Northampton’s 2021 Inspirational Women announced
Written by Martin Steers on March 8, 2021
Teresa McCarthy-Dixon, Dolores Sanders and Maureen Cook were confirmed as the winners of Northampton’s 2021 Inspirational Woman Awards, at the town’s virtual International Women’s Day celebrations on Saturday, 6 March.
Teresa McCarthy-Dixon is the winner of the Community Inspirational Woman Award. Teresa was described in her nominations as a real gem in the Northampton community, a tireless individual and a truly inspirational woman has worked hard throughout the pandemic to make sure vulnerable members of the community were looked after. She turned her pub into a food bank and helped many families not only with essential goods but also helped them decorate their homes, garden clearance and general support.
When restrictions allowed, Teresa ran a Monday club for elders within the community to combat loneliness and isolation as well as setting up the McCarthy-Dixon Foundation helping schools with food donations. She showed her commitment to not only helping people but also the environment by turning her pub into a shop zero type larder.
Dolores Sanders is the winner of the Business Inspirational Woman Award. Dolores was described as a true inspiration for women in manufacturing, actively promoting STEM learning environments and regularly sharing advice and guidance with others in the industry. Before the lockdown, as part of Founders for Schools, Dolores was sharing her journey in innovation, along with what is available and possible when you follow your passion and dreams with school children. Dolores is also the winner of the 2019 Women in Innovation Award.
In her business, Dolores has inspired local young employees to achieve their best with continued support and guidance providing an environment that supports learning and encourages curiosity.
Maureen Cook received the Community Inspirational Woman special recognition for long service to the community and animals. For over 50 years Maureen has traversed the town to bring kindness where there was none by helping and improving the lives of Northampton’s most unfortunate animals though the Save the Strays initiative. She began this work in 1971, and soon found herself getting up in the early hours to take food to one round of strays, doing a full day’s work, then taking food and medical care to more across town. Long retired, non-driver Maureen continues to do all this, plus arranging veterinary care and fundraising. Maureen’s ‘feed – neuter – return’ programme has had a profound effect for Northampton’s cats, and humans, resulting in small colonies of strays that are controlled, and naturally reduce over time.
Councillor Anna King, Cabinet member for community engagement and safety, said: “As always, choosing a winner from the many nominations we received this year was extremely difficult- each of the six award finalists deserve recognition for the hard work and commitment they have shown in their communities.
“However, Teresa, Dolores and Maureen really stood out through their tireless efforts to make the town a better place, and we wanted to highlight the positive impact that these ladies had on their communities. We hope that giving them these awards helps to show our appreciation for the work that they are doing the community and we are all very grateful for the difference they make every day.
““Although we were unable to present them with their awards in person due to the current restrictions, we were delighted to have them joining our online celebrations proving once again that distance makes no difference for today’s inspiring women.”
BBC Radio Northampton presenter, John Griff, presented the winners at the virtual celebration alongside the three shortlisted women, Emma Lynham, Kirstie Pope and Angela Ghavami.
The recording of the International Women’s Day celebrations is available here