The Asian Women of Achievement Awards (AWA), in association with RBS, announced the winners of the 2015 Awards at a recently held event in London in the presence of the Duchess of Gloucester, Patron Princess Badiya bint El Hassan, Theresa May MP, Hilary Benn MP, Tasmina Ahmed-Sheikh MP, Miriam Gonazlez Durantez, Elif Shafak and Jazmine Walia.
AWA is an annual celebration of the contributions that individual Asian women have made in Britain, both professionally and in their communities, and the applicants this year were as impressive as they were diverse. This year’s winners are saving lives through The UK Sepsis Trust, supporting ethnic minority disabled children with Include Me TOO and spreading joy at Comedy At The Cottage. Whether they are just starting out in their careers or have already climbed through the ranks, they are proactively driving positive change, in many cases on top of their day jobs.
This year AWA honoured the author, columnist, speaker and academic Elif Shafak with the Global Empowerment Award. Also, 10 women and one organisation were selected as category winners by a judging panel chaired by Sir Nicholas Young. The full list of winners include: Sajeela Kershi, comedian, actor and writer [Arts & Culture] , Sevasti Wong, managing director, Accenture [Business], Farzana Baduel, founder, Curzon PR [Entrepreneur] , Shivvy Jervis, presenter, Digital Futures; head of digital media, Telefonica [Media] , Nicky Jayesinghe, head of professional policy division, British Medical Association [Professions] , Daman Mullhi, founding trustee and director of PR, The UK Sepsis Trust [Public Service] , Parmi Dheensa, executive director, Include Me TOO [Social & Humanitarian] , Annie Zaidi, youth engagement coach, Leicester City Football Club Community Trust [Sport] , Tanya Datta, store manager, Marks & Spencer [Young Achiever] , Jyoti Shah, consultant urological surgeon, Burton Hospital NHS Foundation Trust [RBS AWA Chairman’s Award] , University of East London [Community Award] .
Also highly commended by the judging panel this year were: Piali Ray OBE, Sampad; Nupur Singh Mallick, Tata Consultancy Services; Renu Kapur, X-Forces; Shelina Permalloo, author, cook and TV personality; Professor Mala Rao OBE, Imperial College and Public Health England; Camilla Bowry, Sals Shoes; Balvinder Sandhu, NHS; Rimla Akhtar, Rimjhim Consulting; Dr Jennifer Gupta, Institute of Cosmology and Gravitation, University of Portsmouth; and Joanne Sui, London Bridge Associates.
Pinky Lilani OBE DL, Founder, Asian Women of Achievement Awards said, ”The common factor linking the women was their inexhaustible positive energy, whether throwing themselves behind their careers, a passion or a cause, they have all shown themselves to be dedicated and determined.”
Les Matheson, Chief Executive, Personal & Business Banking, RBS said: “The awards have highlighted the incredible contribution made by Asian women in the UK today.”
Cherie Blair, long-time supporter and Patron of the Awards said, “The sheer talent and quality of the nominees is testament to the hugely important impact that Asian women have in the UK and it is essential that we continue to recognise and support them.”