After the success of last year’s WWC Belfast “She Rocks” Awards we were delighted to end 2018 with another Award Ceremony highlighting some incredible women in our tech community. Thanks to our sponsor Puppet Labs, we had a chance to get together, have some food, drinks and catch up. So what are the WWCode Belfast “She Rocks” awards? They’re a chance to celebrate someone awesome you know within the Belfast Tech community. We all had a great night, if you missed out here’s a rundown of all our fabulous ‘She Rock’ winners.
Our first award went to our Youth Advocate Star Lisa Donaldson. The Youth Advocate Star is for the creative, patient and inspiring women who volunteer their time actively engaging a youth audience in our local community. Lisa conducted WWCode's first children's workshop at Belfast Design Week last year single-handedly and has inspired the next WWCode leads to keep doing a children's workshop at BDW. This year she founded Tech Education Network (TEN). They now have a group of volunteers working and studying in the tech community, equipping both children and adults with information, practical resources, training and the experience they will need to thrive in the tech arena. She also planned and organized The Great QR Hunt for children during NI Science Festival 2018 where they had to solve riddles encouraging computational thinking. She is a passionate woman who fights for the causes she cares about and powerfully influences the local community.
This Community Star award is for individuals who contribute to the tech community and go above and beyond. Whether they assist others further from our immediate tech community or even contribute to the open source community. They are the helping guides, signposting and steering people towards realizing previously unknown tech ambitions and potential. Congratulations to our winner Chloe Mullan. Chloe helps organize a number of great tech events, she is the co-organiser of Charged (a local meetup that aims to provide an inclusive environment for people to learn new tech and network), co-organiser of LearnTo iOS where she helped deliver an iOS course with no prior knowledge and it was a huge success, CodeFirstGirls and even starting her own code club in her hometown for A-Level students. Her contributions will have a great, positive effect on the community, introducing new people to the tech industry, as well as new technologies to seasoned developers!
The Diversity Advocate Star award is for the women who realize the incredible power of community. They are dedicated to addressing the gender imbalance and promoting equality in tech through a range of initiatives that champion fairness, inclusivity and diversity for a sustainable tech future. They bring their passion for technology to drive tech accessibility, making sure that people from all walks of life have the power to make, use and drive twenty-first-century technology. Congratulations to our winner Roisin Burns. Roisin works in tech consulting at Deloitte and is the Events Lead at Deloitte's Women in Tech network. She has organized various events ranging from coding workshops, tech talks and STEM Ambassador training - all to empower women in tech. Her coding workshop idea has since been replicated by the Deloitte London team and got excellent feedback.
The Rising Tech Star award is for the women who have recently started their journey in the tech community. Whether they are fresh-faced university graduates, returners to work, or those who switched into IT; the individuals changing the face of the tech industry, and always for the better. Despite being new in tech, they bring their knowledge, experiences and perspectives into their role in delivering high-quality work. Congratulations to our winner Chloe McAteer. Chloe recently finished placement at Kainos, She has constantly gone above and beyond, pushing herself to the next level - going out of her comfort zone to pick up new skills and learn new things. She has also inspired the next generation of tech enthusiasts by delivering different talks. She speaks at meetups and conferences as well as writing several blogs, cumulating in delivering an AI workshop down at Microsoft Ireland. Chloe was also recently named as a Top 100 Young Innovator in the UK & Ireland.
The Engineering Leadership Star was a perfect fit for our winner Claire Wilgar. This award is for the women who have been team leaders or great mentors to us. They bring out the best in others and always have your back. They encourage others to keep learning and improving but are also there when you need their support. This award is for the great leaders who don’t only ensure that engineering projects are delivered and meeting targets, but also make the team work well together. Claire is actively involved at Farset Labs, Women In Tech, Women Techmakers, BelfastJS, NI Game Dev, and many others. She has tirelessly supported various events across these communities.
Congratulations to everyone who was nominated. All our winners are truly deserved and we can’t wait to see their continued contribution and impact in 2019.