Meet our Account Director
Describe your career in five words.
Championing for women’s sport growth.
Usually we’d start with a question on what you’ve been up to at work… but we’re happy to make an exception in this case as you have a quite extraordinary story on the horizon. Later this year, you are undertaking the Atlantic Challenge as part of the ‘There She Rows’ Tell us a little more about what inspired you to take that on, who you’re rowing for and what you hope to achieve by doing it?
Shortly after joining CSM in 2018, I was lucky enough to start working on the Talisker account – a single-malt whisky brand, part of the DIAGEO group, who were partnering with Atlantic Campaigns. The ‘Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge’ is a 3,000-mile rowing race across the Atlantic Ocean from La Gomera in the Canary Islands, to English Harbour in Antigua.
50 teams embark on this challenge each year, powered solely by the crew on board, and making the crossing in a tiny boat, just a few metres long. From the moment they push off from shore, crews are totally self-sufficient – living off freeze-dried ration packs, drinking from a water desalination device and facing mother nature at her finest (the good; amazing wildlife, the bad; terrible blisters and sleep deprivation and the ugly; storms and capsizes).
And on top of it all, this was not a fleet of professional athletes, in the most part, these were just ‘normal’ people, taking on an extraordinary feat. In short, it was one of the most incredible, memorable, and inspirational events I’d ever seen. I knew then that it was something I had to do – four years later ‘There She Rows’ was born; a four-women crew, racing in December 2023.
Myself and my three brilliant teammates have come together through shared passion and values – we are all lucky enough to have benefitted enormously from sport throughout our lives; the friends it’s given us and the life lessons it has taught us. And yet, over half of girls will quit playing sport before they turn 17. We want to use the row as a platform to inspire women and girls – to say, if we can cross an ocean in a tiny rowing boat (having never rowed before!) then you can be inspired and empowered to cross your own ‘Atlantic Ocean’. Whether that’s joining your first team, running your first park run, or rediscovering a sport you used to love – you can do anything you set your mind to.
We are raising funds for three charities close to our hearts; Women’s Sport Trust, Endometriosis UK and Teenage Cancer Trust.
It’s evident you are keen to help empower girls and women with the belief they can achieve anything they want to, and back in 2020 you were a key member of the team that launched CSM’s Women’s Sport Strategy. It’s fair to say a lot has happened since then! Are there any particular highlights? What impact has that strategy had so far, and what do you hope to achieve in 2023?
Yes – wow, what a journey! From putting heads together with Harriet Young two years ago in a coffee shop in Victoria, to now having a full strategy and team driving its growth forward in 2023 – it’s truly amazing and there are so many exciting things on the horizon this year.
Hosting our own EURO 2022 panel event and celebration for the opening game of the tournament at CSM HQ in London definitely stands out as a highlight. Discussing the implications of the tournament with some of the industry’s most renowned names and the impact it would create for the sport at large … safe to say the results surpassed any expectations!
In terms of impact of the strategy – paired with the broader landscape and conversation around women’s sport on a meteoric growth trajectory – it’s safe to say women’s sport is now ‘the’ strategic priority for all industry stakeholders. We are in more conversations than ever with brands, rightsholders and athletes. Success this year will be to help them each find their ‘role’ within women’s sport (at CSM, we believe there are seven roles for brands in women’s sport) and as such, drive measurable impact (commercial and cultural).
Looking ahead to 2023 – it is all set to be yet another bumper year for women’s sport – which projects and events are you most excited for and why?
Just when we thought 2022 topped everything for women’s sport … along came 2023! With the Red Roses hosting their first standalone fixture at Twickenham, a new multi-format Ashes series, the hotly anticipated inaugural Women’s IPL and World Cups in football, netball and T20 cricket (and an Atlantic Row in December…) … there’s a lot to be excited about this year!
When not at work, what would we find you doing?
Two years ago, that would have been on two wheels spinning around the Surrey Hills … but now I’ve swapped my pedals for oars – so when not at CSM, I can be found bombing up and down the Thames, learning to row!