THE BLOG

Why We Must Celebrate Truly Inspirational Women

03/09/2014 15:07 BST | Updated 03/11/2014 10:59 GMT

There are, I'll admit, a seemingly endless rosta of awards ceremonies out there. But this one is different. I know - I would say that! But really, it is.

Tonight's Red Women of the Year Awards celebrate inspiring women from all walks of life. In association with Clinique, and hosted by Lauren Laverne, they are designed not to reward women for turning up on the red carpet in a short dress (although some of them might), but as a celebration of inspirational women lauded not for their celebrity, but for their medical breakthroughs, their charity campaigns and their creative successes that all contribute to making the world a better place.

The awards - and we encourage our readers to nominate themselves and tell us about their achievements - recognise that too often, women stay silent when it comes to self-promotion, while their male colleagues have no such problems. And we all have a responsibility to shout about their success more loudly.

Last year we rewarded the likes of Chloe Macintosh, co-founder and creative director of Made.com for her vision, championing designers instead of undercutting them. The truly talented Laura Mvula was named our creative Woman of the Year for being an original talent who didn't fit any mould and for acting as a brilliant ambassador for Britain. Jack Monroe, meanwhile, writer of the A Girl Named Jack blog won the Blogger award for her role in providing valuable insight into the realities of living on the breadline, sharing her smart cost-friendly recipes and using her newly found voice as a platform to make a social difference.

This year's event is even bigger. And without giving away too much about the winners, I can say that our 2014 Red Women of the Year are all outstanding examples of women making a real difference.

I was a fly on the wall at judging day, and, along with award-winning journalist Kirsty Wark, Labour MP Rachel Reeves and The Telegraph's fashion editor Lisa Armstrong, I was stunned at the sheer calibre of shortlisted candidates.

Sophie Turner Laing, Managing Director Content at BSkyB, was so impressed, she announced that she was giving the entire shortlist of names to her news teams because "we need more women like this on TV". I couldn't agree more.

Whilst we do, of course, encourage a few men to celebrate tonight's brilliant winners (Ronnie Wood and Marc Newson, we'll see you later), it's no surprise that Red's 200-strong guest list tonight is dominated by a rollcall of awesome women.

Award presenters include Miriam Gonzalez Durantez, Caitlin Moran, Livia Firth and Kelly Hoppen. ITV's Susanna Reid, a previous Red Women of the Year judge, is having a night out before her Good Morning Britain early alarm call, and Bianca Jagger is making a rare appearance, so inspired is she by our Community/Charity winners. Even Downing Street is involved, with Samantha Cameron hosting an afternoon tea tomorrow for all of Red's winners.

So tonight, as guests gather for the Taittinger Champagne reception at Ham Yard Hotel, there will be a lot of brilliant women in one room. Scientists will clink Champagne glasses with fashion entrepreneurs, and digital pioneers will mingle with charity campaigners, while activists swap stories with creatives. But our passion for celebrating some of this country's finest and brightest women is not enough. We all need to shout loudly about them because there can never be too many outstanding female role models in the world.

You can follow us on the night @RedMagDaily, #RedWomenoftheYear, and catch up with all of the evening's news at Redonline.co.uk .