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Finalists announced for East Midlands Chambers Generation Next Awards 2023

Finalists of Generation Next Awards 2023

Generation Next Awards 2023
Finalists of East Midlands Chamber’s Generation Next Awards Announced

Young professionals and entrepreneurs across the region have been recognised among the finalists of East Midlands Chamber’s Generation Next Awards 2023.


The awards are held in conjunction with headline partner the University of Derby. They celebrate the achievements of young professionals and business leaders aged under 35, as well as organisations led by people in this demographic.


Lucy Robinson, East Midlands Chamber’s director of resources and Generation Next lead, said: “The Generation Next Awards are a celebration of the contribution our young people make to their communities across the East Midlands.


“We received our highest number of applications this year, and are always blown away by the achievements of the entrants.


"Our shortlist of finalists offers a glimpse into the amazing young talent that exists here in the region.”


More than 80 individuals are recognised in the shortlist across the 11 categories – ranging from a Start-up Award and Equality, Diversity and Inclusivity Award through to marking achievements in Innovation and Technology and the Generation Next Future Leader.


A new prize this year recognises rising stars in businesses, aimed at professionals across all levels, including junior roles.


The awards are part of the Chamber’s Generation Next network, which provides learning, development and connecting opportunities to individuals based in businesses across Derbyshire, Leicestershire and Nottinghamshire.

Generation Next Awards 2022
East Midlands' bright young things recognised

Virtual judging days will take place on May 9 and 10, 2023, in which finalists will be interviewed by members of the Chamber’s senior management team, Generation Next board and sponsors.


Winners will be crowned at an alternative awards ceremony on 13 July 2023, where the network will return to Bustler Market in Derby to build on the success of last year’s event, which welcomed more than 200 people.


The shortlist was revealed during an event held at Roamdome in Leicester on February 26. On the night Taylor Gee, last year’s winner of the Volunteer Award who has since gone on to establish his own business Design Only Gardens, gave a speech.


Tickets for the Generation Next Awards ceremony at Bustler Market, Derby, on July 13 cost £65 + VAT for Generation Next members and £75 + VAT for non-members. A 10% discount will be applied on the purchase of five or more tickets. Visit bit.ly/GNAwards23 to purchase tickets.


Generation Next Awards 2023 finalists


Apprentice of the Year (sponsored by Loughborough College)

Abbie Hartshorn: Apprentice test engineer, British Standards Institution

Ella Mossop: Recruitment consultant, Express Recruitment

Evie Culligan: Marketing executive, Invictus Group Ltd

Hattie Parnham: Apprentice painter and decorator, Ashby Decorator Centre

Kai Taylor: Audit semi-senior, MHA MacIntyre Hudson

Phoebe Bromley: Accounts assistant, Express Recruitment

Polly Oakes: Digital marketing executive, Express Recruitment

Rebecca Houlston: Head of brand marketing, Cross Productions

Callum Cole-Needham: Trainee financial planning administrator, Future Life Wealth Management

Sophia Shapcott: Marketing and development executive, Smith Partnership


Creators and Makers Award (sponsored by PPL PRS)

Dan Poynton: Founder and CEO, On Poynt Creative

Deshaun Hancock: Founder, Bloom and Flow

Izzy Plummer: Graphic designer, TTK Confectionery

Nathan Addai: Founder, Mental Roots

Olivia Waldron: Digital marketing co-ordinator, MHA MacIntyre Hudson

Tom Young: Feature writer, Cross Productions

Yudan Deng: Lead of language teaching and content, Follow the Orient

Liberty Always: Digital marketer, Bam Boom Cloud

Jamie Quince Starkey: Founder and director, Down to Earth Derby

Nayaab Mohamed: Founder, Nayaab Mahomed Limited


Customer Service Award (sponsored by Express Recruitment)

Kim Smith: PA to the managing director, The Silver X Group

Ben Wileman: Senior leasing consultant, Select Car Leasing Burton-on-Trent

Ben Wilkinson: Tax manager, MHA MacIntyre Hudson

Cameron Hogan: Senior creative manager, videographer and photographer, ‘AV IT! Media

Ella Sheppard: Senior associate, Nelsons

Georgia Evans: Digital marketing executive, Paragon Sales Solutions

Harriet Fell: Client services apprentice, Purpose Media

Josef Hicks: Business applications second line support engineer, Bam Boom Cloud

Nicole Perkins: Procurement officer, Futures Housing Group

Rebecca Cliff: Employer engagement marketing executive, Nottingham Trent University


Entrepreneur of the Year (sponsored by Fraser Stretton Property Group)

Dan Poynton: Founder and CEO, On Poynt Creative

Jack Thompson: Managing director, Thompson Tree Services Midlands

Jordan Cooley: Managing director, ICS Group Midlands t/a ICS Electrical Contractors

Joseph Bentley: Managing director, ACT Medical

Michael Gladwell: Head of enterprise, Upbeat Communities

Olly Fisher: Managing director, Repeat Digital

Paulina Poziomska: Managing director, Volt-Age

Rob Spence: Managing director, Paragon Sales Solutions


Environmental Warrior Award (sponsored by Hydropath Technology)

Ben James Stuchbury: Founder, Intertwined

Jamie Quince Starkey: Founder and director, Down to Earth Derby

David Allerton: Founder, SE-LF

Komal Shahzadi: Chairperson, Enactus DMU

Nikolas Kordula: Cost manager, Turner & Townsend

Sam Whetton: Founder, Reika Bags

Grace Golden: Director, Pretzel Energy


Equality, Diversity and Inclusivity Award (sponsored by Futures Housing Group)

Katie Michaels: Founder and designer, Moti Me

Michael Gladwell: Head of enterprise, Upbeat Communities

Nathan Addai: Founder, Mental Roots

Samantha Morley: Employer engagement co-ordinator for ESF Reskill and Recover, Nottingham Trent University


Innovation and Technology Award (sponsored by Hardy Signs)

Joseph Bentley: Managing director, ACT Medical

Finlay Riggott: Business analyst, Cosy Direct

Louise Flood: Business analyst, Express Recruitment

Marian Muresan: Systems administrator, RDD Europe

Paulina Poziomska: Managing director, Volt-Age

Purpose Media team


Rising Star Award (sponsored by Nottingham Trent University)

Cerys Graham: Trainee architectural technologist, Morrison Design

Emma Priestley: Head of product, ACT Medical

Fran Jesson: Bakery project manager, TTK Confectionery

Hattie Parnham: Apprentice painter and decorator, Ashby Decorator Centre

Jack Wilkinson: Business development executive, Express Recruitment

James Bird: Accounts assistant apprentice, The Silver X Group

Katie Michaels: Founder and designer, Moti Me

Nayaab Mahomed: Founder, Nayaab Mahomed Limited

Ross McLeod: Assistant project manager, Turner & Townsend

Ruby Birks: Project manager, Purpose Media


Start-up Award (sponsored by Nottingham University Business School)

David Allerton: Founder, SE-LF

Joseph Bentley: Managing Director, ACT Medical

Sam Whetton: Founder, Reika Bags


Volunteering and Charitable Impact (sponsored by ITS Technology Ltd)

Courtney Brindley: Assistant to the temporary division, Express Recruitment

David Allerton: Founder, SE-LF

Jo Walchester: Head of marketing, Rotheras LLP

Kate Frisby: Trainee solicitor, Nelsons

Leah Binney: Buying director designate, TTK Confectionery

Hopeful Futures team, Hope Against Cancer

Shannon O’Neill: Volunteer perinatal peer supporter and student social worker, Connected Perinatal Support CIC

Yudan Deng: Lead of language teaching and content, Follow the Orient


Future Leader Award (sponsored by headline partner University of Derby)

Joseph Bentley: Managing director, ACT Medical

Joshua Leach-Aslam: General manager, Ocean King

Renee Sunnar: Business applications support team leader, Bam Boom Cloud

Ruby Birks: Project manager, Purpose Media

Sarah Deaves: Senior project manager, Turner & Townsend

Theo Kirk: Director of people, Express Recruitment

Umar Razah Boodhoo: Managing director, Mauricare

Verity Mitchell: Head of fundraising, Base 51

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