A high-flying restaurant boss who has helped drive forward an #8 million turnover chain has been named Midlands Businesswoman of the Year.
Dorian Chan (pictured above) – who combines her work with bringing up two young children – began work at a Chinese restaurant in the West Midlands six years ago.
At that time she became personal assistant to the chairman, and the company had one restaurant.
Today, Dorian is vice chairman of the Wing Wah restaurant chain which now has more than 200 employees at four Midland sites. She was named Midlands Business Woman of the Year in a ceremony attended by hundreds of guests at the Hilton Birmingham Metropole near the NEC yesterday.
She oversees all future investment and expansion and has been directly involved from the opening of each restaurant to the company hitting a turnover of #8 million.
The only senior female director at Wing Wah, at the aged of 30 she is also the youngest. Dorian has two children under ten, and devotes herself to balancing between her work and home life.
She said: "We are currently working on two new developments, one of which is a Wolverhampton site later this year.
"It is an exciting time to be working in this industry, and I am honoured to win this award, as it not only recognises the hard work of the staff at Wing Wah, but also acknowledges the contribution that women make to the hospitality sector."
The awards are sponsored by IT services business SCC, The John Lewis Partnership, and lingerie, swimwear and clothing maker Bravissimo.
SCC director and awards panel chairwoman Judy Groves said: "In the male dominated, competitive market of hospitality Dorian Chan has achieved sustained year on year growth and continues to drive the business forward.
Judges said the nominees for Businesswoman of the Year 2006 comprised seven role models. In addition to the overall winner they were:
Avril Palmer-Baunack, chief executive of Insurance Support Services, in Wootton
Stella Christine Dorset, European president and managing director of jewellery manufacturer CPM UK, Birmingham
Jan Rees, director of Foster Care Associates, in Bromsgrove
Anita Patel, managing director of IT training provider FGI Ltd, Warwick
Penny Coates, managing director of Nottingham East Midlands Airport and MAG Regional, Derby
Elaine Clark, managing director of Empower Training Services, Nottingham
Finalists were chosen for outstanding career achievement which made a significant contribution to her company’s financial success.
All proceeds from the event were donated to Skylarks, Vitalise’s Midlands Holiday Centre in Nottingham. In 23 years, the event has raised over #420,000 for Skylarks.