Sponsored by Citi
Sponsored by Citi

The 20th Women in Banking and Finance Awards for Achievement Luncheon was the biggest and best celebration of the women of our industry yet.

More guests than ever before gathered at the London Hilton on Park Lane on Friday 9th June to celebrate the individual achievements of the shortlisted candidates alongside the sector’s achievements in recognising the value of women and diversity in our industry.

We were delighted that Citi supported WIBF as headline sponsor for the 2017 Awards for Achievement Luncheon.

Every year the nominees surpass expectations with their innovation and creativity and every year we leave the Luncheon inspired by the talented women working in our sector. 2017 was no different.

The winners of the 2017 WIBF Awards for Achievement are (below)

The Categories

Award for Achievement

Celebrating a woman who has achieved success within a senior role and who displays qualities of dynamism and daring. Candidates have excelled in their professional life and have also shown an ability to use their skills outside of their own career by either serving on boards of other organisation or by being involved in furthering the interests of women in the workplace.

Young Professional Award

Celebrating a woman aged 35 or younger who is making a significant impact in an organisation. The panel look for women whose contribution to date makes her 'one to watch'. Young professionals are shaping their organisation, not just in terms of financial success but also as being an example to others.

Champion for Women Award

Celebrating a seasoned professional, man or woman, who through personal commitment, application and dedication, continuously promotes and inspires women in the workplace to reach their full potential.

Team Award for Diversity

Celebrating team success in promoting diversity in the workplace. The team may be a business line team that has driven and embedded the diversity agenda or a specalist function (such as HR or Diversity & Inclusion) that partners the business to provide vision and framework.

The Shortlist

Young Professional Award

  • Francesca Lynch, RBC
  • Ebi Obode, NatWest Markets
  • Jennifer Clark, BP
  • Katie Henry, KPMG
  • Keira Bone, Lloyds
  • Noeleen Cowley, KPMG
  • Sarah Langston, EY
  • Yafei Tian, Citi

Team Diversity Award

  • Finance Diversity Team, Sky
  • Breakthrough Women’s Network, Lloyds
  • Business Insights Inclusion Team, BP
  • Coutts/Adam & Company Diversity & Inclusion Council, Coutts
  • Inclusion & Diversity Steering Committee, MUFG

Champion for Women

  • Tracy Jordan, Credit Suisse
  • Andy Clarke, Lloyds
  • Caroline Graham, Barclays
  • Emma Badman, ING
  • Hayley Sudbury, Werkin
  • Robert McKillop, Standard Life
  • Sharon Blackman, Citi
  • Tiina Lee, Deutsche Bank

Award for Achievement

  • Arlene Isaacs-Lowe, Moody’s
  • Annabelle Panesar, Citi
  • Elizabeth Raffle, Lloyds
  • Jackie Moran, Standard Life
  • Lenka Setkova, Coutts
  • Lucy Thomas, Sky
  • Natalia Nicolaidis, Credit Suisse
  • Stacey English, Thomson Reuters

The winners

Francesca Lynch, RBC

Young Professional Award

Fran was identified as top Director talent within Fixed Incomes and Currencies globally. She was promoted immediately upon eligibility and was the top ranked Director Promotion candidate in the global FIC 2016 process.

Currently Director and Co-Head of Europe Corporate Credit Trading for RBC Capital Markets RBC is reviewing fast-tracking Francesca to Managing Director over the next two years so she can take on a greater leadership role. Her profit performance and transformation of RBC client rankings with European clients have been a key factor for increasing RBC’s client footprint in Europe and have been key in transforming the Credit business from a niche player to a top tier counterparty. Fran is an RBC thought leader on graduate and intern recruitment. Fran’s passion for community and charity fundraising is giving young people greater opportunities and making a difference to lives affected by illness.

Finance Diversity Team, Sky

Team Diversity Award

Sky’s Finance Diversity Team (FDT) is a self-organised group of 10 people who have successfully embedded a culture of inclusivity across Sky Finance. The team used internal and external evidence to build the business case for diversity, which was signed off by the Group CFO, now the Executive sponsor.

The team organises Diversity Events, with external and internal keynote speakers; the last event attracted more than 200 attendees. FDT introduced online unconscious bias training, achieving a 90% completion rate, and lead a three-month flexible working trial resulting in 90% of participants citing improvement in work/life balance and 100% of managers supporting full roll out. Following this, flexible working was implemented across Sky Finance. The team reviews for gender balance in recruitment and promotion shortlists as well as for interview panels. FDT is developing an internal Women in Finance network and is executing an external strategy to ensure the brand reflects its inclusive working culture.

Tracy Jordan, Credit Suisse

Champion for Women

Under Tracy’s leadership as Programme Director, Credit Suisse’s Modern Muse has engaged the next generation of female business leaders by showcasing diverse women and their roles within banks.

The programme has directly reached 1,850 girls and inspired more than 200,000 young women and girls in the UK, partnering with approximately 25 schools and three universities. Tracy has served as a Muse herself and is a highly valued role model – she is the mother of three children who returned from a six-year career break and achieved promotion to Director, while still dedicating time to voluntary initiatives. Tracy has encouraged other companies to support Modern Muse, actively reigniting interest in the financial services sector among girls and young women and addressing gender diversity. With her professional impact as a board Director, Trustee and business leader, alongside her philanthropic efforts, mentoring and dedication to young people playing sport, Tracy is a true inspiration to others.

Arlene Isaacs-Lowe, Moody’s

Award for Achievement

Arlene Isaacs-Lowe is Managing Director, Head of Relationship Management for EMEA at Moody’s. She has multi-faceted experience in driving revenues, developing and successfully executing strategic plans, investment and financial management strategies, and investor relations initiatives for financial services industries.

She is a skilled leader with cross-cultural fluency, adept at collaborating with stakeholders; and building and motivating multi-disciplinary teams. She is respected as a proven strategic thinker with global perspective and entrepreneurial drive. Arlene seamlessly melds business and financial acumen with a commitment to philanthropic and social causes, demonstrated by active and long-term board service across a range of non-profit organisations. She is a passionate leader who actively promotes the business case for diversity and inclusion both internally and externally. She is a passionate and inspirational senior role model who actively supports other women in the industry and raises the aspirations of women at Moody’s.

Keynote Speaker

Xavier Rolet KBE

Chief Executive, London Stock Exchange Group

Women in Banking and Finance is looking forward to welcoming Xavier, Rolet, CEO, London Stock Exchange as the keynote speaker for this year's Awards Luncheon. Mr Rolet said:
"At London Stock Exchange Group we understand a broad, diverse team is essential to deliver the best possible outcomes for our customers. In the UK, we signed HM Women in Finance charter to signal our ongoing commitment to equality in the work place and to actively challenge both ourselves and others in the financial sector to keep addressing these issues. We are delighted to support the Women in Banking and Finance Awards for Achievement, which showcases the many contributions that women make to the City of London."

The judges

Noel Harwerth

Patron of WIBF

E. Noel Harwerth is Chair of GE Capital Bank Europe. She is a non-executive director of Standard Life plc, The London Metal Exchange, Sirius Minerals and serves as SID on the board of CHAPS. She is Chairman of the UK Export Finance Agency and serves on the board of the Department of International Trade. Noel is a liveryman of the Worshipful Company of International Bankers, board member of The Committee of 200, member of the International Women’s Forum, and serves on the board of the British Horseracing Authority. She is Chair of the UK Chapter of Women Corporate Directors.

Janet Thomas

President of WIBF

Janet Thomas is Founder and CEO of TouchFX. She is a Panel Expert of The Hague-based Panel of Recognised International Market Experts in Finance. Janet is an established investment banker who has developed award winning technological innovations for the banking industry, at some of the world’s leading financial institutions, including Citi and ABN AMRO Bank. She serves on the board of the Powerlist Foundation, a charity which nurtures the talents of young people of African-Caribbean heritage. From 2013, she has consistently featured on the Powerlist of the 100 Most Influential Black professionals in the UK. In 2009, she won the Women in the City Achievement Award for her business achievements and efforts in helping advance women in the industry.

Melanie Seymour

Vice President of WIBF

Melanie is Head of BlackRock Budapest and a Managing Director at BlackRock. She is responsible for establishing the BlackRock presence in Hungary. Melanie joined BlackRock in 2011 and prior to her current role she transformed the UK DC Administration business and led its sale and transition to Aegon. Melanie has been an active member of WIN EMEA since she joined the firm and took over as co chair in 2015. Melanie is Vice President of Women in Banking and Finance where she actively supports all levels of women in the industry. She coaches and mentors both internally and externally. Brummell Magazine named her a City Champion of Diversity in their list of Inspirational Women 2015.

Vivienne Artz

Incoming President of WIBF

Vivienne is a Managing Director and General Counsel for Intellectual Property, Technology Legal for the EMEA and APAC regions and for Privacy Legal globally, in the General Counsel’s Office at Citi, in London. Prior to joining Citi in 2000, Vivienne worked in private practice in London. Vivienne has recently been appointed to the IAPP European Advisory Board. She is a former co-chair and current Steering Committee member of the UK Citi Women Network, a former chair of the Legal Diversity Council for EMEA and currently on the global Legal Diversity Council, and a Citi Women Community Ambassador.

Natalie Costello

Natalie Costello is Vice President, Chartering and Commercial Operations for BP plc’s global shipping business since 2014. She is responsible for the global management of commercial activities for moving BP’s hydrocarbons on water. She leads teams based in London, Singapore and Chicago and is a member of the BP Shipping Leadership Team. Natalie has served on the global steering committee of the BP Women’s International Network and is a member of the Duke of Edinburgh’s Women’s Network Forum.

Nigel Jackson

Nigel heads up the Leadership function at one of the UK’s leading training and development organisations, Doran Scott Williams, where he focuses on Leadership Development and Executive Coaching in both the UK and Continental Europe. For almost three decades, until 2012, Nigel was a career banking professional, working at executive level for a number of leading financial services organisations. As well as his support and advocacy for Women in Banking & Finance, Nigel is an Ambassador for both the British Forces Foundation and the Defence Medical Welfare Service.

Sophie Baldry

Sophie is a Senior Manager within Lloyds Banking Group’s Customer Journey Transformation team. Sophie works tirelessly to share resources created by Lloyds and partners across the UK and has built a number of strategic partnerships to deliver digital skills training to over 1,000 of the Group’s charity and business customers. Sophie was recognised in the 2015 Guardian 300’s publication as a Rising Star alongside just nine others across the UK and was shortlisted for the 2016 Women of the Future awards. Sophie was the 2016 WIBF Young Professional Award winner.

The 2017 WIBF Charity – Bakhita House

Women in Banking in Finance is proud to support Bakhita House as the 2017 WIBF Charity. Bakhita House does vital work, with great compassion, for female victims of human trafficking. All proceeds from the charity collection at the WIBF Awards Luncheon this year will be donated to Bakhita House.

Caritas Bakhita House opened in June 2015 as an emergency safe house for rescued female victims of human trafficking in the UK.

There are estimated to be more than 14,000 victims of human trafficking and modern day slavery living in the UK today, with 70% passing through or remaining in Greater London. 55% of trafficking and enslaved victims are women. Sadly, there are still large gaps in the care and resources available to help victims upon being freed. Caritas Bakhita House aims to meet this current gap in care by helping rescued female victims of human trafficking who have no access to public funding and support.

At Bakhita House guests receive pro-bono legal advice and assistance, counselling, medical help, translation, one-on-one English lessons, wellbeing and arts therapy, cooking and ICT classes, education and employment training and pastoral and spiritual care, provided by professional staff, religious sisters and 33 volunteers. Women can stay at the house for up to three months - twice as long as the 45 days provided by Government funded schemes.

Since opening in June 2015 fifty women, originating from twenty-four countries, aged between 17 and 66, have been received into Bakhita House.

To find out more, go to www.rcdow.org.uk/caritas/human-trafficking/