The Meetings Industry Association (mia) have revealed the individual names and teams who have secured a place on its coveted annual miaList.
Competition once again remained extremely high for a place on the prestigious roll of honour, which for a decade has been recognising and celebrating the outstanding individuals working within the business meetings and events sector.
The 10 individual names featured on the miaList 2021 include:
- Billy Harris – Edgbaston Park Hotel. Passionate, enthusiastic and with a relentless willingness to support his employer throughout the pandemic, judges commended Billy’s strategic and sensitive support to his team and organisation throughout the pandemic.
- Bouchra Ennaciri – Milton Hill House, The Venues Collection. Despite only moving to the UK four days before the first lockdown, Bouchra’s inspirational enthusiasm, passion and appreciation for her team set her apart as a clear, passionate leader respected by all.
- James Russ – CCT Venues. When the business needed him the most, James stepped up to immerse himself across the entire organisation and was a pillar for his team to lean on. He ticked all the boxes for the judges – throwing himself in at the deep end during the past 18 months to help all areas of the business adapt and respond quickly.
- Jan Denning – The Hospitality Partnership. Thinking outside the box when the industry needed support, Jan not only formed the Hospitality Partnership but drove it forward with the utmost compassion for her employees. The judges felt her enthusiasm and passion for both the industry and her team could not be faulted.
- Jessica Southworth – Hotel Football. With a clear passion for people, Jessica stepped up throughout a time where there was very little stability to support others in need, volunteering within her community both in and outside of the sector. Incredibly resilient and excelling with her career, the judges are clear she has an incredibly bright future ahead of her.
- Josh King – emc3. Constantly pushing the boundaries, Josh’s innovative and determined approach to work made a clear impression on the judges, helping his organisation become more impactful and effective during a challenging period. Incredibly focussed and forward-thinking, the judges felt Josh epitomises the industry with his energy and enthusiasm.
- Matt Merrick – Holiday Inn London, Brentford Lock. Although he joined the Holiday Inn London-Brentford Lock just before the first lockdown, he led his team from the front. The judges felt he was a highly competent individual who should be incredibly proud of his achievements, which includes driving new business opportunities during the pandemic.
- Rachel Bradshaw – Wyboston Lakes. With resilience, adaptability, kindness, leadership and an undying level of energy and enthusiasm, the judges felt Rachel was an unbelievable asset to the business. Her maturity, integrity, and capability shone through and showcased her future potential within the business and the events sector.
- Sam Morgan – The Venues Collection. Identifying Sam as a clear role model oozing creativity and passion, the judges were impressed by a creative, proactive and solution-focused individual that has endless energy to support his organisation and team.
- Sonia Jackson – The Grand Brighton. The miaList judges praised Sonia for her ability to keep the team motivated and supported and engaged throughout the pandemic. She is extremely sensitive to other people’s needs and challenges and her passion and intuition for helping others throughout a challenging and turbulent period was highly commended.
The Best Destination Team was awarded to Conference Leeds for the support and stability they offered to their members through the last 18 turbulent months, which was widely recognised and congratulated by their membership.
Wyboston Lakes’ Senior Operations Team secured the Best Events & Operations Team title. Judges thought their passion, commitment and loyalty really shone above the rest, with the team’s unrelentless and inspiring efforts enabling the venue to secure more and more key worker business during the pandemic.
The judges’ clear winner for the Best Sales and Marketing Team accolade was The Belfry Hotel & Resort, who implemented remarkable initiatives for both their customers and the wider industry during the pandemic. Collaborating with many partners and heavily investing in technology, they provided innovate ways to support clients during challenging times.
Meanwhile, showing a real passion for their organisation, city and sector, ACC Liverpool’s Event Delivery Team secured the Best Venue Team. As well as distributing food for vulnerable people across Liverpool and volunteering to help with COVID-19 testing centres, the team adapted to bring in additional income for the venue and supported the wider industry by hosting the first business event for the Events Research Programme.
Securing the overall Team of the Year title was Emc3 after impressing the judges with their inspiring unity and passion. The judges felt that the Emc3 team’s commitments to deliver amidst mass uncertainty throughout the course of the pandemic was more than exceptional, with everyone working as one to truly serve and protect the success of the company.
“The mia has always known that the business meetings and events sector is brimming with hard-working and exceptional individuals and teams. The last year has continued to be challenging, so it was fantastic to have the opportunity to celebrate and shine a spotlight on the exceptional and committed talent working in our industry. Individually and collectively the winners have adapted and united as teams, continuing to go above and beyond the call of duty. Now in its tenth year, I would also like to extend my greatest thanks to our partners, judges and supporters for contributing to the ongoing success of the miaList.”
Jane Longhurst, chief executive of the mia
Nominees were assessed by an esteemed panel of industry stalwarts, including Dan Stevens of Primary, Gill Smillie of Conference Venues Countrywide, Robert Kenward of YOU search & select, Lacy Curtis-Ward of The Lensbury, Paul Southern of Central Hall Westminster, Julie Shorrock of Hotel and Travel Solutions and Sam Van Leeuwen of PwC.