THE Isle of Man Newspapers Awards for Excellence 2011, in association with RBS International, got off to a flying start with a breakfast launch at the Sefton Hotel, attended by the Chief Minister and all the main sponsors.
This year, the awards night will take place on November 17 with comedian Marcus Brigstocke the compere.
The purpose of the launch event was for each of the sponsors to be allocated an award category.
Isle of Man Newspapers deputy chairman Trudi Williamson introduced the launch, explaining that the idea for the Awards for Excellence was formed in 2005 and grew out of the Freedom to Flourish initiative:
‘We are not always good, on the Isle of Man, at singing our own praises and, since we launched the awards, life has become more challenging for all of us. But it is always worth recognising achievement in our community, perhaps even more so when times are hard.’
She added that the Awards are unique in that they recognise both the public and the private sector on the island. There are also awards for charity and community involvement.
This year there are three new sponsors: Boston Limited, ManSat and Baker Tilly.
The Isle of Man’s Chief Minister, Tony Brown MHK, speaking to the sponsors, said that the awards night had become firmly established as one of the highlights of the Manx year.
He praised the professionalism of the event.
‘It is a great credit to Trudi and all the team,’ he said, adding: ‘But it’s much more than a good night out. The Awards for Excellence are an expression of so much that it is important and special about our island and our way of life.
‘They recognise success across the whole community, from small local enterprises to international businesses, and in the public and voluntary sectors as well as the private.
‘They reflect the team spirit that exists across the community, our commitment to social inclusion and the desire for everyone to share in the success of the island.
‘The Awards are a showcase for the innovation, enterprise and professionalism that has given the island such a dynamic economy, recognised and respected around the world.
‘When we are going through really quite challenging times for everybody I think it’s important to provide a little bit of enjoyment and joy for the people who work for us.
‘It is important to recognise the people who do a lot in our community.’
Although other sponsors have been allocated different award categories each year, Isle of Man Government has sponsored the Freedom to Flourish Award every year since the awards began and this year is no exception.
Mr Brown paid tribute to all the sponsors involved in the event, saying: ‘Most important of all are the sponsors, who continue to support the Awards in more challenging times.
‘I would say that a communal expression of our national spirit is even more valuable when circumstances are challenging, and I thank the sponsors for their vision in recognising that.’
Among the sponsors is Celton Manx, who are sponsoring the International Business of the Year Award.
Executive director Bill Mummery commented: ‘We’re delighted to be sponsoring this award because it reflects the global nature of our own business.’
The award for People Management and Development is sponsored by Tynwald Mills, whose managing director Stephen Bradley said: ‘This is an ideal award for us to be associated with because I believe that the development of people is at the very heart of an organisation’s excellence.’
Rose Dahlan from Sure said: ‘The Young Achiever of the Year is such a good award for us to be sponsoring because we try and support the community with events like the TT and providing facilities such as the bowling alley and one of the areas we particularly like to support is the younger generation.
We have already been involved in the past in achievement awards in local schools and this is in line with what we value in the community.’
The Chief Minister concluded his introduction by recognising all those involved.
He said: ‘As Chief Minister of the Isle of Man – and with thanks again to the organisers, supporters and sponsors of this marvellous event – I am pleased to launch the Awards for Excellence for another year, confident that the success of the Awards is a reflection of the success of the island.’
Bill Shimmins, island head for RBS International, long-standing sponsors of the Awards for Excellence, commented: ‘The Awards for Excellence are an important celebration of the innovation, commitment and enthusiasm that is evident across all sectors of the Isle of Man economy.
‘RBS International has sponsored the awards since their inception in 2006 and it has been a privilege to be involved with such an inspiring event.
‘There are so many successful stories, both of a business and personal nature, to be told across the island and
‘I urge members of the community to enter this year’s awards so we can recognise and reward the businesses and individuals that make a difference.’
Categories and Sponsors
Business Person of the Year – Baker Tilly
Charity, Cultural and Social Enterprise – Britannia International
Company of the Year – Thomas Miller
Customer Service – Conister Bank
Excellence in use of Technology – Domicilium (IOM) Ltd.
Freedom to Flourish – Isle of Man Government
Innovation and Independent Thinking – RBS Coutts
International Business of the Year – Celton Manx
Marketing and PR Effectiveness – ManSat
Small Medium Enterprise of the Year – Collins Stewart
People Management and Development – Tynwald Mills
Public Sector Achievement of the Year – Bridson & Horrox
Teamwork – Isle of Man Bank
Volunteer of the Year – Boston Limited
Young Achiever of the Year – Sure