10 Wirral women have been named as finalists in the Merseyside Women of the Year awards 2019. A public vote has been opened to decide the overall Merseyside Woman of the Year, with 26 heroines to choose from overall.
Members of the public will be able to vote for their Merseyside Woman of the Year via the awards website or postal vote until Monday 10 June 2019 with winners announced at MWOTY's annual awards ceremony.
Taking place on Friday 28 June 2019, the ceremony will celebrate the achievements of women from across Merseyside in eleven categories.
The categories for 2019 are Women’s Group, Young Apprentice, Arts & Media, Entrepreneur, Inspirational Woman, One to Watch, Social Impact, Woman of Courage, Business Leader, Woman Making a Difference and Community Change.
The 10 Wirral finalists, who were selected from a record number of entries, are:
- Angela Preston, Birkenhead - Angela is a three times bestselling author, Tedx speaker, radio presenter and playwright, as well as a wife to Barry and mum to her three sons.
- Mia Austin, Heswall - Mia was 21 when her life was turned upside down. She had a stroke and was left with Locked In Syndrome. Despite Mia has refused to give up and undertakes a lot of charity work, while also inspiring others.
- Rachel Griffiths, Higher Bebington - Rachel is the founder of Mums 2 Marathons. She turned to running to lose weight, but in it she also found freedom from her battle with depression.
- Jessica Gallier, New Ferry - Jessica has worked to break down the stigma surrounding suicide and mental health since her Dad was found dead at the age of 55. She has set up the The Martin Gallier Project, which educates families on how to complete “Suicide First Aid”.
- Victoria Charlton, Prenton - Victoria is a dedicated, hardworking and courageous woman who, despite her own battle with a chronic, debilitating disease called Polycystic Kidney & Liver Disease (PKLD) continues to inspire young people to follow their dreams.
- Rita Waters, Birkenhead - Rita has been Chief Executive of the National Youth Advocacy Service (NYAS) for the past three years. The service has been made stronger under her leadership, bringing stability and turning the charity’s finances around.
- Debbie Layfield, Claughton - Debbie was diagnosed with breast cancer just over 10 years ago. Now proudly cancer free, Debbie uses her personal experiences to inspire and help other cancer sufferers and their families.
- Pam Smith, Wallasey - Pam, 77, was one of the first Yoga teachers in Merseyside and has been teaching Yoga full time for 50 years this year and is an inspiration to many.
- Christine Allen, Oxton - Christine’s life has impacted more than 50,000 young people across Merseyside over a 33-year career, leading a unique and vibrant housing provision.
- Maureen More & Margaret Grundy, Birkenhead - A duo who go out of their way to help others, Maureen and Margaret have given up their own time to help individuals and their local community.
Jean Gadsby, from Merseyside Women of the Year Awards, said: “We received a record number of entries this year, which made the voting process incredibly challenging for our judging panel.
“It was a humbling and extremely emotional experience that has culminated in this list of exceptional women, who are all making a real difference to the lives of people and communities in Merseyside and beyond.
“We encourage everyone to learn about their work and vote for their Merseyside Woman of the Year.”
To find out more about the finalists and vote for your Merseyside Woman of the Year 2019 click here.