Chamber Inspiring females conference 2020

Event Information

Share this event

Date and Time



Online Event

Event description
As we approach the seventh year, , we’re delighted to bring this hugely popular conference to you in a virtual format.

About this Event

Our conference aims to inspire and connect women in the business across the North East of England with this annual conference as part of our Inspiring Females programme of events.

The conference will feature speakers and panellists from business and public life in the North East highlighting the success stories of women in business in the region, and tackling the issues that will help ensure the role of women in our business community continues to accelerate in the years to come.

The virtual conference will be flexible, working to the below agenda but ensuring there’s specific times for breaks and networking to help us all avoid Zoom fatigue!


10:00 Welcome – Alix Bolton, Chair, Chamber Women’s Leadership Forum and Head of People, Virtualsoft

10:15 Carole Harder – CEO, Percy Hedley Foundation

10:45 Desislava Miteva – Executive Director, British Bulgarian Business Association

11:15 Introduction to mindfulness supporting mental health - Dr Lucy Harrison, MBCT

12:00 Lunch break

12:30 Online Networking session (optional) – moving into smaller break out rooms for informal networking and chatter!

13:00 Changing Lives

13:30 Tracey Bowman – Director of Human Resources & Corporate Affairs, Komatsu & Charys Unwin, Apprentice, Komatsu

14:15 Describing Life’s Journey: Experiences of art in addressing ‘gendered’ challenges for women in organisations - Dr Gill Danby, Artistry in Leadership

15:00 Close


Carole Harder OBE

Carole is an experienced executive and a qualified teacher. She took up her post at the Foundation after spending most of her career in the NHS, most recently as Director of Community Services for Durham and Darlington Community Health Service.

Originally from Sunderland, Carole’s career has included work as a health promotion officer, director posts covering quality and service delivery, primary care and GP commissioning.

She has an MBA and is a member of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development. Through her work she has experienced both operational management and organisational development whilst maintaining a focus of the needs of the people who use the services.

Dr Lucy Harrison

I have been a GP for 16 years working in NHS, private and academic sectors. More recently I have expanded my skills to teach mindfulness. I specialise in a form of contemporary mindfulness known as Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT), which is clinically acclaimed. I completed a Masters in MBCT at the University of Oxford in 2018. My work centres around teaching mindfulness skills to healthcare professionals and corporate clients, to help people manage the stresses of work and to live more fully.

I enjoy teaching mindfulness skills to healthcare and corporate clients. Businesses with healthy and happy staff enjoy high levels of staff morale and productivity and, ultimately, enjoy healthy long-term profitability.


Komatsu places a lot of emphasis on STEM activities throughout the region for both school and university students throughout the North East. The amount of STEM ambassadors keeps increasing year on year which helps supporting more and more events and increases the reach that the company has to promote engineering within the region and beyond.

Komatsu UK has picked up the ball on gender diversity over the past three years. The women who have been appointed to senior positions in the organisation have brought a different perspective, which I feel has improved both our culture and our decision-making. Our investment in the everywoman platform has not only given a clear message that we are serious about tackling the gender diversity issue

Dr Gill Danby

Dr. Gillian (Gill) Danby has held many senior leadership positions in the public education and health sectors in the United Kingdom and Canada, and most recently was Vice President and Chief Finance Officer at The Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity in Canada. Gill’s doctoral research was based on gender stereotypes in the workplace, women’s leadership styles and arts-based methods in management education.

She is currently owner/director of Artistry in Leadership, and with her small team of experienced professionals is primarily focused on personal and professional development with individuals and organisations through coaching, mentoring, and facilitation. Gill has a background in dance and music, and in her work emphasises kindness, encouragement, and humour.

This webinar is open to Chamber members only. If you are not a Chamber member but would like to engage with us please contact

Share with friends

Date and Time


Online Event

Save This Event

Event Saved