Jamelia – Inspirational YOU (Girls Edition) – Thursday 2nd March at the House of Commons 2017


Artist and Song Writer

Thursday 2nd March 2017

Women at the top – Letter to my 15 year old self (Teenage Girls Masterclass) – Private event

House of Commons


Jamelia signed her record deal with EMI records in the UK at the tender age of 15. Jamelia went on to write, record & release 3 albums, 2 of which achieved gold certifications (Drama & Walk With Me) and the other went double-platinum (Thank You). These albums collectively produced 10 top 40 singles (7 of which were Top 10’s) in her native country, England.

The success of Jamelia’s albums in the UK was repeated internationally and took her all over the world, She has travelled to and performed on every continent, achieving number 1’s as far flung as Australia & Thailand. Jamelia has also toured with Destiny’s Child, Usher & Justin Timberlake on their stadium tours.

“If anyone is likely to beat the world-conquering stars of American R&B at their own game, it’s Jamelia” – Daily Telegraph

Award Winner

Jamelia has been the recipient of many prestigious awards, including; 4 Mobo awards, An Ivor Novello, A Cosmopolitan award, A ‘Q’ Award and an Elle Magazine Style Award to name a few.

Television Presenter

After 10 years in the music industry, Jamelia decided to embark on a new career path, in television. She began by making appearances on panel shows such as CH4’s ‘8 Out of 10 Cats’ & the BBC’s ‘Never Mind the Buzzcocks’ & ‘Would i Lie to you?’. Jamelia enjoyed the freedom television gave her, in particular, the freedom to allow her personality to shine. In the years to come she would continue to work in television in various capacities. Presenting documentaries as diverse as “Whose Hair is It Anyway” which tackled the realities behind the human hair extension industry to “Shame About Single Mums” Which explored the history in the UK of the shame associated single motherhood, a subject close to her heart as she was raised by a single mother and is one herself.

In 2015 Jamelia starred in Bear Grylls adventure show ‘Mission Survive’ on ITV1. She also joined the line up of celebrities in the BBC’s ever-popular ‘Strictly Come Dancing’ getting to week 10 at the grand Blackpool Tower with her dance partner Tristan McManus.

Jamelia has also participated in shows which required her to draw upon her musical roots. Shows such as Move like Michael Jackson, where dancers competed to perform at a Michael Jackson tribute concert. I love my Country in which the producers created a part especially for Jamelia, she also took on the role of coach for two seasons of The Voice of Ireland with both of her acts making it to the final, one of them going on to win the show.

Jamelia joined the panel on ITV’s daytime show Loose Women in 2013, and continues to be a regular panellist. Jamelia also presents pieces for Loose Women’s sister show, This Morning.


Another string to Jamelia’s bow, is acting, in 2009 she had played herself alongside Daniel Mays in the CH4 comedy Plus One, In 2012 she starred in an episode of the improvised ITV show Crime Stories, and in 2013 played Aimee in the BBC’s very popular, Death In Paradise. Jamelia starred in a feature film by Hungarian director Robert Koltai along with movie legends, Tamer Hassan, Vinnie Jones & Michael Madsen. In 2016 Jamelia played the role of Helena Wales in an episode of the BBC’s Doctors, and her latest project is the short film by Fredi Nwaka, The Diary in which she plays the lead character, Detective Anisa Powell.


Jamelia became the first black woman to front a campaign for the hosiery giants Pretty Polly in 2004. Jamelia has also modelled in high profile campaigns for Reebok, Peta, Boux Avenue and fronted Toni & Guy’s Model:Me Haircare Range alongside supermodels, Helena Christensen and Erin O’Connor. Jamelia has walked Naomi Campbell’s Fashion for Relief catwalk several times and graced the covers of Cosmopolitan, Elle, Company, Time Out & Harpers & Queen magazines to name a few.

…and Her Most Important Job?

Jamelia’s penultimate role is being a Mum to her two wonderful girls, Téja (15) and Tiani (11). Most of the accolades above took place after becoming a mother. Jamelia cites her children as her constant source of inspiration, motivation and reason for it all. She describes her daughters as her best friends – spend an hour with them, and you’ll see that the feeling is mutual from her gorgeous girls!


Ray BLK – Inspirational YOU (Girls Edition) – Thursday 2nd March at the House of Commons 2017


Singer and Songwriter

Thursday 2nd March 2017

Women at the top – Letter to my teenage self

House of Commons



The up-and-coming British R&B singer @rayblk will be joining our private invite-only Inspirational YOU.

Ray is the youngest of three children, Ray studied English Literature at west London’s Brunel University before briefly working in PR, and making music during her evenings and weekends. For six months, she didn’t sleep for more than five hours a night. In the past year, though, her hard work has begun to reap rewards: in December, the sultry “5050” was playlisted by BBC @bbc1xtra and @rinsestagram and since then she’s racked up over a million @SoundCloud plays, made her TV debut on BBC2’s Later… With JoolsHolland, and been nominated for a MOBO award for Best Newcomer.

The London singer and rapper was recently named as the winner of BBC Music Sound of 2017.

Delivering the brash honesty of rap music, with her unique blend of soul and R&B spirit, Ray BLK weaves between genre boundaries borrowing the elements she requires to reach her goals. “I feel proud when my music connects with people,” says the 23-year-old from Catford, South London.

Ray, who has collaborated with grime star @stormzyofficial on My Hood, her tribute to Catford, south London, draws from the likes of MissyElliott and Timbaland’s textured rap, along with R&B and pop. “I’m particularly proud to be a part of this year’s list, as it’s full of so much talent, some of whom are independent artists like myself,” she added, “which I really hope inspires the next generation of artists.”


Dawn Butler MP – Inspirational YOU – Tuesday 28th February at the House of Commons

Dawn Butler 

MP for Brent Central

Tuesday 28th February 2017

Leadership, progression and success at the top – Raising the bar

House of Commons

Dawn Butler was born to immigrants from Jamaica, and is one of six children. She worked on a market stall and in a bakery in her youth but started her career as a computer programmer/systems analyst. She later became a civil servant, as manager in the employment service and then a trade unionist.  Her desire to enter politics came from a deep rooted commitment to address inequality.


Elected as the Member of Parliament for Brent South on 5 May 2005 Dawn’s maiden speech described her constituency as a “shining example of integration at its best”. Dawn became the first elected African-Caribbean woman to become a Government Minister in the UK.

Dawn ran a hugely successful campaign in 2015 and won Brent Central with a majority of nearly 20,000; giving the largest vote swing in Britain.


Dawn has always been a passionate campaigner for young people; she is an Honorary Vice President of the British Youth Council, was formerly Chair of the APPG on Youth Affairs, a member of the Children & Families Select Committee and Vice Chair of the Labour Party with responsibility for Youth. Her work on youth led to Dawn being appointed as the Minister for Young Citizens & Youth Engagement at the Cabinet Office by Gordon Brown. This made Dawn the first ever African-Caribbean woman to serve in a British Government.


A natural campaigner, since returning to Parliament Dawn has taken on the ‘Big 6’ energy companies over the excessive cost of pre-payment meters. She has held a Westminster Hall debate, launched a national petition and secured a commitment from the Prime Minister to look at this issue.


Dawn is the former Shadow Minister for Diverse Communities and was recently voted the People’s Choice Labour Party MP of the Year.

Book your ticket:


.@ChichiNwanoku MBE – Inspirational YOU – Tuesday 28th February 2017 – House of Commons

Chi-chi Nwanoku MBE

Founder, Artistic & Executive Director Chineke!, Principal double bassist,

Prof Royal Academy of Music, Broadcaster, Writer & Mentor

Tuesday 28th February 2017

Leadership, progression and success at the top – Raising the bar

House of Commons

An ex-sprinter and half the size of her double bass, Chi-chi Nwanoku has gained a reputation as one of the finest exponents of her instrument today.

The eldest of 5 children from Nigerian and Irish parents, she was 7 years old when she discovered the piano at a neighbour’s, who taught her to play a 12-bar blues. She returned to their house daily until the neighbour got so fed up they wheeled the piano up the road and gave it to her as a gift! Meanwhile, she was spotted (aged 8) by an athletics coach and trained as a 100- metre sprinter, eventually competing at National level. This career ended abruptly due to a knee injury aged 18, which is when (and why) she took up the double bass and actively pursued a career in music.



She studied at the Royal Academy of Music and with Franco Petracchi in Rome, and soon found herself in demand internationally.

Chi-chi is the Founder, Artistic and Executive Director of the Chineke! Foundation, which supports, inspires and encourages Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) classical musicians working in the UK and Europe.

The Chineke! Foundation champions change and celebrates diversity in the classical music industry through its two orchestras, the Chineke! Orchestra and Chineke! Junior Orchestra, as well as its educational and outreach work. Ultimately, the Chineke! Foundation aims to give classical BME musicians a platform on which to excel, and by such methods increase the representation of BME musicians in British and European orchestras. More information about the Chineke! Foundation and its work can be found at www.chineke.org.

Chi-chi is a founder member of the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment and held the position of Principal double bass there for 30 years. She is Professor of Double Bass Historical Studies at the Royal Academy of Music, where she was made a Fellow in 1998.

Chi-chi’s range of musical interests have resulted in a broad career performing and recording in a diversity of styles from authentic baroque through to 21st century and new commissions, with many of Europe’s leading chamber orchestras and ensembles. Some of her notable chamber recordings include Schubert’s ‘Trout’ Quintet (recorded three times), and Octet, Beethoven Septet, Hummel Piano quintet and Boccherini Sonatas. Her solo recording of Dittersdorf and Vanhal Concertos with the Swedish Chamber Orchestra; Hyperion CD 67179 received critical acclaim.

In 2012 Barrie Gavin directed a documentary film about Chi-chi’s career, called ‘Tales from the Bass Line’. As a broadcaster, Chi-chi presented BBC Radio 3 Requests for four years, she guests for the TV Proms and was Jury member of BBC 2 TV Classical Star. She presented a two part series for BBC Radio 4 in 2015 which brought to life the stories and music of black composers and musicians from the eighteenth century, whose vivd presence on the classical music scene have slipped through the net!

Chi-chi was also the ‘mentor’ for the 2016 BBC 4 TV series ‘All Together Now, the Great Orchestra Challenge’, showcasing the amazing talent of British amateur orchestras. Chi-chi is a trustee of the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain, Mayor’s Music Fund, Tertis Foundation a Council Member of the Royal Philharmonic Society. She served on the board of the Association of British Orchestras (ABO) from 2008 to 2013. Chi-chi created the ABO/RPS ‘Salomon Prize’ which celebrates the “unsung heroes” working in the ranks of British Orchestras.

Awards and achievements

  • Chi-chi was awarded an MBE for services to Music in the 2001 Queen’s Birthday honours.
  • She was one of the 100 – Happy List in the Independent on Sunday 2011.
  • In July 2016 she was appointed as an Honorary Fellow of Trinity Laban Conservatoire in recognition of her “pioneering contribution to music, in particular the inspiration she provides, the commitment she has shown, and the contribution she has made to addressing inequalities within classical music in the UK, most recently through the Chineke! Foundation.”
  • Chi-chi was awarded the Black British Business Awards, Person of the Year 2016.

Source: Black British Business Awards 2017

Chi-chi is a dedicated advocate of the importance of music in everyone’s lives and is committed to teaching and sharing her love of music.

Book your ticket:


Karen Blackett OBE @Blackett_kt – Inspirational YOU – Tuesday 28th February 2017 – House of commons

Karen Blackett OBE

Chair of Mediacom UK and Chancellor of the University of Portsmouth

Tuesday 28th February 2017

Raising the bar – Leadership, progression and success at the top

House of Commons

Karen has been in media for 22 years and is currently Chairwoman of MediaCom, the largest media agency in the UK with billings over £1 billion. Prior to this Karen was CEO for 5 years.

Karen has been instrumental not only in the success of MediaCom, but in championing diversity throughout the advertising and media industry. In 2012 Karen launched the first ever Government backed Apprentice Scheme for the sector, where the apprentices qualify for an NVQ in Marketing and Communications.


In June 2014, Karen received an OBE in the Queen’s Birthday honours and in 2015 Karen was the first business woman to be named Britain’s Most Influential Black person in the Power List.

Image from ITV news – MediaCom CEO Karen Blackett

In 2015 Karen was appointed as one of four external advisors to help diversify the Civil Service, and as a DIT (Department for International Trade) Business Ambassador for No 10. Karen is also a Non-Exec for Creative England whose focus is to support new and emerging talent in the Creative Industry helping grow the UK Economy and a Council member of the Creative Industries Federation. In March 2016 Karen became the President of NABS, the advertising industry charity which focuses on health and wellbeing in the workplace and presenting the business case for Diversity.

Karen Blackett, was named chancellor of the University or Portsmouth in January 2017, succeeding broadcaster and Women’s Equality Party co-founder Sandi Toksvig.

Source: University of Portsmouth

Blackett will take up the role officially in October to coincide with the beginning of the academic year. She is a graduate of the university herself, having gained a BA in Geography in 1992 as well as an honorary degree in 2015.

Blackett added: “I am honoured to become Chancellor of the University. As an alumna of Portsmouth, I am thrilled to be able to return to the University and use my passion for developing talent and learning, to help create our next set of leaders.”

Book your ticket:



Funke Abimbola @DiversityChamp1 – GC and Head of Financial Compliance at Roche – Inspirational YOU – Thursday 2nd March 2017


General Counsel & Head of Financial Compliance


Thursday 2nd March 2017

Women at the top – Letter to my 15 year old self

(Teenage Girls Masterclass)

House of Commons


Funke is a solicitor and senior leader for Roche, the world’s largest biotech company. Her team provides legal support to Roche’s pharmaceutical operations in the UK, Ireland, Malta and Gibraltar. In addition, she also leads the financial compliance function for the UK pharmaceutical business.

Outside of her day job, she is a notable diversity campaigner, mainly focusing on campaigning for more gender equality, race diversity and social mobility within the legal profession.

Currently the most senior black lawyer in her field, she is ranked as being a top 20 BAME leader globally (Financial Times), one of the 100 most influential leaders of African/Afro-Caribbean heritage in the UK (The Powerlist) and the most influential black lawyer in the UK (Debretts 500 list for 2017).


A multi award-winning lawyer and leader, Funke has received both national and international recognition for her legal and diversity work and is an experienced public speaker, speaking about her personal journey to large audiences ranging from school children to senior professionals including regularly speaking in Parliament. She holds a number of board-level voluntary leadership roles across a range of different diversity organisations and is a Committee member of a House of Lords-based diversity recruitment drive. She appears regularly on BBC 1 as a news reviewer.


Funke is a proud working mother, an expert mentor and sponsor, passionate about the law, diversity, education and healthcare.

She is a regular media commentator, a keen fundraiser for various charities (including Cancer Research UK) and has twice served as school governor and as a board director. She recently founded the Akindolie Medical Scholarship in memory of her father, Dr. Frank Olufemi Akindolie. This is a privately funded bursary and leadership mentoring initiative aimed at supporting future UK doctors from a minority ethnic background.


In October 2016, Funke was honoured with a ‘Point of Light’ award by UK Prime Minister Theresa May and the UK Cabinet Office, recognising the outstanding positive impact of her voluntary diversity work in improving workplace diversity and in supporting the next generation of future leaders.


 Pics: @Funke Abimbola

Tom Ilube – CEO – Inspirational YOU – Tuesday 28th February 2017

Tom Ilube

CEO of Crosswords Security 

Tuesday 28th February 2017

Leadership, Progression and Success at the top  – Masterclass

House of Commons

Tom Ilube is a technology entrepreneur and educational philanthropist.

He is founder and CEO of cyber security company, Crossword Cybersecurity plc, Previously he was Managing Director of Consumer Markets at Callcredit Information Group, the private equity backed UK credit reference agency, sold to Chicago based private equity firm GTCR in 2014. Prior to Callcredit, Tom founded and was CEO of Garlik, a venture capital-backed identity protection company, sold to Experian in 2011. Earlier, Tom served as Chief Information Officer of Egg plc, the pioneering FTSE 250 UK internet bank. His career has included Goldman Sachs, PwC, Cap Gemini and the London Stock Exchange.

Tom is Chair of Governors of ADA College, the UK’s National College for Digital Skills. He is Chair of the African Gifted Foundation and in 2016 launched the African Science Academy, the first girls science and technology school on the continent.

Pic: @TomIlube twitter

Reflecting on the achievement, Tom Ilube said: “Launching the African Science Academy is the highlight of all my work in education over the past decade. I am convinced that we have brilliant young women in African who have the potential to be tomorrow’s world class scientists and engineers.”

Tom was named as the most influential person of African and Caribbean heritage in the Powerlist 2017.

Pic: @Powerful Media aka The Powerlist 2017

Book your ticket:


 Pics: @TomIlube

Leadership at the top – House of Commons – Tuesday 28th February 2017

Inspirational YOU

 supported by Dawn Butler MP 

Leadership, progression and succeeding at the top – masterclass

Raising the bar

House of Commons

Tuesday 28th February 2017 – 6.30pm-8.30pm

Doors 6pm (Please note – prompt start)

Raising the bar: Inspiring Balance is a celebration of empowering leadership and success at the top

The panel will focus on the issues affecting the career paths of those entering competitive professions, maintaining their careers, business, well-being and striking a balance.

The event is open to all: under- and post-graduates, newly qualified and established professionals.  Inspirational YOU provides you with a fantastic opportunity to meet established and respected leaders, to network and gain tips, which may well give you the competitive edge.

Introduced by Dawn Butler MP


Dawn Butler MP, Labour MP for Brent Central

Peter AkwaboahMD – Morgan Stanley

Sandra Federighi, CFO – Stella McCartney

Tom Ilube, CEO – Crossword Security and No. 1 in the Powerlist 2017

Karen Blackett OBE, Chair and former CEO of Mediacom, NED and listed in the Powerlist 2017

Chi Chi Nwanoku MBE, Double Bassist, Artistic director, Prof. Royal Academy of Music, Broadcaster & Writer



  • Are we breaking the glass ceiling?
  • Visibility – the importance of standing up and being counted.
  • How do we get more black and asian professionals into senior positions?
  • Status of women and black professionals in competitive industries?
  • How to balance your career, personal life and well-being?
  • Portfolio careers – joining boards and progressing via external opportunities


6.00 – 6.30 Guests seated for discussion

6.30 – Welcome, introduction

6.40 – 8.00  Panel discussion

8.00 – 8.30 Q&A

8.30 – 8.45 Close and depart

  • Access to the House of Commons is via Cromwell Green Visitors Entrance on St.Margaret Street
  • Please allow 30-45 minutes for airport-type security to enter the House of Commons
  • The event will take place in Committee Room 14
  • Please note that no food or drink is allowed in any of the Committee Rooms although delegates may take in bottled water
  • Please let us know of any special requirements, including any assisted access needs to the House of Commons


Tickets: https://ukleaders.eventbrite.co.uk

E: info (at) inspirationalyou.co.uk

T: 07545 156 111

T: @inspirational_u


Pop Up Market and Acoustic showcase – Clapham on Saturday 25th March 2017

Pop Up Market and Acoustic evening
Saturday 25th March 2017
2pm – 8pm
Join independent makers and designers who are selling:
* Fashion * Jewellery * Accessories * Arts & Crafts * Natural beauty products * Homeware * Baby and children clothing * Books * Music * Art * and more!
Enjoy music throughout the day alongside entertainment and activities for your children.
Come along to:
– Buy unique gifts for your family and friends (or yourself)
– Purchase exclusive clothing
– Explore unique gifts
Our market is an opportunity for you to experience high quality goods from independent brands. We will have a variety of well-known designers and local acts in attendance.
*5pm – 8pm*
In the evening we have live music and acoustic entertainment from popular artists and performers.
Come and hear about The Village CIC and our plans for our new community space.
More info:
Email: thevillageldn@gmail.com
Call: 07957 570 526 / 07772 527 813 / 07545 156 111
Info and bookings

Pop Up Market and Acoustic showcase – Clapham on 18th December 2016

Pop Up Market and Festival
Sunday 18th December 2016
12pm – 9pm
Join independent makers and designers who are selling:
* Fashion * Jewellery * Accessories * Arts & Crafts * Natural beauty products * Homeware * Baby and children clothing * Books * Music * Art * and more!
Enjoy music throughout the day alongside entertainment and face painting for your children.
Do you want to:
– Buy unique gifts for your family and friends (or yourself)?
– Purchase exclusive clothing during the Holidays?
– Explore last minute gifts?
Our market is an opportunity for you to experience high quality goods from independent brands. We will have a variety of well-known designers and local acts in attendance.
*6pm – 9pm*
In the evening we have live music and acoustic entertainment from popular artists and performers.
Come and hear about The Village CIC and our plans for our new community space.
More info:
Info and bookings
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