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Stalwarts, trailblazers and inspirational figures singled out at second Naval Servicewomen’s Network Awards

Naval Servicewoman of the Year LWtr Rebecca Fyans
12 March 2021
The second Naval Servicewomen’s Network Awards were announced last night – held virtually rather than 2020’s glitzy dinner in Yeovilton.

The event recognises women who have contributed significantly to the Naval Service through their professionalism, commitment and enthusiasm – and their male allies who have impacted positively on the lived experience of Naval Servicewomen.   

Leading Writer Bethany Barnes and Surgeon Captain Elizabeth Crowson share the ‘Inspires Me’ award. LWtr Barnes has repeatedly gone above and beyond her core role at the Waterfront Logistics Support Group supporting the Submarine Flotilla making her one of the most valued members of the team. Surg Capt Crowson was nominated by more than 20 medical and dental officers and staff at the Institute of Naval Medicine who have been inspired and positively influenced by her leadership throughout her career.

The crew of nuclear deterrent submarine HMS Vigilant earn the Collaborative Working award for embracing women serving in all messes/departments of the boat, challenging the status quo and working tirelessly to improve life for the 12 female submariners. 

The Outstanding Contribution award is shared by Commanders Jane Roe and Maryla Ingham. Cdr Roe’s engineering experience has risen to the challenge of ensuring both veteran Hawk jets and Avenger turboprops are ready for training and ops. And Cdr Ingham has been an inspirational figure while in charge of the Coastal Forces Squadron, responsible for developing the careers of more than 40 lieutenants and through her energy and drive ensured the squadron succeeded in every endeavour, from taking Sea Cadets to sea to providing force protection to HMS Queen Elizabeth.

Surg Lt Cdr RN Louise McMenemy is the recipient of the Innovation Award. One of only three women out of 24 to be awarded a Percy Hobart Fellowship, working with medical comms start-up Pando, providing WhatsApp style communication for healthcare. She developed her own project, allowing Service personnel to own the temporary medical downgrade process.

 

Sharing the Emerging Talent award are Sub Lieutenant Fleur Peoples and Able Seaman Erin Follett. The former has been instrumental in several Future Commando Force projects at CTCRM in Lympstone. Thanks to her drive and direction projects which would normally take up to two years were completed in a few months. AB Follett performed duties and took on responsibilities of a senior rating at the Maritime Intelligence Fusion Centre with many colleagues absent as a result of the pandemic. Not only did she step to the fore, but the standard of her work impressed throughout her chain of command.

WO1 Rosemary Dodd is 2021’s Unsung Heroine, recognition for her contribution to the RN Parenting Support and Information Team over several years. Using her vast knowledge and experience she has provided support, advice and guidance to a huge number of Servicewomen during maternity/adoption leave.

Culdrose Naval Servicewomen’s Network take the Inclusive Teamwork Award for the work within and without the Cornish air station, from organising the annual conference last March (attended by 200 people) to holding outreach events with local schools.

And finally, the Naval Servicewoman of the Year is Leading Writer Rebecca Fyans, a champion of support for families – inside the Services and in civvy street – with children with Down’s Syndrome. From devising training for clinical neo-natal staff through to ensuring all military families receive guidance and assistance – especially in the first days after diagnosis – and involvement in a worldwide Down’s Syndrome initiative, Rebecca has been an inspirational figure, all alongside her day job in the Royal Navy and raising a young family. And over the past 12 months she’s taken on a new role: helping to set up a network for military families living with/caring for someone with a long-term or life-changing illness.

 

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