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Director of the year awards



The 2020 Director of the Year Awards Ceremony was delivered as a virtual event on Wednesday 18 November.  

Click here to watch the ceremony
Are you interested in the 2021 Director of the Year Awards? Full details will be available soon, but in the meantime make sure you register your interest using the button below.

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Chair’s Award for Excellence in Director and Board Practice – Heidi Mottram, CEO Northumbrian Water

Judges’ Special Award – Nicola Chance-Thompson DL, CEO The Piece Hall Trust

Social Value and Sustainability Impact 
Joint winners: William Beer, Tunley Engineering, Wakefield and Clair Challenor-Chadwick, Cause UK, Harrogate 

Family Business       
Winner: Brian Stahelin and Abigail Stahelin-Hall, Stafflex Limited, Huddersfield
Highly commended:
Jonathan Lupton, Econ Engineering Ltd, Ripon
Atul Malhotra, Malhotra Group PLC, Newcastle upon Tyne
Equality, Diversity and Inclusion
Winner: Nitin Shukla, Haven Tyneside, Gateshead
Highly commended:
David Nikolich, ABSTRACT, York
Winner: Martin Port, BigChange Limited, Leeds
Highly commended:
Paul Smith, Touchstone Education, Doncaster
Zandra Moore, Panintelligence, Leeds
Adam Hildreth, Crisp, Leeds
Winner: Ryan Maughan, Avid Technology Ltd, Cramlington
Highly commended:
Adam Hildreth, Crisp, Leeds
Winner: Diane Cheesebrough, V4 UK Holdings, Gateshead
Highly commended:
Nicola Chance-Thompson DL, The Piece Hall Trust, Halifax
Public Sector            
Joint winners: Wallace Sampson, Chief Executive of Harrogate Borough Council and Ben Houchen, Tees Valley Mayor
Winner: Claire Conlaund, The Skills Network, Selby
Highly commended:
Anna Sutton, The Data Shed, Leeds
Kenneth Wood, AA Projects Limited, Leeds
Dawn Carney, Fresh Pastures & School Milk UK, Wakefield
Winner: Bethany Ainsley, OptiMe, Billingham
Third Sector
Winner: Richinda Taylor, EVA Women's Aid Ltd, Redcar
Highly commended:
Charlie Stobbart and Tom Smith, MAP Charity, Leeds
James Cross, Urban Green Newcastle 
Winner: Grant Nicholson, Planet-U Energy, Leeds
Highly commended:
William Beer, Tunley Engineering, Wakefield
Laura Hepburn, Greenology, Middlesbrough


• Simon Walton, managing partner at Berwick Partners/Odgers Berndtson, Leeds and chair of the judging panel

• Dr Joanna Berry, associate professor in entrepreneurship at Durham University Business School

• Jo Barnes, managing director of Hull based Shared Agenda, specialists in estate solutions for the public and private sectors

• Karl Pemberton, managing director, Active Chartered Financial Planners, County Durham, and chair of the IoD’s North East (South) branch.

• Dan Gill, founder of Leeds based catering and event management specialist Dine

• Rachel Hannan, business angel and advisor, Leeds.