A Wiltshire businesswoman, who enjoyed one high flying career in aviation before embarking on a second in technology, is in the running for an award.

Lara Barnes, Business Development Manager with leading website and software development company Digital Trading, has received a nomination for a Women’s STEM award at the Women’s Business Conference 2019. 

Run by Women’s Business Club, the conference and the STEM award recognises the outstanding contributions of women in STEM. The acronym STEM stands for science, technology, engineering and mathematics. There’ll be an announcement of the winner at the Cheltenham conference on December 4th.

Lara barnes business award nomination - laura barnes at a computer

Lara, 34, from Highworth, exclaimed her delight at her nomination. She said too how proud she is that her two careers show what women can achieve industries that tend to be male-dominated.

“I felt surprised yet honoured to get this nomination,” said lone-parent Lara. She juggles her career with looking after her two boys, Thomas, aged six, and Joseph, three. “It’s my belief, as a single Mum, that it’s so important to show what one can achieve and to have a career that I and my children can be proud of.”

Lara embarked on her first career at 17 when she fulfilled her long-held ambition to join the RAF. After her basic training, she moved into flight operations and became an air traffic controller at Brize Norton.

In 2007, Lara left the RAF and her upward career trajectory continued. She moved into operations in private aviation at Oxford Airport, becoming responsible for a fleet of aircraft and a large workforce.

It was only when Joseph was born that she took a mini career break, but even then threw herself into a new enterprise. Before joining Highworth-based Digital Trading in 2018, Lara ran a successful crafting-based enterprise.

Now Lara is loving getting to grips with a second career in technology and immersing herself in the digital world. At Digital Trading, the team focus on software solutions that can save time and effort within a company, as well as lead to increased business growth and sales – something that greatly appeals to Lara’s entrepreneurial spirit and business brain.

“I joined as office manager in the first instance, but I could see what great work the team here at Digital Trading do. And I knew I could help develop their client base,” she said. “I enjoy learning all about the technology world alongside understanding how an App can change the way you work. Before I joined, I had little idea of what coding meant! It shows what doors can you can open if you knock on them.”

Women’s Business Club is a national network of businesswomen. Its members are either business owners or working at a senior level within an organisation. WBC’s mission is to help women succeed in their professional lives. It does this through empowerment, support and the collective experience of the membership. 

Anyone wanting to vote for Lara can do so at https://www.womensbusiness.club/stem-award/

For more information about Lara’s career at Digital Trading – based in Highworth – visit https://digitaltrading.co.uk/.

Also on the topic of STEM see this post about Scoosh.