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House of Commons Launch Awards For Celebrating Inspirational Achievers

A prestigious event at London’s House of Commons this week marked the launch of a national awards campaign to celebrate some the country’s most inspirational female achievers.

The sixth – and biggest - Ladies First Professional Development Awards, will highlight success stories as well as raise funds for The Giles Trust Brain Tumour Fund at its awards ceremony in the summer. The Awards are headed up by Ladies First directors Tracey McAtamney from Balsall Common and Karen Massey from Leamington.

A host of new categories are among the 20 being contested this year, including Sustainable Business Leader, Trailblazer of the Year and Inclusivity Leadership Award.

The gongs also honour, among others, Start-up of the Year, Excellence In Technology and Innovation, Excellence In Health and Wellbeing, Charity/Community Champion, Campaign of the Year, Family Business of the Year, Business Resilience Award and Business Woman of the Year, as well as seeing the return of the popular men’s category, Man of the Year.

Guests at the launch event, heard from host and speaker Colleen Fletcher, Coventry’s first female MP for 36 years – and last year’s recipient of The Ladies First Lifetime Achievement Award.

Colleen served on Coventry City Council for 13 years from 1992 and as an MP for nine years. She is also Vice Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Groups on Blood Cancer; Cancer; Homelessness; Mental Health; and Pancreatic Cancer, causes close to her heart.

Recently announcing her intention to step down from Westminster at the next general election, she said:

“I think awards are very important. They make people feel valued and it’s important that as many people as possible hear these women’s stories.”

This year’s awards are also supporting The Giles Trust Brain Tumour Fund, funded in 2015 by former England cricketer Ashley Giles MBE and his wife Stine, who was diagnosed with three brain tumours over 12 years. The charity raises funds for research, pioneering equipment and support for patients.

The awards are sponsored by Janine Edwards Wealth Management in Berkswell and Midlands-based recruitment agency Pertemps and headed up by Ladies First’s Tracey McAtamney and her newly-appointed co-director, Karen Massey.

Tracey has herself been recognised nationally for her work with the networking group as well as her charity The Surviving Bereavement Foundation, which provides practical and emotional support for those coping with loss. Tracey said:

“Every year we look forward to championing women who deserve recognition but who don’t go looking for the spotlight, so we want to shine it on them."

"This year’s awards are going to be the Ladies First’s biggest and brightest celebration of these women yet and we’re incredibly excited to be partnering with such amazing individuals such as Colleen and Stine, who set the tone perfectly at the launch day, along with the incredible setting of The House of Commons.”

Finalists will be invited to an independent judging day at Mallory Court in Leamington on April 8th before the glittering awards night at IXL Dallas Burston Polo Club on June 13th.

Closing date for nominations is March 12th. For further information about how to nominate, visit:


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