Venus Awards Birmingham 2014


NatWest Venus Awards Birmingham 2014 winners announced

Following thousands of votes, over 1,500 nominations and applications and a frenzy of excitement, the Birmingham Venus business women Awards took place at the icc, Birmingham on Wednesday 26th November 2014.  Hosted by Rachel New and Tara Howard, Venus Awards Founder, the evening proved to be a huge success.

Expanding across the country, in regions already such as Dorset, Devon, Southampton, Brighton, Portsmouth, Oxford and Bristol, this is the first year the Venus Awards were in Birmingham to recognise and reward the amazing business women of Birmingham.

The awards were founded in 2009 by Tara Howard, then Managing Director of Langtry Manor Hotel in Bournemouth, she announced, “The night was magical, the food fabulous, the setting stupendous and the atmosphere electric. It was so inspiring to see the wealth and diversity of successful Birmingham business women. I felt so honoured to be on stage with the winners of the various categories who were deservedly recognized for their achievements. We have not had an awards ceremony yet without lots of laughter and a few tears – this year was no exception.”

Together with Joanne Gilbert-Lewis, a local business women herself and owner of Event Group UK, an Event Management company the Venus Awards were launched in May 2014.  “Birmingham is a tremendous city to succeed. There are so many opportunities for businesses to flourish and grow. These awards celebrate the vital part that women play in this success.  All the women finalists, not just those that took home the trophies, inspired us all with their energy, enthusiasm and drive to succeed.” 

Here are the winners of the prestigious evening:

Heart Business Mother   

Jess Jeetly   


Jess Jeetly is the Founder and Managing Director of Jeetly, the first collaborative clothing brand for petite women (defined as 5’3 tall or under). A former optometrist turned businesswoman, she is a proud mum, wife and Ambassador for Women at IWIB.

Business of the Year    

Kirsty Davies-Chinnock    

Professional Polishing Services Ltd  

PPS has grown to be the largest of its kind in the UK and is reflected in Kirsty’s accolades such as IoD Director of the Year. When she isn’t championing manufacturing through the media Kirsty is an author and a Trustee.

Customer Service Award   

Aine Gallagher   

Sana Vita Healthclub Ltd 

Aine is a committed, passionate and ambitious person. When not coaching, Aine dedicates her time to personal learning and development as she strongly believes by doing this she can apply, and help her clients in the best way possible.

Customer Service Award  

Aine Gallagher   

Sana Vita Healthclub Ltd   

Aine is a committed, passionate and ambitious person. When not coaching, Aine dedicates her time to personal learning and development as she strongly believes by doing this she can apply, and help her clients in the best way possible.

Birmingham Post Employee of the Year   

Prof Kiran Trehan   

Birmingham University

Kiran has made an immense contribution to the promotion of enterprise at Birmingham Business school; her work with SME’s has been a catalyst for the development of ‘fast-growth’ businesses in the region. She is a passionate and inspiring change agent who makes a real difference.

Employer of the Year   

Eileen Schofield   

Schofield & Associates

Eileen started her business 5 years ago with nothing but a desk a phone and lots of enthusiasm and energy. In the last 5 years Eileen and the team have developed a Law Firm with a national and international profile. Eileen is currently President of Birmingham Law Society.

Entrepreneur of the Year  

Jayne Watkins 

LiveWell (Care & Support) Ltd

Jayne is a hard working mum and entrepreneur who is passionate about the highest standards of individualised and the supported living model of support, so much so that she set up LiveWell Care to deliver those exacting standards to adults with disabilities and autism. As the mum of a young man with autism, the business is built around her values a high standards. The business has seen tremendous growth since its inception in 2011 and that is down to a strong value based model and hardworking team.

Home Based Business Award   

Amanda Goode   

Think Tenders Ltd  

Amanda is a skilled bid writer with over 25 years business winning experience gained within a variety of sectors.  She is passionate about writing compelling bids and in facilitating business growth for her clients by winning a range of contracts.

The Westbourne Centre Influential Woman  

Ulrika Dandekar  


Ulrika, often known as Riya, is a 21 year old woman fighting with a rare type of blood cancer. Her only hope now is a stem cell transplant. Previously, she was extremely active and ambitious, wanting to go to medical school to become a life saver.       

Cross Productions Inspirational Woman Award    Debbie Huxton    Be A Business Success    Debbie is a woman on a mission. She challenges people daily to change their lives for the better by imparting her BIG Wisdom as an inspirational speaker, author and business executive success coach.

Johnsons VW Lifetime Achievement Award  

Judy Dyke   


Judy gained an LLB Honours in law at the University of Birmingham and has worked at Tyndallwoods Solicitors since 1974.  Throughout her career she has used her professional expertise to support local charities.

Networker of the Year    

Denise Morris    

Bloomer Heaven  

Denise is a charismatic, motivational and astute individual with the ability to make friends and influence people. She always handles any situation with professionalism as Denise is extremely driven, resourceful and a dedicated woman.

New Business Award  

Trish Willets   

BB Boutique 

Trish is a Mom of two daughters Jessie & Amy, and is married to Mark.  She loves working with her daughters in their Family Business, BB Boutique.  BB is her late Mother’s initials – Betsy Bassett – It’s All About Family.

New Media, Technology and Online Award  

Lizze Leary   

Kindred Sole  

Lizze Leary, 26 is founder of the online shoes store. The brand creates shoes collections each season from worldwide fashion brands for customers to shop with free next day delivery. Lizze was named ‘Young Business Executive of the Year 2013’.

SimkissGuy PA of the Year   

Erin Taheny  

Catalyst Corporate Finance

Erin is overjoyed to be nominated for Birmingham PA of the Year. To know her team at Catalyst Corporate Finance have gone out of their way to support her is fantastic – pressures on as they have told her she’d better win now!

Professional of the Year   

Dee Kundi   

HL Solicitors 


Dee Kundi, Head of Legal at HL Solicitors, is a solicitor with significant banking litigation experience overseeing a specialist law firm providing Litigation, Debt Collection, Recovery Services and Arrears Management to a broad client base. Dee has been appointed to the Executive Board for the IAB, part of the Birmingham Chamber of Commerce Group, a number of years and was just elected as Vice President.

NatWest Small Business Award  

Jodie Cook   

JC Social Media    

MD of JC Social Media b a Birmingham-based specialist social media agency, and co founder of Clever Tykes, a series of storybooks that introduce children to entrepreneurial role models. She enjoys powerlifting and steak, in that order!    

The Venus Awards, originally called the Langtry Manor Business Women Awards, were set up in 2009 by Tara Howard, to recognise the hard work, effort and skill that it can take women to successfully juggle business with other commitments.  Rebranded in 2011 to the Venus Awards, up to sixteen categories are judged by sponsors, with three of those categories being voted for by the general public.  Finalists were invited to attend the prestigious Awards Ceremony at the icc, Birmingham where the winners were announced during an exciting and glamorous event which is fast becoming the business social event of the year


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