Search gets under way to find the South West’s top business leaders

February 10, 2015

Firms in the Bristol area are being urged to enter one of the region’s top award schemes showcasing excellence and enterprise in business.

The prestigious Institute of Directors’ South West Director of the Year Awards 2015 seek to recognise outstanding business people and focus UK-wide attention on success in the region.

Award nominations are open to anyone working at director level in any type of business or organisation – they do not have to be a member of Institute of Directors (IoD).

Categories include:  Family Business, Public Sector, Not for Profit/Third Sector, International, Non-Executive, Corporate Responsibility and Director.  This final award category is open to any size of company, small, medium or large.

A panel of experts will judge the entries and the winners will be announced at a dinner later in the year. Bristol Business News and its sister titles Bath Business News and Swindon Business News are again media partners for these coveted awards.

Last year Chris Smith, managing director of Marshfield Bakery near Bath, was named overall regional Director of the Year. He is pictured receiving his award from IoD regional chair Richard Ayre.

Mr Ayre said: “We had a very high standard of entry last year, reflecting the diverse and successful business landscape across the region.

“These awards are designed to recognise and celebrate the role of business leaders and their contribution to the economy of the South West, whether they be working in the public or private sector.”

Other winners last year included Nick Sturge, who runs Bristol’s Engine Shed tech incubator, Henry Williams of Chipping Sodbury-based Morgan and Lotus car dealer Williams Automobiles, Steve Clarke of Aztec West-based sustainable business consultantcy ecosurety (formerly Budget Pack Environmental), and Helen Lacey, founder of Red Berry Recruitment, which has offices in Shepton Mallet, Taunton, Bridgwater and Yeovil.

Simon Barbato of Mr B and Friends Creative and James Eades, Systemagic, both Bath, were highly commended.

South West winners automatically qualify to go forward to the UK Director Awards in London in the autumn.  The entry form and more details are available by calling 0117 370 7785, emailing, or online at

The deadline for entries is March 31.

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