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Women from the University of Leicester who have been an inspiration to their colleagues have been honoured in a special photographic display.

Staff were invited to nominate those they felt were truly inspirational women, with 20 from across the University selected for a new wall of striking photographic portraits in the Fielding Johnson Building, on campus.

Picture: University of Leicester

The project, which has taken place during the University’s centenary, builds on the legacy of 12 women who were showcased on the original Wall of Inspirational Women at Leicester, some years ago.

Nominees could be part of the academic or Professional Services communities and were considered on account of their contributions, the positive impact they have on others and the fantastic work they do every single day.

Professor Henrietta O’Connor, Pro Vice-Chancellor and Head of College of Social Science, Arts and Humanities, came up with the original idea for the wall, in 2014.

She said: “I wanted to do something to start the conversation around gender equality at Leicester, recognising that, at the time, there was a lack of visibility of women. For example, we had no pictures of women in the Council Room and no buildings named after women.

“This celebration of women is an important and small step in working towards a more inclusive and equal workplace.” 

Professor O’Connor added: “There are so many inspirational women at the University of Leicester, who are doing a wonderful job, and it’s important that we celebrate those who are role models for other women in the organisation.

“Often, those inspirational women are in jobs that we don’t immediately think of, and not necessarily in the most senior posts, and so it has been great to see so many from right across the University be honoured.”

Rajinder Bhuhi, Leicester Innovation Hub Manager, is one of the women honoured on the wall. She said: “To be classed as an inspirational woman is a real honour, especially in our centenary year, which makes it extra special.”

Digital and Learning Innovation Manager, Nichola Gretton, said of her nomination: “It was like an out-of-body experience because I’m somebody who just potters away. It was really emotional and I was touched that someone had taken the time out to nominate me.”

Nominee, Dr Margaret Byron, Associate Professor in Human Geography said: “With this nomination comes a huge responsibility to continue making lives better for young people. It doesn’t finish at the point of nomination – it begins.”

You can read all the inspirational women’s biographies on the University of Leicester’s website at: