Simone Roche, CEO and founder of Northern Power Women (NPW), a campaign to accelerate gender diversity from the North of England, has been honoured with an MBE in the Queen’s Birthday honours list 2018 for her services to gender equality.


The award has been made in recognition of Simone’s dedication and commitment to driving gender equality through her work for over a decade.

Simone engages businesswomen and men as agents of change to create opportunities for organisations and individuals to engage, learn and promote their achievements as NPW champions and advocates, and so transforms the culture of business by recognising, celebrating and showcasing role models.

Following the publication of the Hampton Alexander Review last week and the Gender Pay Gap statistics last month, it is clear that the work Simone does is critical to the improvement of our economy and society. 

Baroness Newlove, NPW Trustee and Victims’ Commissioner said: “I’m absolutely delighted to see Simone being honoured for her work tirelessly, energetically and passionately driving the agenda to accelerate gender equality from the North. What she has achieved is phenomenal. She gives her time and shares her connections extremely generously to benefit wider society, whether that is supporting girl guiding, global youth organisations, CEOs or charities.”

Speaking about her award Simone said: “I am surprised and thrilled to have been awarded this MBE and extremely proud that the work that I have been committed to over the past 10 years has been acknowledged.”

She continues: “I’m passionate about amplifying voices and recognising role models of all genders, backgrounds, sectors and levels. The individuals and organisations engaged with Northern Power Women are absolutely brilliant and I’m proud to share their stories. It’s so important to celebrate success – you can’t be what you can’t see – and by building a community of nearly 13,000 change makers we can raise aspirations and contribute to a thriving Northern Powerhouse.”

“I’m proud to share this honour with the community I am building and showcasing. It celebrates what they have enabled, motivated and inspired me to do. They are amazing Northern Power Women.”

Simone’s next mission

Northern Power Women will explore what the world of work will look like in the future. It is launching a two-day Festival in Manchester at the end of 2018 and in Newcastle in early 2019, specifically designed and curated by the generation who will be living and leading in it.

This will be a peer-to-peer event, powered by the Northern Power Women’s Future List and their networks, to which established leaders and influencers will be invited to hear what future change makers have to say about the economy, technology, workplace culture, lifestyle and business.

Andy Burnham, Mayor of Greater Manchester has stated he is “enthusiastically behind this festival” and is delighted it will take place in the North of England.