Fast Forward 15 reveals line up for third year

The mentoring programme for championing female talent in the events and hospitality sector, Fast Forward 15, has revealed its line up for its third annual edition.

The programme, founded by Fay Sharpe, VP Marketing, BCD Meetings & Events, has so far helped 30 future leaders from a broad range of organisations including corporates, hotels and ancillary suppliers.

Participants this year include Elizabeth Staiano, marketing executive at Speakers’ Corner; Alison Warwick, business development manager at Ascot Racecourse; Loreen Brown, events, profile and fundraiser at Maya Centre, Counselling for Women, and Laura Healy, a final year student at Leeds Beckett. They will be mentored by industry luminaries from some of the world’s top organisations, including Andrew Mosley, GM at The Grand Brighton; Becci Thompson, head of corporate sales at The O2; Caroline Jackson, senior principal academic, Bournemouth University; Joy Thomas, senior events manager, group events at Lloyds, and Martin Jensen, head of international congresses and events at Lundbeck.

2017’s mentees underwent a rigorous interviewing process and each was matched to a mentor who will help upskill and coach them with business and personal objectives throughout the year-long programme. Mentees will receive 11 personal sessions and the chance to plan, manage and execute a charity event as the culmination of the year’s mentorship.

Fay Sharpe said: “Once again we have a lively bunch of individuals with a common goal: to empower themselves with the skills that will enable to them to be at the fore of the hospitality market. The Fast Forward 15 initiative has become a benchmark for development and I am indebted to the mentors who give up their time to help.”

Elizabeth Staiano from Speakers’ Corner said: “I can’t wait to get started as I have seen a demonstrable change in peers who have been lucky enough to have been part of Fast Forward 15. Fay is a figurehead for the industry and I am so pleased to be associated with this, and to be in a position to learn from her.”

Lauren Norton Smith from Winton added: “Fast Forward 15 has achieved some fantastic results since its inception and I am thrilled to be part of this year’s programme. It’s a real privilege to be asked to contribute to the next generation of female hospitality professionals.”

Paul Colston


Paul Colston

Managing Editor, Conference News & Conference & Meetings World.

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