Solus’ DeAnna Avis named Inspiring Woman of the Year

The Automotive 30% Club has announced its most inspiring women for 2021, with Solus Accident Repair’s DeAnna Avis named Inspiring Automotive Woman of the Year for 2021.

The national customer experience lead was chosen because of the strength of her commitment to the cause of gender balance and inclusion both in her own company and in the wider sector. “I’m so incredibly grateful and humbled to be the winner of the Inspiring Automotive Woman of the Year-and quite frankly, still in shock. As an immigrant, and a woman without a university degree, I hope that my win inspires people from any background to go for their dreams and gives them the courage to make connections and get their voices heard.

“The automotive sector is hugely rewarding, fast paced, fun, and there is always more to learn and do. At Solus, we are keen to change perceptions of the bodyshop industry to show people that it is a great career choice and that includes reaching out to women through our apprentice program, diverse recruitment, and nurturing talent within the business. I am passionate about helping other women succeed and our gender balance network is about creating those connections to help us mentor and grow our talent. We are so proud to be part of the Automotive 30% Club and I hope by working together we all succeed in achieving 30% by 2030,” Avis said.

Jade Price, apprentice vehicle technician at Jardine Motors Group, was also amongst the winners taking home the Trailblazer of the Year award.

Angela Shepherd, CEO of Mercedes Benz Retail Group also won the Inclusive Leader Award; Catherine Moseley, chief people officer at Motorpoint was awarded HR Director Game Changer; Sibelle Reina, group customer insight manager at Volkswagen Group UK was recognised as Diversity Champion; and Lucy Yiasoumi, social media executive at Auto Trader UK was named this year’s Rising Star.

Automotive 30% Club founder Julia Muir said: “I’m very proud to be able to celebrate our wonderful Inspiring Automotive Women Award winners. In the short time since I started this initiative to recognise the most inspiring women in the sector, our Automotive 30% Club membership has grown to include more than 50 business leaders, and our campaign to achieve a better gender balance has gained significant momentum. We now have many more women in CEO and top management roles, as well as a steady increase in female representation in management at all levels in the sector. Congratulations to all our Inspiring Automotive Women Award winners; we truly appreciate all the great work they are doing.”

All winners came together “virtually”, yesterday, for a celebration event hosted by Muir, and sponsored by Volkswagen Group UK, Solus Accident Repair Centres, Auto Trader UK and Close Brothers Motor Finance and the overall awards sponsor Jardine Motor Group.

The Automotive 30% Club’s Inspiring Automotive Women Awards aim to recognise the unsung heroes of the automotive industry. Individuals can nominate any woman who works within the Club’s member organisations on the basis that they have personally been inspired by them.