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Florence makes six

11/08/2021 - Car of The year

The president of Car of the Year jury, Frank Janssen, has written the following introduction of the new jury member:

The Car of the Year jury has reached a milestone. For the 2022 edition of our award I am proud and happy to announce that with Florence Lagarde from France (Autoactu.com) we have reached the number of 6 female members, that is exactly one tenth of the total 60. 10 percent may not sound a lot, but if we consider a male dominated business like the car industry and related branches, it is quite an achievement. When I joined the jury 20 years ago we had already 2 women, Maria Angeles Pujol from Spain and Marianne Sterner from Sweden. Today it is threefold. „I would like to thank the jury for their attention to gender representation“, says Florence Lagarde. “I have been an automotive journalist for over 30 years and I know that women are as comfortable as men in this sector when they enter it. The difficulty is to attract them by showing that the automobile industry is not 'reserved' for men”.

When inviting new members to the Jury of The Car of the Year, we always followed the guideline that competence and maturity are priorities. We are not inviting women for the sake of diversity. But it is a fact that women are interested in cars and that they play a huge role in purchase decisions, underestimated for a long time. And it is a clear fact that women work in this business – maybe it is not that obvious, because sometimes they are not as noisy as men are. We just have to open our eyes a little bit more. The Car of the Year jury has always opened its eyes to find female members. Besides Florence Lagarde, we today have Silvia Baruffaldi from Italy, Ulla Ellmer from Germany, Susanne Hofbauer from Austria, Vicky Parrott from the UK and Helen Xenakis from Greece as members. And maybe some day we will have a female president of the jury.