Leading ladies of Berkshire and Buckinghamshire - 2017
PUBLISHED: 11:39 03 March 2017 | UPDATED: 11:44 03 March 2017
Berkshire and Buckinghamshire women mean business! Here, we turn the spotlight on some of our county’s most successful and discover what it is that makes them tick
Jenny O’Neill - Aspire Medical Aesthetics
Jenny leads a team of qualified, experienced, expert, medical practitioners offering a comprehensive range of non-surgical anti-aging and fat reduction treatments.
What is the best advice you’ve ever been given? - The best advice ever given to me was to “provide an excellent service to fewer patients”. It’s all about valuing patients differently and focusing on quality rather than quantity. After running a busy Harley Street Clinic with restricted time for patient consultations, I opened Aspire Clinic in Reading, pledging to give my patients as much time as they needed to discuss and understand their treatment options and to have a relaxed, comfortable and positive experience.
Who or what inspires you? - Mauricio de Maio is a brilliant Brazilian Doctor who spends his time developing advanced treatment techniques and travelling the world teaching best practice in aesthetics. I look forward to spending two days with him every year and am hugely inspired by his knowledge and expertise.
How important is it for women to support each other in business? - Women have unique qualities in their ability to embrace and support each other in business. The secret to my success is to have surrounded myself with brilliant women who are great team players, working together and supporting each other to provide a result driven service to Aspire’s patients.
Madejski Stadium, Reading RG2 OFL 0118 9313575 www.aspireclinic.com
Mrs Liz Hewer - St George’s School
Liz Hewer has been Headmistress of the all-girls school, St George’s Ascot, since September 2016. Offered the post after ten years at neighbouring St Mary’s Ascot, Liz worked initially as a Geography teacher and Housemistress, progressing to the role of Deputy Head in 2009.
What’s the secret of your success? - I’m not sure there is any secret really! I’ve always been committed to the jobs I have done, worked hard and I enjoy juggling the variety of commitments that exist within any job in a school. Having the support of family, friends and colleagues over the years has also been invaluable.
Name the 3 treasures in your life you always like to keep close? - I would certainly say ‘my family’ and I would want to grab my children, Freddie and Katie, in the event of a fire. Other things I would probably choose are the hard drive with all our family photos on and on a more practical note - my handbag!
As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up? - My only lasting memory from childhood of a job I was keen to do was to be a waitress - I’ve always liked being organised and busy!
Wells Lane, Ascot, Berkshire, SL5 7DZ 01344 629900 www.stgeorges-ascot.org.uk
Tina Malhame - NoLoGo-Chic
Tina has had a successful career as a highly prolific women and children’s clothes designer for High Street stores, including Monsoon, Next, Per Una. In 2011 she started her own online clothes range, NoLoGo-chic and now has a dedicated following of loyal customers.
What’s the secret of your success? - Secret? Hard work, grit and absolutely loving what I do. As a young designer I worked for Sir Terence Conran’s Design Group. He taught me the importance of punctuality working within a team and of timely work submissions.
Name the 3 treasures in your life you always like to keep close? - The three treasures I have, the first romper suits my mother so lovingly knitted for the birth of my two sons. A watercolour full of energy depicting a Cuban cigar factory painted in the 1920’s. My diaries written over decades, reminding me just how lucky have been to travel and work all over the globe, and to inspire the trilogy I am writing about the life of a clothes designer.
As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up? - I absolutely love books. As a child I loved keeping them in order on the book shelves at home and made a note when another member of the family took one. However once an elderly, genteel lady in the village asked me what I would like to be when I grew up, I replied librarian. She said, “nonsense child. Get a job and see the world.” ... and I did.
07812 734582 www.nologo-chic.co.uk
Heidi Daniel - Heidi Bakery
Although I was born in Ascot, our family has always had a great affinity with the south of France. Holidaying as children we grew up loving the food, climate and way of life. Eating “shi-shi” doughnuts on the beach with my sisters are some of my fondest childhood memories. So when it became time to choose a career path, moving to Cannes to take on a diploma in business studies was an easy choice. I spent 2 fantastic years learning the language and working in local bakeries where I fell in love with the trade. A fresh, local, scratch bakery just wasn’t something we had at the time in Berkshire. Luckily with my family in retail I had a great opportunity to launch my first kitchen in the heart of Windsor. The newly relaunched “Heidi” (much to my reluctance!) has benefitted from over 20 years trading history and has just launched a second site in Farnham, Surrey. We are extremely excited about the future of the business and are now looking at more opportunities around Berkshire where we have always loved to live and work.
What’s the secret of your success? - The secret to my success is being surrounded by a wonderfully supportive family. With 6 children it’s not easy running a high street business but I find I thrive from the challenge and pressure.
Name the 3 treasures in your life you always like to keep close? - Family aside, I like to keep my running shoes, a good bottle of prosecco and any ESPA creams close as they all provide great day to day therapy!
Daniel Department Store, Windsor, 02080 502105 www.heidibakery.co.uk
Sue Andrews - Family partner, B P Collins LLP
I lead a seven-strong family team of lawyers at B P Collins, who advise on all matters arising on divorce, separation and pre and post nuptial agreements. Its a privilege to advise people on decisions that will impact upon the rest of their lives.
What’s the secret of your success? - The ability to relate to people and put their needs first, since many people separating feel groundless and need support. You also need to think strategically about the final outcome, and provide practical and realistic advice about getting there.
Name the 3 treasures in your life you always like to keep close? - All the things I treasure remind me of people or places such as my late partner’s Rolex watch that I have been wearing since his death - to lose that would be devastating. I also love my art deco cocktail glasses (a present bought in a Parisian antique shop) and a rare photograph of Princess Caroline of Monaco taken by Karl Lagerfeld - a reflection of my two other passions - fashion and black and white photography.
As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up? - I wanted to be a fashion designer until I was about 13 - even though I couldn’t draw very well. But after watching TV programmes featuring lawyers, which I think cast a spell over me, I just knew that I wanted to be a solicitor.
32-38 Station Road, Gerrards Cross, SL9 8EL 01753 889995; www.bpcollins.co.uk
Susan Cleaver - Cleaver Property Management
Director of CPM a Property Management Business based in Wokingham that I started with my husband Martin some 23 years ago. CPM provides management to blocks of flats and gated communities within the Thames Valley and surrounding areas. We provide a range of services including Accounting, Maintenance and arranging Service Charge Budgets. In addition; I am also responsible for the wellbeing of our Staff, dealing with HR matters, providing Staff Training and organising various social events which helps to bring both Management and employees together.
What’s the secret of your success? - Having a positive attitude to work, being able to see the best in both people and bringing out that positivity in others.
Name the 3 treasures in your life you always like to keep close? - Teddy Bear - my constant companion since early childhood, “Fred Bear” has stood beside me through good and difficult times. Family Photo Album - containing wonderful snap shots of family life. My Shoes -I have an enviable collection of Louboutin and Jimmy Choo Shoes which I will eventually donate to the V&A Museum.
As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up? - As a child, I thought that working with young children was my dream and I had ambitions of becoming a Norland Nanny. I thought that the Norland Nanny Uniform (brown/cream) was pretty and the prospect of travelling to exotic countries fascinated me.
Ascot House, Finchampstead Road, Wokingham, Berkshire, RG40 2NW 08444 993411; www.cleaverproperty.co.uk
Amanda McLean - CEO of Thames Valley Air Ambulance
As a resident of the Thames Valley area, I have admired what is my local air ambulance for a long time. I joined TVAA as CEO in October last year and I am thrilled to be apart of this fantastic organisation. TVAA has evolved into one of the UK’s leading air ambulance charities and we are keen to build on our successes within aviation and the development of Prehospital Emergency Medicine. We all have a collective ambition for our service to reach, treat, and save more patients. By working with our communities and our partners; I intend to strive onwards with this aspiration.
What’s the secret of your success? - It is important to be true to yourself and with others. I have tried to be guided by my values and principles throughout my career, using research, preparation and tenacity to see me through difficult decisions and positive developments. I believe success also comes from being genuinely interested in people, learning from others and creating teams around me that have thrived.
Name the 3 treasures in your life you always like to keep close? - Obviously, my family. Photographs (the hard drive where they’re backed up). My phone - to allow me to access everything from memories, to family and friends, to my diary and other practical stuff.
As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up? - When I was at school I wanted to be a journalist. I still very much enjoy communications and creativity in my work, but I honestly now have my dream job as CEO of Thames Valley Air Ambulance - who wouldn’t love being involved in life saving work” and playing with helicopters?!
0300 999 0135 www.tvairambulance.org.uk