WeAreTheCity’s 2024 Rising Star Awards shortlist announced

Rising Stars 2024 Shortlist Montage with logo

WeAreTheCity is extremely proud to announce our shortlist for the 2024 Rising Star Awards.

For the tenth consecutive year, WeAreTheCity is thrilled to unveil the shortlist for the 2024 Rising Star Awards, highlighting the exceptional achievements of over 230 remarkable individuals. With Royal Bank of Canada as our headline sponsor and the support of our esteemed sponsors, we extend our heartfelt congratulations to all the shortlisted candidates.

The Rising Star Awards, which attracted 1,300 nominations from across the UK, witnessed an outstanding calibre of entries this year, emphasising the imperative of greater female representation across various industries. All our judges stated that the standard of entries for this year’s awards was nothing short of exceptional.

Rising Stars 2024 shortlist Montage with colour

Among the nominees, we have Cara Swain, Medical Officer in the Royal Navy and Founder of the Royaumont Forum, recognised for her exceptional dedication to medical education, mentorship, and advocacy for cultural change within the military and medical communities.

Donna Otchere, Co-Founder of SiSTEM UK, a beacon of inspiration, dedicating her efforts to breaking down barriers and providing invaluable support to women in STEM through mentorship, internship programs, and community outreach initiatives.

Sadia Akhtar, Neurological Physiotherapist at MSPhysioCoach, a dedicated neurological physiotherapist, who is revolutionising patient care with her pioneering program tailored for women living with Multiple Sclerosis (MS). Her commitment to bridging the gap between physical and mental healthcare serves as an inspiration to the healthcare community. By assembling a multidisciplinary team of experts and integrating elements of psychological support and empowerment, Sadia’s program offers comprehensive care that addresses the unique challenges faced by women with MS. Through her innovative approach, Sadia is not only transforming the lives of her patients but also inspiring healthcare professionals worldwide to adopt a more holistic approach to patient care.

These are just a few of the incredible women on our shortlist. You can view the entire shortlist here.

Dave Thomas

Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) is delighted to be powering the Rising Stars Awards for the fifth year. We are committed to helping clients thrive and communities prosper and diversity and inclusion is more than just a value for us, it’s at the heart of what we do, so supporting these awards is a great way to celebrate and showcase incredibly talented people and organisations across multiple industries.

Dave ThomasCEO, RBC Europe

The calibre of entries this year has been truly exceptional. Every one of these women should be extremely proud of their achievements. They are key contributors to their industries and outstanding role models. I wish them the very best of luck in the final round of judging.

Vanessa Vallely OBEFounder, WeAreTheCity
Vanessa Vallely OBE - Headshot 2024

The Rising Star Awards also continue to celebrate Champions, recognising the efforts of senior leaders who are actively supporting the female pipeline as well as celebrating male allyship via our Men for Gender Balance category.

This list shines a spotlight on male allies such as David Morgan, Vice President & International Treasurer at Royal Bank of Canada, who is the Executive Sponsor for RWomen, which is RBC’s employee resource network for women and gender in Europe. David has spearheaded transformative initiatives as Executive Sponsor for RBC’s RWomen, driving substantial growth in membership and fostering a culture of gender equity and inclusion in Europe.

Our Champions shortlist also pays tribute to Kellie Kwarteng, Founder & CEO of Halzak & Elevate – Women in Tech. A pioneering figure in the recruitment industry who has tirelessly championed women in tech through initiatives like Elevate – Women in Tech, a podcast, and community group, while also volunteering to support youth in sports, showcasing her dedication to fostering diversity and inclusion in both professional and philanthropic realms.

All shortlisted individuals will have the opportunity to celebrate their achievements at a special event hosted on the rooftop of RBC on 21st May, where they can network with fellow nominees, sponsors, and judges. The final Rising Star Awards winners will be announced on 28th May and honoured at a prestigious awards ceremony on 17th July at The Londoner Hotel, Leicester Square.

Please note that the winner of the Company of the Year category will be announced at the ceremony on the 17th July.

We express our sincere gratitude to our esteemed panel of judges and our sponsors for their invaluable support in recognising and celebrating these outstanding individuals: Abisola Barber, Ama Ofori, Ania Rontaler, Asif Sadiq MBE, Athena Lamnisos, Ben Stevenson, Birgit Neu, Capt Sam Kinsey-Briggs MBE MA, Carol Ann Whitehead, Catherine Hall, Charlotte Kanagasabapathy, Charlotte Sweeney OBE, Claire Cohen, Dave Savage, Deborah Garlick, Dr Ruth Oshikanlu MBE, Dr. Byron Cole HonDBA, Dr. Diahanne Rhiney BCAe, Dr.Sally Penni MBE, Ekta Soni, Eleanor Mills, Helen Pankhurst CBE, James Brandon CBRE, Jane Karczewski, Janthana Kaenprakhamroy, Jenny Blackford, Joanne Monck OBE, Katherine Bryant, Katie McEwan, Khayala Eylazova, Lee Chambers, Lieutenant Colonel Sulle D Alhaji, Lin Yue, Martina Satherlund, Melanie Seymour, Paul Sesay, Professor Funke Abimbola MBE, Professor Susan Vinnicombe CBE, Richard Pickard, Rob Neil OBE, Robert Baker, Sally Orange MBE, Sandie Small Duberry, Sarah King, Scarlett Russell, Sharon Wallace, Stacey Toder-Feldman, Professor Sue Black OBE, Temi Nelson, Thorrun Govind, Vanessa Sanyauke and Victoria Wratten.

*Shortlisted individuals are invited to enter our public vote as a separate award. The public vote will open from 14-20 May 2024. The number of public votes cast has no impact on the winners of our categories, as that decision is made by our judges.

*Please note there is no public vote for the Champion, Company of the Year, Global Award for Achievement or the Men for Gender Balance categories.

We would also like to thank our incredible sponsors who power our work to find and recognise these incredible individuals.

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