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Northern Ireland

IoD NI Reveals 2021 Director of the Year Awards Shortlist

28 Oct 2021

IoD NI has revealed the finalists for the Northern Ireland Director of the Year Awards, with a shortlist featuring business leaders representing a wide spectrum of organisations and sectors within Northern Ireland.

Winners of the prestigious awards, sponsored by AIB, will be announced during a ceremony at The Merchant Hotel, Belfast on Thursday 2nd December.
Gordon Milligan, Chairman, IoD NI commented:
“Each year we look forward to the Director of the Year Awards and the opportunity to recognise and celebrate Northern Ireland’s most dynamic and successful business leaders from across all industries and sectors.

“As we look ahead to post-pandemic economic recovery, it is wonderful to see so many high-calibre finalists, who are making a real and positive contribution towards Northern Ireland’s growth and development, named on the 2021 shortlist. 

“These pragmatic and forward-thinking directors demonstrated admirable organisational leadership throughout a sometimes daunting and uncertain situation, and they should all be immensely proud of what they have achieved. 

“Huge congratulations go to all those who have made the shortlist and best wishes to everyone for the final.”

This year’s finalists are:

1. Director of the Year - Non-Executive – sponsored by Deloitte
• Alex Lee - Fscom
• Ellvena Graham - ICC Belfast
• Noel Brady – Continu

2. Director of the Year - Agility and Resilience – sponsored by Schroders Personal Wealth
• Gina McIntyre - SEUPB
• Kieran Kennedy - O'Neills
• Stephen Henderson - Ruach Music Ltd
3. Director of the Year - Innovation – sponsored by KPMG
• Brendan Digney - Machine Eye Technology 
• Darragh McArt - Sonrai Analytics 
• David Henderson - Tobermore
• Paul Murnaghan - BT
• Roisin Molloy - TriMedika 
• Rorie McBride - Mount Charles Group
4. Director of the Year - Young – sponsored by Carson McDowell
• Ben Stocks - Leckey Design
• Chris Gray – Gray’s Communications 
• Jonathan Sinclair - HighRoads
• Katie Matthews - GEN UK
5. Director of the Year - Public Sector – sponsored by Capita Technology Solutions
• Donna O'Connor - NIFRS 
• John D'Arcy - The Open University
• Peter Wilson - BSO 
• Roger Wilson – Armagh Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council

6. Director of the Year - Third Sector – sponsored by Capita Technology Solutions
• Cara Cash-Marley - Groundwork NI
• Colin Jess - Social Enterprise NI
• Heather Weir - NI Hospice
• Kerry Anthony - Inspire Wellbeing
7. Director of the Year - Family Business – sponsored by BDO Northern Ireland
• Bill Wolsey - Beannchor Group
• Gavin Annon - Mount Charles Group 
• Kevin McNamee - Denroy Group 
• Louise Skeath - SDG
8. Director of the Year - International – sponsored by Invest Northern Ireland
• Paul McKernan - StatSports 
• Rodney Lowry - Lowe Rental 
• Stephen Henderson - Ruach Music Ltd
• Ursula Lavery - Moy Park
9. Director of the Year - Small to Medium Business - sponsored by Ulster University Business School
• Amanda Campbell - Envision Intelligent Solutions
• Dr Scott King - Pinnacle 
• Gareth Loye - M&M Contractors
• Louise Skeath - SDG
10. Director of the Year - Large Business – sponsored by ABL Group
      • Donna O'Connor - NIFRS
• Donna Parker - Staffline NI
• Ian McConnell- PwC Operate
• Leigh Meyer – Citi

The recipients of the prestigious award for Philanthropist of the Year – sponsored by Community Foundation Northern Ireland, along with the Chairman’s Award for Excellence in Director and Board Practice - sponsored by AIB, will also be revealed during the ceremony. 
Orla McGerr, Head of Direct, NI, AIB added:
“This year’s shortlist makes for a very impressive read, and all of the 2021 award finalists should be very proud.

“Northern Ireland’s business leaders have exhibited remarkable resilience and experienced notable successes despite the current political and economic climate. 

“This commitment to promoting better business and economic growth should be recognised, and the Director of the Year Awards provide us with the opportunity to do just that.  

“I would like to extend my congratulations to all those named on this year’s shortlist and look forward to celebrating our outstanding directors making an impact on a local, national and global level.” 

For further information, or to book spaces at the Northern Ireland Director of the Year Awards ceremony, contact

For more information, please contact the IoD NI Office on: 

028 9694 6209


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