Nominations open for Great Women awards

Autocar has opened nominations for its Great Women in the British Car Industry initiative, which will culminate in an awards ceremony on 14 June.

Run by Autocar, in association with the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT), and judged by a panel of automotive experts, the initiative recognises the top 100 women leading the way across the UK’s car industry.

The top 100 will be selected from the following 11 areas of the car industry: Aftersales and Workshop, Executive, Marketing, Manufacturing, Operations, People Development, PR and Communications, Sales, Purchasing, Vehicle Development, and Mobility and Digital. A winner will be selected in each category, with the overall winner then chosen from that list.

In addition to the top 100 leading women in the British car industry, there is a category for apprentices that celebrates new talent in the sector at the beginning of their career.

In 2020, Alison Jones, then UK group managing director and senior vice-president of the PSA Group, was named the most influential British woman in the automotive industry. Since her win, Jones has been promoted to UK group managing director and senior vice-president of Stellantis, and also named the SMMT’s first female president.

Last year, the awards celebrated rising stars in the industry. Hannah Denton, area fleet manager at Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles UK, was crowned the winner. Denton was the second-most-successful fleet manager by volume in the whole of Volkswagen Group UK in 2018. She was also responsible for launching the VW Group graduate field force programme, which aims to give those on the graduate scheme at least a week in the field learning about a direct sales role.

Haymarket Automotive managing director Rachael Prasher, who heads the judging panel, said: “This will be the seventh year of our Great British Women initiative and we are looking forward to once again shining a light on the best talent in the UK’s automotive industry.

“This past year has seen even more women move into leadership positions across the industry. Great British Women both celebrates these achievements and provides an opportunity for all women in the automotive industry or who are considering joining the automotive industry to see and hear from these amazing role models. Each year we are blown away by the growing number of entries across all industry sectors and I’m sure 2022 will be no exception.”