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Buckinghamshire Women in Charity Awards 2021: Meet the judges

The Buckinghamshire Women in Charity Awards 2021 celebrates the amazing achievements of women across Buckinghamshire who work and volunteer in the charity sector.

With four award categories open for nominations, the judging panel consists of women who all have extensive experience of working with charities and communities in the county, and bring years of experience and insight to the judging process. The judges are:



Chair of Judges: Cllr Mimi Harker OBE, Chairman of Community Impact Bucks & Member of Buckinghamshire Council
Mimi has been Community Impact Bucks Chairman since 2017. She has been a district councillor for 21 years and was awarded an OBE in 2012 for her work for women and her local community. She currently serves on Buckinghamshire Council as the Deputy Armed Forces Champion and is involved in a wide range of voluntary roles across Buckinghamshire.



Judging the Outstanding Leadership in the Charity Sector category: Rachael Shimmin, Chief Executive of Buckinghamshire Council
Rachael Shimmin is the first CEO for the new unitary council of Buckinghamshire, an organisation bringing together the five predecessor councils in the county. Launched in the middle of the Coronavirus emergency, Rachael established and led a series of partnership arrangements across the County to respond to the pandemic locally. She has extensive experience in the key sectors of children’s services, adult social care, health and community safety, and was awarded the OBE for services to social care in 2014. Rachael currently holds a number of positions including the County Council networks CEO lead on adult care and health, a Board member of the Association of Local Authority Chief Executives and the lead Chief Executive for the South East Strategic Leaders Group.


Judging the Trailblazer in the Charity Sector category: Hero Brown, founder and editor-in-chief at Muddy Stilettos
Hero Brown is an award-winning national journalist and former editor at the Independent on Sunday magazine. Her ground breaking digital platform Muddy Stilettos, helping urbane, fun-loving women outside London make the most of where they live, has grown from a blog written from her kitchen table in Haddenham, Buckinghamshire, to an online publishing company across 25 counties. In 2019 Hero was named in the Daily Mail as a digital pioneer and one of the 50 most inspirational women in the UK, and last year Muddy Stilettos was chosen as a #Next Gen Top 20 media company.


Judging the Outstanding Volunteer category: Trudi
Scrivener, Director and Founder of Ashridge Home Care, President Nominee Princes Risborough Rotary, and Trustee, Heart of Bucks
Trudi has worked in the social care sector for over 25 years.  She is the Founder and MD of Buckinghamshire based Ashridge Home Care, a thriving and reputable home care business.  She is a trustee at The Princes Centre and Ambassador for Health and Wellbeing at Heart of Bucks charity.  Trudi is the first woman to join Princes Risborough Rotary and takes up the role of President next year.  She is passionate about women being successful in both the voluntary and private sector and is absolutely thrilled to be part of this fantastic initiative recognising women in the charity sector for their outstanding achievements.


Judging Young Charity Woman of the Year category: Mari Durward-Akhurst, International Para Dressage Rider and European Silver Medallist
Mari is a Para Dressage Rider competing at National and International level and a European Silver Medalist (team) striving towards selection for the Tokyo 2021 Paralympics. She is an Ambassador for the charities Arctic One, The Douglas Bader Foundation and Ataxia UK, as well as a mentor for four up and coming Para Dressage Riders. Mari has a rare genetic condition that is degenerative and is a full-time wheelchair user; horses are her life and the feeling that competing them gives her is indescribable. She is a public speaker aiming to encourage others to follow their dreams and to inspire others along the way.

For more information and to nominate an inspiring woman for the Awards, visit the Women in Charity Awards 2021. Also why not join us at the online awards ceremony on Monday 8th March (12-1.00pm) to help us celebrate their achievements? Book your free place here.