Awards ceremony puts North East women entrepreneurs in the spotlight
(19 November 2007)
Hundreds of female entrepreneurs, their colleagues and other business professionals from across the region gathered at The Sage Gateshead on Friday 16th November to see Nickie Gott of events management company ‘She’s Gott It!’ win the Susan Dobson Award for Entrepreneurship and be named ‘North East Woman Entrepreneur of the Year 2007’.
Nickie, who formed the company in 2002, impressed the judges with her professional and inventive approach to events management and communications. With an impressive portfolio of major projects in the public, private and voluntary sector, the latest contract has seen Nickie win a four year deal to deliver the world’s biggest winter festival in Edinburgh. On winning the award, Nickie said, " I've never felt so proud. Because loads of people have believed in me for a long time, and have put their faith in me – my family and my team. This just affirms that maybe I should do that too.” “To be up there in front of so many successful women, and to be told that you really are successful, is amazing”. “We as a company have achieved so much over the last five years, that I have to stop and pinch myself on a number of occasions, about that success”. “This award will give us the strength and motivation to go on to do even bigger and better things.” The North East Woman Entrepreneur of the Year Awards, developed and organised by Women Into the Network (WIN) of Durham Business School, sponsored by One NorthEast & South Tyneside Council and compered by Julia Hankin of BBC Radio Newcastle, saw over 700 people attend the glittering ceremony to hear the results and help to celebrate the achievements of the North East’s women entrepreneurs. The nine categories on offer were sponsored by a host of organisations across the region – The Journal, South Tyneside Council, Thompson Building Centres, North East Social Enterprise Partnership (NESEP), Arts Council England, Northumberland County Council, University of Teesside, Solutions Recruitment and The Susan Dobson Memorial Fund. Other winners on the evening were: Best Newcomer – Delyth Raffell of TwinsUK Young Woman Entrepreneur – Rebecca Philipson of UR – In the Paper Ltd Woman in Retail – Jan Massey & Melanie Crow of Photography for Little People Woman Social Entrepreneur – Kate Welch of Acumen Community Enterprise Development Trust Ltd Best Cultural and Creative Business - Sue Moffitt of Fifiefofum Rural Woman Entrepreneur – Gill Burgess of r//evolution marketing UK Ltd Woman in Technology or Innovation – Elaine Hall of The Alternative Supply Company Ltd Woman in the Service Sector - Janice Auton of Poppys Hairdressing Ltd Lisa Vickers, WIN's Events and Communications Manager said, "The Awards are a perfect platform for us and our sponsors to bring recognition to the phenomenal amount of talented women running businesses here in the North East. Over the years our winners have grown their businesses substantially, gone on to win national awards and, most importantly, acted as role models for the many other women running businesses or thinking of starting an enterprise. I have no doubt that this year’s winners will follow in their footsteps, continue to grow and help encourage more women into self-employment”. “The Awards were on a much bigger scale this year – we almost doubled in capacity and tickets still sold out well in advance. People recognise the importance of The North East Woman Entrepreneur of the Year Awards which is why it will always be one of the most popular and highly rated business competitions in the region”. Attending the Awards was Margaret Fay, Chairman of the Regional Development Agency, One NorthEast, a long-time supporter of WIN and the Awards. Margaret said, "The continuing development of women's enterprise offers our region enormous untapped potential and is a key areas of focus for One NorthEast”. “One NorthEast has provided significant financial support to Women Into the Network and we are proud to be associated with these Awards. The North East Woman Entrepreneur of the Year Awards continue to motivate and inspire our women entrepreneurs and I congratulate WIN for bringing together another successful event". Also attending was Rick O’Farrell, Head of Enterprise & Regeneration at South Tyneside Council who said: “We are delighted to support the North East Women Entrepreneur of the Year Awards. The nominees and winners are a real inspiration to people throughout the region, and our congratulations go to them all. South Tyneside has always been a place where successful women make their ideas happen and where creativity, determination, dedication, and entrepreneurial skills and talent continue to flourish”. A full list of winners and runners up can be seen on the website – www.womenintothenetwork.co.uk