Meet our SWiT Board Superstars
Lynsey is Chairperson for SWiT, a charity driving gender equality in the Tech sector for Scotland. As part of the SWiT team, Lynsey founded the SWiT Awards, now in its 3rd year, which aims to uncover inspirational role models across Scotland and provide a platform for stories and successes to be shared on a national scale. SWiT board members give their time on a voluntary basis alongside successful technology roles.
Lynsey leads customer success strategies for a global technology organisation and has over 20 years’ experience in technology starting out at the age of 17 as a trainee programmer. Lynsey had a non-traditional route into a successful technology career starting as an apprentice and working hard to bring her personality and creativity to all of her roles. As a result, Lynsey is passionate about inspiring younger generations to embrace technology and about building a vibrant, diverse, and equal workforce where ideas flourish and people feel empowered to do their best work and be happy in the workplace.
Chairperson of SWiT
Elaine McKechnie is a Senior Manager in Information Security for the UK's 6th largest Retail Bank. She specialises in delivery of Security Technology in the Financial Services Sector. She has served on the Board of SWiT since 2014 and loves encouraging others to join the tech sector! Her passion for technology is driven by her own career change from Police Officer to Business Analyst back in 2012 so she brings a wealth of knowledge about what it feels like to risk it all and climb the ranks in a completely new job. In her spare time Elaine likes to keep fit and hang out with family.
Watch Elaine's video on Security by clicking button below.
Marisa Metcalf joined the board of SWiT in February 2019. Marisa started her career in technology almost 20 years ago and previously sat on the board, as Operations Director, of a Scottish Telecommunications and IT provider for 8 years, she now leads Cisco's Partner Channel in Scotland. A recent Bachelor of Laws graduate, Fellow of the Chartered Management Institute and STEM Ambassador, with two young children, Marisa is hugely passionate about technology and encouraging young people, especially young girls, to explore technology and STEM based careers.
In her spare time, Marisa loves to do arts and crafts with her children, DIY and is learning to play the piano.
Anna is Irish born, Scotland based. Anna has a BA (Hons) in Business and Management and an MSc in Human Resource Management, a more recently a Black Belt in Lean Kaizen.
Anna’s career path following university has meandered from a management position in a bar/ restaurant to starting in Hewlett Packard as an Executive Assistant and then applying for a role as Business Analyst, owning the Business Scorecard for the Spare Parts Supply Chain in another organization within HP. Within two years in this role, she was promoted to my present position as a Global Business Operations Manager specializing in Headcount and Location Strategy.
When she’s not waving her SWiT flag, she mentors the HPE Early Career Hires and also sits as the Vice-Chair of the Erskine WoMEN@HPE Network, adding value on site by providing a strong network of women to provide line of sight and also support. Anna is also the Lead of the UK&I WoMEN@HPE Communications team, ensuring that we showcase and grow our network.
Anna is happily married to Dale and recently added a cat called 'Son' into her family.
Watch Anna's video on routine by clicking button below.
Nicola Paul is an accomplished digital marketing and e-commerce professional, and founded Yellow Bird Digital in 2017 to help small and growing brands with selling online and improving their marketing strategies.
She now partners with a range of SMEs and growing brands across the retail, not-for profit and creative sectors to help them to navigate the complex worlds of digital marketing and e-commerce.
Nicola joined SWiT in 2019 as she is passionate about both the growing technology sector and the rise of female-led start-ups, and is keen to continue the great work of the charity while helping other women to successfully run their own businesses.
Watch Nicola's video on Self Care by clicking button below.
Silka Patel is a strategic marketing expert with 19 years’ experience of working within the technology industry and is currently the Senior UK Marketing Manager at Leidos. Silka set up Scotland Women in Technology which is now in its 11th year, championing women and girls in the technology sector.
Silka has a number of external roles including as a Non-Executive Director at the Glasgow Women’s Library which she has held for 7 years, Non-Executive Director at Technology Scotland and a member of Changing the Chemistry which seeks to improve board effectiveness and quality through the Diversity of Thought.
She is a keen supporter of women in technology and mentors STEM graduates and apprentices so they can be involved in the life changing opportunities that the sector offers.
Married and a mother of two boys, she enjoys the gym and cooking whilst juggling life and would have it no other way!
Ishbel MacPherson has 20 years of experience as an Intellectual Property and Technology lawyer in the Technology and Life Sciences sectors. She has advised public and private sector entities on a wide range of intellectual property, information technology, and commercial contract matters at all stages in the technology process – from early stage research to end user terms. In a fast-moving technological world, she is interested in the practical and legal implications of new technologies. She is proud to be a Board Member of Scotland Women in Technology supporting, celebrating and investing in women’s participation in the Technology sector to ensure that new technologies benefit everyone.
Mhairi Galbraith is an ACCA qualified accountant, currently undertaking specialised work within the third sector. Mhairi joined the SWiT team in early 2019 and is involved in various charities, both as a volunteer and at board level. She is a passionate believer in the empowerment and advancement of women in the workplace, believing that it will increase the quantity and quality of the human resource within the organisation and in turn provide societal development. Given the surge in the Scottish technology sector, Mhairi sees this as an opportunity to implement her vision for women, allowing them to be at the forefront of the technology curve.
Steven Grier leads Microsoft’s business in Scotland. From humble IT beginnings on Margaret Thatcher’s YTS Scheme with Digital Equipment Corporation in 1989 so began a journey through oil (BP), booze (United Distillers), funerals (Co-Op) and software, ultimately finding himself at Microsoft in the year Windows XP launched (Bing it!). Passionate about Scotland, inspired by innovation and with a soft spot for healthcare and digital skills - he likes technology when it makes people smile. Married with a young son and has set himself the life challenge of finding the perfect balance between competitive cycling, a fondness for malt whisky, Burns poetry and Scandinavian power metal music. It may take some time.
Country Manager, Microsoft in Scotland
Ray launched DIGIT, Scotland’s leading technology media & events company in 2013. DIGIT is dedicated to providing tech news, views, opinion for IT & Digital users & consumers. Ray has developed partnerships spanning: industry, academia, government, membership groups, regulatory bodies and innovation centres. This ensures that DIGIT’s news and events are not restricted by the interests of a single perspective but instead reflect a balanced consensus, covering the core issues that are most relevant to the audience. WWW.DIGIT.FYI and its network of events now reach nearly 50,000 business & technology users per week. DIGIT hosts major conferences and events in Scotland, including Digital Energy, Digital Transformation Scot-Secure, Scotland, Intelligent Automation, FinTech and DIGIT Expo, all serving as community platforms for business user collaboration and networking.
DIGIT has been supporting STEM, Women in Technology and other areas of industry inclusiveness via their editorial output and event agendas are delighted to be supporting the awards once again. This is Ray’s third year as a SWiT awards judge.
Passionate about the power of PR, Sarah launched Hot Tin Roof in 2002. She has worked with some of Scotland’s brightest startups and is trusted by both journalists and the entrepreneurs behind the story. Now she is building PingGo, a do-it-yourself PR machine, expected to disrupt the PR industry forever.
Owner - Hot Tin Roof
Eileen McLaren, currently VP Product Management at Indigo Vision, is one of the best known faces in the Scottish IT scene having been instrumental in scaling the countries two unicorns; Skyscanner and FanDuel prior to joining Cognitive Geology in 2017, and Indigo Vision in 2019.
Her early career in technology was in Financial Services where she progressed from analyst programmer, through project and programme management, eventually branching out into coaching and consultancy before joining Skyscanner in their early growth period.
Previously VP of Engineering at FanDuel, Development Manager at Skyscanner and COO at Cognitive Geology, Eileen has recently joined Indigo Vision as part of their transformation and growth.
Eileen was raised in Glasgow and studied at Glasgow College of Technology. She now splits her time between homes in Edinburgh and Glasgow and still finds time to support her favourite Glasgow football team.
A keen advocate for increasing the number of females working in IT and tackling the technology sectors diversity problems, Eileen has been a judge for the SWIT awards since inception, and is an active member of Digital Skills Partnership Industry Advisory Group.
Alison has held a number of leadership roles in Sopra Steria across the UK, all of which involved a leading role for the company’s business in Scotland. She is now on secondment to Government under the First Minister’s Digital Fellowship Programme and is currently leading the Digital Transformation Division within the Scottish Government. In this role she leads a team who work across a number of digital transformation programmes across Government to support programme delivery, promote digital ways of working and maximise re-use of government assets.
Alison is also the vice chair of ScotlandIS.
Stuart Macdonald is founder and Managing Director of Seric Systems, a multi-award winning Cyber Security and Technology business based in Scotland, serving the UK. Seric work with a broad range of organisations including Public Sector, Corporates and SME’s. Stuart is an investor in a number of other business and founded SmartSTEMs a charity involved in STEM.
After achieving a BSc Computer Information Systems, Jackie began her career as a computer programmer in the manufacturing sector. She moved onto the University of Paisley as a computing lecturer and was an early pioneer in online learning, a role she developed further when she became director of learning at the Scottish Council for Educational Technology.
As assistant chief executive at Learning and Teaching Scotland, she led national government digital initiatives for schools. Jackie took up a vice principal post at Ayrshire College in 2013, where her responsibilities included information systems and data analytics. She became principal of West Lothian College in August 2018.
Throughout her career, she has retained a passion for addressing the gender balance in technology and engineering, leading initiatives like This Ayrshire Girl Can.
Jackie Galbraith -
Principal and CEO/Board Member
Kepa is the Associate Dean International and Director of Postgraduate studies at the Faculty of Engineering in the University of Strathclyde. Kepa previously worked as Director of Business Engagement and Programme Leader for the MSc Data Science for Business at the Stirling Management School. Kepa has been closely involved with The Datalab MSc programme for several years and he is particularly proud of seeing two female students from my cohort win the prestigious Datalab Placement Award in consecutive years for the impact of their work in Scottish organisations.
Faculty of Engineering,
University of Strathclyde
“Winner of the Business Man of the Year award at the Scottish Asian Business Awards.
Gurjut is the Founder and Curator of TEDxGlasgow, one of the largest TEDx events in the world.. they have had over 13 million views of 140 talks.. and at their last event we had 2000 guests.
In his free time he enjoys supporting various community initiatives, sailing, trying not to fall off motorbikes and spending time with his two sons.”