History of Women in Finance
Not too long ago, the highest job post women on Wall Street received was as a secretary. It was a time when universities weren’t accepting women and so they had to educate themselves by enrolling in night classes offered by some business schools. Women found jobs in banking by responding to newspaper ads or through their friends. Once they were hired, they would attend business school in the evenings
and a support network started to grow.
Intro to the Awards
Presented by Momentum Media and partnered with AMP Bank, the Women in Finance Awards highlights the strength, diversity and innovation female leaders bring to the finance industry. 2019 marked the event’s third consecutive year and it was overwhelmed with participants. They received over 700 representatives from a diverse range of financial industry backgrounds including accounting, banking, insurance, mortgage broking and more.
The awards were kicked off by Shelly Horton, journalist and TV presenter. The awards highlighted the importance of women in the finance industry, allowing guests to not only appreciate how far women have come but also as a way to network and broaden the talent pool.
The winners of these awards represent inspirational high achievers from the financial sector. The year 2019 witnessed 26 categories and 232 finalists. Let’s have a look at some of the most notable awards received under the accounting sectors. To access the full comprehensive list of the entry requirements and categories of the listed awards, click here
Accountant of the Year
Simone Palfreyman of Palfreyman Chartered Accountants won accountant of the year at the Awards. Palfreyman Chartered Accountants offers personalized taxation and accounting services. They are Small Business Specialists, helping businesses grow from the ground up. This was not the first award she’s received either! In 2018, Simone was awarded the Regional Professional of the Year and Partner of the Year award at the Hunter Region Business Excellence Awards! Being awarded awards two years in a row is a testament to her work and dedication.
"I am pretty passionate about small businesses and helping them to succeed. Our team’s focus is not on how much we can bill our clients, but on how much we can help our clients.” - Simone Palfreyman
Auditor of the Year
Following an online audit system, Naomi Kewley, the Managing Director of Peak Super Audits, won an auditor of the year! A strong influence in the accounting world, Naomi graduated from the University of NSW with a Tax Masters graduate.
Naomi dabbles in more than just her business. She is also an active member of the SMSF (Self Managed Super Fund) Association, where she is accredited as a Specialist Auditor and Advisor. Prior to immersing herself in the world of auditing, she worked as an accountant with SMSF. Not to mention, in 2018 she was also awarded the title of the "SMSF Specialist Auditor Top Achiever”, benchmarking her dedication and excellence in the field of finance and auditing.
"Look for the top of the mountain. Remember it. Then focus on the rock three feet ahead. Scale it one rock at a time.” - Naomi Kewley
Bookkeeper of the Year
The Carbon Group provides multiple finance-related services. From accounting and bookkeeping to payroll and insurance. This year, Allison Gardiner, the lead bookkeeper at the Carbon Group, received the Women in Finance - Bookkeeper of the Year award.
With over 20 years of experience in the bookkeeping business, Allison specialises in bookkeeping services in legal, conveyancing, real estate, and travel. Not to mention, she does a lot of her bookkeeping using cloud-based accounting software such as Xero.
"Treat a percentage of your money as already belonging to someone else. That way, you won’t be tempted to use it to prop up cash flow.” - Allison Gardiner
Mortgage and Finance Broker of the Year
From the renowned company, Mortgage Choice, Deslie Taylor was awarded the Mortgage and Finance Broker of the Year award. Mortgage Choice is an industry run primarily by women with a focus on home loans.
To date, they have helped hundreds of home buyers. Their business revolves around finding the most appropriate loan for their clients from 25 of Australia’s banks and lenders. Their unique business model involves a free service to their clients as they receive their payments from lenders, once the home loan is settled.
She has crowned the same award in 2018 as well, benchmarking her name in the home loan industry. She was also named the Residential Finance Broker of the year in Queensland by MFAA (Mortgage and Finance Association Australia).
"This is the second time Deslie has received this award and I believe her work ethic should serve as an inspiration to her peers and the industry as a whole. Mortgage Choice should be honored to have a professional of her calibre representing the brand,” - a spokesperson from Women in Finance Awards 2019
Product owner of Zuper, Katie Cox won the Excellence Award this year. Launched in 2018, Zuper is a new form of a super fund focused on using technology to engage Australians in taking a more proactive approach to saving up for their retirement.
Starting off as a business development manager, Katie Cox soon became the proud owner of a product set to revolutionise the way we manage our super. Alongside the Excellence Award, she was also awarded the Young Leader of the Year award.
"It is important to not be afraid to ask "for what you want”. People can’t read your mind… [If you ask], you might just get it,” - Katie Cox
In today’s world, some of the most successful and idolised entrepreneurs are women. It is important to celebrate the success of women in a primarily male-dominated industry. Regardless to say, women have been pushing the boundaries and smashing glass ceilings for the last 50 years so we’re excited to see what’s to come.