Founded in 2013, AWUK exists to positively support, represent, celebrate and encourage women in the animation and VFX industries in the UK.

We aim to change the gender landscape by building a vibrant network that facilitates mentoring, knowledge exchange and education resulting in women in fulfilling their potential.

We welcome members from all disciplines of Animation and VFX including, but not limited to: writing, storyboarding, concept art, production, 2D, 3D, stop motion, environments, design, HR, Finance, Marketing, IT, project management and R&D.

Membership is £30 per year and gives you access to networking and workshop events, exclusive discounts and, most importantly, a network of over 1,000 women across the UK.

Page header image by Laura Martin Dominguez

Regional Chapters

Thanks to our volunteers, Animated Women UK now has regional chapters in Scotland and the South West. You can find out more on their pages. If you are interested in brining Animated Women UK to your region, please contact us to find out what's involved.


Anna Gregory | Director

With a very eclectic career in the television and film industry Anna has found her niche in animation. Anna has been a freelance editor, sound designer, camera operator and director. She has had the opportunity of working with directors such as Stanley Kubrick and Sidney Lumet. Principal areas of activity have been TV, including dramas, comedy and documentaries.

Anna has concentrated on wild life documentaries, travelling extensively filming gorillas, Livingston fruit bats, great whites and whale sharks. She has a BAFTA nomination for her work on Beyond The Clouds, a seven part series for Channel 4.

As a keen advocate in promoting women in technical positions Anna is an active BFI academy mentor. She is delighted to be involved with the setup of Animated Women UK and is looking to forward to a new venture concerning South American animation.

Dara McGarry | Co-Chair (Animation)

Dara started her career at Disney Feature Animation in 1997, and over the course of 13 years worked in a variety of departments including Production, Technology and Effects on films such as Dinosaur, Chicken Little, Tangled and Frozen.   But being a bonafide anglophile, she jumped at the chance to move to London in 2010, working as an Artist Manager for DNEG VFX.
A few years later, DNEG opened a Feature Animation division with Dara as the Artist Manager, helping to grow and shape the team from its nascent days of 12 people to a global team of 700.  She now serves as the Operations Manager for DNEG Animation.
A deep desire to support and grow the animation industry in the UK has led Dara on a quest to find and nurture young talent and ensure they have the skills and knowledge to succeed in our industry.

Debra Coleman | Director (Panel & Speaking Engagements)

Debra is an ICF accredited Business and Personal Coach with a proven background in leadership, coaching and mentoring within VFX.

Debra has enjoyed a 25 year career in the Visual Effects Industry, progressing from Runner at Cinesite to Global Head of Compositing at DNEG, compositing on 25+ films and closely overseeing delivery of 100+ projects by hundreds of artists. Along the way, she has been involved with winning 3 Oscars and 3 BAFTAs, worked overseas, been a British Arrows judge, is a proud parent and a vocal advocate for women in VFX/Anim/tech.

With Open Frame Coaching, Debra is delighted to pool her strengths and experience to provide coaching and facilitation for individuals and companies within VFX and Animation.

Debra Wootton | Director (Production)

Debra Wootton founded Webra Multimedia Ltd in 2007 whilst at University, establishing the business at Pinewood Studios in 2008 going on to graduate as a digital animation specialist in 2009 when she was then invited to sit on the board on Alumni for UWL in January 2010.

As well as her philanthropic activities Debra has also gone on to built up a portfolio of businesses; joining Terry Ackland-snow at FDI (Art Direction Training) in 2009 and establishing Webra as a group with Webra Productions, Webra Training and Webra Events joining Webra Multimedia Ltd in 2013.

Helen Piercy | Director (Education)

Helen Piercy is a multidisciplinary filmmaker, award winning children’s author and professional educator. With degrees in Graphic Design (BA Hons) and Animation Direction (MA-The National Film and Television School) Helen began her career working as a freelance animator in London before launching her own business as a filmmaking educator in 2012.
Her passion for supporting young people led her to become a student mentor for Central Saint Martins MA Character Animation Course. In 2016, she joined the BA (Hons) Animation Course at Norwich University of the Arts as a full-time lecturer. Helen completed her Postgraduate Certificate in Learning and Teaching in Higher Education in 2017 and is a fellow of the Higher Education Academy.

Louise Hussey | Co-Chair (VFX)

Louise is an Executive VFX Producer at ILM.  She began her career in TV Post and then into CG Animation. This led to Rushes where she was a VFX Producer for the Film & TV VFX department and in 2013, moved to Double Negative as part of the Senior team that set up the DNEGTV VFX division.

She was Executive Producer for the VFX teams on the BAFTA award-winning 'Metalhead' and Emmy Nominated 'Altered Carbon' and left in June 2018 to move to ILM.

Over the years, a desire to help develop new talent led Louise to the Creative Skillset Animation Council, and she is now on the BAFTA Learning and New Talent Committee, which supports new talent and education initiatives.

Lucy Cooper | Director (Marketing)

Lucy began her career at Scottish Television before a move to London and the world of post production. Her 20 years of experience spans a variety of creative companies across broadcast, film and television post production and physical special effects.  In 2008, she joined VFX software vendor The Foundry, where she spent 8 years as a key member of the team that grew the company from 30 passionate people and £4.6M turnover into a 330+ strong company with a valuation of £200M.

Lucy's passion to engage with the issues facing women in the industry was ignited when she attended Cranfield School of Management’s ‘Women as Leaders’ course, which provided real insight into the realities facing women and challenged attendees to play an active role in instigating change.  Now Managing Director at Union VFX, Lucy leads a great team of Marketing volunteers at AWUK.

Rosemary Klein | Director (Legal & Business Affairs)

Rosemary is a dual qualified English and Canadian lawyer who has worked both in-house and in private practice since 1990 advising various media companies on production, distribution, exploitation and protection issues.

She has developed a specialty in structuring and advising on international treaty coproductions. Previous to her life in the law she was a stage manager and company manager at the Stratford Festival and various regional theatre companies in Canada.

Rosemary is the Director of Television at London's Industry Media Business Affairs consultancy where she advises independent television producers and creators and distributors of all genres of content on their production and media exploitation issues and contracts.

Val Cazalet | Director (Finance)

With 30 years’ experience of working with individuals and companies in many areas of the creative sector, and with a particular interest in film and television, Val has a detailed understanding of the issues her media clients face and always takes a hands-on, practical and proactive approach.

Val works with a range of creative businesses, including AIM-listed companies, SMEs, groups of companies and individuals. She offers advice that is tailored to each client’s specific need and her media experience includes clients in brand design, advertising, events management, production and special effects, internet and technology, PR, radio as well as film and TV.

She is also a board member and treasurer of Women in Film and TV.In her free time, travel is Val’s passion, which she indulges as often as possible.

Advisory Group Chairs

Bimpe Alliu

Bimpe Alliu | Women of Colour Working Group Chair

Bimpe is a Concept Artist at Industrial Light & Magic in London. She started her career in VFX as a Runner before working her way up to the role of Concept Artist, working on films including Avengers: Endgame and Spiderman-Man: Far from Home.

She is passionate about continuing the important discussions surrounding racial diversity in the visual effects and animation industries and has participated in panels for Animated Women UK, Manchester Animation Festival, and podcasts for Access: VFX and Visible in Visuals.

Sueann Rochester

Sueann Rochester | Regional Working Group Chair & Scotland Representative

Driven by a love of all things animated and a need to organise things, Sueann was always destined to be an animation producer. She graduated from Edinburgh College of Art with a degree in Animation and moved into her first production role at Red Kite Animations. With almost 20 years of experience in long form TV production Sueann has worked with clients including Cartoon Network, Disney, the BBC and DC Thomson and produced BAFTA and EMMY nominated shows ‘Dennis & Gnasher’ and ‘Ask Lara’. Her current role as Managing Director of Wild Child Animation is to help shape and grow a world class animation studio in Scotland that produces original IP and 3rd party content. Her goal is to create high quality, story driven animation for all ages.


Lindsay Watson

Lindsay Watson | Founder

Lindsay is a Canadian/British animation producer whose company CANUK Productions focuses on development of IP and co-production of animated children’s series.Lindsay launched Animated Women UK in 2013.
In January 2019, after 6 years of service, Lindsay stepped down from the board of AWUK.
Her drive and passion persuaded the board to get behind the cause and together we have created a vibrant organisation that encourages, promotes, supports and represents women in the UK’s Animation and VFX industries.
Lindsay remains a strong and passionate advocate for diversity and equality and will continue to provide support to AWUK initiatives.


Thanks to:

Alison Doggett
Alison Warner
Amy Backwell
Beth Parker
Georgina Hurcombe
Kate Derrick
Lucy Crewe
Marcia Mihotich
Oana Nechifor
Ria Brown
Zoe Verrier-Stunt
Xenia Moliner-Roldan


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