top of page


Updated: Jun 27

Philippa Clothier on International Women's Day

Philippa Clothier, a Newcastle born and bred businesswoman has been in the PR & Marketing industry for over 40 years. For International Women’s Day 2024, she sat down to reflect on her time as Managing Director of Clothier Lacey & Co., which celebrates its 25th year in business. 

After embarking on her career in marketing at Procter and Gamble learning the ‘tricks of the trade,’ Philippa moved on to her next role at a local advertising agency. Following a brief pause from working to take care of her two young children, the advertising agency she was working at decided to relocate from Jesmond to Washington. Faced with the prospect of daily commutes and the challenges of balancing work and motherhood, Philippa entered a pivotal time in her career, in which she decided to do “exactly what you wouldn’t advise anyone to do” and set up her own agency without any plan. This bold move is a testament to Philippa’s resilience and foresight and marked the establishment of what we now know as CLC. 

Philippa confessed that she has worked in the industry for an “awfully long time,” with the recent re-discovery of her award for ‘Woman of Outstanding Achievement 1991’. 

Coincidentally, Philippa was awarded this International Women’s Day of the same year, exemplifying her years of experience and dedication to her career. 

The re-discovery of the award led Philippa to give thought to her time in the business. At a stage where she self-admittedly “should be working fewer hours each week,” Philippa has “no intention of halting her career any time soon”, which can be accredited to the variety of tasks and the pleasure she derives from her career. Philippa stresses the importance of learning new things even as you get older, with many people’s university degree signalling the end of their education. She articulates that “every day is different” and “a school day” in the world of marketing & PR. 

CLC’s work culture mirrors her own values. Leadership for her means to lead by example, with Philippa stating, “we don’t have hierarchy in the company, everyone just pulls together and it’s good fun.” This is a clear indication of her philosophy towards work – everyone is equally important, and every day is an opportunity to contribute, learn and most importantly enjoy what you do. “I never think in the morning when I get out of bed, 'Oh, I don’t really want to do this today.' I always think, 'Oh, what new things will today have in store?'” Maintaining this eagerness to work alongside promoting equality and teamwork is what makes CLC. 

Reflecting on her accomplishments, Philippa beams that the achievements of her family, notably her daughters - Zoe, who is heading up CLC’s Land and New Homes division, and Sophie, who welcomed twins, Freddie and Pinky, into the world just two years ago (making Philippa a very proud granny) - are a source of profound joy.  

On the business front, Philippa depicts survival as a key measure of success. “It's been a really tough business environment in the past few years, particularly in our industry. People have to feel confident about embarking on a PR or marketing campaign. They are often a bit loath to start spending money, and often company accountants or whoever is in charge of the purse strings will be the first to say, ‘we’ll do the marketing ourselves,’ which is a decision that rarely works out well.” Navigating these downturns requires resilience and commitment. 

Inspiration for Philippa doesn’t come from any single individual but rather from the traits she admires - “hardworking, open, honest, sociable and modest people.”  Her advice to others, drawn from her own ‘home-spun philosophy,’ emphasises the importance of recognising and building upon one’s strengths. “Stick to the knitting,” she advises, “speculating a lot of time and money to expand into a totally different market when you don’t have a track record in it isn’t always a wise move. Recognise and build on what you are good at – make the most of it.”  

Philippa is a great believer that there is “no secret to success” and that hard work is integral to achievement. She is more than happy to be the last one in the office, and when working from home she has found herself continuing to work later than 11pm. 

Philippa's counsel to women looking to obtain a leadership role is unequivocal: “Never underestimate yourself, if you're prepared to put the hours in there really is nothing you can’t do.” She believes you have to be a certain type of person to come into the world of marketing & PR, “If you want to succeed in this industry, you’ve got to enjoy talking to people and always be interested in their stories. If someone asks you to do something you haven’t done before don’t say ‘oh I don’t think I can do that,’ you’ve got to say I will give it my very best shot. We learn from adversity, really.” 

Philippa’s advice, rooted in hard work, resilience, and the courage to seize opportunities resonates deeply with the principles of International Women’s Day, and the pursuit of equality, recognition and empowerment across all sectors at the heart.


As we reflect on the narratives shared and the wisdom imparted by successful female leaders like Philippa, let us carry forward the spirit of International Women’s Day in our daily actions, committing to foster environments where diverse talents are celebrated, and learning is continuous. 

International Women's Day logo 2024

If it’s time to infuse your brand with the same passion and expertise that has led Clothier Lacey & Co. to success, reach out to Philippa at to explore how your brand can benefit. Whether it’s a brand image refresh, compelling marketing campaign launch or an aim to make headlines with standout PR strategies - CLC can help you to navigate your brand’s success story.  


bottom of page