Capgemini exec chair crowned IT ‘woman of the year’

First-ever CWT everywoman award celebrates successful women working in technology

Christine Hodgson, executive chairman of Capgemini UK, has won the award for Woman of the Year 2011 at the inaugural CWT everywoman in Technology Awards.

The Connecting Women in Technology awards, held in London today, were launched to celebrate successful women operating in what continues to be a male-dominated industry.

"Given the tech industry's expansion in the UK over past years and its potential for futher growth, everywoman felt there was a real need to create a forum to highlight the opportunities for women and the innovators already making their mark within the industry," said Maxine Benson, co-founder and director of female business network, everywoman.

'Woman of the Year' Hodgson was appointed as position of chairman of Capgemini UK in January, and is the company's first female board director. She also chairs Capgemini's UK Sustainability Board.

Hodgson has worked at Capgemini for 13 years in a range of roles, including CEO of Technology Services North West Europe. In addition, with her background in accountancy, she was previously CFO for Capgemini UK and the Global Outsourcing Division.

The awards also celebrated the success of women in seven other categories, ranging from rising star (for women under 30 who are excelling in their careers) to business leader of the year.

Stephanie Nicolaou, an ICT systems analyst at Agusta Westland Helicopters who only graduated from university last year, won the rising star award. She was credited with helping the company save millions of pounds through her work on data clean-up and development projects.

Other notable finalists in this category included 27-year-old Emma Davids, an IT professional at Yorkshire Water Services.

Davids' achievements include increasing the water company's Service Level Agreement compliance from 88% to 93%. She is also one of the first people to set up a Computer Club for Girls (CC4G) in Bradford.

Cisco employees were also well-represented in the awards, with two finalists winning in their categories.

Bernadette Wightman, managing director, of Cisco UKI Partner Organisation, won business leader of the year, while Nikki Walker, senior director of inclusion, diversity and sustainability Europe at Cisco Systems, was crowned inspiration of the year. Walker played an important role in driving cultural change at the company, helping to increase the number of women on the UK and Ireland board from 18% to 40%.

Other winners included Billie Major, core assets portfolio director at Capgemini UK, who won team leader of the year. She leads the team responsible for the company's largest global account, HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC).

Wendy Tan-White, founder and CMO of Moonfruit, a DIY website builder, was chosen as entrepreneur of the year, while Naomi Chayen, professor of biomedical sciences at Imperial College London, was innovator of the year.

This story, "Capgemini exec chair crowned IT ‘woman of the year’" was originally published by Computerworld UK.

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