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Leading lights from the North West and North Wales were honoured as the Finance Director of the Year Awards made a triumphant return following a break in 2020 due the global pandemic.

The evening which was held on Thursday 18 November in the Crowne Plaza Hotel Liverpool, also raised £3000 for the NSPCC - it costs £4 to answer a call to their Childline service, so funds raised last night could help pay for an amazing 750 calls!

Emma Stoddart, Chief Financial Officer from ChargePoint Technology was the overall winner and Crowned FD of the Year in addition to winning her category, Finance Director of the Year (£5 - £20 Million Turnover). The judges noted her exceptional financial management through a major transactional event for the company but also her incredible, personal resilience and ability to motivate and build trust. 

In a year that has challenged our health services like no other in recent times, fittingly, Howard Jones, Finance Director at Baywater Healthcare received the Lifetime Achievement Award and James Thomson, Director of Finance for the Clatterbridge Cancer Centre NHS Foundation Trust won Finance Director of the year – Not for Profit or Public Sector Organisation (Over £100 Million)

Regional winners included Faye Dyer from The ACC Liverpool Group for the Liverpool City Region Award, Phil Parker from Sunbelt Rentals UK for the Warrington Award, Damian McDonald from Jones Village Bakery for North Wales Award and Liz Carnie from Chester Zoo for West Cheshire Award.

Simon Massey Managing Director of Accountable Recruitment said:

“I’m very passionate about our local business regions and having had the pleasure of working with so many talented FDs within the local area I really appreciate and understand what remarkable jobs they do, year in year out. As a result, I feel that they deserve some well-earned recognition and would like to say congratulations to all the finalists at this stage.”

Mark Rathbone, Brabners’ Head of Corporate said:

“The last 12 months have been really tough for businesses and finance directors have had a particularly challenging job balancing the books and helping keep businesses afloat during the pandemic. We are joining Accountable Recruitment as legal partner to highlight the region’s outstanding finance talent and bring much needed recognition for the work these individuals do. We are delighted to be involved in this prestigious initiative and look forward to re-engaging with many of our business partners as we emerge from the pandemic.”

Neil Sturmey, Tax Partner at Grant Thornton UK LLP said:

“The past 12 months have tested most businesses. Many have only been able to weather incredibly difficult trading conditions due to astute, pragmatic decision making from their chief financial officers and finance directors. For those in industries which have boomed due to demand driven by measures to control the pandemic, the challenge has been different but just as noteworthy. This has been the most uncertain period in our lifetimes to be leading strategic M&A activity, entering new global markets, or raising growth capital. We are blessed with an array of incredibly talented FDs and CFOs in our local region, and we’re delighted to celebrate their contribution, in this year more than ever.”

Tom Carter, Corporate Area Director at HSBC said:

“After such a challenging year in 2020, it is fantastic to see that the FD of the Year Awards back in 2021. As always, the awards seek to showcase the talent of the Finance Directors in the North West, however this year more than ever, it represents an opportunity to celebrate of the resilience and strength of businesses and finance teams in the region. I would like to personally congratulate each and every nominee, you should be extremely proud of your achievement and I wish you every success in the future.”

The full list of winners at the awards, which are sponsored by Accountable Recruitment Grant Thornton, Brabners and HSBC are:

Special Recognition Award
Helen Davidson, Lucid Games 

Commercial Finance Director of the Year
Robert Brent, MSite

Finance Director under 40 years of age
Colin McGuirk, Millmead Optical

Finance Director of the Year (up to £5 Million Turnover)
Barry Nightingale, Wejo

Finance Director of the year (£5 - £20 Million Turnover)
Emma Stoddart, ChargePoint Technology

Finance Director of the year (£20 - £32 Million Turnover)
Laura Hayes, The Clever Company

Finance Director of the year (£32- £55 Million Turnover)
Rachel Griffiths, Boys and Boden

Finance Director of the year (above £55 million Turnover)
Andrew Jones, WS Transportation

Finance Director of the year Not for Profit (Up to £16 Million)
Kate Randall, Parkhaven Trust

Finance Director of the year – Not for Profit (£16 - £100 Million)
Sharon Edwards, PSS

Finance Director of the year – Not for Profit or Public Sector Organisation (Over £100 Million) James Thomson, The Clatterbridge Cancer Centre NHS Foundation Trust

Finance Director of the year Liverpool City Region
Faye Dyer, The ACC Liverpool Group

Finance Director of the year Warrington Region
Phil Parker, Sunbelt Rentals UK

Finance Director of the year North Wales Region
Damian McDonald, Jones Village Bakery

Finance Director of the year West Cheshire Region
Liz Carnie, Chester Zoo

Lifetime Achievement Award
Howard Jones Baywater Healthcare

Overall Winner and Finance Director of the Year 2021
Emma Stoddart, ChargePoint Technology

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