Automotive International Women’s Day 2020


Automotive International Women’s Day 2020

I never fail to be impressed by women who make it to the top of their professions. Undoubtedly they have to be talented and ambitious but they also have to be tough, focused and confident enough to lead and influence others.

When it comes to the automotive industry however, there still aren’t enough women working at senior and Board level but during the fifteen years FOXY has been operating, the numbers of females making a real difference within the industry and for the benefit of motorists in general has definitely risen dramatically.

So, on International Women’s Day in 2020 here is FOXY’s Hall of Fame to acknowledge the business women we’ve been particularly impressed with. An increasingly difficult choice to make, truth be told.

Here are the remarkable women in and around the automotive industry that inspire FOXY in 2020.

Jamie Chadwick

Twenty one years of age and from Somerset, Jamie Chadwick is a British female racing driver who is currently competing in the F3 Asian Series. She won the inaugural W Series championship in 2019 and joined Williams Grand Prix Engineering as a development driver afterwards. She has a cool and strategic head around the racing track which makes her a clever and steady driver who will be hard to beat in 2020.

For more information about Jamie see here.

Hayley Pells

Hayley Pells is the inspirational business owner of Avia Sports Cars in Bridgend. She’s an MOT tester and keeps up to date with regular training. Avia is a successful workshop and Hayley has won many business awards for her style of management and community care initiatives. She talks about juggling family and business life, recognising the stress that can result when unexpected events cause problems.

Hayley is also an influencer who writes regularly in trade publications and has spoken at international conferences about her business model. Hayley also offers consultancy services for motor businesses wanting to follow her values based direction.

For more information about Hayley see here.

Mary Williams OBE

25 years ago Mary founded road safety charity Brake. She’d previously lost her mother in a road accident involving a truck without working brakes. She later lost her boyfriend in a head-on collision with a car. Both devastating events, but instead of putting her off this area, they gave her more determination than ever to make a difference.

She’s since developed victim support services and training programmes alongside campaigns for more police officers on the road, speed cameras and cycle lanes. And much more.

Explaining why she does this she said ‘I didn’t want anyone else going through what I did’.

For more information about Mary see here.

Frances Molloy

In a tragic accident, Frances’ son Michael was killed in a coach crash caused by a tyre which was nearly 20 years old. He was only 18 and was travelling home to Liverpool from Bestival on the Isle of Wight in 2012.

An inquest found the crash was caused as a result of the coach’s worn-out tyre.

Frances set up the “Tyred” campaign, calling for a ban on tyres more than 10 years old on buses, coaches and minibuses. It’s taken her ages to get this far but she never gave up.

As a result of her campaigning the government agreed to consult in 2019 with a view to prevent tyres of more than 10 years being used on steered axles of trucks, buses and coaches. But an outcome has yet to be announced by Transport Minister Grant Shapps…

Roads Minister Jesse Norman (2019) said “I want to pay tribute to Frances Molloy and the Tyred campaign for their brilliant campaign to ban older tyres on buses and coaches.”

Don’t give up Frances – this WILL happen we feel sure.

For more information about Frances see here.

Sue Robinson

Sue is a Director of the National Franchised Dealers Association (NFDA) which is a part of the RMI (Retail Motor Industry Association). When FOXY first started out, Sue was one of very few female names mentioned by industry staff – because there weren’t many others then.
Sue is a first rate diplomat at heart and greatly respected for her communication skills and campaigning work in Europe. This is where she does her best to make sure the business playing field is as even as possible for UK car dealers.

She was nominated for the Barbara Cox Woman of the Year Award in 2019.

For more information about Sue see here.

Julia Muir

Julia has an impressive automotive background. With more than 25 years experience in retailing, manufacturing and consulting she has held roles in Quality, HR, Dealer Training, Recruitment, Sales, Marketing, Product Development, Brand and Advertising. Her HR background, in particular, informs her business direction.

Julia runs a social enterprise called Gaia Innovation encouraging youngsters, especially girls, to aim for careers in growth sectors such as automotive and engineering. In addition she set up the UK Automotive 30% Club, comprising a voluntary group of senior staff from automotive manufacturers, retailers and suppliers who are committed to organisational cultures where women thrive.

Our goal is to fill least 30% of key leadership roles with women by 2030.

We are confident that Julia and the UK Automotive 30% Club will get there much sooner…

For more information about Julia see here.

Wendy Williamson

Wendy is the first female Chief Executive of the IAAF. As such she heads up a trade association that promotes the automotive sector to government, the EU, allied trade associations and the press to secure the future of the independent automotive aftermarket.

This is all the more impressive because this is such a male domain.

Wendy effectively leads campaigns lobbying for the best interests of the independent sector who might otherwise be told what they can and can’t do by automotive manufacturers with vested interests in shoring up their franchised business partners.

For more information about Wendy see here

Vicki Butler-Henderson

Vicki Butler-Henderson is a highly regarded British racing driver, former presenter of Top Gear and current presenter of Fifth Gear. She is also a motoring journalist and a member of the REV trio of women who review cars with women in mind, at the Autotrader website.

For more information about Vicki see here.

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