The ninth Public Affairs News Awards took place on 14 November at 8 Northumberland Avenue in a glamorous ceremony hosted by Daily Mirror Associate Editor Kevin Maguire. An 18 person judging panel, including PubAffairs Director Phil Murphy, oversaw a large number of nominees for 16 categories, the winners all being announced on the evening.
The awards aimed to acknowledge the best from all sectors of the Public Affairs industry and as such included new categories “aimed at recognizing the increasingly important contribution made by in-house public affairs professionals”.
PLMR were voted as Consultancy of the Year, the judges commented that they have “had an exceptional year of growth and client delivery, including securing £100 million investment in Tech City and changing the direction of policy around food redistribution.” PLMR pipped Bellenden and Open Road to receive the award.
The Best Agency to Work For award saw APCO chosen ahead of Connect Communications and MHP Communications. The agency were commended for their outstanding training opportunities and the ‘APCO Gives Back’ programme which offers employees the chance to give back to the community. The Best In-House Team to Work For, introduced to mirror the Best Agency award, was won by UK Chamber of Shipping; the voice for the UK shipping industry with around 140 members.
Emily Wallace of Connect Communications was voted Consultant of the Year, the judges commenting that “her insight and analysis is always geared to adding value to her client’s objectives”. Rebecca Parsons, Visa Europe’s sole public affairs professional in the UK, won In-House Professional of the Year having established Visa Europe’s public affairs function three years ago.
The late Peter Childs was remembered for his enormous impact on the Public Affairs industry with the Oustanding Contribution award, his wife Vanessa was present to collect the award amidst a standing ovation.
Two categories voted for by guests on the night were Party Conference Stand and Party Conference Event or Activity. Guide Dogs were rewarded for their golf themed stand at conference and Connect Communications for their impressive effort to cycle to Brighton for the Labour conference, led by Chief Executive Gill Morris and Business Director Laura Blake on a tandem!
See below for a list of the 2013 winners:
- Rising Star: Iana Vidal (Public Affairs Officer, Anthony Nolan)
- Trade Body: Federation of Master Builders
- Agency Campaign: Fishburn Hedges (Working Together to Secure the West Coast)
- In-House Campaign: Mash the Beer Tax
- Voluntary Sector Campaign: Intern Aware (The Campaign for Fair Interships)
- Best Use of Social Media: Homecoming
- Outstanding Contribution: Peter Childs
- Public Affairs Parternship: WM Morrison Supermarkets plc & the National Farmers Union
- In-House Team of the Year: Guide Dogs
- Best Agency to Work For: APCO Worldwide
- Party Conference Stand: Guide Dogs
- Party Conference Event or Activity: Connect Communications
- In-House Professional of the Year: Rebecca Parsons (Public Affairs, Visa Europe)
- Consultant of the Year: Emily Wallace (Director, Connect Communications)
- Best In-House Team to Work For: UK Chamber of Shipping
- Consultancy of the Year: PLMR
You can see the full list of winners along with some judges’ comments on the Public Affairs News Awards website.