Three women, three stories – meet some of the women working in the Police Commissioner’s Office
March 8th, 2023
TO MARK International Women’s Day, we are sharing the stories of some of the women who work for the Police and Crime Commissioner in Cambridgeshire and Peterborough.
From their thoughts on female empowerment to what inspires them to do the jobs they do – meet Ella, Catherine and Cristina.
Ella Hayward – Senior Partnership Policy Officer
Ella Hayward was brought up listening to Radio 4’s Woman’s Hour programme. The empowerment of women and feminist issues gripped her interest from an early age and so it came as nothing of a surprise to her family when she decided to study feminist topics more formally at university.
After completing a BA degree in Geography from the University of Southampton, she went on to study a MPhil in Multi-Disciplinary Gender Studies at the University of Cambridge. During the course, she conducted research on the commercial sex industry and explored a range of theoretical feminist approaches and responses to sex working.
As a seasoned globetrotter, Ella has put her views on female empowerment and self-confidence into practice, visiting 66 countries – and still counting! She has enjoyed two career breaks to go on extended travelling trips; the first, a 500-day worldwide backpacking adventure across Southeast Asia, Oceania, Central America and South America with her partner Ben, and the second, a three-month trip across Eastern and Southern Africa. Among her many ‘bucket list’ experiences are watching an active volcano erupt all night in Guatemala, skydiving and bungee jumping in New Zealand and doorless helicopter rides over Rio de Janeiro. Such escapades have helped her develop into the confident and motivated person she is today.
Now, as the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner’s Senior Partnership Policy Officer, Ella contributes to the delivery and development of the Commissioner’s Police and Crime Plan and legal responsibilities, providing oversight across a broad range of key policy areas.
Whether gorilla trekking in Uganda or camping aloft a dormant volcano, Ella believes adventure is the ‘spice’ of life.
A Spice Girl ‘to the core’, Ella says International Women’s Day should serve as a powerful reminder for women to embrace change and always push themselves to try new experiences.
Catherine Kimberley – Communications & Engagement Manager
As a communications specialist, Catherine Kimberley understands how important it is that women not only use their voice but are heard. Having the confidence to instigate change and fight injustice are attributes that have impacted Catherine’s work both professionally and personally.
As a mother, Catherine has fought long and hard alongside her husband Martin to secure her son Jack the support and resources he needs to live his best life. Jack, 22, was born with quadriplegic cerebral palsy and epilepsy and requires full-time care. As well as advocating to improve his care and opportunities so he can lead a full life, she has also worked hard to help other young people living with disabilities through fundraising efforts.
Catherine successfully balances her family and professional life thanks to flexible hours that allow her to provide care for Jack, who is at college, and also support her youngest son Dylan, 20, an apprentice accountant.
Originally from County Durham, Catherine studied English Literature and Spanish at Anglia Ruskin University (formerly Cambridge College of Arts & Technology).
She began her career in marketing at Cambridge University Press and then moved on to become PR & Events Manager at Cambridge University Development Office. She then joined the Central Office of Information (COI) – the former government agency responsible for communicating government policy and campaigns in the regions. Here she was appointed Regional PR Manager (East of England) providing support to a number of Whitehall departments including the Home Office, Cabinet Office, Health and Safety Executive and Highways Agency.
In 2011, Catherine moved to the Big Lottery Fund as a Regional Outreach Manager supporting local and national charities to successfully tell their own stories.
After a brief spell as a freelance communications consultant, Catherine joined the OPCC as a Communications Officer in 2015 before being promoted to Communications and Engagement Manager working within the OPCC’s management team.
Catherine ensures the work of the Commissioner is effectively communicated internally to staff and externally to the public and partners. She also ensures that the OPCC’s policies and projects are in line with the views and needs of Cambridgeshire and Peterborough’s diverse communities.
Catherine takes great pride in bringing up sons who are respectful and supportive of women. She sees International Women’s Day as an opportunity for both men and women to recognise their role and responsibilities in creating a future where women are treated equally and can live free of discrimination, bias and violence.
Cristina Turner – Director for Strategic Partnerships
Strong and confident female role models inspired Cristina to aim high from an early age. Throughout her childhood and adult life, she has benefitted from the support, encouragement and positive example of female members of her family and those she has encountered in her professional life.
Her career began in London as a Policy Officer at the Home Office. From here, she progressed through a range of roles across a broad range of the Home Office’s responsibilities, and often working closely with Ministers and senior civil servants. This included an exciting time working in Parliament to take some new legislation through into law.
After years of living the city life, Cristina decided to relocate to Cambridgeshire to put down her roots and took up a secondment opportunity at the East of England Development Agency. From here, she moved over to the former Cambridgeshire Police Authority in 2012 and became instrumental in the development of the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner (OPCC).
Cristina initially took on the role as Policy and Performance Manager and hasn’t looked back. Now as Director for Strategic Partnerships and a member of the OPCC’s Senior Management Team, she supports the delivery and development of the Commissioner’s Police and Crime Plan and other legal responsibilities associated with the Commissioner’s role. Her role includes working with a broad range of strategic partner agencies who contribute to reducing crime and disorder in Cambridgeshire.
As a mother, she juggles family life with her professional duties and works hard to maintain a healthy balance. She says a flexible working pattern and supportive working environment have been vital for ensuring she can continue to reconcile her work and caring responsibilities and progress her career.
Cristina says International Women’s Day highlights the power of strong female role models in society who represent what is possible and within reach and provide the motivation for other women to succeed and achieve their ambitions.