Rockinghorse CEO becomes a Woman of the Year

Donna Holland, Rockinghorse CEO, has been chosen as a Woman of the Year in recognition...

Donna Holland, Rockinghorse CEO, has been chosen as a Woman of the Year in recognition of her 20 years in charity work.

The Women of the Year Awards celebrate women from across the UK and around the world who are doing remarkable work and making a difference to others. From supporting and serving society, to saving lives, breaking glass ceilings and building communities. Women of the Year recognises women whose exceptional efforts today are paving the way for the women of tomorrow.

Donna Holland, Rockinghorse CEO

Donna was nominated by Natalie Burns, Strategy Director at United Us and member of the Women of the Year Management Committee and wrote the following about her: “Donna Holland is a serial change-maker in the charity sector. In her tenure as the Head of Fundraising and Marketing at Girlguiding, she was responsible for increasing the inclusivity of the organisation to women and girls from different religious backgrounds – a huge shift in this historically monotheistic organisation.

“Since then, she has gone on to work at The Mix, Maternity Worldwide (where she took on her first C-suite position as Interim Chief Exec), and now takes on the mantel of CEO at Rockinghorse Children’s Charity. Only 8 months into the role, she is already on a mission to better the care and support services that sick and disabled babies, children and teenagers across Sussex have access to. She’s a tour de force.”

The event, held at the Royal Lancaster Hotel in London, was hosted by celebrated actor, comedian and TV presenter Mel Giedroyc, and awards were presented by Lorraine Kelly CBE, Vicky McClure, Miquita Oliver, Clare Balding, Angela Hartnett and Nisha Katona.

Over 400 women attended the celebration, which has been happening since 1955, joining together to honour the achievements of so many. This year’s event paid special tribute to the extraordinary achievements of women in the global sporting arena this year, especially following the historic win for England’s Women’s Football team in the UEFA Women’s Championship this summer.

Donna said: “I’m incredibly proud and honoured (and also very daunted!) to be nominated for a Women of the Year Award.

“I’ve worked in the charity sector for more than twenty years now. Over that time, I’ve had the privilege to work on so many ground-breaking projects, game-changing campaigns and dial-moving programmes, and with so many inspiring, committed and compassionate people.

“I’ve had the opportunity to volunteer for dozens of charities and to mentor, and be mentored by, some brilliant people. Thank you to all those people. I’ve also done some ridiculous things for charity – jumping off things, climbing up things, dressing up, getting blisters, and doing anything I can to raise money for causes close to my heart.

“I’d encourage anyone to support the charity sector anyway you can – your skills, experience and resources are needed now more than ever. Here’s to the next 20 years of serving my community and changing the world for the better.”

Dr Oli Rahman, Chair of Trustees at Rockinghorse said: Donna has been like a breath of fresh air. She has not only helped us reflect on what we have achieved as a relatively small, local charity but also allowed us to explore what we could do moving forward.

“Her insight, openness, honesty and integrity will no doubt translate into improving the quality of care we provide for families and children associated with the Royal Alexandra Children’s Hospital, Brighton. I feel lucky to have her by my side.”

Find out more about the Women of the Year events here.

Many congratulations to Donna for this amazing achievement!