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South West

IoD South West Director of the Year Awards 2018 Winners Announced

15 Jun 2018
south west director of the year awards winners

Enterprise and leadership in both the private and public sectors have been recognised in the 2018 Institute of Director South West awards.

This year saw the introduction of a number of new categories, including Innovation, which was won by Dr Anil Ohri, founder and Chief Executive of Regent’s Park Healthcare. Based in Downton, Wiltshire, the company provides managed cardiac care services across 42 NHS hospitals, employing over 300 staff and delivering more than 100,000 cardiology procedures.

He was praised by the judges for demonstrating how disruptive innovation could successfully challenge current healthcare service operating models.

The inaugural New Director award, for directors who have been in the role for less than two years, was awarded to University of the West of England pro Vice Chancellor and Executive Dean of the Faculty of Business and Law Donna Whitehead. Emma Bateman, CEO of Gloucester-based storage and shelving specialists BiGDUG, was Highly Commended.

Donna leads a team of nearly 300 staff and over 6000 students and manages a budget of £55million. She also leads the work on Enterprise across the University. She was singled out for achieving transformational change for the organisation in an impressively short period of time.

Devon businesswomen Alison Jordan and Rebecca Marks were named Public/Third Sector and Family Business Directors respectively.

Alison is CEO of Exmouth-based Pete's Dragons, a bereavement support service for anyone affected by suicide in Devon and Cornwall and founded in 2014 with her family in memory of her younger brother, Pete Wicks, who took his own life in 2010 aged 24. Alison was particularly praised for her clarity of leadership and vision and commitment to delivering a broad range of tailored bereavement support services.

Rebecca is co-founder and MD of global entertainment agency Scarlett Entertainment, founded nearly 10 years ago with her brother Benjamin Marks.  The company, which has its HQ in Newton Abbot, now employs over 50 entertainment specialists and represents 12,000 acts worldwide.

The judges noted her genuine passion for establishing a seriously impressive global customer base of leading brands.

Start Up Director of the Year is Oliver Bruce, founder and managing director of Pinpointmedia in Cheltenham.

Oliver founded the business in 2013 while still at University with a clear vision to produce the highest quality films at cost-effective prices, making film accessible to budgets of all sizes. Since then, the award winning team has created more than 4000 films for brands all across the world.  Judges said his entry showed clear analysis of the market and a strong strategy to gain and retain clients.

It was a highly contested category with David Kirkpatrick of Bristol-based TRIA Recruitment and Gareth Williams, founder of Yellow Dog, which helps businesses access large amounts of computer processing resources, also based in Bristol, Highly Commended.

The Corporate Responsibility Award was awarded to Rob Vivian, CEO of telecoms provider Pure Comms, based in Bristol and Cornwall.  A previous finalist in another category, Rob was recognised for his consistent commitment to CSR from both an employee and community perspective. Rob is a business ambassador for North Somerset Council and also works with North Somerset Enterprise Agency to support up and coming business people.  

There were a total of 14 shortlisted directors from across the region at the event that took place at Sandy Park Stadium, near Exeter.  It was sponsored by accountants Bishop Fleming who have offices throughout the South West, including Bristol, Exeter and Bath, Plymouth, Torquay, Truro and Worcester.

Guest speaker was Roy Kinnear, CCO of SW-based airline Flybe.

Regional chair and chartered director Nick said: "The South West has a well-deserved reputation for creativity, leadership and entrepreneurship. The diversity of awards this year served to demonstrate just this. We had a record number of entries this year so to be even shortlisted was an achievement. I want to congratulate not just our winners but our runners up too."

All the winners from these awards will now go forward for a chance to represent the South West at the IoD National Director of the Year Awards in the autumn.

The judging panel was made up of the IoD South West Chairs and sponsor's representatives.

Notes to Editors

The Institute of Directors (IoD) was founded in 1903 and within three years was awarded a Royal Charter to support, represent and set standards for business leaders nationwide.

We encourage entrepreneurial activity and promote responsible business practice for the benefit of our 30,000 plus members and the business community as a whole.

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