Stephanie Shirley

Updated: 11/16/2019 by Computer Hope
Stephanie Shirley

Name: Dame Vera Stephanie "Steve" Shirley

Born: September 16, 1933, in Dortmund, Germany

Computer-related contributions

  • British businesswoman and philanthropist best known for founding the software company F.I. Group (later Xansa, eventually acquired by Steria) in 1962.
  • She was concerned with creating work opportunities for women with dependents, and employed only women until the Sex Discrimination Act 1975 made that illegal.
  • Adopted the name "Steve" to help her in the male-dominated business world.
  • President of the British Computer Society from 1989 to 1990.

Honors and awards

  • Assessed as one of the 100 most powerful women in the United Kingdom by Woman's Hour on BBC Radio 4 (2013).
  • Appointed by Prime Minister as first Ambassador for Philanthropy (2009).
  • Received the Beacon Fellowship Prize for her contribution to countering autism and for her pioneering work in harnessing information technology for the public good (2003).
  • Promoted DBE (Dame Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire) (2000).
  • Received the Mountbatten Medal (1999).
  • Gained the Freedom of the City of London (1987).
  • Awarded a Recognition of Information Technology Award (1985).
  • Appointed Officer of the OBE (Order of the British Empire) (1980).

Significant publications