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Finalists revealed for Enterprising Women Awards 2022

The finalists are announced as East Midlands Chamber’s network celebrates 25th.

Eileen Perry MBE DL and Jean Mountain
Eileen Perry MBE DL and Jean Mountain

The best of the region's female business talent has been recognised ahead of this year's special edition of East Midlands Chamber’s Enterprising Women Awards.

From rising stars to established leaders, finalists across 11 categories were announced on Thursday, June 9, for the 2022 awards. Organised in partnership with headline sponsor Futures Housing Group, the announcement was made at a summer barbecue held at Winstanley House, in Leicester.

Winners will be announced at the annual gala dinner, which takes place at Leicester Tigers’ Mattioli Woods Welford Road Stadium on September 30 will mark the 25th anniversary of the Enterprising Women network.

Three new categories have been added this year, including a Diversity Champion, Rising Star and Lifetime Achievement Award. There's no shortlist for the latter, which will instead be given as a surprise to an unsuspecting winner on the night.

Long-time categories such as Female Entrepreneur of the Year, Apprentice of the Year, Team of the Year and the headline award of Business Woman of the Year return alongside these.

Niche are delighted that our parent company, Cross Productions, has been recognised for Small Business of the Year, as well as our Head of Brand Marketing, Becci Houlston, who is up for Apprentice of the Year.

A judging panel, comprising members of the Enterprising Women team, Chamber board of directors and category sponsors, will be held on July 5 for the finalists to get their chance to pitch before winners are decided.

Enterprising Women co-chair Jean Mountain said: “In a big year for the Enterprising Women network, we wanted to celebrate with an extra-special awards, and we firmly believe this shortlist delivers this.

“It features some truly inspiring women across a wide range of sectors and backgrounds, as well as across different parts of their career journey – from those just starting out in apprenticeship roles to highly successful business leaders representing everything that is great about our region.”

Fellow co-chair Eileen Perry MBE DL added: “We were overwhelmed to receive so many fantastic entries that selecting who goes through to the final was a massive challenge, and we can’t wait for the judging panel now to decide our 2022 winners.

“One of our favourite new additions this year is the Diversity Champion category, which opens the door for the first time to some incredible men who play a pivotal role in supporting our enterprising women, while we’re very excited about recognising a very special person with the Lifetime Achievement Award on the night.”

The Enterprising Women Awards 2022 will be hosted by TV presenter Emma Jesson, and features a three-course meal as well as entertainment.

Individual tickets are priced at £75 + VAT for members of East Midlands Chamber and £90 + VAT for non-members. Tickets at a charitable rate will be available for eligible organisations at £60 + VAT. A discount will be applied to bookings of tables of 10 at £700 + VAT.

Enterprising Women Awards 2022 shortlist

Business Woman of the Year – Sponsored by Futures Housing Group

Olivia Pritchard – Bustler Market @ The Chocolate Factory

Samantha Bennett – Hear4u & Healthscreen

Emily Smith – Michael Smith Switchgear

Monica Huang – Morningside Pharmaceuticals

Laura Cook – The Learning Support Centre Female Entrepreneur of the Year – Sponsored by Midlands Engine Investment Fund

Olivia Pritchard – Bustler Market @ The Chocolate Factory

Jaz Kaur – Fraser Stretton Property Group

Dawn Brown – Rose Cottage Doggy Day Care

Charlene Brand – The Wellness Brand

Sarah Withers – Withers Gin

Social Commitment Award – Sponsored by She Inspires Global

Gift Wellness

Michael Smith Switchgear

Morningside Pharmaceuticals

Treetops Hospice

TTK Confectionery

Small Business of the Year – Sponsored by Unique Window Systems

Access Training East Midlands

EMA Training

Fraser Stretton Property Group

Noble Events

Female Employee of the Year – Sponsored by Smallman & Son

Victoria Philp – Everards Brewery

Katie Stephens – Noble Events

Lizzie Peate – Penny Price Aromatherapy

Karen Miles – trentbarton

Leah Binney – TTK Confectionery

Team of the Year – Sponsored by PPL PRS

Balls2 Marketing

Everards Brewery

Loates HR Consultancy

TTK Confectionery

TwentyTwenty – Love4Life

Outstanding Contribution to Work in STEM – Sponsored by Pick Everard

Bam Boom Cloud


De Montfort University

Lotus Maternity

PERFORMS Assessment

Becci Houlston - Head of Brand Marketing for our parent company.
Rebecca Houlston

Apprentice of the Year – Sponsored by EMA Training

Rebecca Houlston – Cross Productions

Polly Oakes – Express Recruitment

Lucy Bamford-Jones – Fidler & Pepper Lawyers

Esme Wade – MacMartin

Rubie Birks – Purpose Media

Rising Star Award – Sponsored by Amanda Daly, The Turnaround CEO

Lottie Hardy – EMA Training

Emma Baumback – Future Life Wealth Management

Grace Golden – Purpose Media

Jessica Barnett – Timms Solicitors

Santa York – TTK Confectionery

Diversity Champion – Sponsored by Breedon Consulting

Stephen Gould – Everards Brewery

Narinder Nijjar – Fraser Stretton Property Group

Maria Hanson – me&dee

Gill Heppell – PerCurra

Zinthiya Ganeshpanchan – Zinthiya Trust/She Inspires Global

Lifetime Achievement Award – Sponsored by Paradigm Wills

*Finalists not announced for this category – winner announced at the gala dinner on 30 September


Written by Tom Young

Tom is a feature writer for Niche Magazine. He has a degree in Creative Writing and over a decade of experience working in comedy and theatre as the founder of improv group, The Same Faces. He writes about what's on, interesting people, and local events.


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