Rising Star Awards: What happened next for Hannah O’Neill

Hannah O'NeillWeAreTheCity’s Rising Star Awards are now in their eighth year.

The Rising Star awards were introduced to showcase the UK pipeline of female talent below management and to create female 100 role models across 25 different industries and professions.

Over the year’s, the awards have recognised over 700 women across the UK and India.

In this ongoing series, we speak to our winners about life after winning a Rising Star award.

We spoke to Hannah O’Neill, who won a Rising Star Award in Charity & Not-For-Profits in 2021.

After graduating with a degree in Sociology and Criminology in 2016, I became the ‘Programme Coordinator for Liverpool’ with Action Tutoring – a national education charity dedicated to supporting young people from disadvantaged backgrounds to achieve a meaningful level of academic attainment, with a view to enabling them to access further education, employment or training.

In August 2020, after 3.5 years as a Programme Coordinator, having built a series of strong, collaborative relationships and partnerships across the region, I was promoted to the new position of ‘Partnerships and Fundraising Manager’, leading corporate and university relationships across the country to strengthen the charity, whilst overseeing the charities fundraising activities.

A passionate volunteer, having volunteered for several years as an A-Level Sociology tutor, a mentor for young women, befriender for Mencap and a Veterans charity for retired Armed Forces personnel, and as a fundraiser for The Cat’s Protection League. My CPD includes qualifying as a certified Neuro-Linguistic Programming Practitioner, Timeline Coach and Hypnotherapist Practitioner.

I innately believe we can all be the difference that makes the difference.

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

I was really shocked, humbled, grateful and – most importantly – really proud! It was actually my partner’s birthday and we were on a holiday in North Wales, so I stole his thunder! But he’ll have other birthdays! 

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

Since being named a Rising Star in Charity and Not-For-Profit in 2021 I have been focussing on personal and professional development in various ways. I’m currently in the process of exploring a Trustee role with a charity that supports new mums and families with a range of complex issues, I’ve been re-visiting my work as a Neuro-Linguistic Programme Coach and Practitioner and of course volunteering as much as possible! I’ve gone from managing two colleagues to four since winning the Award, and have been working closely with leaders in my local community to understand how best to support our community through these turbulent times, in addition to mentoring lots of young woman about their careers, confidence and next steps. Of course I’ve also nominated another fantastic lady as a Rising Star – pay it forward and be the difference that makes the difference to someone’s career and thus life!

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

Believe in yourself and know your power, skills and expertise. Really take stock of how brilliant and incredible you are, and the fact you’re being recognised for the amazing work you’re doing. As you write your bio and submit it to WeAreTheCity, really feel each word about yourself and be firm in the fact no-one can do what you do like you do it!

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

 Network with as many wonderful people as possible, and spread the word about what you do through as many channels as you can. Take opportunities, be proud, be humble and have ‘vision’. Know your passion and know you have something to offer this world that no one else can. They might do what you do, but not how you do it! – this was the best advice I was ever given when pursuing my career. 

Nominations for our 2022 Rising Star Awards are now open! 

Now in its eighth year, the Rising Star Awards are the first to focus on the UK’s female talent pipeline below management level. Our strategic goal, set in 2015, aims to showcase 1,000 outstanding women by 2025. By highlighting the accolades of these women, WeAreTheCity are not only promoting the amazing female talent that exists across the UK, but actively encouraging organisations and business leaders to invest in and recognise these women as leaders of tomorrow and individual contributors to their respective industries.

We are now once again inviting you to nominate an amazing woman, champion, man or company. The nominations process for all categories, our Rising Star Champions, Global Award for Achievement, Company of the Year and Men for Gender Balance Awards are now open via the Rising Stars website.

Rising Stars Banner 2022 (800 x 600 px)
About the author

Alison is the Digital Content Editor for WeAreTheCity. She has a BA Honours degree in Journalism and History from the University of Portsmouth. She has previously worked in the marketing sector and in a copywriting role. Alison’s other passions and hobbies include writing, blogging and travelling.

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