Inspiring Leader – Client

This is a category aimed at women in leadership positions within client or public works organisations who have used their positions to inspire and engage the workforce and improve outcomes for customers and their business.

Johanne Bridgman
Severn Trent

At Severn Trent, Jo leveraged her extensive contaminated land knowledge to enhance waste permitting procedures, saving the company over £1.5M on various projects. She developed internal documentation to upskill teams on waste classification and surplus soil management. Jo's consultancy design experience has been invaluable in projects within coal mining legacy areas, where she emphasized public safety and regulatory compliance. She initiated the Coal Mining Risk Assessment Reporting Framework, selecting expert suppliers and supporting the tender process. Recognized with Severn Trent’s Star of the Month Award and nominated for Employee of the Year, Jo embodies the company's values of pride, courage, curiosity, and care. Her ability to communicate technical details informally and effectively, combined with her mentoring of colleagues, makes her an inspiring leader and a vital asset to Severn Trent and the Ground Engineering Team.

Iona Davis
Port of Dover

With 16 years in the construction industry across consulting, contracting, and client organizations, Iona Davis, a Chartered Engineer with ICE, excels in structural, civil, and marine engineering. As Principal Engineer at the Port of Dover, she leads asset condition assessments and maintenance planning, enhancing asset lifespan and operational efficiency. Notably, Iona managed the bearing replacement project for a critical pier, devising innovative access walkways to minimize disruptions and ensure user safety, crucial for the port's 48 daily ferry crossings. Her focus on sustainability includes specifying GRP over steel for longevity and offsite fabrication to reduce waste. An advocate for diversity, Iona influences CCCU's engineering strategy, promotes STEM education, and integrates diversity into procurement practices. As the first female team leader in the Port's Engineering Department, Iona's leadership and pioneering efforts drive both industry advancements and societal impact.

Penny Halliday
Enfield Council

As the leader of Enfield Council’s flagship regeneration project, I am transforming a brownfield site into vibrant neighborhoods through Meridian Water, set to deliver 10,000 homes and 6,000 jobs over 25 years. Despite challenging market conditions, I secured funding and mitigated risks to ensure project success. Highlights include:- Welcoming the first residents to Meridian One, with diverse and accessible housing options.- Unlocking Meridian Two, adding 274 homes and commercial space, and securing £9.7M from the GLA.- Reprogramming infrastructure works, securing an additional £25M in funding, totaling £195M.- Retaining contractors during funding reviews, enabling immediate commencement of main works. I prioritize diversity, inclusion, and community engagement, ensuring local residents benefit from the regeneration. With a target of £390M in social value, Meridian Water has already achieved over £56M, highlighting its significant positive impact on the community.

Suzanne Kinley
Heathrow Airport

Suzanne Kinley, Workforce Relations Manager at Heathrow Airport, stands as a paragon of leadership and compassion in construction. Her initiatives, including integrating The Lighthouse Club wellbeing app and organizing significant mental health events like International Men’s Day, have profoundly impacted the workforce’s wellbeing. Suzanne's proactive crisis management, particularly following a subcontractor fatality, and her relentless pursuit of better employment practices and welfare standards, demonstrate her commitment to creating a supportive and inclusive work environment. Her personal resilience and dedication, further highlight her extraordinary character and dedication to others. Suzanne's leadership has made Heathrow a beacon of positive mental health and wellbeing in the construction industry.

Caoimhe O'Flaherty
Berkeley Group

Caoimhe has exceptionally contributed to Health and Safety over the last 12 years. As the Senior Health and Safety Manager at White City Living, she has revolutionized health and safety standards, effectively engaging a diverse workforce. Her innovative approach includes organizing impactful sessions like the live role play of a fall from height, widely regarded as the most engaging health and safety training ever. By fostering collaboration between management and onsite workers, Caoimhe has broken down traditional barriers and significantly enhanced safety awareness. Additionally, her role as a mental health awareness ambassador underscores her holistic commitment to workplace well-being. Caoimhe’s dedication, creativity, and leadership have not only changed the face of health and safety but have also set new benchmarks in the industry, making her a truly inspiring leader.

Fatema Salat
Ashghal Public Work Authority

As the pioneering woman in my civil engineering department, I have successfully navigated initial skepticism to earn the trust and respect of my peers. Currently leading major infrastructure projects in southern Qatar, including the Roads Improvement Works project, I handle comprehensive responsibilities, from budget management to ensuring stringent safety and quality standards. I proactively address safety and quality issues, issuing nonconformance reports to uphold standards. Engaging with stakeholders, I manage their concerns and requirements effectively, minimizing disruptions. My oversight of commercial aspects, such as variations and change requests, ensures project completion within budget and timelines. Through my leadership, strategic vision, and mentorship, I inspire my team, drive excellence, and foster a collaborative culture. My ability to maintain high standards, manage complex challenges, and build strong stakeholder relationships underscores my qualifications for the Leadership Inspiration award.

Lynn Summerfield
British Land

My driver is the legacy we create – not just through our work with the local community or from the development we have constructed, but also by each member of the team learning, developing and taking things they have learnt on to their next projects. My hope is that my open approach to knowledge sharing and the teams experience of working within a positive client-contractor culture will mean many more projects, teams and people will benefit from all the great things that have been achieved at Norton Folgate. My experience of working as a main contractor has enabled me to see varying perspectives when dealing with difficult project challenges. By encouraging the team to share issues we were able agree what we didn’t agree about and move challenges forward in a productive way – doing what was right for the project was at the heart of decision making.