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Voting is now open for this year’s list of the most influential women in UK technology, giving readers the opportunity to let us know who they think should be this year’s winner.
This is the 11th year of the list, and more than 600 nominated women have been whittled down to 50 by a panel of expert judges.
The list was originally launched in 2012 to showcase women in the technology industry and give readers access to relatable role models in the sector. It is speculated that one of the reasons why young people, particularly girls, don’t choose technology careers is because they cannot see people like themselves in tech roles.
The winner of this year’s Most Influential Woman in UK Tech accolade will be announced at an event in London on 19 October 2022. Planned in partnership with recruitment specialist Nash Squared, this year’s diversity and inclusion event is focused on how inclusion can make a tech workplace better for everyone.
Hall of Fame
Alongside the top 50, each year the judges also choose several women for the Computer Weekly Women in Tech Hall of Fame to recognise their lifetime achievements and ongoing contributions to the technology sector. This year’s additions have just been announced:
- Andrea Palmer, principal consultant, Infosys Consulting; BCS fellow; chair, BCS Women.
- Anne Boden, CEO, Starling Bank.
- Anne Marie Neatham, COO Kindred – powered by Ocado Group, Ocado Group.
- June Angelides, investor, Samos Investments.
- Nicola Blackwood, chair, Genomics England.
- Priya Guha, venture partner, Merian Ventures.
- Rav Bumbra, founder, Structur3dpeople; founder, Cajigo.
- Sarah Luxford, partner (DDaT), GatenbySanderson; co-founder, TLA Women in Tech.
- Sharon Moore, global technical lead for government, IBM Technology.
- Vanessa Vallely, CEO and founder, WeAreTheCity.
Computer Weekly readers can now vote for who they feel is the most influential woman in UK technology in 2022.
Click on your choice below and then on the “submit” button (or the arrow button on mobile) at the end of the list and your vote will be registered. Note that the list appears in a randomised order.
Voting closes at midnight on 21 September 2022.
Editor’s note: The final list of the most influential women in UK tech will be chosen by combining the decision of the judging panel with the votes of our readers. The combined reader vote will carry the same weight as that of one judge, and will provide the UK IT professional input into the order of the list. The editor’s decision on the list will be final.
The shortlisted 50 (in alphabetical order) are as follows – click on each name to visit her Twitter profile (where available):
In 2016, Osunsade founded Hustle Crew, a platform offering career development resources for groups who are under-represented in the technology sector, and she is currently also CEO.
Summer of 2020 saw her start a new role as the VP of global community and belonging at consumer insight firm Brandwatch, where she is focused on developing and sticking to inclusion practices for the firm.
Part time, Osunsade is a scout for venture capital (VC) firm Ada Ventures and until last year was an advisory board member for startup founder community Your Startup, Your Story.
Over the last few years, she has appeared on several notable lists, including the Financial Times Top 100 Influential Leaders in Tech, Tech Nation Top 50 Influential Voices in Tech and the Dots 100 Trailblazers.
Morris is the founder and CEO of Compare Ethics, a platform that uses data to allow customers to compare ethical and sustainable fashion brands. Until the beginning of 2020, the company was a resident of Google for Startups.
Morris is an advocate of both technology and sustainability despite not originally coming from a tech background. While working at ethical policy and communications consultancy AEQ Global, Morris earned a masters in conflict, security and development.
Chalmers founded The Geek Whisperer in 2015 to advise IT decision-makers on how to better communicate with non-technical members of businesses to drive better outcomes.
She is also the co-host of the Scaling, Failing & Prevailing Podcast, and has won several awards for her skills in public speaking.
McLaughlin is chair of ScotlandIS, an organisation offering IT services and consulting with the aim of developing and growing the technology ecosystem across Scotland.
She has a long background in digital transformation, including almost three years as head of digital transformation manager for the Scottish government.
An entrepreneur and co-founder, Brailsford joined Code First Girls as CEO in 2019 where she works to encourage more women into the tech sector by providing software development skills and education.
She is also a board member for the Institute of Coding, where she is focused specifically on diversity and inclusion, and is a self-employed commercial and strategy consultant.
Prior to her work at Code First Girls, she co-founded and was CEO of performance management firm Frisbee, which was part of venture capital fund Founders Factory.
An expert in diversity, inclusion and community building, Farooq co-founded Muslamic Makers in 2016 as a networking group for Muslims in tech, design and development.
As well as a freelance diversity and inclusion consultant, Farooq is an angel investor for Ada Ventures with special interest in edtech, healthtech and fintech.
She has an extensive background in digital and artificial intelligence in both the private and public sector.
Taylor co-founded TechReturners, where she is currently CEO, to give skilled individuals who have has a career break the opportunity to connect with firms and help them back into mid-to-senior level tech roles.
She is also co-founder and CEO of The Confidence Community, which aims to provide resources, training information and events to give people more career confidence. Taylor is co-founder of community WIT North, and co-founder of ReframeWIT.
As CEO of Nash Squared, White heads up the global firm which provides IT recruitment, technology solutions and leaderships services out of 36 offices across the world.
White has a long background in the tech sector, having previously held roles as CIO and director of IT, as well as completing a degree in computer science.
In her 30 years at KPMG, Mehta has had many responsibilities, including building the firm’s focus on trade and investment, and helping scaleup clients to access financial support.
She is now chair of the organisation, and this year was awarded an MBE for services to UK trade and investment and supporting female entrepreneurs.
Karia has spent much of her career in and around the startup ecosystem, most recently as a venture partner for venture capital firm Molten Ventures.
For five years, she led BizSpark in the UK (now known as Microsoft Ventures), concentrating on early-stage technology businesses, as well as being responsible for working alongside venture capitalists and angels on behalf of Microsoft.
She sits on many industry advisory boards, including CognitionX, Humanity, Bootstrap Europe SCsp, The Work Crowd and Wrisk.
In her 25-year-career, Gorski has had many focuses, including strategy consulting, marketing development and commercial decision-making.
She is currently CEO of the CEO of R² Factory, the part of Rolls-Royce that develops data and artificial intelligence (AI). She is also co-founder of Emergent Alliance, a not-for-profit focused on using data to help firms and small businesses plan their futures in a post-Covid era.
Hunter founded Coding Black Females in 2017 to help black female software developers meet each other and network. Alongside her work at Coding Black Females, Hunter is a software developer.
She is an advisory board industry representative in University of Essex Online’s computing department, is technical director at SAM Software Solutions, and technical director at full-stack and front-end training organisation Black Codher Bootcamp.
Previously, Hunter was lead software engineer at Made Tech, and held roles such as senior software developer, lead Java developer, app developer and technical consultant at various firms.
She was named a Computer Weekly Women in UK Tech Rising Star in 2020.
Charlotte Light, advisory board member, Institute of Coding; group CTO, Aztec Group
Light has held many high-level tech positions throughout her career, including IT director of corporate for Specsavers and controller of system delivery (CIO) for Channel 4. She is currently CTO of Aztec Group, where she is responsible for ensuring the firm’s technology strategy meets both internal and external company needs.
She is also an advisory board member of the Institute of Coding.
Scott joined Ovo as chief product and technology officer in 2021 to lead the energy provider’s technology teams. The firm recently launched a Tech Academy aimed at supporting people at apprenticeship level to pursue careers in technology.
Prior to Ovo, Scott was chief technology officer for News UK and deputy CTO for parent company News Corp, and has also been CIO at the Financial Times, where she was responsible for technology across the FT group, leading a 400-plus global team responsible for building and operating the infrastructure, business applications, data and consumer products across multiple platforms.
Scott has over 20 years’ experience across the media, IT and engineering industries. Before joining the FT, she worked for the BBC, BT Vision, News International and ITV Digital, and as a consultant at Accenture.
Thorne is co-CEO of Tech She Can, a charity aimed at increasing the number of women in the technology sector, as well as a venture partner at Deep Science Ventures.
She has a background in the education sector, previously holding roles as director of innovation strategy for the University of Surrey, and executive officer to the vice-president (innovation) at Imperial College London.
Barclay has been with Microsoft for more than 10 years, holding several roles including director of SMB, general manager of small and mid-market solutions and partners, and COO.
She is now CEO of Microsoft in the UK, responsible for the firm’s product and service offerings in the region.
Claudia Natanson, head of information security, AccuWeather; chair, UK Cyber Security Council
An expert in cyber security, Natanson has had more than 15 years in the sector, with past roles including security strategic adviser for Smiths Group, Aramark and Intercept Parmaceuticals, as well as CISO for Diageo and chief security officer for the Department for Work and Pensions.
She is currently head of information security at AccuWeather, as well as chair of the UK government’s Cyber Security Council.
Wosskow is chairman and co-founder of AllBright, a platform designed to help support and fund female entrepreneurs in the UK. She is also a board member of London’s Business Advisory Board, The Women’s Prize for Fiction, and The Rose Review of Female Entrepreneurship.
Until March 2017, Wosskow acted as chairman for Sharing Economy UK, the trade body that represents the UK’s sharing economy businesses.
Diana Kennedy, CTO, Bupa
Kennedy is currently the CTO for healthcare provider Bupa, where she is also heavily involved in the organisation’s women in tech network, TechX.
Prior to her current role, she was at BP for 11 years, working in roles such as head of strategy and architecture for enterprise systems, IT&S director for upstream strategy and architecture and VP of strategy, architecture and planning.
She is a volunteer for the Modern Muse project, part of Everywoman, which seeks to promote science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) role models to young women to encourage then to pursue careers in technology.
Akumanyi is a serial founder and software developer, and is currently co-CTO at community network Coding Black Females.
She is also co-founder, CTO and lead developer of AI shopping site Furnishful, and founder of training course provider DigiBright.
Sinel founded Teens in AI and Acorn Aspirations to help young people who want to solve real-world problems using technology such as AI, virtual, augmented and mixed reality.
She has won awards for her work, including CogX 2017 Award in Using AI for Social Good Projects, and is currently an education taskforce committee member for the All Parliamentary Group in Artificial Intelligence, and a business mentor at Microsoft for Startups.
Before working on Acorn Associates and Teens in AI, Sinel was a consultant for several firms, including the British Council, NGOs, Chittagong Hill Tracts and the Ethiopian Cultural Heritage Project.
A serial entrepreneur, Sinclair is co-founder and CEO of software company EnterpriseAlumni, and is the youngest person in the world to have floated a company on the London Stock Exchange.
In 2016, she was awarded an MBE for services to entrepreneurship, and as well as acting as a adviser for Unicef, helping the charity to launch its first crowdfund in 2017, Sinclair is a columnist for The Telegraph and an advisory council member for G7.
As part of her role as chief digital information officer at The Open University, Stace hopes to use technology to improve student experience.
An expert in transformation, prior to her current role, she spent time as chief digital and technology officer for the Department for Education, and before that was chief digital and technology officer for the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills.
With a background in law surrounding telecoms, the internet and media, Wright now uses her expertise as director of not-for-profit The Institute of AI, as well as non-executive director of Playfinder and partner at Harbottle & Lewis, heading up the tech, data and digital group.
Fongang is a strategic brand specialist aiming to help technology companies with brand engagement. She is managing director of creative agency 3 Colours Rule, as well as a branding, neuromarketing and social selling course instructor for the agency.
She is a brand adviser at the BBC, a brand specialist for Consilience Ventures and an entrepreneurship expert with the Entrepreneurship Centre at the Saïd Business School at the University of Oxford.
She founded the Tech London Advocates Black Women in Tech group, which aims to support and accelerate diversity and inclusion in the tech sector.
Sillem worked for the Royal Academy of Engineering for 12 years before being appointed its CEO in 2018.
Previous roles at the Academy include deputy CEO and director of strategy, director of programmes and fellowship, and head of international activities.
As well as her work for the Academy, Sillem is a trustee and judge for the St Andrews Prize for the Environment, a trustee of EngineeringUK and the Foundation For Science and Technology, and CEO of the Queen Elizabeth Prize for Engineering.
Coyle has held several roles at London & Partners, including principal adviser, director of trade and growth, leading the export and growth strategy for the firm, and managing director of growth, before being made managing director of business growth in early 2021.
She has several other roles, non-executive director for Rocketseed, and acts as co-chair for the Tech London Advocates Scale Up Group.
In the past, she was managing director of Silicon Valley Comes to the UK, and was an adviser for charity Founders4Schools.
Hirt joined Innovate Finance in 2015 as the industry body’s head of community, before eventually becoming its CEO six years later. She now heads up the organisation, aiming to drive innovation and transformation in the fintech sector to make it more inclusive.
She has worked around the world in a variety of roles, including acting head of corporate relations for Chatham House in the UK, head of membership for the Brazilian-American Chamber of Commerce in New York, and head new hire trainer for an English language training programme in Japan.
Wade, a research fellow at Imperial College London, works in the University’s SPIN-Lab investigating the quantum mechanical effects of light on chiral organic semiconductors, and has been published in several scientific journals.
She was previously a postdoctoral research associate, conducting research into polymer-based light emitting diodes (LEDs).
To help tackle gender imbalance on Wikipedia, and to shine a light on women in STEM, Wade ran a year-long campaign to add profiles of women in STEM to Wikipedia.
Previously, Wade served on the WISE Campaign Young Women’s Board and the Women’s Engineering Society Council.
Jennings began a new role at BT this year heading up the group’s data platforms, helping to create new business models using data and AI. At BT, she has led the BT Skills for Tomorrow programme, which helps people across the UK use digital to their advantage. The programme has helped 10 million people learn digital skills and confidence with technology.
She was previously the director at the Royal Household, and chief executive responsible for strategy and delivery of iDEA CIC, the inspiring digital enterprise award, and before that spent 15 years with the BBC in a variety of roles, including programme editor for BBC Breakfast with Frost and executive editor for BBC News.
She spent two and a half years as programme executive for the BBC Academy, helping develop a leadership programme for senior creative leaders throughout the BBC. Jennings has also held roles at major broadcast organisations ITN and Sky.
Oniwinde founded BYP Network in 2016 to help black professionals network and have easier access to jobs after a trip abroad confirmed the challenges young black people face in getting jobs both in and outside the UK.
She is board trustee for volunteer organisation Getting On Board and has received several awards and accolades, including Forbes 30 Under 30 and Financial Times Top 100 BAME Leaders in Technology.
As part of her role at the National Cyber Security Centre, Cameron helps the UK to plan for, and respond to, risks and opportunities posed by emerging technologies.
She has a long history of roles in the public sector, including at organisations such as the Department for International Development, the Northern Ireland Office, the Cabinet Office, and the Government’s Stabalisation Unit.
Williams is CEO of inclusion campaign FutureDotNow which aims to ensure people are not left behind by the growing skills gap caused by digital adoption.
She is a member of the UK government’s Digital Skills Council, is a member of the board of trustees for Transport for London and is chair of the Good Things Foundation.
Prior to her current work, she spent more than 20 years at BT in a number of different roles, including programme director for sustainable business, director of tech literacy and education programmes, and director of digital society.
Patel has an extensive background in both diversity and STEM, currently holding positions as non-executive director of UK IPO, a trustee of the Science Museum Group, and chair of Diversity UK.
She also founded Asians in Tech, which annually showcases the top 100 people from Asian backgrounds working in the technology and digital sectors in the UK.
O’Shea has a background in both technology and the insurance industries, having worked at Admiral Group before joining Confused.com in 2016 where she is now CEO.
As well as non-executive director for CFC Underwriting, she is the chair of Insurtech Board 2.0 and a the chair of FinTech Wales.
Krupinska has run Google’s UK startup support organisation since December 2018, and is the chair of Youth Business International, which helps young people from under-represented backgrounds start businesses.
Previously, she co-founded fintech startup Azimo in 2012, to make sending money easy and accessible for everyone. She has also been entrepreneur in residence for govtech accelerator Public and co-founded FreeUp.io, an “ethical fintech” firm that was acquired by fintech investor Greensill in October 2019.
Naomi Timperley, co-founder, Tech North Advocates; growth and innovation consultant, We Are GSI; innovation and growth lead, Manchester Tech Festival
Timperley is a freelance consultant and co-founder of Tech North Advocates, a private sector-led collection of tech experts who champion the technology sector in the north of England.
Last year, she co-founded advisory firm Growth Strategy Innovation, which helps to grow startup and scaleup organisations.
Named a Computer Weekly Women in Tech Rising Star in 2017, is also a board trustee of charity Digital Advantage, a board member of community initiative WILD Digital and, until last year, was a board member of FutureEverything. In the past, she co-founded Enterprise Lab.
Nicola Martin, head of quality engineering, Adarga; BCS Women committee member and BCS Pride vice chair
Currently the head of quality at Adarga, Martin has a history of working as a test consultant at firms such as Barclays, Sony, the UK Home Office, Shazam and Sky.
She is currently a committee member and inclusion officer for the BCS Special Interest Group in Software Testing, and is the vice-chair of the BCS LGBTQIA+ tech specialist group.
Jamieson founded, and is CEO of, The Dots, a network designed to help people connect with creative professionals.
She is an advocate for diversity and describes herself as “delightfully dyslexic”. The community at The Dots is made up of more than 68% women, 31% BAME and 16% LGBT+ members.
Lakhani founded Century Tech as a teaching and learning platform focused on subjects such as AI, cognitive neuroscience, big data analytics and blockchain, where she is also CEO.
A frequent speaker, she is a board member for the Foundation for Education Development, a board member for uboxed2022, a member of the UK’s AI Council, and a non-executive director for the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS)
She was awarded an OBE in 2014.
Sohoni co-founded Seedcamp in 2007, an early-stage venture capital firm which has invested in more than 200 companies since its inception, where she is a partner.
A regular in the startup and venture capital space, she is also an adviser with Credo Ventures in the Czech Republic, a fellow of the Kauffman Fellows Program, and a senior adviser with Anthemis Group SA.
Turner founded Angel Academe, a pro-women and pro-diversity angel investment group focused on technology, and is currently CEO of the group.
Turner is also an advisory board member of tech recruiter Spinks, and in 2007 co-founded consultancy Turner Hopkins, which helps businesses to create digital strategy.
Previously, Turner was an external board member and chair of the investment committee for venture capital fund the Low Carbon Innovation Fund and a board member of the UK Business Angels Association, the trade association for early-stage investment.
After founding WAH Nails and using social media to grow the community and AR-driven salon, Reid founded Beautystack to provide beauty professionals with better booking software, also allowing users to develop networks. This eventually grew into The Stack World, a community building platform for women-led brands and businesses.
In March 2022, The Stack World was chosen to be part of the investment strategy Launch with Goldman Sachs.
A past Computer Weekly Rising Star, Atcheson is the global vice-president of diversity and inclusion at Valtech, as well as an outspoken advocate for diversity and inclusion both in and outside the tech sector.
Previously, she has been global director of diversity, equity and inclusion, and head of diversity and inclusion at Monzo and prior to that, she was the UK expansion director of Women Who Code, responsible for advancing the Women Who Code networks across the UK, after founding the organisation in 2014. She is now an advisory board member.
Over the years, Atcheson has held several tech roles, including a technical business consultant for technology, strategy and architecture at Deloitte, software engineer for Kainos and product analyst for SR Labs.
Ash has two major roles - as Technology Innovation Leader at PwC UK, and Co-CEO and Founder of the charity, Tech She Can. She's a board member of the Institute of Coding and, in 2020, received an MBE for services to young girls and women through technology.
Tech She Can is an award-winning charity with over 240 member organisations, who together work with industry, government and schools to improve the ratio of women in technology roles. It provides initiatives and pathways into tech careers across all the different stages of girls' and women's lives.
At PwC, Ash led change in the technology workforce, pioneering initiatives which saw the percentage of women in tech more than double to reach 32%.
Fuller founded Miribure in 2015. The company uses data gathering and analytics to promote strategic decision-making in firms.
She is also a founding ambassador of the FiftyFiftyPledge, an advisory board member of Tech London Advocates and Tech Global Advocates, and the TLA Women in Tech co-lead.
Fuller co-founded, and until 2019 was CEO of, incubator and accelerator Salaam Ventures, which focuses on assisting ethical startups.
For the last 11 years, Hargreaves has been CEO of the Internet Watch Foundation, a not-for-profit organisation which works with about 170 members to report and remove online child sexual abuse images and videos.
She is also an advisory board member for several organisations, including the WeProtect Global Alliance Threat Assessment, the International Justice Mission and the World Economic Forum’s Coalition for Digital Safety.
Goldstaub is an expert in the impact that AI has on society, co-founding CognitionX, a platform and network that helps to build AI and data-driven systems.
She is the chair of the government’s AI Council, which aims to offer advice and guidance to the government in the ongoing use and development of AI.
She also acts as marketing counsel for Founders4Schools, adviser for The Prince’s Trust and is the co-founder of Future Girl Corp, an organisation that runs free events for future female CEOs. She also acts as a judge for Teens in AI, and is an advisory board member for the Campaign for Science and Engineering.
Tristi Tanaka, head of the CMO Office, NHS Black Country ICB; BCS Women committee member; fellow, ForHumanity
Tanaka is currently part of the programme team for All4Health&Care, a community launched during the pandemic to connect digital healthcare providers with the public sector.
She is also the head of the CMO Office for NHS Black Country ICB, a fellow, independent audit for AI systems for ForHumanity, and a BCS Women membership secretary.
As well as a background in web development, Allen founded the DevelopHER awards in 2013 to help increase the number of women working in technology roles.
The awards eventually grew to include a coding club in 2016 to teach teens HTML and CSS.
Allen currently works as a senior software develop in the UX team at Certua, and has had developer roles in several other organisations including Brisk, Proteo UK, and Liftshare.com.