Karen Jacques, Chief Operating Officer at maritime intelligence provider Dryad Maritime, has scooped a prestigious Freight Transport Association (FTA) Everywoman award for Innovation and Sustainability.
The Awards programme was launched seven years ago to raise awareness of the varied and rewarding careers that the transport and logistics sector offers. The sector currently employs 2.2 million people, representing 8% of the UK’s workforce, yet 588,000 additional workers are required in the sector over the next six years to meet demand as the UK’s infrastructure grows.
Maxine Benson MBE, Co-Founder of Everywoman, said: “As the transport and logistics industry seeks to employ half a million more people, it has never been more urgent to ensure the sector attracts more talented women. Inspirational female role models enjoying rewarding careers and achieving success will do that. That’s why today’s winners are so vitally important to the industry. We congratulate them all.”
A panel of expert industry judges, singled Ms Jacques out from a highly competitive shortlist which included entrants from big brands such as ASDA and Kuehne & Nagel to win the Innovation and Sustainability award and she collected the award at ceremony in London this week.
“Winning the Everywoman award means a tremendous amount and it would not have been possible without the support of the full Dryad team. I would encourage women to have the confidence to apply for jobs in industries that have been traditionally dominated by men, these sectors are far more accessible today and can offer up some outstanding opportunities for driven individuals to excel and succeed,” said Ms Jacques.
Theo de Pencier, FTA Chief Executive: “FTA is pleased to encourage forward thinking companies that are committed to introducing diversity to the freight industry, and working further with everywoman offers opportunities to expand that work. The key for our industry is to be able to access a wider talent pool and to be able to meet its need for good quality staff in whichever role it needs to fill.”
Ms Jacques joined Dryad Maritime in 2009, originally as the Commercial Director. Since then, she has been credited with turning the formerly niche enterprise into a commercial success. The business has shown significant growth in the last five years, a result that company founder Graeme Gibbon Brooks directly attributes not only to her entrepreneurial flair, but also to the products and delivery mechanisms she has overseen and developed.
Graeme Gibbon Brooks, Managing Director, Dryad Maritime Executive, said: “Dryad Maritime was the youngest company to receive an accolade. To be considered a finalist amongst so many large, household brands was an achievement in itself so to win it really is testament to the dedication of Karen; she deserves this award wholeheartedly. Her dedication to the industry is very much unrivalled and she is constantly working to improve standards and develop innovative and economical procedures. She is a real inspiration, not only to the team here at Dryad but also to other women working and trying to build careers in the transport and logistics sectors”.
This latest win continues Ms Jacques’ winning streak at the company; in 2013 she led the business to secure the internationally recognised and highly competitive IHS Safety at Sea award.
Her commercial success comes following a career as a Warship Navigator in the Royal Navy. During her distinguished 14-year military career she received recognition for her service in the Adriatic and the Former Yugoslavia and went on to serve as Aide de Camp to the Head of the Royal Navy, Admiral Lord West GCB. She is renowned and respected throughout the maritime industry and is a frequent guest commentator on global and maritime piracy issues for international media agencies.