TechWomen100: What happened next for Victoria Riess

What happened next for Victoria Riess?

In this ongoing series, we speak to our winners about life after winning a TechWomen100 Award.

Now in their sixth year, the TechWomen100 Awards recognise and celebrate the achievements of women in tech – the emerging tech talent and role models for the future.

We spoke with Victoria Riess, who won a TechWomen100 Award in 2021.

Victoria Riess

Victoria is a Senior Strategy Leader of McKinsey Digital, Cambridge MBA, and award-winning Women in Tech.

She has a track record as a women leader in tech and over twelve years of leadership experience in general management, digital strategy consulting, and corporate strategy on digital transformation. She leads digital strategy consulting programs across the EMEA region in IT and fintech as well as intelligent transportation. She has experience in business strategy, digital transformation, Cloud DevOps Engineering, data science, and leadership.

Victoria is a sound Senior Strategy Leader in technology and builds and leads digital functions with high performing global teams. She demonstrates senior leadership in technology by combining business acumen with innovative strategies to attract and develop top talent. She is a known thought leader in technology, showcasing value of digital capabilities to a wider audience. She collaborates with different senior stakeholders to enable digital experience across my organisations, digital ecosystems, and services and products. She encourages digital innovation to further positive impact solutions, sustainable practices (ESG), and a more inclusive working environment for Women in Tech.

How did you feel when it was announced that you’d won a TechWomen100 award?

When it was announced that I had won the TechWomen100 award, I felt very honoured to receive this prestigious Women in Tech award from Goldman Sachs. I was humbled that my achievements in demonstrating a clear passion for technology, paying it forward and helping other Women in Tech were recognised.

A dream came true!

I was also grateful to receive this award alongside big (female) thinkers in the tech industry.

Please tell us what has happened in your career since winning the TechWomen100 award?

Since winning the TechWomen100 award, I developed into a sound Senior Strategy Leader in technology by being promoted into a senior role at McKinsey Digital, building and leading digital functions with high performing global teams. I demonstrated senior leadership in technology, combining business acumen with innovative strategies to attract and develop top talent. I developed into a known thought leader in technology by being invited to over five speaking engagements with more than 15,100 attendees, showcasing the value of digital capabilities to a wider audience. I collaborated with different senior stakeholders to enable the digital experience across my organisations, their digital ecosystems, and services and products. I encouraged digital innovation to further positive impact solutions, sustainable practices (ESG), and a more inclusive working environment for women in tech. Besides the TechWomen100 award, I was recognised with the prestigious WomenTech Global Awards by the WomenTech Network, three-times shortlisted as Women in Tech Award Finalist, and nine-times nominated for the Women’s Leadership Awards.

What advice would you give to someone else going through the award’s process?

Just go for it!

Overcome your imposter syndrome and ask your sponsors and mentors to nominate you – or simply nominate yourself.

Then, when you are “in”, always remember “It takes a village…” So connect to your entire community of women champions and allies to continuously promote and inspire you to reach your full potential in the tech industry – and simply ask them to vote for you!

What tips would you give to our other members to enhance their careers?

I have learned to achieve success as women within a senior role in the technology industry and display qualities of dynamism and daring in my working life. So my tip, which I would give to your other members to enhance their careers, is that they should use their leadership skills beyond their own career such as I did by serving on boards of other tech organisations and my involvement with furthering the interests of women in the technology industry.

Be bold, think big, impact the world, and fail forward fast!

I am now considered a role model in the technology industry and am making a significant impact by driving change across the tech industry.

TechWomen100 Awards Logo 2022

TechWomen100

Nominations now open!

The TechWomen100 awards are the first of their kind to focus solely on the female tech talent pipeline and recognise the impact of champions, companies and networks that are leading the way. Nominations are open via the WeAreTechWomen website until 12 August 2022.

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TechWomen100 What happened next - 800x600 - Sophie Hebdidge

TechWomen100: What happened next for Sophie Hebdidge

What happened next for Sophie Hebdidge?

In this ongoing series, we speak to our winners about life after winning a TechWomen100 Award.

Now in their sixth year, the TechWomen100 Awards recognise and celebrate the achievements of women in tech – the emerging tech talent and role models for the future.

We spoke with Sophie Hebdidge, who won a TechWomen100 Award in 2021.

Sophie Hebdidge

Sophie Hebdidge is the Academy Director and CTO at futureproof, a technology training company which supports diverse talent in forging a tech career through comprehensive training, deployment, and ongoing support.

She is also the founder of Techniclarity, which gives female founders the tech know-how they need to lead their start-ups. Sophie began her career at Barclays as a business analyst, before moving on to develop some of the world’s leading coding communities in London and New York. She is also a serial founder and CTO, notably developing voicebots which equip teenage girls with the skills they need to manage their own mental health.

Whether facilitating an advanced Python course or educating senior leaders on cybersecurity, Sophie is deeply passionate about helping women create and understand technology.

How did you feel when it was announced that you’d won a TechWomen100 award?

I couldn’t quite believe it and was even more excited when the physical award came in the post, I’ve never had anything like that happen before! I’ve worked for nearly all of my career to support and encourage women into tech and I felt really proud to be recognised for this work.

Please tell us what has happened in your career since winning the TechWomen100 award?

Since my award futureproof has gone on to scale up quite rapidly, we’re now training 3x more people than we were last year and have won numerous more awards including Best Small Employer from the Women in Tech Awards.

What advice would you give to someone else going through the award’s process?

Your work will speak for itself, just keep doing amazing work and it will be recognised.

Also don’t be ashamed to shout about the fact that you are nominated and you want people to vote for you!

What tips would you give to our other members to enhance their careers? 

Focus on what motivates you and keep trying to do work that makes a difference.

TechWomen100 Awards Logo 2022

TechWomen100

Nominations now open!

The TechWomen100 awards are the first of their kind to focus solely on the female tech talent pipeline and recognise the impact of champions, companies and networks that are leading the way. Nominations are open via the WeAreTechWomen website until 12 August 2022.

NOMINATE NOW

TechWomen100 What happened next - 800x600 - Sara Hidayatullah

TechWomen100: What happened next for Sara Hidayatullah

What happened next for Sara Hidayatullah?

In this ongoing series, we speak to our winners about life after winning a TechWomen100 Award.

Now in their sixth year, the TechWomen100 Awards recognise and celebrate the achievements of women in tech – the emerging tech talent and role models for the future.

We spoke with Sara Hidayatullah, who won a TechWomen100 Award in 2021.

Sara Hidayatullah

Originally from Karachi, Pakistan, Sara Hidayatullah studied economics at the University of California, Berkeley, before taking a job with Applied Predictive Technologies (now owned by Mastercard) that brought her to London.

Within Mastercard, Sara is an expert at optimising business innovation and experimentation for customers using the Test & Learn software. Sara leads teams of analytics consultants and data engineers to deliver short-term analytics projects and long-term software-as-a-service engagements to 20+ clients across multiple industries throughout Europe.

In her spare time, Sara partnered with Mastercard’s philanthropic hub, the Center for Inclusive Growth, to think about how the Center can use Mastercard’s assets to drive social impact. Through this partnership, Sara has led multiple pro bono projects with charities and developed tools for public sector decision making, like the Inclusive Growth Score, a measurement for objectively assessing communities and their needs, a particularly prescient tool as the UK implements their Levelling Up agenda to prioritise neighbourhoods in need of investment.

Starting this fall, Sara will be pursuing a Master’s in Public Policy at Georgetown University (in Washington, DC) where she has been chosen as a McCourt Scholar, and will receive a full merit scholarship based on her leadership potential and background in social impact.

How did you feel when it was announced that you’d won a TechWomen100 award?

I was elated! I felt very proud of myself and grateful to my wonderful manager who nominated me and encouraged me to apply. I felt especially proud to be nominated amongst such amazing and inspiring women in technology from all different backgrounds!

Please tell us what has happened in your career since winning the TechWomen100 award?

Winning the award inspired me to formally pursue my passion for social impact and apply for a Masters in Public Policy. I am excited to share that I will be starting a two-year MPP program at Georgetown University (in Washington, DC) this fall as a McCourt Scholar with a full merit scholarship.

The award encouraged me to apply for the scholarship and was called out as a big plus on my application!

What advice would you give to someone else going through the award’s process?

My advice would be to create a cohesive story and stick to it. As ambitious women, most of us are juggling many different activities (e.g. volunteering, leading organisations, blogging, courses) in addition to our day job that may not always have a common theme. Find the common thread and stitch together your experiences to create a strong personal story that effectively shows who you are to the judges!

What tips would you give to our other members to enhance their careers? 

My advice would be to figure out how you can use your skills/expertise outside of your day job. For e.g. if you’re a consultant, can you work on projects outside of your team to get more exposure to the company? Can you use the same skills to help charities further their mission? This will enhance your network and increase your exposure to new opportunities. Oftentimes we stay on the same career path because we haven’t tried anything different – this is your chance to do that in the safest way possible!

My other advice is to just go for it (easier said than done!). I hear so many women including myself saying no to exciting, new opportunities because they are outside of our comfort zone or aren’t “safe”. Over the years, I have found that the most fulfilling opportunities were the ones that seemed scariest.

Always repeat to yourself: someone’s going to do it, why shouldn’t it be you?

TechWomen100 Awards Logo 2022

TechWomen100

Nominations now open!

The TechWomen100 awards are the first of their kind to focus solely on the female tech talent pipeline and recognise the impact of champions, companies and networks that are leading the way. Nominations are open via the WeAreTechWomen website until 12 August 2022.

NOMINATE NOW

TechWomen100: What happened next for Neha Rajesh

What happened next for Neha Rajesh?

In this ongoing series, we speak to our winners about life after winning a TechWomen100 Award.

Now in their sixth year, the TechWomen100 Awards recognise and celebrate the achievements of women in tech – the emerging tech talent and role models for the future.

We spoke with Neha Rajesh, who won a TechWomen100 Award in 2021.

Neha Rajesh

Knowing that technology has the power to create a better and more inclusive world for every human is what gets me out of bed every morning.

I work at Google, and my goal is to help small and large businesses in EMEA unleash the power of cloud technology through Chrome Enterprise. I entered the world of technology marketing 10 years ago with a ‘non-technical’ background, and within months, I was running our marketing efforts in niche technology areas such as Semantic Modelling, Insurance Telematics and Robotic Process Automation. In my previous role at Temenos, a banking software company, I was responsible for growth marketing and driving adoption of cloud-native and AI-driven software that makes banking better for over a Billion people worldwide.

Born in India and immigrating to the UK at the age of 20, I realized the value of having strong mentors and coaches in life who can unlock opportunities for young women in technology. I launched my own organization, WonderWoman to connect girls with women mentors in the tech space to support each other on their journeys in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. I am a regular speaker at schools around the UK for Year 12 to 14 students, to empower and inspire the next generation of female leaders. I am also an ambassador for ‘I Can Be’ and run school visits for girls aged 7–8 from underprivileged backgrounds to introduce them to the world of work. My mission is to open as many doors as possible for women and I take every opportunity within my sphere of work or in a personal capacity to drive this change.

How did you feel when it was announced that you’d won a TechWomen100 award?

I was absolutely honoured and humbled to be announced as a winner. The women on this list are just phenomenal and true superheroes! Getting to know them and their stories over the TechWomen100 journey instils confidence in me that if we can all shout loud enough and push for change, we can foster inclusivity in tech. Each one of these women has shared a personal story on breaking down barriers across their childhood and careers. I think we are on a mission to drive representation in the tech sector and I am thrilled to be on this journey with fellow Changemakers!

Please tell us what has happened in your career since winning the TechWomen100 award?

The award was great validation that I am on the right path and doing the right things to support women in my network. I am doing more and more school and college talks to encourage future women leaders to pursue a career in technology. I have grown my mentoring platform, WonderWoman, and have had the chance to build an awesome network of like-minded women. This award has also boosted my profile and I have been recognised across other platforms like the ‘Woman who Achieves’ program. The highlight of my year so far is that I won the Platinum Champion Award in honour of Her Majesty The Queen and her 70 years of service. The awards were launched by the Royal Voluntary Service together with HRH The Duchess of Cornwall to recognise volunteers across Great Britain. I was also inspired to look at other DEI forums and became a member of Forbes The Culture whose mission is to create equitable pathways for leaders of colour who are impacting culture globally to connect, collaborate and change.

More than anything, I look forward to amplifying the TechWomen100 initiative that really brings together the most amazing female talent, and I will be nominating some superstars for an award this year.

What advice would you give to someone else going through the award’s process? 

Ultimately it’s not about winning or losing. I am so grateful to be shortlisted for awards, but I don’t pursue the trophy (although the TechWomen100 trophy is a stunning one 🤩). I pursue the opportunity – the opportunity of meeting like-minded women, bonding over our common goals, discovering career and growth opportunities just over coffee chats!

Just be relaxed, be yourself and do it because you care about the mission and legacy you want to leave behind.

What tips would you give to our other members to enhance their careers?

Find a mentor! The most priceless career moves I’ve had are due to relationships I’ve built with mentors and champions over my career. Find your cheerleader who is going to push you forward but also be brutally honest with you, and cherish that relationship! Some mentors are for life 🙂

TechWomen100 Awards Logo 2022

TechWomen100

Nominations now open!

The TechWomen100 awards are the first of their kind to focus solely on the female tech talent pipeline and recognise the impact of champions, companies and networks that are leading the way. Nominations are open via the WeAreTechWomen website until 12 August 2022.

NOMINATE NOW

TechWomen100: What happened next for Katie McMillan

What happened next for Katie McMillan?

In this ongoing series, we speak to our winners about life after winning a TechWomen100 Award.

Now in their sixth year, the TechWomen100 Awards recognise and celebrate the achievements of women in tech – the emerging tech talent and role models for the future.

We spoke with Katie McMillan, who won a TechWomen100 Award in 2021.

Katie McMillan

My role is an Information Security Manager at Agilisys Ltd.

I have a real passion for my role, which is great as I’ve always professed, we spend so much time working, I’d much prefer to work doing something that I enjoy with like-minded people. If ever I get that dreaded Sunday night feeling, I would know it was time to move on.

My personality lends me to working well with others. I am a fixer and find helping others a natural trait of mine. So much so, my family were convinced I’d end up in a caring profession. As it happened, I found IT was where I felt most at home. I find my attitude and drive to fix problems, identify gaps and help others works as an advantage in this sector, especially security. I think there is a caring aspect to my role and as the Infosec Manager for the NHS I can protect systems and data for millions of people.

My career started with less focus on strategy and more a mixture of ‘give it a go’ and sheer determination. I started in IT where many of us did, working on a helpdesk and fixing peoples machines. I like to challenge myself and quickly became ambitious. I worked in my own time to learn the infrastructure, how it worked, and how to fix it. I moved into management where I managed IT estates within college and University settings. I led the team, managed a portfolio of projects, developed strategy, and plugged security gaps which had been glaringly open for several years. This all led me on the path to discovering my passion for infosec.

The key driver within my career is the ambition to succeed. I have been offered a lot of wonderful opportunities. Every one of these I have worked hard and put all my effort into achieving both my aspirations and best results for the customer. My focus will always be to provide the best service I can.

I am a mentor for women in tech through mentorXchange. This gives me the opportunity to mentor women who are starting out on their career journey. I am an enterprise advisor for CIPD where I will be matched with and work alongside a school to enhance their careers programme.

How did you feel when it was announced that you’d won a TechWomen100 award?

When I found out I had won a TechWomen100 award I was amazed. I am my biggest critic in the most part and actually winning an award for something just wasn’t on my radar. I was humbled and also felt like I was in very good company with the other 99 winners. What a powerhouse of strong successful women!

Please tell us what has happened in your career since winning the TechWomen100 award?

My career has progressed a lot since winning the award. Internally it was featured on our teams channels, intranet, company LinkedIn process. I was invited to take part in a panel for international womens day. I was promoted to a lead role and more recently have passed my CISSP exam. I’ve continued to mentor women at the beginning of their journey into tech, which makes me feel I am giving back and using my experiences for good.

What advice would you give to someone else going through the award’s process?

Believe your own hype.

You deserve to win this award because otherwise you wouldn’t have been nominated.

Remember all your achievements and shout them from the rooftops. You never know who you might be inspiring.

What tips would you give to our other members to enhance their careers? 

I would suggest drawing on the experiences of the strong women around you, both in person or remotely. I was lucky enough to have some great supporters. Also, look at getting into a mentoring programme and network with like minded people through in person sessions or through LinkedIn.

TechWomen100 Awards Logo 2022

TechWomen100

Nominations now open!

The TechWomen100 awards are the first of their kind to focus solely on the female tech talent pipeline and recognise the impact of champions, companies and networks that are leading the way. Nominations are open via the WeAreTechWomen website until 12 August 2022.

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TechWomen100: What happened next for Saima Sadiq

What happened next for Saima Sadiq?

In this ongoing series, we speak to our winners about life after winning a TechWomen100 Award.

Now in their sixth year, the TechWomen100 Awards recognise and celebrate the achievements of women in tech – the emerging tech talent and role models for the future.

We spoke with Saima Sadiq, who won a TechWomen100 Award in 2021.

Saima Sadiq

I started my technology career fresh out of college as a young 19 year old helping Sky TV customers with their technical equipment issues (and then broadband and mobile technical support when these products came along).

I’ve worked in a variety of roles with increasing levels of responsibility and escalation resolution. In 2012 I moved in to project management and became responsible for some of Sky’s high profile and strategic projects which gave be an opening and insight into a whole different world of technology. This is when I truly became involved in STEM and the growth opportunities within this field for women. Until this point, not only did I not have much awareness of STEM and what this meant but also what this could mean in terms of a long term fulfilling career. 2017, following the e birth of my youngest son at the age of 35 years old I decided to take the leap after 18 years at Sky TV and branch out in to the technology world and took up a position as Senior Program Manager at Mastercard Payment Gateway Services and have never looked back. Payments technology is a fascinating field that we all take for granted but learning and growing my knowledge in this field has really opened my eyes and ignited a new passion in my life. I am part of the group that work with young primary school aged girls as part of the Girls4Tech program to tech them about STEM and the job and career opportunities that are open to them. I now work as the Lead Technical Program Manager for MPGS in Europe leading a high performing team of Technical Program Managers delivering strategic business change working closely with our Product and Engineering partner teams.

How did you feel when it was announced that you’d won a TechWomen100 award?

I was extremely proud and truly humbled to have won the TechWomen100 award. I have worked extremely hard in my career and have taken many falls along the way but always have risen stronger and more motivated and determined to succeed. 2019, 2020 and 2021 were extremely difficult years for me on both a professional and personal level so to have received this award was the ultimate recognition of hard work and commitment.

Please tell us what has happened in your career since winning the TechWomen100 award?

Since winning the TechWomen100 award, I have been called out in Mastercard’s Global and European and local colleague town halls, I have featured on our internal bulletin board, Mastercard HUB as well as Linkedin. I was fortunate enough to work with our comms and marketing team to have recorded a podcast which was published and shared on the Mastercard network and on socials such as our twitter, Facebook and Linkedin pages. In terms of my career, support from my immediate team and wider Mastercard payment gateway team has been phenomenal. I exceeded expectation and goals for my year end performance review and got really positive feedback and results and to top off what was a whirlwind end to and amazing year, I also secured an internal promotion to Director, Program Management with my new role still evolving but moving toward an amazing future!

What advice would you give to someone else going through the award’s process?

You will get back in life what you are willing to put in so believe in yourself – you are truly awesome! Winning is amazing but even to be recognised is a sign that you ARE making a difference. Keep it up and keep on shining!

What tips would you give to our other members to enhance their careers?

Build your network but stay true to yourself, bring your most true, authentic and confident self to work every single day. Persevere and don’t be shy to talk to your boss about where you want to go in your career.

Step out of your comfort zone but most importantly, own your own career.

Nobody owes it to you to help you succeed – you however owe it to yourself to go out there and get it!

TechWomen100 Awards Logo 2022

TechWomen100

Nominations now open!

The TechWomen100 awards are the first of their kind to focus solely on the female tech talent pipeline and recognise the impact of champions, companies and networks that are leading the way. Nominations are open via the WeAreTechWomen website until 12 August 2022.

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Isabel Chapman - TechWomen100 What happened next - 800x600 (2)

TechWomen100: What happened next for Isabel Chapman

What happened next for Isabel Chapman?

In this ongoing series, we speak to our winners about life after winning a TechWomen100 Award.

Now in their fifth year, the TechWomen100 Awards recognise and celebrate the achievements of women in tech – the emerging tech talent and role models for the future.

We spoke with Isabel Chapman, who won a TechWomen100 Award in 2019.

Isabel Chapman

Isabel is a communications expert who has worked with young people, parents and disadvantaged, isolated communities for the last twelve years in various settings, including the Criminal Justice System, Peabody Housing Association, the Charity Sector and inner-city schools and estates.

Isabel has extensive experience and specialises in increasing access to opportunities through technology, co-creation of technology tools, demystifying technology, platforming the voices and experiences of those who are often forgotten and hard to reach.

Isabel has expertise in managing multi-stakeholders campaigns and programmes across the private and public sectors, focusing on social change, inequality and youth violence. In 2013 Isabel managed and coordinated The Oii My Size Campaign, which was awarded the Nominet Award for ‘Making the Internet a Safer Place.’ The Oii My Size campaign is an educational, youth-led website about the consequences and legalities of sexting. Isabel worked with The Pixel Parlour to support the campaigners to harness the power of technology to create social change, and empower young people with knowledge about the sharing of sexual images and information about a relatively new social issue. In 2013, in line with the change in the law to include 16 and 17 year old in the Domestic Abuse Victim definition, Isabel worked with Peabody Domestic Abuse lead and the Oii My Size group again to create a young person-specific webpage ‘What Is Normal?’ on the website, to allow young people to access reliable information online about Relationships and Domestic Abuse.

How did you feel when it was announced that you’d won a TechWomen100 award?

I was delighted and quite surprised to have been announced in the TechWomen100 award, to be honest. It was a huge accolade and a real sign of encouragement that I might not have had a conventional path into it, but that I do in fact work in Tech. The TechWomen100 Awards evening was one of the most amazing evenings, especially considering the next few months have been followed by the lockdown.

Please tell us what has happened in your career since winning the TechWomen100 award?

At the start of the lockdown in March 2020, along with Alex Baker who I support at Battersea Power Station with the Education Programme across Wandsworth (usually for one day a week pre-lockdown), we set up Power To Connect and I became a Director of the initiative, which has now been developed into a Community Interest Company. This was a direct response to the COVID19 Pandemic, where local schools shared with us that they were previously unaware of how many of their pupils and families were without laptops, tablets and wifi at home. This was a huge barrier for families and schools trying to engage in homeschooling across the lockdown.

In partnership, Wandsworth Council and Battersea Power Station launched the Power to Connect initiative. With a two-pronged approach, the project tackles digital poverty through data vouchers and laptops. The first was for Battersea Power Station Foundation to make a donation of £10,000 towards £10 data top-up vouchers for families on Pay As You Go systems on their mobile phones. The donation was made to the Council’s school meal voucher app as we identified most of the families struggling with access to data were also recipients of free school meals.

The second approach has been the campaign to encourage donations of old, working laptops/tablets. Launched in April 2020, Power to Connect has collected over 300 devices from local members of the community, refurbished them as Google Chromebooks and donated them to 36 local schools, guided by the Council’s Free School Meals Deprivation Data. Schools identify who the vulnerable families are who would benefit most from a laptop, and provide the devices for the families to keep, to support homeschooling.

Local volunteers were recruited via Social Media and through local community partners. Volunteers have been sought to provide IT specialism in repurposing the donated computers at the ROSE Community Club in Nine Elms, cleaning and checking devices; delivery/collection of the devices from the donors from across London, and delivering updated devices to schools and community groups.

  • 332 Devices donated to Power To Connect in total
  • 100 Donated by Corporate Partners
  • 80 Donated by Local Councils
  • 300 Updated Chromebook Devices delivered to Schools and Community Organisations since April 2020 in Wandsworth
  • 259 Laptops / 41 Tablets  / 2 iMAC Desktops / 8 iPhones all donated locally
  • 185 Devices Delivered to 36 schools
  • 48 Volunteers Signed Up as IT, Logistics and Transport Volunteers
  • 4 community organisations in Wandsworth benefitted – FAST London, Carney’s Community, Katherine Low Settlement and Waste Not Want Not (food poverty programme). Devices that are unable to be updated have been recycled locally

My role has been to oversee the setup and delivery of Power To Connect, coordinating all donations, volunteers and distribution of the Chromebook laptops. The TechWomen100 Award absolutely gave me the confidence to put myself forward as one of the founders and directors of Power To Connect. Access to laptops and data for families has been a passion of mine since working at #techmums; Power To Connect has allowed me to hopefully make a lasting impact on local families during the pandemic.

I have also helped to move Battersea Power Station Community Choir onto Zoom, helping over 70 choir members with rehearsing online and using Zoom for the first time, hosting virtual training sessions, as well as coordinating a top-secret project, where the choir remotely recorded a song with Sting, who lives at the Power Station. The choir meeting Sting and the song can be found here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hB8i2Kt9eaY / https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MydHpXq-Quo

At the end of February 2020, I was invited to speak at the University of Leeds, where I studied to talk about the TechWomen100 Award and being self-employed in the creative industries.

What advice would you give to someone else going through the award’s process?

My advice would be to put yourself forward, this process has taught me how the outdated and fixed ideas people have in their minds about what the Tech Sector and who works in it, needs to be challenged to make it more accessible for a diverse range of people.

Since the start of my career developing apps, websites and online campaigns with young people, I did not identify as working in Tech, even though Digital Innovation was a core part of all of my work.

I’d met some amazing mentors through the TechWomen100 process and I feel as if this is just the beginning for a really exciting part of my career, so I am very grateful to WeAreTheCity for the opportunity.

What tips would you give to our other members to enhance their careers? 

I think opportunities often evolve, they don’t arrive at your door fully formed. Events, courses, coffees, small pieces of work, or even an email, can lead to new opportunities, so where you can, put yourself out there. A lot of people like to talk a lot, but I prefer to get on and do things, making things happen quickly and responding to need. I’ve found being open-minded, reliable and working hard usually leads to new opportunities.

TechWomen100 Awards Logo 2022

TechWomen100

Nominations open on 01 July 2022

The TechWomen100 awards are the first of their kind to focus solely on the female tech talent pipeline and recognise the impact of champions, companies and networks that are leading the way. Nominations open via the WeAreTechWomen website on 01 July 2022!

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Lisa Ventura - TechWomen100 What happened next - 800x600 (3)

TechWomen100: What happened next for Lisa Ventura

What happened next for Lisa Ventura?

In this ongoing series, we speak to our winners about life after winning a TechWomen100 Award.

Now in their fifth year, the TechWomen100 Awards recognise and celebrate the achievements of women in tech – the emerging tech talent and role models for the future.

We spoke with Lisa Ventura, who won a TechWomen100 Award in 2019.

Lisa Ventura

Lisa Ventura is an award-winning Cyber Security awareness consultant and is the CEO and Founder of the UK Cyber Security Association (UKCSA), a membership association that is dedicated to individuals and companies who actively work in cyber security in the UK.

She has over 10 years’ experience in the cyber security industry and is passionate about raising awareness of being more cyber aware in business to help prevent cyber-attacks and cyber fraud. She is a thought leader, author and keynote speaker and has been published in various publications globally. Lisa is also an advocate for women in cyber security, the cyber skills gap and neurodiversity.

How did you feel when it was announced that you’d won a TechWomen100 award?

I was in total shock when it was announced that I had won a TechWomen100 award, I couldn’t believe it! I was so honoured to win this award and to be alongside so many other amazing women in the technology industry. It was a dream come true! I was so very sorry not to be able to make the ceremony and meet everyone, my father was in ill health at the time and I couldn’t leave him – I so wish I could have been there to meet all the other amazing and inspiring women who won a TechWomen100 award.

Please tell us what has happened in your career since winning the TechWomen100 award?

Since winning my award I have been included in SC Magazine’s 50 most influential women in cyber security list, as well as shortlisted for the Inspiration Award for the Network Computing Magazine awards. Unfortunately, these awards have been postponed to October due to COVID-19. I was also due to take part as a speaker at various conferences and events including the Cloud and Cyber Expo, the Identity and Think Management Summit and Think Partners Cyber Security for Government event, but all these were postponed due to COVID-19. I have however moved to doing more webinars and speaking online, although it is not the same as the energy you get from being in a room full of inspiring and engaging people. The UK Cyber Security Association is going from strength to strength, and my first book “The Rise of the Cyber Women” is due to be published this year.

What advice would you give to someone else going through the award’s process?

Enjoy the process and if you do win, enjoy that too! I was so humbled proud and honoured to win my award, it now has pride of place on my mantlepiece.

What tips would you give to our other members to enhance their careers?

Fortune favours the bold is one of my favourite sayings – never be afraid to ask for what you want, whether it is a promotion, pay rise or more flexible working hours. What is the worst that can happen, your employer says no, and if you don’t ask you don’t get. Be bold, be brave and be the very best version of yourself.

TechWomen100 Awards Logo 2022

TechWomen100

Nominations open on 01 July 2022

The TechWomen100 awards are the first of their kind to focus solely on the female tech talent pipeline and recognise the impact of champions, companies and networks that are leading the way. Nominations open via the WeAreTechWomen website on 01 July 2022!

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Ivana Skerlikova - TechWomen100 What happened next - 800x600 (4)

TechWomen100: What happened next for Ivana Skerlikova

What happened next for Ivana Skerlikova?

In this ongoing series, we speak to our winners about life after winning a TechWomen100 Award.

Now in their fifth year, the TechWomen100 Awards recognise and celebrate the achievements of women in tech – the emerging tech talent and role models for the future.

We spoke with Ivana Skerlikova, who won a TechWomen100 Award in 2020.

Ivana Skerlikova

Ivana Skerlikova is a recent winner of the Tech Women Award and the Rising Star Award in IT Category.

Her passion for technology started when she was 8 years old and got her first computer – it was love at first sight! Since then Ivana has pursued a career in IT with a strong background in green tech, delivery, sales enablement, and talent management.

Her favourite motto is ”in life be a warrior, not a worrier” so she decided to join the fight against climate change. She launched the Atos Green Network in 2018 to connect like minded people and use technology to drive positive sustainable change while also collaborating with environmental charities to share best practices to protect our oceans, lands, and natural habitats.

In addition, Ivana runs an annual tech-talk competition Atos X (over 12,000 global attendees) that aims to accelerate Digital Learning and Innovation and also develop junior talents working in the ICT sector. In her spare time, she is a Mental Health First Aider for fellow colleagues, supports STEM and D&I initiatives, and also mentors an inmate in one of London’s prisons through the ANTZ Junction.

How did you feel when it was announced that you’d won a TechWomen100 award?

Surprisingly, my first thought was a negative one – I felt that this is not deserved that there are so many much more incredible women and men out there. Yes, you may recognise this thinking as ‘the imposter syndrome’’. My second thought was more in a form of a happy dance I performed in the middle of the living room 😊. And after that I felt on the top of the world (and immediately texted this great news to my family and supportive colleagues)!

Please tell us what has happened in your career since winning the TechWomen100 award?

I have been invited to give a presentation during the Tech Women Conference where I talked about how green technology can accelerate our journey to suitability and Net Zero. I have been super scared to do this but getting outside of your comfort zone is exactly what Tech Women 100 is all about!

I have landed my dream job and moved from healthcare into the sustainability field.

I have also been promoted and moved to a director level role, working as the Global Decarbonization Director (and I absolutely LOVE my new role!)

I am now doing mentoring for other women in our UK&I organisation and also for some students from my high school back in Slovakia, encouraging more women into the tech industry.

What advice would you give to someone else going through the award’s process?

Believe in yourself and don’t be afraid to share your successes; you should own them and be proud of all your hard work.

What tips would you give to our other members to enhance their careers? 

TechWomen100 is a great way to connect with other amazing like-minded professionals. Make sure you add them on your LinkedIn (yes, it takes a bit of time to add 100 people 😃 ) and reach out to them for a virtual coffee. You will get out of the process as much as you put in, so do not waste this great opportunity for personal growth, development and networking.

 

TechWomen100 Awards Logo 2022

TechWomen100

Nominations open on 01 July 2022

The TechWomen100 awards are the first of their kind to focus solely on the female tech talent pipeline and recognise the impact of champions, companies and networks that are leading the way. Nominations open via the WeAreTechWomen website on 01 July 2022!

FIND OUT MORE

TechWomen100: What happened next for Rachel Pattinson

What happened next for Rachel Pattinson?

In this ongoing series, we speak to our winners about life after winning a TechWomen100 Award.

Now in their fifth year, the TechWomen100 Awards recognise and celebrate the achievements of women in tech – the emerging tech talent and role models for the future.

We spoke with Rachel Pattinson, who won a TechWomen100 Award in 2020.

Rachel Pattinson

I manage digital research and social innovation programmes at Newcastle University, as part of Open Lab, a world-leading research group in interaction design and ubiquitous computing.

I’m responsible for managing the strategic management and operational delivery of the EPSRC-funded Centre for Doctoral Training in Digital Civics (£4.7million) and the Digital Economy Research Centre (£4million). These programmes are training and supporting researchers to explore how emerging digital technologies can promote civic engagement. From 2020, I will also be managing Newcastle University and Northumbria University’s Centre for Digital Citizens (EPSRC: £3.7million), co-ordinating the programme’s network of over 30 partners.

Outside of my paid employment, I am a director and trustee of award-winning theatre company, Mortal Fools.

I moved into a technology role in 2019. Working on interdisciplinary digital programmes connects with my broader professional interests in education, arts and culture, libraries and information, charities, and working with children and young people. I am interested in exploring how technology is changing the way we live, and how we can change technology.

How did you feel when it was announced that you’d won a TechWomen100 award?

Surprised, and completely delighted! It was amazing to become a TechWomen100 winner after less than 18 months of working in a digital role. It’s an honour to be part of the TechWomen100 community, which includes so many incredible women working in the technology sector.

Please tell us what has happened in your career since winning the TechWomen100 award?

Well, quite a bit!

When I won the TechWomen100 award, I was just starting a Senior Leader Degree Apprenticeship and MSc with Newcastle University Business School. I’ve now completed the first year, and I’m on track to complete the programme in late 2022.

I also started managing a new digital programme at Newcastle University: the EPSRC Centre for Digital Citizens, a Next Stage Digital Economy Centre. Since the TechWomen100 awards, I successfully managed the launch of the programme and our initial work with partners – engaging around 70 different organisations.

I definitely think winning the award raised my professional profile. I was featured in blogs and social media posts by my employer, Newcastle University. I’ve been included in coverage by the BBC, Computing, and regional press too.

Winning the award also really made me think about gender equality in tech. I wrote a blog post exploring how we can support women in academic computing roles, and I also chaired a panel at the Dynamo North East conference on whether we need a regional women in tech network.

What advice would you give to someone else going through the award’s process?

Go for it! I never thought I’d win – but it’s really helped my confidence.

What tips would you give to our other members to enhance their careers? 

Talk to people, take risks, and follow your interests.

TechWomen100 Awards Logo 2022

TechWomen100

Nominations open on 01 July 2022

The TechWomen100 awards are the first of their kind to focus solely on the female tech talent pipeline and recognise the impact of champions, companies and networks that are leading the way. Nominations open via the WeAreTechWomen website on 01 July 2022!

FIND OUT MORE