Currently reading: Autocar names top female executives in the British car industry
Alison Jones from Stellantis is the overall winner, following a record number of entries

Alison Jones, senior vice-president of circular economy at Stellantis, has won Autocar’s Great Women in the British Car Industry 2022 initiative, held in partnership with the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders.

Autocar Great Women in the British Car Industry 2022

Jones also came top of Autocar’s Executive category, alongside 11 other category winners who are recognised as being the most influential women in the British car industry today. Outstanding individuals across the categories, which include Marketing, Sales, Vehicle Development and Manufacturing, are celebrating their achievements today at a live event in London.

Autocar has also named five further Hall of Fame inductees in 2022. Joining Linda Jackson, the inaugural Hall of Famer from 2020, are: Danella Bagnall, vehicle programme quality director at Jaguar Land Rover; Josephine Payne, Craiova site director for Ford Motor Company; Michelle Roberts, marketing director at BMW Group UK; Angela Shepherd, CEO of Mercedes-Benz Retail Group; and Sue Slaughter, global purchasing director, supply chain sustainability, at Ford of Europe.

An Apprentice category, also recognised today, celebrates the rising stars at the beginning of their careers in the automotive industry.

Jones’s rise up the ranks of Stellantis has been impressive even to people well versed in her skill set. In February 2019, she was appointed group managing director of Peugeot, Citroën and DS Automobiles in the UK and senior vice-president for the PSA Group. Then, following the merger of those brands under the Stellantis umbrella, Jones was given an overarching role in 2021, as she was made UK country manager and senior vice-president for Peugeot, Citroën, DS Automobiles, Fiat, Fiat Professional, Abarth, Jeep and Alfa Romeo. One year later, she was given the global Stellantis role of senior vice-president of circular economy. In addition, she is president of the SMMT.

Autocar editor Mark Tisshaw said: “Alison Jones continues to build on her impressive track record in the industry and stellar career to date, and is a worthy two-time winner of our initiative. Her recent promotion to a global role within Stellantis demonstrates precisely why she is so highly valued within this most influential of organisations, and her success, influence and profile show no signs of slowing down.”

Jones said: “I'm very honoured to receive this award, as the team at Autocar and these awards demonstrate the breadth of talent and amazing jobs we have in our industry. We all continue to collectively work to improve the diversity and inclusion of our teams in all its forms. Our workforce should be a reflection of our communities and customers, and our industry is such an exciting and changing one, it should and can be attractive to everyone.”

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Chair of the judging panel and managing director of Haymarket Automotive, Rachael Prasher, added: “I’m delighted to see how much the quality of our entrants improves each and every year when we come to judge this initiative, perhaps best seen with just how much the top Executive category has grown. It’s a fantastic sign of the health of our industry and the breadth of talented women working in it in ever-more senior and influential positions.”

SMMT CEO Mike Hawes said: “These awards recognise the exceptional women leading our industry, leaders who will inspire future generations to see automotive as an exciting and rewarding sector. The competition for the Great Women initiative gets ever tougher, and the breadth and depth of talent in this year’s list, in every discipline, from design and engineering, to marketing, sales and board room, shows the progress the sector is making.

“Of course, there’s still a long way to go to address gender and other imbalances and future success will depend on our ability to attract many more talented people from all backgrounds into our top jobs.”

This year’s event was held in Euston Square, London, and included a panel debate with Alison Jones, Julie David from Peugeot and Mandy Dean from Ford. Jessica Hawkins, a driver ambassador from Aston Martin, and Britishvolt’s chief strategy officer, Isobel Sheldon, were also interviewed as part of the awards celebrations.

You can view the full list of winners by visiting the Great Women in the British Car Industry microsite. The social media hashtag for the initiative is #AutocarGreatWomen.

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sabre 14 June 2022

Great Women titles do harm to women, the same way MeToo does. It emphasizes weakness of women. Such a title should be cancelled from the same reason Great Men does not exist. The desired titles should be Great Persons. Women should be seperated only in fields that they are definitely weak, such as sports, for example.