Dr Vijay Sharma


Dr. Vijay Sharma pioneered the concept of a national public service radio station targeting the Asian diaspora in Britain within the BBC.

Vijay transformed six hours a day radio programming on the local BBC Radio Leicester targeting the newly arrived Asian Community and the recently  expelled Ugandan Asians in Leicester in the early 1970s, into an award winning national digital radio service the “BBC Asian Network” reaching out to the British Asian diaspora in particular but also across other communities in the United Kingdom and world wide. Significant journalist and on air talent recruitment and development by the Asian Network has produced some of today’s well known personalities, voices, reporters and journalists on UK’s radio and television.

This radio service which was rooted in Leicester, under Vijay’s leadership as Managing Editor and Head of BBC Asian Network saw a number of transformations from a local to regional to semi national (developing partnerships with BBC World Service and other BBC radio local services ) before launching on the BBC’s national digital radio platform.

Vijay is a trained social worker completing her Masters in Social Work from University of Warwick, practicing as a social worker in Nottinghamshire , after undertaking community work at the Foleshill Community Centre, in Coventry.

Vijay was appointed as the first Race Relations Advisor to the Chief Executive of Leicestershire County Council before joining the BBC Radio Leicester as an Education Producer. Her brief was overseeing the development of the Asian, African, Carribbean and Youth programmes, before being promoted to take charge of developing and extending the Asian Programme strand.

During her career, Vijay has undertaken many Non- Executive Directorships and Trustee roles in Health, Higher Education, Regional Government, Probation, the Performing Arts and charities, for example, Gingerbread, advocating rights of single parents and Leicester Theatre Trust - Curve.

Currently, Vijay is Non-Executive Director on East Midlands Ambulance NHS Trust (where she Chairs the Workforce Committee, is also a Board Champion for Freedom to Speak Up matters and Board lead for Equality, Diversity and Inclusion), Vice-Chair and Council Member of University of Leicester (where she a Member the Medical School's, Fitness to Practice Panel)  a Trustee of Rainbows (an East  Midlands children’s Hospice) and a Member of the Board of Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland Community Foundation.

Vijay is a qualified Executive Coach/ Mentor, working particularly, within the Arts, the NHS and other caring professions.

During her whole career, Vijay has championed fairness, equality, diversity, inclusion and dignity and respect and continues to be a passionate advocate. For her pioneering work Vijay has been awarded Honorary Doctorate Degrees by De Montfort and the University of Leicester. In 2018, for her services to broadcasting, Vijay was awarded the Fellowship of the Radio Academy.