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Novlette Balela OBE

Equality Diversity and Inclusion Lead, The Growth Company

Novlette joined the Growth Company in 2021 as Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Lead. Her previous roles include Chief Executive of Sporting Equals For 10 years where she led and directed the business to raise the profile of racial inequality in sport in the UK to become a Gold Standard winner at the British Diversity Awards in 2002.

Prior to joining Sporting Equals, Novlette spent 13 years working for Sheffield City Council across several departments as she began to progress her career in the NHS and in a number of voluntary sector organisations. Novlette is a professionally qualified trainer and was a consultant for the Central Council for Education and Training in Social Work (CCETSW) for social work qualifications. 

In 2007 Novlette was awarded an OBE and an Honorary Doctorate from Sheffield Hallam University for Services to Diversity in Sport. Novlette has been appointed on several Boards locally, regionally and nationally where her expertise around the equality, diversity and inclusion agenda has been invaluable. 

In 2005, Novlette was nominated for Woman of the Year at the 2005 GG2 Leadership & Diversity Awards. In August 2006, she won the Physical Activity & Sports Category at the first ever Council of Black Led Churches (CBLC) Black Achievement Showcase Awards.