JAHAMA Highland Estates in Scotland has made two new female appointments to its estate management team as it continues to lead the way in promoting a diverse and responsible approach to land management.
Anastasia Young, 22, has joined JAHAMA as Estates Surveyor. Hailing from the village of Laggan at the northern end of the Estates, Anastasia studied Rural Business Management at SRUC Aberdeen and has moved from a regional rural chartered surveying firm in the Scottish Borders.
Anastasia’s appointment challenges the typical demographic of a chartered surveyor – only 16% in the UK are female – while also representing an emerging, modern breed of Scottish rural estate professionals. In the rural profession, women now make up 35% of qualified chartered surveyors while 61% of newly qualified entrants to the sector are female.
In addition to her role, JAHAMA Highland Estates will support Anastasia in her final year of training ahead of her RICS exams.
Anastasia’s arrival coincides with the new role of Estates Support Specialist filled by Helen Polley, who has lived in Lochaber for more than 15 years and has a wealth of estate management experience from her previous role with Bidwells. Helen previously qualified as a paralegal while working for a Fort William firm of solicitors and is well placed to provide the team with a range of advice and support.
The appointments are a welcome boost to the business as it prepares for a busy year, including the publication of its first-ever natural capital valuation report, the potential return of recreation and tourism activities following the Covid-19 pandemic, and participation at COP26 in Glasgow as part of parent organisation GFG Alliance.
The appointments also emphasise JAHAMA’s commitment to hiring a young and diverse workforce with ties to the local area, breaking down the typical barriers women currently face in a male-dominated sector.
Last year, JAHAMA appointed Highlands-born Chloe Malcolm, 25, as farm manager of its 12,000 acre upland farming enterprise, one of Scotland’s largest hill farming operations.
Chief Operating Officer, Julia Stoddart, also bucked the trend with her appointment in late 2019, taking up management of the 114,000 acre estate in a role that has traditionally been the preserve of men.