Institute for Transport Studies (ITS)

International Women’s Day 2015

To mark International Women’s Day we celebrate some of the prominent women in the transport sector today who are graduates of the Institute. 


Michele Dix,
 Transport for London / Crossrail 2 

Michèle graduated from ITS in 1982 with a PhD examining the relationship between land use planning and transport.

As Managing Director of Planning at Transport for London (TfL) Michèle has actively encouraged women into transport and engineering, mentoring up-and-coming leaders as part of the not-for-profit Future of London project. As TfL's Equality and Inclusion champion, she led the organisation’s work to ensure that London's diverse population benefit from access to transport, and that the TfL workforce reflects the city it serves. Described by Sir Peter Hendy as “the best transport planner in Britain” Michele’s outstanding contribution to the sector was recognised with the award of a CBE in the Queen's New Year's Honours 2015 (read more).  Michèle was also presented with a lifetime achievement award at the 2014 Transport Practitioners Meeting, in recognition of her long-term commitment to the profession. In February 2015 she was appointed as Managing Director of Crossrail 2, leading one of the UK’s most significant new infrastructure projects.

Anne Clarke

MSc Sustainability (Transport), 2013

Recognised for MVA Transport Prize for the best student in Transport Planning and Sustainability and STAR conference prize (2014) Anne was one of 13 women to be selected for special commendation in this year's University of Leeds Women of Achievement event and exhibition.  This event recognises women who have achieved an external prize or award in their field for either; outstanding research, teaching, scholarship or technical work, since January 2011. Nominations have been gathered from our community of postgraduate students, research fellows or associates, lecturers and readers, professors and research technicians. This event and exhibition supports the University’s Athena SWAN objectives towards the recruitment, retention and advancement of women in Arts and Science disciplines across the University of Leeds. Anne now works for Arup in London in the Transport Consulting team.  She is mostly involved in Local Authority transport policies and strategies as well as development planning and design advice, with a particular focus on cycling.

Hilary Holden (nee Crowther) Associate Director, Arup

MSc Transport Planning, 1999

Hilary is head of transport consulting in Canada for Arup. Based in Toronto but working across the country, her team of analysts, planners and engineers work with public and private sectors clients to help solve complex and strategic design and planning issues. Her team’s projects have included advising the City of Toronto authorities on transportation master planning, and on the express rail service linking downtown to the international airport. Hilary won a Rees Jeffreys Road Fund bursary to come to ITS in 1998, graduating the following year with distinction. After working for Steer Davies Gleave in Leeds, she moved to Arup to work with Nigel Foster, before taking the leadership of the transport consulting business in Canada.   Read more about Hilary via her profile in the University of Leeds prospectus

Rawia El Rashidy

Rawia El Rashidy completed her PhD in 2014, funded by a White Rose Scholarship.

In 2012 Rawia was a gold medallist in a prestigious European Commission competition which showcases sector-leading work by early career researchers. Competing against 350 entries from across Europe, Rawia was selected for one of six gold medals in the Young European Arena of Research (YEAR) Award.  Commended by the judges for combining  “a rigorous numerical approach with an appreciation of the practical relevance of the result”  the gold medal also led to Rawia’s recognition in in the University of Leeds’  'Women of Achievement 2013' award.  Her research focused on designing a reliable way to measure the resilience of transport networks during and after an unexpected climate change event by using characteristics such as redundancy, reliability and mobility. Read more.

Siti MalkhamahVice Director, Engineering Faculty, University of Gadjah Mada, Indonesia

MSc Transport Planning & Engineering 1999, PhD 1999

Siti is the Vice Director of Post Graduate Programmes in the Engineering Faculty at University of Gadjah Mada (UGM) where she co-ordinates all Masters and PhD programmes in the faculty. She also assists the Ministry of Transport develop human resources within the ministry, including co-operation with international institutions. Siti was instrumental in establishing a dual Masters programme between ITS and UGM, which sees Indonesian students complete the second year of their degree at Leeds.  She also coordinates delegations from the Indonesian Ministry of Transport to visit ITS for short courses.  

Leanne Farrow, Senior Transport Planner, JMP Consultants

MSc Transport Planning, 2006-2007

Leanne was awarded the Chartered Institution of Highways and Transportation (CIHT) Young Professional of the Year for “her invaluable contribution to raising the Institution profile with younger members” in 2012. Leanne has been with JMP Consultants, since graduating from the University of Leeds with an MSc in Transport Planning in 2007.  Leanne has experience in a wide range of areas, but has developed a particular interest and expertise in the development of sustainable transport strategies and in the delivery of behaviour change projects.  In 2008, the Yorkshire & Humberside Branch took the decision to set up a Young Professionals Committee (YPC) with the aims of promoting the CIHT, increasing membership and organising technical events and networking opportunities for its younger branch members.  Since 2008, Leanne has played an active role in the YPC through the roles of both Chairperson and Vice-Chairperson.