10/09/10

By Claire West

One of the country’s youngest insolvency practitioners has been shortlisted for a Young Business Woman of the Year award.

Gemma Roberts, 24, from Wilson Field based in Sheffield, is in the running for next month’s Forward Ladies Young Business Woman title, which celebrates the successes of women across the north in business.

Gemma, from Sheffield, began her career at the insolvency and business turnaround specialists the day after her last GCSE, and has rapidly progressed up the ladder.

With a clear career goal from an early age, Gemma started as an office junior at 16-years-old, before going on to be a trainee case administrator, a senior case administrator and then to where she is now — a corporate manager.

While most insolvency practitioners come from banks or accounting with a business-related degree, Gemma didn’t even do a GCSE in business studies. By learning on the job at Wilson Field from a young age, Gemma studied for her Joint Insolvency Examination Board (JIEB) qualification among people much older than her, with the youngest people usually in their mid-30s.

Gemma passed the rigorous exams first time, which only has a 40 per cent pass rate.

Gemma said: “It’s a privilege to be shortlisted amongst these successful business women. I was very surprised when I heard the news! I’m very excited and nervous but I’m sure it will be a good day, it’s something to feel very proud about.”

The awards ceremony will take place on September 24 at The Met Hotel, Leeds.

Forward Ladies started in 2000 as a small networking group of professionals. Since the organisation has grown to have a database of 12,000 women in business across the north of England from Hull to Liverpool.