Throughout March, we will be sharing the incredible words of these women and calling on our community to share their stories. We hope you will join us so we can amplify why we should all #ChooseToChallenge for gender equity.
Please share our videos, and contribute by adding your own video to your socials and tagging us in @watc_updates or @watc_wearetechwomen; Insta: Watc_HQ and by using the hashtag, #ChooseToChallenge100.
HELLO!’s editor in chief Rosie was named Editor of the Year (entertainment and celebrity) by the British Society of Magazine Editors in 2017. She is the author of three novels The Stylist – which is currently in development as a Hollywood movie – and Amber Green Takes Manhattan, with Just Between Friends being published in November 2020. Rosie is ambassador for charity Safe Hands For Mothers, and when she’s not glued to online news sites, social media or reading copy for the magazine, she can be found entertaining her two young children.
June has enjoyed a 20‐year career, in which she has become one of the most recognisable faces of British television. June began her career at Kiss 100 and later became a presenter for MTV UK & Ireland. It was when she started on Channel 4’s T4 that she became a household name. June hosted 2005’s Make Poverty History event and presented at the UK leg of Live Earth in 2007. In 2008 she hosted Nelson Mandela’s 90th birthday celebrations in front of 30,000 people in London’s Hyde Park. June has also interviewed and introduced some of the world’s biggest names including HRH Prince of Wales, Bill Clinton, Al Gore and George Clooney.
She has worked extensively with HRH Prince Charles as an ambassador for the Prince’s Trust, whilst campaigning for The One and Produce (RED). June was awarded an MBE in 2007 for her services to broadcasting and charity, making her one of the youngest people ever to receive an MBE. June was later awarded an OBE in the 2020 New Years’ Honours List.
June is the co‐founder of the WIE Network (Women: Inspiration & Enterprise). This acclaimed conference has featured leading speakers including Sarah Brown, Melinda Gates, Arianna Huffington, Donna Karan, Queen Rania, Nancy Pelosi and Iman.
After living in America for eight years, June moved back to the UK in 2015, and is now a regular panellist on Sky News’ weekly current affairs discussion show, The Pledge.
June is also an author of three award winning books; ‘Diversify: Six Degrees of Integration’, ‘The Power of Women’ and ‘The Power of Privilege’.
Andrea was born in Scotland and grew up in the Caribbean. After moving to England, Andrea finished her education before moving to London with everything she owned in the back of her car and slept on floors to pursue her dream of becoming a journalist.
Her persistence paid off. Andrea is now a #1 Sunday Times Best-Selling author. Her latest Sunday Times Best Seller: This Girl Is On Fire: How To Live, Learn and Thrive in a Life You Love is available now.
Her previous books are: Confessions of a Good Girl, and Confessions of a Menopausal Woman.
She is also an award-winning TV broadcaster, journalist, radio presenter and CEO and co-founder of the female empowerment site www.thisgirlisonfire.com – Andrea’s mission is to empower 100 million women around the world to live, learn and thrive in a life they love.
In Andrea’s 26-year career as a broadcaster she has interviewed some of the biggest names in the business, including Oprah Winfrey, Beyoncé, Drew Barrymore, Will Smith, Dustin Hoffman and Amy Schumer. Working alongside stellar guest panellists such as Goldie Hawn and Eva Longoria, Andrea has hosted ITV’s ratings and multi award-winning live Daytime chat show Loose Women (Britain’s version of the US show The View) since 2007, bringing her warmth, humour and journalistic skill to the small screen every lunchtime.
Andrea has written for many publications including The Daily Mail, The Mirror, Woman & Home, Woman, Red, Heath & Wellbeing and Surrey Life.
Deborah James was diagnosed with stage 4 bowel cancer in 2016, when she was just 35 years old. Since then she’s had more than 15 tumours removed and countless rounds of chemotherapy, but continues to live her life to the fullest, while also undergoing treatment. She helps to raise important awareness of bowel cancer especially in people under 50 – and supports the work of charities like Bowel Cancer UK.
Deborah first started a blog, ‘bowel babe’, about her experience of being a young woman and mum living with the disease, which then became the award-winning, weekly column Things Cancer Made Me Say in The Sun Online. She’s an author of the best-selling book, F*** You Cancer: How to face the big C, live your life and still be yourself, and her second book will be published later this year, titled How to live when you could be dead.
She also presents the chart-topping podcasts ‘You, Me & the Big C’ for BBC’s Radio 5 Live and ‘The Good Stuff’, which she hosts with her children. She presented BBC Panaroma’s Britain’s Cancer Crisis last year, highlighting the impact of COVID-19 on cancer patients, and regularly appears on national television campaigning for improved treatment for people with advanced bowel cancer.
Helen Pankhurst CBE is an author and a women’s rights activist and international development practitioner. Helen is a Senior Advisor for CARE International. She previously worked for other international development charities including WaterAid, Womankind Worldwide and ACORD. She is currently a Trustee of ActionAid.
The great-granddaughter of Emmeline Pankhurst and granddaughter of Sylvia Pankhurst, leaders of the British suffragette movement, Helen carries on the legacy. This includes undertaking re-enactment work for current-day awareness-raising including at the Opening Ceremony of the 2012 London Olympics, the 2015 film Suffragette, leading CARE International’s annual #March4Women event ahead of or on International Women’s Day in London and convening the Centenary Action Group and convenes the Greater Manchester focused GM4Women 2028. She has worked with the composer Lucy Pankhurst, on the lyrics of the Emmeline Anthem commissioned by BBC Radio 3 and in 2018 published the book: Deeds Not Words, the Story of Women’s Rights, Then and Now.
Jacqueline Gold CBE is chief executive of Ann Summers and Knickerbox and is renowned for managing a company run by women, for women.
She began her career at 21 when she started working for her father’s company, Ann Summers. As she learnt more about the Ann Summers of the 1970s she saw the potential to change the focus of the business and create a business and brand which focused on women and would allow women to browse and shop for lingerie and sex toys in a safe, female friendly environment.
Jacqueline has made Ann Summers the profitable success it is today through hard work, determination and a belief in a concept that had never been seen before. With no formal business training, Jacqueline ascribes her success to understanding women, good instincts and always listening to her customer.
Catherine Mayer is a writer, activist, speaker and the co-founder and President of the Women’s Equality Party. She co-founded the Primadonna Festival, which had its debut in 2019. She was the founding Executive Director of the think tank Datum Future and writes and consults on the impact of data-driven technologies. She has written four books: Amortality: The Pleasures and Perils of Living Agelessly (2011), Charles: The Heart of a King (hardback 2015, paperback 2016), Attack of the Fifty Foot Women : How Gender Equality Can Save the World! (March 2017, paperback Feb 2018) and, with her mother Anne Mayer Bird, Good Grief: Embracing Life at a Time of Death (Dec 2020).
She started her career in journalism at The Economist, went on to hold deputy editorships at Business Traveller and International Management magazines and contributed regularly to the German edition of Forbes. For 11 years she worked as a London-based correspondent for the German news weekly, FOCUS. In 2004, she joined TIME as a senior editor, and later became London Bureau Chief, Europe Editor and, finally, Editor at Large.
Her political biography of Prince Charles, a Sunday Times top 10 bestseller, made headlines across the world when it was published in February 2015.
The following month she proposed the idea of the Women’s Equality Party at the Southbank Centre, during the WOW-Women of the World-Festival, and agreed with Sandi Toksvig to co-found the party.
Catherine frequently appears on broadcast media and at live events. She performs one-woman shows and with Grayson Perry staged “Hello Boys” at the Bridge Theatre in 2018. Her show Catherine Mayer:FFS toured in 2019. She was the lead candidate in London for the Women’s Equality Party in the European elections. She served as the elected President of the Foreign Press Association in London from 2003-2005. She is on the founding committee of WOW. She served as a trustee of the National Migraine Centre. She was a judge for the 2018 Women’s Prize for Fiction.
Jess Phillips is the Labour MP for Birmingham Yardley and Shadow Minister for Domestic Violence and Safeguarding.
In 2012, she was asked if she would consider being a local councillor, which she agreed to. She was selected to contest for Birmingham Yardley the following year. In 2012 she was elected as a Labour councillor for Longbridge ward and was appointed as the victims champion for Birmingham City Council, lobbying police and criminal justice organisations on behalf of victims.
She became the Member of Parliament (MP) for the constituency of Birmingham Yardley at the 2015 general election.
As an outspoken MP on women’s rights she became chair of the Women’s Parliamentary Labour Party in September 2016 and in February 2017, Phillips’ first book, Everywoman, One Woman’s Truth About Speaking the Truth, was published by Penguin Books.
Dr Shola Mos-Shogbamimu is a New York Attorney and Solicitor of England & Wales with broad expertise in the financial services industry, an author, public speaker and political commentator featured in mainstream and online media. A political & women’s rights activist, she also teaches intersectional feminism to female refugees and asylum seekers; scrutinizes government policies from a gender and diversity inclusion perspective; and co-organises women’s marches and social campaigns. She founded the Women in Leadership publication as a platform to drive positive change on topical issues that impact women globally through inspiring personal leadership journeys and established [email protected] to promote women & BAME leadership in the legal profession through universities and secondary schools. She is also the Co-Chair of the American Bar Association Africa committee. An academic enthusiast, she has anExecutive MBA (Cambridge); PhD(Birkbeck); LLM (London School of Economics & Political Science); MA (Westminster) and LLB Hons (Buckingham University).
Sophie Walker spent twenty years at Reuters as an international journalist and news editor. After a long and trying journey supporting her elder daughter through a diagnosis of autism, she started campaigning for disability rights, particularly those of girls on the autism spectrum, for Ambitious About Autism, Include Me TOO and the National Autistic Society. In 2015, she helped to create the Women’s Equality Party, Britain’s first feminist political party, which she led and grew into a movement of thousands across the UK. Sophie ran for London Mayor in 2016, and in 2017 stood for election to Westminster, campaigning for equal pay, affordable childcare and an end to violence against women. She was named by Vogue in 2018 as one of the ‘New Suffragettes.’ She is now co-director of Activate Collective, a fund to support female community activists to run for political office and Chief Strategy Officer at McAllister Olivarius.
Deborah Frances-White is a stand-up comedian, podcaster, screenwriter and corporate speaker.
Deborah’s background as an improviser, her quick wit and her warm and friendly style combined with her passion for justice, fairness and inclusion make her a formidable comedian. Her hour-long shows Cult Following and Half a Can of Worms were turned into a BBC Radio 4 comedy series for which she won the Writers’ Guild Award. You may have seen her on Have I Got News For You or seen the film Say My Name which she wrote.
Deborah is the creator and host of various podcasts, including the hugely successful Guilty Feminist and GrownUpLand which she co-created for BBC Radio 4. Deborah’s first podcast and the thing she is most well known for is The Guilty Feminist. Started in late 2015 with Sofie Hagen (who has since left the project), episodes are now recorded in major venues including the London Palladium, the Barbican Hall and the Coliseum as well as around the country.
Claire is an editor and columnist on the Telegraph. She heads up the Telegraph Women online channel and is Associate Features Editor on the newspaper. Claire is also a commentator for the BBC, Sky News and LBC, as well as a public speaker and panel host. She writes a weekly newsletter – The 51 Per Cent – filled with opinion and insight into the talking points of the moment.
Liv Cooke is a British professional football freestyler, current five-time world record holder, and former freestyle world champion. She is a BBC sports presenter and UEFA ambassador, who has previously been awarded the Parliamentary Rising Star and Woman of the Future awards.
Since becoming a professional freestyler, Cooke has diversified her career through social media and TV, ambassadorial roles, and founding several companies.
Her work has included performing at Qatar’s national sports day, becoming an ambassador for the UEFA ‘We Play Strong’ initiative designed to get more girls into football, and touring Australia to inspire children to get active. Commercially, Cooke has featured in a Channel 4 TV commercial, a number of Adidas commercials, and a LIDL advert. In addition, she has appeared on a number of TV shows including Match of the Day, Soccer AM, BBC and Fox Soccer News