‘Women like me’ provides a glimpse into the lives of women from across the clean energy sector, celebrating their successes, as well as sharing their lessons. We hope these will inspire many of you to seize a new opportunity and support you to become your best self.
We will need all the talents of society if we are going to tackle a challenge as big as achieving net zero. The vision of the Entrepreneurial Women in Renewable Energy network (EWiRE) is to make diversity a priority at all levels of the clean energy sector, making companies more resilient and able to innovate.
Sonya Bedford is a Partner with Stephens Scown solicitors, based in its Exeter office, and is head of the firm’s Renewable Energy team. Her strengths lie in dealing with wind farms, wind turbine acquisition, solar pv (domestic and commercial), anaerobic digestion, biomass and hydro. Sonya is also experienced in dealing with grid connection agreements, issues arising with Ofgem accreditation and funding of renewable energy projects. She is currently undertaking her MSc in Renewable Energy. Sonya assists with many community energy projects and is currently on the steering group for the Exeter Community Energy project and the working party for the Fossil Fuel Free Farming project with Bicton College.
Philippa is an infrastructure finance specialist within the Infrastructure and Projects Authority (part of the Cabinet Office). Prior to joining the UK Government in 2013, Philippa was a Partner at the professional services firm EY, and had previously been in investment banking for many years. In the IPA, Philippa advises Government departments on projects in the energy, transport, water, and digital sectors. For example, she recently led on the setting up of the £400m Charging Infrastructure Investment Fund for electric vehicle charging.
Dr Cathy McClay is trading and optimisation director at Sembcorp Energy UK, which has the largest portfolio of distributed, flexible assets operating in the GB market. Cathy has 20 years’ experience in the electricity industry. She has worked for a number of energy companies in the UK, France and the Netherlands, specialising in modelling and analysis for trading, risk management and strategy. Immediately prior to joining Sembcorp she was Head of Future Markets at National Grid SO where she was responsible for developing the GB electricity and gas markets. A key focus was on opening up the ancillary serviced markets to new sources of flexibility such as demand side response.
Kayte is head of markets for the ESO, accountable for developing markets to enable future operation of Great Britain’s electricity system on the path to net zero. She joined National Grid PLC in 2002 and has held a wide variety of senior roles across the business, most recently as Head of Strategy and Regulation for the ESO. Prior to that she spent three years in Boston with National Grid’s US electricity distribution businesses. Kayte holds a first class degree in Business Economics and is a graduate of the Harvard Business School Program for Leadership Development.
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