After a record number of nominations in 2016, the award introduced two new categories this year: the Suzy Spirit Inspiration Award, aimed at established PR and comms professionals, and the Suzy Spirit Rising Star Award, aimed at industry newcomers. Nominations were received from across the country, across a broad spectrum of the communications industry, both in-house and agency.
The award was originally launched by Gorkana in partnership with Suzy’s former employer LEWIS, in memory of one of the industry’s brightest young stars, who passed away from bowel cancer in July 2012, aged 31. Now in its fourth year, the award is designed to recognise those who have made a difference to others in the industry and acknowledges individuals of exceptional character, principle and determination.
The finalists for the 2017 Rising Star Award are:
- Connor Mahon, Account Executive, FleishmanHillard Fishburn
- India Smyth, Media Relations Manager, Barclays
- Euan Steedman, Press Officer, BBC
The finalists for the 2017 Inspiration Award are:
- Claire Foster, Deputy Head of News, Directline
- Emma Tweedie, Director, Teacake Tuesday
- Camilla Swain, PR Manager, Girlguiding
- Polly Kennedy, Director, APCO Worldwide
“The judges were very impressed with the quality and dedication of those nominated,” said Sally O’Neill, VP at LEWIS and member of the judging panel. “With the introduction of two awards this year, we have seen those at the start of their career and those with more experience not only inspiring colleagues at work, but also mentoring others and doing amazing things for the community. We’re excited to meet them all in person at the next round.”
The winners of the Suzy Ferguson Spirit Awards 2017 will be announced at a ceremony in London on 17th March.
Last year the award went to Henry Playfoot, Founder of Pitch Doctor and former Strategy Director at Claremont Comms, who was chosen from a shortlist of five. Previous winners include Nicola Green, Director of Comms and Reputation at O2, and Rosie Warin, CEO at Kin&Co.