Home News Judging Panel Revealed for CIPD North East of England HR&D Awards

Judging Panel Revealed for CIPD North East of England HR&D Awards

Judging Panel Revealed for CIPD North East of England HR&D Awards

The judging panel are poised to pick their winners for this year’s CIPD North East of England HR&D Awards.

Now entering their 15th year, the awards are the area’s most prestigious HR&D awards, and showcase and applaud the excellent HR&D practices in our region and the hard-working HR&D teams and individuals helping businesses through this challenging and testing time. Last year’s awards were held virtually due to the Covid-19 pandemic but these hugely popular awards will be live once again on June 30, at The Fed in Gateshead.

There are 10 categories available to enter with the closing date for entries fast approaching. Businesses are encouraged to submit their entries before the closing date on Friday 22 April. The judging panel has been assembled and is preparing to carry out the difficult task of choosing the finalists and winners.

Sarah Carnegie and Elouise Leonard-Cross, co-chairs of the CIPD North East of England Branch Committee, said: “We are delighted that so many senior HR&D professionals from across the region have volunteered to be judges for our Awards. It is so important to involve experienced specialists as they will be able to bring a high level of discernment and knowledge to the judging process.”

This year’s judging panel is:

Richard Adams – HR director, Cairn Group. 2022 marks 20 years in HR for Richard, working in multiple sectors and with many amazing people. Richard and his team lead the people agenda for Cairn Group’s 40 hospitality venues and 2,500 people. Currently training as a coach, Richard is an ultra-runner, rugby coach and married father of three.

Helen Baker – global director of diversity, equity, and inclusion, Sage. Helen is a proud LGBTQIA+ woman, wife and mother to two children. She is responsible for creating and delivering a robust Diversity, Equity and Inclusion strategy, and building an intentionally inclusive and equitable colleague experience at Sage. Helen is most proud of the numerous career shifts she has made during time at Sage, is a leadership coach and mentor for many inside and outside Sage, and has recently joined Mental Health Concern as a Board of Trustees member.

Garry Besford – people development manager, Citizens Advice Gateshead. An experienced HR&D professional with experience in public, private and third sector organisations, Garry is currently responsible for the development of the people function at a local charity. Garry has also delivered the CIPD qualifications at a range of training organisations over the past decade.

Paul Britton – head of EDI and colleague wellbeing, Newcastle University. Paul has over 20 years of experience working in the higher education sector and has also spent time working in acute mental health for the NHS. As the head of EDI and colleague wellbeing at Newcastle University he is hugely passionate about addressing issues relating to inequalities and enhancing employee wellbeing.

Lisa Crichton-Jones – executive director of people and OD, Gateshead Health NHS Trust. Lisa is an experienced NHS HR director, having worked at Executive Level since 2012 and in the NHS since 1999. She has experience of working in large complex trusts as well as some time as the first director of workforce for the North East and North Cumbria Integrated Care System. She is a governor at Gateshead College and chair of the North East HRD network as well as a member of the North East and Yorkshire People Board.

Cate Kalson – chief people officer, Opencast. Cate has had a “squiggly” career, starting out as a biomedical research scientist before getting into the tech industry working as a data analyst, a product manager and now as a people team leader. Cate is busy leading the scale up of Opencast whilst trying hard to maintain and build on the great culture that has been established over the past 10 years. Cate has two young sons that keep her busy outside of work.

Anu Kaura – head of legal, Malhotra Group PLC. As the head of the legal department for Malhotra Group PLC, Anu also sits as the vice chair of the National Law Society In-House Division and is a member of the Newcastle Law Society. Anu previously practiced as an employment lawyer for 11 years before moving in-house.

Michelle Robson – global chief people officer, Indicia Worldwide. As a previous winner of HR team of the year, Michelle brings a great inside lens to the judging panel. Working and living internationally Michelle has a very broad exposure to varying cultures, challenges and opportunities which has driven her through her career.

Mark Thompson – managing partner, Ryder Architecture. Mark joined Ryder in 1988 becoming a director in 1995. In recognition of his “influential and inspirational role in the industry” Mark was made an Honorary Fellow of the RIBA in 2003. As managing partner Mark has responsibility for the strategic development of Ryder. He is also chair of blood cancer charity Bright Red, vice chair of NewcastleGateshead Initiative, board member of North East England LEP, member of the CBI North East Regional Council and the CBI National Construction Council. He also sits on the advisory board of Invest Newcastle.

The awards are sponsored by Defence Relationship Management, Jackson Hogg, Lynn Bennett Resourcing, Opencast, Newcastle University Business School, Northumberland County Council, People Spark Solutions, Sullivan Brown Resourcing Partners and Womble Bond Dickinson.

The closing date for entries is Friday, April 22. To enter and for more information please visit cipdneawards.co.uk

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