5 of the Women of the Year to inspire you

In need of a few role models to motivate you out of your work-life rut? Well look no further than the inspirational winners of the Women of the Year awards 2015.

Chosen by a panel of equally successful women, including comedian Sandi Toksvig, the five strong winners line-up reads like a who’s who of modern day saints. From leading cancer charity founders to anti-youth violence campaigners. They’re all there!

It’s the 60th anniversary of the ceremony (which first took place in 1955), and was held at the InterContinental Hotel in Park Lane, London.

The victors were chosen for their “perseverance and courage in the face of some of the most serious issues facing women today”.

Check out the impressive list below.

1. Cokie van der Velde – Barclays Woman of the Year

Medecins Sans Frontieres sanitation expert

Yorkshire charity worker Cokie van der Velde has received special congratulations for her aid work overseas in West Africa, where she helped to fight the Ebola virus.

2. Pat Rogers – Lorraine Woman of the Year

– Anti-youth violence campaigner

Youth worker Pat Rogers was nominated by a friend for her “inspirational work with young people, helping them understand the implications and consequences of drunken or violent actions.”

This was all even after suffering the tragic loss of her son after a fight broke out on a night out with friends.

She told ITV: “f it saves one person’s life, it would be worth it. But we know that the message is so powerful it’s changing the way young people think.”

3. Jayne Senior – Good Housekeeping Woman of the Year

– Child exploitation campaigner

Jayne Senior ran an outreach programme for victims of the sex abuse scandal in Rotherham. The whistleblower reported almost 1,700 cases of grooming or sexual exploitation to the police during a period of 12 years

On receiving her award she told ITV: “Twelve months ago our town became the most infamous town not only in the UK but in the world. 1400 children had been abused in the most unimaginable way”.

4. Jocelyn Bell Burnell – Prudential Woman of the Year

– Astrophysicist

Although she was overlooked for a Nobel Prize for her incredible discovery of the first radio pulsar in the late 60s, scientist Purnell has been awarded a lifetime achievement award by Prudential.

She was made a dame in 2007 and served as president of the Royal Astronomical Society and the Institute of Physics, as well as currently working as a visiting professor to Oxford University. So the celebrated physicist is no stranger to success

5. Kris Hallenga – DFS Woman of the Year

Coppafeel! founder

After being diagnosed with breast cancer at the age of 23, Hallenga decided she wanted to do something to help others get diagnosed earlier and hopefully have a better chance of surviving the disease.

So she set up Coppafeel!, a charity that aims to encourage people to check themselves regularly for cancerous signs, and raise awareness of the struggle. Not bad for a youngster eh?

Check out our amazing interview with Kris here

Now what?