International Women’s Day at Snowplow

Nicki Faulkner

March 8th marks International Women’s Day 2020. At Snowplow, we’re celebrating by putting a spotlight on the talented, passionate and driven women that we have the pleasure of working alongside.

Nicki Faulkner – Office Manager

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I have been writing, recording and producing music since I was a child. I’ve played gigs, got picked up by an indie label, been on BBC’s Introducing show, been featured in an article on The Verge and last year I released a concept EP entitled ‘Borderline’. I do it all from my bedroom, which makes me feel even more proud of myself for everything I’ve achieved.

Over the years, I’ve had 30,000 plays on SoundCloud, been on the radio in both the UK and the US and reached number 1 in Pop on Reverbnation, which isn’t bad for someone with an active social life and a full-time job!

I’ve played the recorder, penny whistle, violin, steel pans, guitar (electric & acoustic), keyboard, bass, ukulele and a number of gadgets that beep and boop but I’m definitely much better when it comes to synthesized instruments on Logic Pro X. You’ll often find me with my head in my MacBook using music production as therapy – it really helps!

Miriam de Medwe – People Operations Manager

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My biggest passion in life is traveling and exploring as much of the world as possible, and doing anything that gives me an adrenaline rush.

I decided at 18 that I’d had enough of academia for a while and while all my friends went to university, I traveled around North and South America on my own. I worked on a horse ranch, road tripped from Arizona to California, trekked Machu Picchu, staying in a favela in Rio, visited Iguazu Falls and nearly didn’t come home from Ilha Grande, a beautiful island off the coast of Brazil.

During that first year, and after seeing so many incredible cultures and meeting the most wonderful, interesting people, I realized that one year just wasn’t enough. So I then travelled Australia, Indonesia and Southeast Asia on my own, finally finishing up in India. From motorbiking around Vietnam to swimming with elephants in a remote village in India or with turtles in the Gili Islands, those two years made a huge impact on me.

Since then, I’ve traveled to nearly 40 countries – in 2018, I think I traveled to 11 countries in that year alone! As I’m writing this, I’m sat in Cape Town with Table Mountain in the background looking forward to going surfing tomorrow morning and then paragliding off Signal Hill in the afternoon.

Claire White – Customer Success Specialist

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Outside of work I volunteer with the Royal Air Force Air Cadet. I have been a member of this organization for 10 years from being a junior cadet to now being an adult volunteer member of staff. After completing a weeks training at RAF College Cranwell I was awarded my Cadet Forces Commission and the rank of Pilot Officer. Day to day, I volunteer weekly on a Wednesday night and I support mentoring and developing the cadet NCO/leadership team and general administration in the background to keep the squadron running.

During my time with the Air Cadets I have learned principles of flight, about the structure and history of the RAF, how to shoot a rifle, completed leadership and fieldcraft training, trekked across Iceland, marched 100 miles in 4 days and developed my own personal and professional confidence. Thanks to my cadet and staff experience with this organization I feel prepared to take on any challenge that life throws at me.

Victoria Vlasenko – Senior Sales Development Representative

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I’ve always enjoyed home cooking and even got a chef certificate in Ukraine. I won a couple of competitions at my previous job at the summer barbecue parties – I came 1st 3 years in a row for the best shashlik and steak among 10-15 teams. After moving to the UK, I fell in love with Gordon Ramsay and his wife’s cooking; now I have dozens of cookery books and I keep learning something new every week. Follow me on Instagram for my recipes!

Franciska Dethlefsen – Head of Demand Gen

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I’m a digital nomad. Although I hate that title, it’s what best describes my situation at the moment. Snowplow lets you work from wherever you want which makes it easy to travel around and experience the world. My favorite thing is to land in a new city or country and explore what daily life is like there. Where do I get groceries? What kind of groceries? What’s the gym situation like? How’s the dining scene? Although I don’t have much time to explore during the week, I make the most out of my weekends and organize day trips or just explore an area of a city.

The photo is from the Semien Mountains in Ethiopia where I went on vacation before working from Kenya for a month. I’ve never seen anything like it!!

Denika Campbell – Talent Acquisition Manager

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I was pretty bored during my maternity leave in 2018 (before my Snowplow days) and also quite broke (statutory maternity pay is trash!). I always had a love for scented candles (Jo Malone, Yankee, etc. – the good stuff!) but I had to cut back on such luxuries. I was on a hunt for a new hobby and I started making wire-wrapped jewelry, which was a major flop! I then came across an article about making soy wax candles, a light bulb went off in my head and from there Dee Light Candles was born.

I make all of my candles in my kitchen so my home smells amazing every weekend. Initially it was just my little pet project but my family and friends really enjoyed them and encouraged me to attend craft fairs and sell them online. I was surprised by how successful my candles have been. My top-selling candle is based on a Tom Ford scent but at Christmas, everyone goes wild for my Christmas Spice candle. It sold out within an hour!

A “celebrity” (Big Brother winner – Akeem Griffiths) has even bought a few of my candles. I’m planning to expand Dee Light Candles this year, promote more on social media and open an Etsy store but for now, I receive orders via Instagram and Facebook.

Sam Welch – Financial Controller

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I wouldn’t refer to this as a talent, because I’m not terribly gifted at it, but outside of work what I love to do is sign up to ridiculous events where I try to jog for an absurd amount of distance and time. Sometimes I do the same with cycling. Sometimes this also involves an element of swimming.

Last year, this saw me taking part in the Thames Path Challenge – a 100km route along the river in which entrants walked, jogged and ran to the finish line. When I initially signed up for the event, having completed several marathons, I thought that the 50km route would be a doddle and that I could only really challenge myself by signing up to th
e 100km. How wrong I was. In the end, I jogged the first 66km, then gave up and speed walked the rest. It took me 17 hours to complete and I finished after 2am. My family were there to cheer me at the finish line, and I made a good friend along the route. It’s incredible to share moments like that with a stranger, where you both rely on each other heavily to see each other through to the finish.

One of the best things about training for the event was the trail running that I had to complete in the months leading up to it. Running outside, off road, just trying to cover distance rather than aiming for specific minutes per mile was incredibly refreshing and very good for the mind. Add to that the fact that I was able to complete a month’s worth of this training in the Alps in Austria, jogging through mountains, along rivers, amongst meadows and forests was just truly magical.

This year, my aim is to sign up for 5 events in total – my first is a half marathon at the end of March. The second is ‘Man v Horse’, which is a 22 mile race through the Welsh countryside where 800 runners will race 60 horses to the finish line. Training started at the end of February – I can’t wait to see where it takes me!

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