The CEO of Twycross Zoo – East Midlands Zoological Society has been named Inspirational Woman of the Year at the Enterprising Women Awards 2017. Dr Sharon Redrobe OBE, who was chosen from dozens of nominations for the accolade, was presented with the award at the Enterprising Women 20th anniversary gala dinner last night at Colwick Hall Hotel, Nottingham. Dr Redrobe holds an RCVS Diploma in Zoo and Wildlife Medicine and an RCVS Certificate in Laboratory Animal Science and is an RCVS Specialist in Zoo and Wildlife Medicine. She has over 70 journal and book publications and has spoken at numerous conferences. Dr Redrobe was unable to receive the award herself. Collecting it on her behalf, Claire Oldham, Director of Discovery and Learning at Twycross Zoo, said: “Sharon is very grateful and proud to receive this award.” The award was presented by headline sponsor Cambridge and Counties Bank. Dr Redrobe was one of six women and a team presented with awards at the dinner. Six more and another team were highly commended. The awards recognise the achievements of women in business, many of whom have to balance running families and households to achieve their success. The other winners were: Business Woman of the Year - Suzanne Smith of Soteria Asbestos
Community Champion of the Year - Barbara Cathcart of Nottingham Hospitals Charity
Enterprising New Business Woman of the Year - Mital Thanki of Spark Academy
Team of the Year – Geldards Family Team
Female Employee of the Year - Min Rose, of The University of Nottingham
Apprentice of the Year - Megan Morris, of Sky Recruitment Solutions.
Enterprising Women is co-Chaired by Jean Mountain, a Director and Immediate Past President of East Midlands Chamber (Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire, Leicestershire), and Eileen Richards, owner of ER Recruitment and former Chair of Integra for Women in Business in Leicestershire, which merged with Enterprising Women.
Eileen said: “We were very impressed with the quality of the applications this year and level of support for women in business.”
The gala dinner was hosted by freelance presenter Emma Jesson, who was GMTV’s first weathergirl, later working for ITV Central and ITV Granada, and who has also done advertising voice-overs, had a part in a British comedy feature film and appeared on the Jasper Carrot and Ruby Wax TV shows.
Each of the awards was sponsored. The event’s headline sponsor, Cambridge & Counties Bank, coordinates a Women in Business mentoring scheme, which is supported by Enterprising Women.
Eleven mentees were shortlisted to take part in an assessment day. The successful mentees, which were also announced last night, were Amanda Overend of Books & Pieces, Jade Patel of Cambridge & Counties Bank, Neha Kadiwar of Hastings Direct, Sarah Wilkins of Lumbers and Lynsey Hyslop of The Rugby Players Association. Jean, who launched Enterprising Women 20 years ago, said: “Congratulations to all the winners of this year’s Enterprising Women Awards. These awards are all about acknowledging and celebrating their achievements. “There are some very talented and hard-working businesswomen in Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire and Leicestershire who play a massive part in the success of their business but are often not recognised for their hard work and determination.
“These enterprising women make an important contribution to the local economy and their success stories will hopefully inspire other women to pursue their business dreams.”