A business psychologist has been named as one of ten 'men for gender balance' at a national awards ceremony.
Lee Chambers, from Blackburn, who founded Preston-based wellbeing company Essentialise Workplace Wellbeing, has made it to the finals of the WeAreTheCity Rising Star Awards Men for Gender Balance awards category, which celebrates senior men who champion women and gender balance either inside or outside their organisation.
Mr Chambers was commended for his inclusive ethos and continued commitment to menopause support and awareness in the workplace, his gender equity advocacy, and his mentoring of women in early STEM careers.
On making the esteemed shortlist, Mr Chambers said: “It was a surprise to make the final given the standing of the awards and how I still feel I’m at the beginning of my gender equity journey.
"Being an ally is such an important part of my own learning and development, and I’ve taken as much from mentoring, supporting others and encouraging inclusion as I’ve given, if not more.
"I’m honoured to be sat alongside men who I look up to and admire, and thank the judges for recognition; it means an awful lot.”
The Rising Star Awards, now in their eighth year, are the first to focus on the UK’s female talent pipeline below management level.
Through these awards, they celebrate 100 individual female contributors that represent the leaders and role models of tomorrow.
They hope that by raising the profile of shortlist candidates and winners, they will also encourage organisations to consider how they strengthen the development of their female pipeline in the future.
Since 2015, WeAreTheCity’s Rising Star Awards have highlighted the achievements of more than 750 future leaders and role models across a variety of different industries and professions.
They are also celebrating Men for Gender Balance, which celebrates senior men who are championing women and gender balance either inside or outside their organisation.
The shortlisted nominees for this year include Lee Chambers, a psychologist, coach and founder of Essentialise Workplace Wellbeing, a wellbeing and inclusion consultancy; Ian Clarke, Founder of Delight Consulting, who holds the Millennium Volunteers Award for Excellence for a lifetime dedicated to mentoring, coaching and counselling disadvantaged young people and their businesses; and Richard Pickard, Founder of Inclusive Search, an advocate for TLA Black Women in Tech and The 30 Per Cent Club, and the author of the Exceptional Female Role Model’s interview series.
CEO Europe, Capital Markets and Wealth Management for Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) Dave Thomas, said: “Royal Bank of Canada is delighted to be powering the Rising Stars Awards for the third year and extended our partnership through to 2024.
"These awards are critical to celebrate and showcase incredible talent across multiple industries in the UK, something that is particularly important during these challenging times.
"Diversity and inclusion is more than just a value at RBC, it’s our strength, and it’s one of the ways we bring our purpose of helping clients thrive and communities prosper to life.”
Founder of WeAreTheCity, Vanessa Vallely OBE, said: “The calibre of entries this year has been truly exceptional.
"Every one of these men should be extremely proud of their achievements.
"They are key contributors to their industries and outstanding role models.
"I wish them the very best of luck as they continue to champion this important area of inclusion.”
The final list for Men for Gender Balance are:
• Aidan Moran – ecx.io Ltd
• Daniel Lopez Rovira – OLIO
• Ian Clarke – Delight Consulting
• Lee Chambers – Essentialise Workplace Wellbeing
• Morgan Jones – Oliver Wyman
• Richard Pickard – Inclusive Search
• Stephen Gill – Salamander Limited
• Stuart White – HSBC
• Tim Hole – Sky (UK)
• William Torrie – Barclays