The award recognises truly inspiring females who make a difference in their field, organisation and the region. 

Receiving this award is a testament to Alison's outstanding achievements and unwavering commitment to excellence in education and her drive for positive change that has led to lasting impact on the institutions she has served.

Throughout her 28-year career in further and higher education, she has been committed to driving a high-quality and progressive education and skills agenda, with an unwavering commitment to bridging the gap between education and industry. With extensive experience in both industry and education, Alison has a unique perspective and a deep understanding of the needs and challenges faced by students, staff, and employers. Her leadership, vision, and commitment to excellence have driven positive changes, empowering students and educators alike.

Upon receiving the award, Alison expressed her gratitude, saying, "I am truly honoured to receive the Inspiring Female Award. This recognition is really a testament to the collective efforts of our team at NCD now and the teams I have worked with throughout my career. I am passionate about fostering a workplace culture that encourages innovation, diversity, and collaboration. This award is not just a personal achievement but a celebration of many peoples’ dedication and hard work."

Ashley Carney, Chamber events manager, said: “A huge congratulations to everyone who won an award or was nominated at our Inspiring Females Awards 2023 – you’re all truly inspiring.”

Alison joined New ƵAPP Durham as the Deputy Principal in 2020. Under her leadership, the college achieved a significant milestone in November 2022, Ofsted outcome of overall Good with Outstanding areas. Additionally, receiving the distinction of being one of the first in the country (and the first in the North East) to obtain an Ofsted Strong rating for meeting skills needs. More recently, NCD was awarded Highly Commended in the FE ƵAPP of the Year category of the Educate North Awards, and has been awarded finalist in the prestigious Association of ƵAPPs Beacon Awards.

Andy Broadbent, Principal and Chief Executive at New ƵAPP Durham commented, "We are thrilled to see Alison's accomplishments recognised with this award. She works tirelessly to drive for excellence in education, her key focus being on students being able to fulfil their potential and on closing the skills gap to support the North East region."