WeAreTechWomen logo 12020 is nearly over and to celebrate the year gone by, WeAreTechWomen is taking a look back at our top moments.

Due to the Coronavirus pandemic, this year we had to adapt and innovate to host some of events, conferences and awards virtually. We wouldn’t have been able to achieve this without our supporters. We would like to extend our sincere thanks to everyone who has supported us this year. A huge thank you to our clients, sponsors, speakers, judges, partners, champions, advocates and above all, our community. We look forward to supporting you and your progression in 2021.

Check out what happened during our 2020 below:

Images from the We Are Tech 100 Awards, QE II Centre London 23Jan2020

January

We started January off with a bang, by celebrating our 2019 TechWomen100 winners at our award’s ceremony at the iconic Queen Elizabeth II Centre, Westminster, London.

Winners, sponsors, judges and guests celebrated and enjoyed a three-course meal and champagne reception to toast the TechWomen100 finalists’ achievements. The evening was facilitated by Julia Streets, Founder, Streets Consulting and attendees were welcomed by Vanessa Vallely OBE, Managing Director, WeAreTheCity; headline sponsors, Karin Rossi, J.P. Morgan; and our education partners, Professor Sue Black OBE, Professor of Computer Science & Technology Evangelist, Speaker & Author and Professor Gordon Love, Durham University.

View the pictures from the night here.

March

The COVID-19 virus has, and will no doubt continue to have a significant impact in terms of how we all continue to work.

In the light of these challenges, we have had to adapt and innovate in order to find our new normal. This may have meant working from home, eliminating travel, managing work and family as well as learning how to continue to operate, albeit in a virtual world.

As a direct influence of the COVID-19 pandemic, WeAreTechWomen, together with our sister site, WeAreTheCity, launched WeAreVirtual in March, to offer our support to keep you engaged and inspired over the coming months.

WeAreVirtual offered free weekly skills webinars. This ‘pay it forward’ initiative has been kindly supported and shaped by over 45 amazing speakers and companies, who have all pledged to share their expertise.

Thanks to our speakers, we have and will cover a myriad of topics relating to both work and life. You can watch our previous webinars on playback or discover our upcoming ones here.

We also celebrated International Women’s Day on 08 March.

Each year International Women’s Day (IWD) is celebrated on March 8, with the first day being held in 1911. Thousands of events occur to mark the economic, political and social achievements of women. Organisations, governments, charities, educational institutions, women’s groups, corporations and the media celebrate the day.

This year’s theme was #EachForEqual – which looked to celebrate women’s achievements, to raise awareness against bias and to take action for equality.

To celebrate International Women’s Day, we asked over 70 women in tech, from across all backgrounds, ethnicity and ages, to tell us what exactly the day means to them. You can find out what they thought here.

WeAreVirtual, WeAreTechWomen, Dell Technologies webinars 1April

In April, in light of the pandemic, we announced that our annual WeAreTechWomen conference was going virtual!

For the past four years, WeAreTechWomen have hosted their flagship annual conference in London. This event has enabled over 2,500 women to network with their peers and learn about what is innovating and disrupting the tech industry.

Disrupt. Innovate. Lead wasn’t like any other virtual event you may have experienced in the past. We used a state-of-the-art platform to bring you four stages of inspiring content from live keynotes, webinars, recorded content, Q&A panels as well as the opportunity to meet some of our speakers and sponsors in our virtual exhibition hall.

WeAreTechWomen & WeAreVirtual, in partnership with Dell Technologies, also introduced a series of free tech webinars.

WeAreVirtual is WeAreTechWomen’s new initiative to pay it forward and support the ongoing development of our community. Together with our sponsors and supporters, we want to bolster your learning by providing more content through our websites and social channels, as well as opportunities to learn and engage online.

With the support of Dell Technologies, we brought you webinars focused on how technology can help you to navigate these uncertain times. Held every three weeks via Zoom, each session was 45 minutes long, full of educational tips and tricks and a Q&A.

You can watch the series on playback here.

WeAreTechWomen conference stats 800x600

June

In June, we held our first virtual WeAreTechWomen conference!

The conference, proudly sponsored and supported by Accenture, BAE Systems, Barclays, Credit Suisse, Dell Technologies, Goldman Sachs, J.P. Morgan, NatWest, Oliver Wyman, OpenFin; PwC; and RBC; saw over 1,000 delegates log on, from across the technology sector and a range of companies including Sky, Aviva, RAF, Finding Ada, Stemettes, Mastercard, Three, Foreign & Commonwealth Office, Shell and Monzo.

The conference consisted of six stages, with over 60 speakers, 20 exhibitors and over 15 Q&A panels. Delegates could shape their own learning as well as revisiting sessions they may have missed, with a 30-day playback.

The morning began with a number of keynotes from inspirational role models in tech, including Jacqueline de Rojas CBE, President, techUK; Dame Stephanie Shirley CH, IT Entrepreneur & Philanthropist; and Edwina Dunn OBE, Chairman, Starcount and Founder, The Female Lead.

July

In July, we gave you another chance to join our WeAreTechWomen conference with a digital pass.

The digital pass enabled you to watch all 72 sessions over a 14-day period. With the ticket, you could access the platform to gain a deeper understanding of over 25 different areas of tech.

Thanks to the help of over 108 global speakers we covered everything from Technology Trends, AI, Cyber, Virtual Reality, Augmented Reality, Robotics, Drones, Internet of Things, Wearables, Agile, DevOps, Fintech, Payments, Sustainability, Entrepreneurship, HealthTech and Diversity & Inclusion, Neurodiversity, Mental Health in Tech, Returnships and Flexible Working.

August

In August, we announced that we were once again looking for nominations for our 2020 TechWomen100 Awards.

Our awards focus solely on women working in tech below director level. We hope that by highlighting the accolades of up-and-coming inspirational female tech talent, we can help to create a new generation of female role models for the industry, and a pipeline of future leaders.

New for this year, we were also excited to introduce a new “Global Award for Achievement” category to our awards to expand our search for global talent. This category was for a female individual who works within the tech industry outside of the UK, whose current position is below director level.

Through the awards, we also recognise a number of senior individuals who are championing up-and-coming women, as well as any organisations that have designed and implemented successful initiatives and programmes in order to attract, retain and develop the female tech talent.

Finally, we applaud the often-voluntary efforts of the women in tech networks that operate across the UK, and again would like to formerly recognise these within our awards.

The 2020 awards were kindly powered by BAE Systems and sponsored by Accenture, Barclays, Credit Suisse, Goldman Sachs, J.P. Morgan, Oliver Wyman and OpenFin

September

September saw WeAreTechWomen launch our She Talks Tech podcast.

She Talks Tech’ brings you stories, lessons and tips from some of the most inspirational women (and men!) in tech.

From robotics and drones, to fintech, neurodiversity and coronavirus apps; these incredible speakers are opening up to give us the latest information on tech in 2020.

Vanessa Valleley OBE, founder of WeAreTheCity and WeAreTechWomen brings you this latest resource to help you rise to the top of the tech industry. Women in tech make up just 17 per cent of the industry in the UK and we want to inspire that to change.

So subscribe, rate the podcast and give it a 5-star review – and keep listening every Wednesday morning for a new episode of ‘She Talks Tech’.

October

In October, we announced our TechWomen100 shortlist.

The shortlist showcased remarkable women within the technology and STEM sector, including Susan Jason, a Principal Systems Engineer and Head of Outreach at In-Space Missions, who led the final test phases of the Faraday-1 commercial rideshare nanosatellite; Charlene Hunter, who founded Coding Black Females, to inspire, provide opportunities and showcase the talents of black women in tech; and Heather Black, who founded Supermums, which helps upskill mums (and dads) back into flexible work in the Salesforce ecosystem.

November

November saw the announcement of our 2020 TechWomen100 winners!

The winners of these awards showcase remarkable women within the technology and STEM sector including 12-year-old Avye Couloute, who, aware of female under-representation in STEM education and careers, founded Girls Into Coding to encourage more female involvement in tech; Susan Jason, a Principal Systems Engineer and Head of Outreach at In-Space Missions, who led the final test phases of the Faraday-1 commercial rideshare nanosatellite; and Heather Black, who founded Supermums, which helps upskill mums (and dads) back into flexible work in the Salesforce ecosystem.

The winners include individuals from leading firms such as the BBC, NatWest, Jaguar Land Rover, IBM, Trainline, Visa, Deloitte, Microsoft, Bank of England and Monzo Bank, amongst many more.

The awards also recognise Champions, Networks and Companies, who are all actively supporting the progression of women in tech and STEM. New for this year, the TechWomen100 awards are also celebrating women in tech from outside the UK, in the Global Award for Achievement category.

WeAreTechWomen also announced their Editor’s Choice winner, June Angelides. Named the 6th Most Influential BAME tech leader by the FT in 2018 and 15th Most Influential Woman in Tech by Computer Weekly in 2018, Angelides is an early stage investor at Samos Investments. Prior to joining the world of venture capital, she founded a social enterprise, Mums in Technology, which was the first child-friendly coding school in the UK.

TechWomen100 Award's CeremonyDecember

We closed the year as we had started in 2020 – by celebrating our TechWomen100 Award winners.

Given the circumstances, the team at WeAreTechWomen had to do things a little differently with our awards, hosting the award’s ceremony virtually.

Over the course of the night, our attendees were congratulated by our sponsors and special guests and we heard from inspirational speakers and entertainers, who all endeavoured to create a truly magically experience.

The event was attended by winners, judges, sponsors and special guests and our winners had the opportunity to network with each other in our interactive breakout rooms. Each winner received a goodie box with their award, complete with champagne, chocolates, books and other treats.

The virtual award’s ceremony was hosted by Julia Streets, CEO, Streets Consulting. Throughout the evening, we were joined by our special guests, IT entrepreneur and philanthropist Dame Stephanie Shirley CH; maker, coder, tech advocate and TechWomen100 winner, Avye Couloute; and live vocal duo, The Vocal Jewels, as our special guests for the 2020 TechWomen100 Award’s Ceremony.