Debra Ward, managing director of London-based iconic events company Camm & Hooper, has been named ‘one to watch’ by the Women to Watch in Hospitality, Travel & Leisure Index 2019.
The index is a new barometer for the hospitality, travel and leisure industry. It highlights the real-life stories from women who are seen to be up and coming in the industry, including those who have recently made or who are ready to step into board positions. Ward joins an incredible line up of talented female role models with a broad range of experience and achievements.
Ward is a true entrepreneur, having started, led and sold several businesses across three continents. In 2007, Debra and her team founded Mitie Client Services which became the industry leader in front-of-house services, turning over £22m in just five years. The company was named one of the Best 100 Small Companies to Work For by The Sunday Times, and received its coveted Special Training award as well as a host of sector awards. Ward was also former Human Experience lead across EMEA for property giant JLL, and prior to this MD EMEA for Condeco Software, recipients of the Queen’s award for innovation in technology.
Ward’s international career is dedicated to service excellence and she is passionate about people and culture as a company differentiator. In 2014, she was named Women of Achievement winner by Women in the City, and one of the top 10 people in facilities management by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors. She joined Camm & Hooper in 2018 and has since significantly grown its turnover and opened two new exciting venues in London. Battersea Power House, located in Battersea Power Station, is the second new venue under Ward’s leadership and is due to open in Autumn 2021. Battersea Power House will showcase five stunning events spaces for large scale, corporate and private events.
The Women to Watch in Hospitality, Travel & Leisure Index 2019, in partnership with MBS Group, set out not to find the top women in the sector, but to demonstrate that there are inspirational female leaders in all areas of the hospitality, travel and leisure sector. Nominations for the index were sought for women who stand out from their peer groups and excel in leadership; commercial impact; entrepreneurialism and innovation; and a wider contribution to the sector and society.
Ward is thrilled to join the line-up: “It is an enormous privilege to be recognised as one to watch in the hospitality, travel and leisure industry. It’s essential that companies encourage and nurture women in leadership roles, as this attracts more talented women to join our sector. It’s so important that women can look around our industry and see authentic role models from all backgrounds and with a variety of experience.”
Tea Colaianni, founder and chair of the index, said: “The index has unearthed a monumental wealth of personal and professional stories, successes, tips and lessons learnt. These women are inspiring role models with diverse backgrounds, nationalities, education, race/ethnicities, experiences and ages. I feel proud to share the stories of so many talented women who can inspire the next generation of leaders.”
The full version of the Women to Watch in Hospitality, Travel & Leisure Index 2019 can be downloaded here.