IoD Scotland revealed six national winners from Edinburgh at its Director of the Year Awards 2021 at a live online ceremony hosted by Shereen Nanjiani on Thursday night.

Winners from the Edinburgh and Lothians region include:

·       Viana Maya, Founder and CEO of pRESPECT / pRESPECT HUB CIC, who was named IoD Scotland Director of the Year – Innovation.The Judging Panel liked Viana’s initiative, tackling employability in minority ethnic and refugee communities and applauded her clear emphasis on ethics and strong organisational values so that people feel empowered to reach their true potential. The panel commented on Viana’s excellent skills and that she is not afraid to try new initiatives.

·       Simon Poole, Owner and Managing Director of Jerba Campervans Ltd, who was named as IoD Scotland Director of the Year – Small-Medium Business. Simon won the award for his leadership on high quality customer service and championing high levels of employee wellbeing, including overseeing the business being the first UK automotive business to achieve the Good Business Charter and sign up to the Fair Tax Mark. Simon also won the Regional Director of the Year award for Edinburgh and Lothians. 

·       Dr John Scally, previously National Library of Scotland was named as the IoD Scotland Director of the Year – Public Sector.The judging panel was impressed by the breadth and depth of the work that John led at the National Library of Scotland during his tenure – especially related to equality and diversity, such as acknowledging Scotland’s links to colonialism where he demonstrated real leadership in this area so that others could learn.

·       Sara Roberts, Founder of Healthy Nibbles, was awarded IoD Scotland Director of the Year – Sustainability. The judges remarked that Sara is demonstrating true entrepreneurial spirit with an authentic focus on sustainability.

·       Kathryn Strachan, Managing Director at Copy House Ltd, was named as IoD Scotland Director of the Year – Young. She received the award for her ability as an innovative and inspirational leader, with a clear growth agenda for the organisation which has led to impressive financial results. The judging panel loved her commitment to people shown through, for example, paying potential employees for their consultancy. And Linda Fyffe-Jardine the CEO of Edinburgh Dog and Cat Home was highly commended.

·       Alastair Davis, CEO of Social Investment Scotland, was named SCVO Director of the Year – Third Sector. Alastair’s leadership has been key to the success and growth of SIS. He has been instrumental in inspiring stakeholders, partners and investors to support the delivery of demonstrable impact across the Third Sector.

The awards, headline sponsored by Badenoch + Clark, announced the national winners of the 12 director categories, seven regional categories and four discretionary awards to celebrate individuals’ business accomplishments in 2021.

This year a new award was introduced to pay tribute to the commitment and drive shown by leaders during the pandemic.

The inaugural ‘Agility and Resilience Director of the Year 2021’ was won by Lynn Laughland, Managing Director of HRM Homecare Services Ltd from Kilmarnock. The judges commented that Lynn went to extraordinary lengths to increase HRM’s critical care service offering during the pandemic, providing the highest level of front support to the most vulnerable. 

Four discretionary awards were also given including the ‘IoD Scotland Chair’s Award’ presented to Vivienne MacLaren. In her role as Chair at Scottish Women’s Football, Vivienne has transformed the organisation and it is recognised as being an important and growing influencer in Scottish sport.

Louise Macdonald OBE, National Director of the Institute of Directors in Scotland, said: “Leaders have faced an incredibly challenging two years in businesses and cross sector organisations across the country, with many being forced to pivot operations and switch from thriving to surviving and back to thriving.

“The awards honour the resilience and tenacity of those directors, celebrating the leaders who are continuing to drive Scotland’s economy and communities forward with passion and determination despite the most extraordinary conditions. The standard of entries was excellent this year, and I’d like to congratulate all of the individual and regional winners, as well as all of the shortlisted finalists.”

2nd June 2021 IOD Scotland Institute of Directors Scotland. National Director Louise Macdonald Credit – Phil Wilkinson