We are delighted to announce that this year’s winner of the GDST Alumna of the Year Award – by one of the largest votes ever – is Wimbledon High School alumna, Samira Ahmed.
A multi-award-winning journalist, writer and broadcaster, Samira works on a range of prestigious programmes including Art of Persia on BBC4, Front Row on Radio 4, Newswatch on BBC1 and the podcast How I found My Voice, and Channel 4 News. She was voted the British Broadcasting Press Guild Audio presenter of the year 2020, and the Stonewall Broadcaster of the year 2009 for her C4 News film about the shocking treatment of lesbian women in South Africa.
Presenting Samira with her trophy, Wimbledon High School’s Head, Fionnuala Kennedy said, “What an unmitigated pleasure it is to welcome Samira Ahmed back to Wimbledon High, her alma mater, and to have the honour of presenting to her the award for GDST Alumna of the Year 2021. We are hugely proud to count Samira as one of our own, both as a Wimbledonian and as a member of the GDST, and I know all those here and across the Trust will join me in congratulating her on this thoroughly deserved award.
In response, Samira said, “Thank you so much. If there is one thing I would say, it’s that you are going to have to fight the same battles again that I thought had been won. Don’t take anything for granted.”
Samira is also a trustee of three charities: The Centre for Women’s Justice, UK Feminista and Action for Stammering Children, and an honorary fellow of St Edmund Hall, Oxford. She also has an honorary doctorate from City, University of London for services to journalism.
In January 2020, Samira won a landmark sex discrimination employment tribunal against the BBC for equal pay on Newswatch. Speaking about the tribunal, Samira said, “I hope my case has shown how ingrained discrimination still is in the work place, the need for women and men to work together as allies, the importance of being in a union to protect hard won rights, and I am proud that Ahmed v BBC is now a landmark case that stands in the history books as we continue try and end sex discrimination once and for all.”