Top 10: Women in Energy in the UK and Europe

Top 10: Women in Energy in the UK & Europe
In celebration of International Women’s Day and Women’s History Month, we celebrate some of the leading women shaping the UK and Europe’s energy landscape

Making the most of a time where women worldwide are celebrated, Energy Digital is publishing a special series of Top 10s throughout March that shines a spotlight on a collection of phenomenal women making waves across the energy sector.

Covering three geographies — the UK and Europe, US and APAC — these Top 10s will champion the best of the best from around the world, including CEOs, CTOs, CFOs, CPOs, CSOs and CSCOs.

This comes as BizClik launches a variety of Top 100 Women supplements in 2024 across major titles – Sustainability, Procurement, Supply Chain, Technology and FinTech.

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An annual commemoration, BizClik first launched the Top 100 Women series in 2021 as part of its mission to celebrate the Top 100 Women, first in FinTech, Supply Chain and Technology. 

Featuring influential executives from the likes of bp, Shell and E.ON, discover who features in the Top 10 Women in Energy in the UK and Europe.

10. Gunhild Grieve
Role: CFO
Company: RWE Supply & Trading
Location: London, UK

Gunhild Grieve, CFO of RWE Supply & Trading

Leading the way to a green energy world, RWE’s investment and growth strategy, Growing Green, is contributing significantly to the success of the energy transition and the decarbonisation of the energy system. Grieve, who has a background in investment banking, has accumulated more than 15 years working at RWE, taking the CFO post in 2021. RWE’s CEO Markus Krebber applauded Grieve’s experience when she assumed her position, sharing his delight that “a highly experienced and knowledgeable financial market expert” was taking over the fundamental role.

9. Victoria Ossadnik
Role: COO of Digital and Innovation
Company: E.ON
Location: Munich, Germany

Victoria Ossadnik, COO of Digital and Innovation at E.ON

A Doctor of Physics from Munich’s Ludwig Maximilians University (LMU), Ossadnik joined the E.ON Group as CEO of E.ON Energie Deutschland in 2018, before taking on her current position in 2021. Also a member of E.ON’s Executive Board, Ossadnik has previously worked in senior executive roles at giants such as Microsoft and Oracle. She now champions E.ON’s digital journey, which heavily contributes to E.ON’s transformation into a sustainable and digital energy business. In conversation with The Innovator, she highlighted  the importance of AI adoption in the energy sector and how AI can accelerate the transition to low-carbon energy future. 

“The availability of data is crucial for a successful energy transition,” she said. “We need regulators' help to make that happen in a way that grants us access while securing the required data protection.”

8. Aurélia Tremblaye
Role: SVP & Group CPO
Company: ENGIE
Location: Paris, France

Aurélia Tremblaye, SVP & Group CPO at ENGIE

With a career in procurement and sourcing spanning more than 15 years, Tremblaye has worked for the likes of Atos and General Electric before joining ENGIE in 2021. In her role, she highlights the importance of supply chain in the wider company eco-system and ensures it is cohesive. She is a firm believer in how a united and streamlined supply chain is critical to ensure sustainability goals are met and quality is maintained.

“The mission of ENGIE’s Procurement function is to support our group’s performance, sustainability and competitiveness, through the selection of performing, innovative suppliers which have a positive impact on people and the planet” she said.

Tremblaye was honoured as one of Procurement Magazine’s Top 100 CPOs in November 2023.

7. Dr Jutta A. Dönges
Role: CFO
Company: Uniper
Location: Frankfurt, Germany

Dr Jutta A. Dönges, CFO at Uniper

Uniper is up there among some of the largest generation and trading companies in Europe, with a balanced portfolio of technologically advanced large-scale assets with outstanding technical and commercial expertise. Branding itself as “guiding the direction of energy generation and gas supply at the beginning of a new era for the industry”, the German energy company appointed Dönges as CFO a year ago. Dönges — a former Goldman Sachs banker —  set out her plans to diligently lead Uniper through a stabilisation phase and  to successfully reopen it to the capital markets.

On her appointment, Tom Blades, Chairman of Uniper's supervisory board said: “In Jutta Dönges, we have not only gained an outstanding leader, but also someone who is very familiar with the interplay between entrepreneurial activity and state supervision.”

6. Francesca Zarri
Role: Director of Technology, R&D & Digital
Company: Eni
Location: Milan, Italy

Francesca Zarri, Director of Technology, R&D & Digital at Eni

Directly managing oil and gas projects in Italy and beyond — like West Africa — Zarri is key in managing an international team  and has worked with Eni and its associated projects since 1997. As a trained mining engineer with worldwide experience, Zarri is a hands-on manager and is known as a universal planner. Her keen focus on organisation and forward-thinking, as well as her presence at plants and in other aspects of the business, meaning she is on hand to facilitate the discovery and implementation of practical solutions to company challenges. Her competence and experience is recognised company- and industry-wide — but this has not always been the case. Known early in her career as ‘Franceschina’ (little Francesca) despite often being the person in charge, Zarri has risen through a multitude of senior positions and proved her ability, proving her desire and motivation in the field.

5. Anna Krutikov
Role: Head of Sustainable Development
Company: Glencore
Location: Zurich, Switzerland

Anna Krutikov, Head of Sustainable Development at Glencore

One of the world’s largest mining companies and a major producer and marketer of coal, Glencore is focused on supporting the energy needs of today whilst investing in its transition metals portfolio, all while the world moves closer towards a low-carbon economy. As its Head of Sustainable Development, Krutikov leverages her sustainability executive experience to lead the positive evolution of Glencore’s sustainability performance, ensuring the company’s natural resources can power modern life — whether the EV revolution or the smartphone in most people’s pockets. A frequent speaker at summits, such as UN Forums and The BNEF Summit, Krutikov advocates Glencore’s holistic approach to sustainability.

4. Jannicke Nilsson
Role: EVP of Safety, Security & Sustainability
Company: Equinor
Location: Norway

Jannicke Nilsson, EVP of Safety, Security & Sustainability at Equinor

Holding a variety of executive and management positions in the upstream oil and gas industry through her career, Nilsson joined Equinor in 1999. Now EVP of Safety, Security & Sustainability, Nilsson’s role centres around the safety and wellbeing of Equinor’s staff and ensuring their actions have a positive impact.

“It is encouraging to see that the good work our employees and suppliers do each day to improve safety is paying off,” she said at the end of 2023. “We continue working closely with the industry, sharing lessons learned.

“Our extensive experience from proactive safety work in the oil and gas business is also incorporated and continued in new value chains within renewable energy and low-carbon solutions.

“Reducing the backlog of safety-critical maintenance is a very important part of the work to prevent major accidents. We now see the lowest level ever recorded.”

3. Kate Thomson
Role: Group CFO
Company: bp
Location: UK

Kate Thomson, Group CFO at bp

Having worked for bp since 2004, Thomson has had a wealth of significant posts througuot her tenure, including Group Treasurer,Group Head of Tax and SVP Finance – Production & Operations. She was appointed Interim CFO in September 2023, a position made permanent in February. Helge Lund, bp’s Chair, applauded Thomson’s experience when she official took her permanent position. He said: “She has a detailed understanding of bp and the energy and finance sectors, combined with deep technical expertise. Her record of finance leadership together with her performance as interim CFO have clearly demonstrated her suitability to become bp’s permanent CFO.” 

Thomson added: “We’ve made great progress through the past few years in strengthening bp, and I have no doubt this will continue. I’m excited about how we can continue to drive bp’s focus on delivery and growing value as we work towards hitting our targets for 2025.”

She previously had worked at the likes of consultancy EY and Charter plc, which was acquired by Colfax Corporation, now Enovis, in 2012.

2. Helle Kristoffersen
Role: President Asia & Country Chair Japan
Company: TotalEnergies
Location: Paris, France

Helle Kristoffersen, President Asia & Country Chair Japan at TotalEnergies

Formerly President of Strategy & Sustainability among other senior roles, Kristoffersen was appointed President Asia & Country Chair Japan earlier this year, on top of her role as Member of the Executive Committee. The dual Danish and French national is a graduate of the École normale supérieure and the Paris Graduate School of Economics, Statistics and Finance (ENSAE) and also holds a Master’s degree in Econometrics from Université Paris Sorbonne. She is an alumna of the French Institute for Higher National Defense Studies (IHEDN) and, as well as this, is a Knight of the Légion d’honneur. She has worked for TotalEnergies for more than 13 years.

Between 1994 and 2011, she held a number of general management positions within the Alcatel group, which became Alcatel-Lucent and then Nokia

TotalEnergies aims to reduce emissions from its oil products by 40% in 2030 from 2015 levels,increasing its reduction target from the 30 per cent announced last year.

"The net takeaway is that even when our gas-related Scope 3 emissions go up, the world is better off,"

1. Sinead Gorman
Role: CFO
Company: Shell
Location: UK

Sinead Gorman, CFO at Shell

Gorman joined Shell in 1999 and, across her 25 years at Shell, has held a variety of key finance leadership roles. She began her career as a civil engineer, with her pivot to the finance sector landing her a place in C-suite roles, latterly CFO in 2022. Alongside Shell’s CEO Wael Sawan, Gorman has played a huge part in refreshing Shell’s financial framework for investors. This is all while Shell aims to achieve near-zero methane emissions by 2030, alongside plans to invest US$10 billion to US$15bn by 2025 to support the development of low-carbon energy solutions.

Gorman has an MEng in Engineering, Economics and Management from the University of Oxford, and an MSc in Finance from London Business School.

On her appointment to her current role, Shell Chair Sir Andrew Mackenzie said: “She combines broad finance, trading, new business development and capital projects experience with a deep knowledge of Shell, and a strong commercial and external focus.

“I look forward to working with her in the execution of our strategy to accelerate Shell’s transition to a net-zero emissions energy business purposefully and profitably.”

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