Derbys Finest is a group which aims to inspire, celebrate and support women across the county – bringing together women of all ages, backgrounds and skill sets at a range of networking, professional development and social events.
Since its formation in March 2017, the group has gone from strength to strength. In May 2019 Derbys Finest merged with local networking group Women in Business, to form ‘Derbys Finest – Inspiring Women in Business’.
A particular focus of Derbys Finest is to inspire and encourage the future generations of females, to show them that they can achieve
and thrive as an equal in all areas of society. Derbys Finest also supports a number of local charities who benefit from money raised
by the group.
To inspire all to reach their full potential. Showing appreciation and support to others with impact and feeling to make a difference.
To evoke positive emotions in all those we connect with
To support innovation in our communities
To be the vehicle for collaborative behaviour
I was born and bred in Derby so a true Derby Gal! I studied in Sheffield to get my Law Degree and was the first person in my immediate family to attend University. I was regularly told that being a solicitor wasn’t easy and that it took a lot of hard work. Hard work did not and does not scare me, so at 23 I qualified as a solicitor. I trained to be a Criminal Solicitor and did that for several years before changing my specialist area to Commercial Litigation and particularly Debt Recovery. I am now a Partner and head up two teams at Smith Partnership, Debt Recovery and Business Development. I love to network and meet new people and I am so very passionate about inspiring women and helping them to be the best that they can be. I founded Derbys Finest to provide a Community which at its heart encourages, inspires and supports women. In 2018, I was blessed with a little girl Alice who is the light of my life and inspires me to try and create a better world.
I founded Derbys Finest in 2017 after reading an article which celebrated the top 250 people in Derby; there was such a small percentage of women acknowledged that I felt compelled to shine a light on the real number of amazing women in Derbyshire. I feel my role in Derbys Finest is to help facilitate a space where anyone can seek help and guidance as well as build up a personal and business network. Derbys Finest has grown a lot and I am proud that we are now seeking to offer professional development courses to our members as well as social events. The outpouring of support from the members to one another during the pandemic has been amazing and I am so proud of what we have achieved together. In the next few years I want to grow the group so that the support we have can be shared and the benefits of being a member can be increased.
I wish I could time travel; I love history but I am also impatient and I want to know what will happen in the future.
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After working in sales and marketing for over 20 years, I embraced social media with open arms as soon as it emerged. I believe that social media is a wonderful, cost-effective way to reach new audiences and build your brand. As a self-confessed social media geek, I love getting results for my clients. I’ve worked with scores of businesses over the years, as a Social Media Trainer and speaker. I offer practical solutions and tailored support based on what’s right for your business – no waffle or confusing jargon. I was winner of the “Outstanding Woman In Professional Services award“ at the East Midlands Women’s Awards (EMWA) 2018 and the Theo Paphitis Small Business Sunday #SBS award. Above all I am committed to achieving fantastic results for my clients, my high client retention rates speak for themselves. How do I work with my clients? I am proud to provide different options for my clients, whether it’s 1:1 tailored training or being part of my successful year long membership programme. I have a training option to fit most budgets! I always offer a free thirty minute chemistry call to my contacts and would love to work with more Derby’s Finest ladies to support their business growth!
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As an ex-business owner in Derby (Mercia Image commercial printers), I am enjoying taking a step back from the pressures of running a manufacturing company for over 33 years. I am extremely proud of my achievements in business directing a team of 26 and have a wealth of experience in cashflow, accounts, finance, HR and sales. Successfully managing the day to day challenges of running a business in a competitive man’s world has taught me a great deal about business and survival over the years.
Personally, I have 3 children that have grown up to be kind, responsible adults. I believe that witnessing first-hand the roller coaster that goes along with being a single parent and running a business has made them appreciate the importance of working hard and not to give up when the going gets tough.
I am now a property investor and in the process of looking at creating a business where I can utilise my communication skills to connect local companies to maximise their goals.
I am a trustee at Children First Derby, a charity who support vulnerable children and families locally, and an ambassador of Safe and Sound, a charity fighting against child exploitation.
Derbys Finest was initially created by myself and Claire Twells, our aim to develop a group of ladies to support each other and to gain the recognition they deserve that can be easily overlooked. Bringing ladies together, exchanging contacts and ideas with successful collaboration, which in turn raises self-esteem and achieves goals, personally or in business.
Being a committee member of Derbys Finest is very rewarding and it is exciting to see it grow in numbers over the years. We have some amazing members on board offering support and encouragement to others – a great recipe for success.
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I’m a marketing professional that joined the Smith Partnership Business Development Group in March 2018 to work alongside the Business Development Partner, Claire Twells. After being with the firm for just over one year, I was promoted to my Marketing Executive role after covering for the BD Partner and Marketing Manager during their coinciding maternity leave. Within the company, I have a particular focus upon Digital Marketing based projects, working alongside all six offices that Smith Partnership have based across the East Midlands. I joined Derbys Finest as a committee member in 2018 at the age of 19.
During my spare time, alongside studying I am also a dance teacher at a local dance school based in Darley Abbey, teaching during the evenings and at weekends, with an Associate qualification. I have taught dance since the age of 16, focusing on the traditional disciplines of ballet and tap.
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