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2012 Lunch and Awards

by  Women of the Year

October 22, 2012

2012 Lunch and Awards

P.D. James, Zainab Salbi, Doreen Lawrence and Team GB’s  Olympic & Paralympic medallists
honoured at Women of the Year Awards 2012

** Lunch & Awards celebrate women’s dedication, success and achievements **

This year’s Women of the Year Lunch & Awards took place today (Monday 22 October) at the InterContinental London Park Lane. Five awards were presented to exceptional women who have each proved an inspiration to others through their courage, selflessness, dedication and achievement.

The 2012 Women of the Year Award winners are:

•         Barclays Women of the Year Award: The Iraqi-American women’s rights activist, author and co-founder of Women for Women International Zainab Salbi

•         Good Housekeeping Women of the Year Award: Team GB Olympic & Paralympic Women Medallists

•         Sacla’ Women of the Year Lifetime Achievement Award: Best-selling crime writer & Life Peer P.D. James

•         Women of the Year Award: Campaigner for justice, following the murder of her son Stephen in 1993, Doreen Lawrence

•         ITV1’s Lorraine Inspirational Woman of the Year Award was been won (on a viewers’ vote) by: Kate Woolveridge who has been recognised for her tireless work to promote awareness of Alzheimer’s disease and dementia in Cardiff through her work with the “Forget me nots choir”

Baroness Helena Kennedy QC, President of the Women of the Year, said: “The magic of this event – and what makes it unique – is the way in which it brings together the most fabulous women from the widest range of geographical, social, ethnic and political backgrounds; from the very well-known to unsung heroines doing outstanding work in their community.

“Our special winners today embody this: from P.D. James, the best-selling crime writer, to women’s rights activist and author, Zainab Salbi, and from the brilliant Team GB Olympic and Paralympic women medallists to Doreen Lawrence, who has campaigned tirelessly for the victims of racist crime and reform of the police service.

“Their achievements, dedication and passion are an inspiration to women everywhere, encouraging us all to fulfil our ambitions, support others and stand up for what we believe in.”

Clare Blampied, Managing Director of Sacla’ UK, presented the Award and said, “Lady James is an inspirational winner for Sacla’, loved by generations for her wonderful books written over the past 50 years and for her amazing energy, passion and enthusiasm for everything she tackles. Her impressive career is motivating if a little daunting for us all! ”

Lindsay Nicholson, Editorial Director, Good Housekeeping, said of Team GB’s Olympic & Paralympic Women Medallists, “London 2012 was – undeniably – the women’s Olympics. Our incredible Olympians and Paralympians broke new records and won more medals than ever before. But, for me, most importantly they sent out a message to all young women that there is so much more to aspire to physically than being Size Zero.”

Olympian and Paralympian athletes at the Women of the Year Lunch included Katherine Grainger, Rebecca Adlington, Beth Tweddle, Zoe Newson, Samantha Murray, Christine Ohuruogu,  and Sarah Storey.

In presenting Doreen Lawrence with her award Beverley Knight said, “It is a joy to present such a quietly courageous, determined and humble woman, as Doreen certainly is, with an award. I have admired her for years, the grace with which she has dealt with injustice after cruel injustice on both sides of the law to eventually see some resolution.  She is the embodiment of the saying “never give up”.”

The winners were selected by a judging panel. President and Chair of Women of the Year, Baroness Kennedy and Teresa Graham, were joined by a terrific line-up of judges from across a wide variety of sectors including: Camila Batmanghelidjh, Chief Executive, Kids Company; Melanie Dawes, Director General of the Economic & Domestic Affairs Secretariat at the Cabinet Office; Ronke Phillips, ITV London correspondent and Jasvinder Sanghera, CEO & Founder of Karma Nirvana, a support group for victims of honour violence.

Every one of the 400 guests at the lunch is recognised as a ‘Woman of the Year’, and is celebrated for their achievements and contribution to society. They represent not only themselves but the millions of extraordinary women who make a difference every day.

There were also some familiar faces amongst the attendees, including Lorraine Kelly, Dame Mary Archer, Kathy Lette, Maureen Lipman, and Fifty Shades of Grey author, E L James.

The ceremony was hosted by Sandi Toksvig and the awards were presented by actress Dame Helen Mirren DBE, singer and actress Beverley Knight, broadcasters Sue MacGregor and Lorraine Kelly and the Rt Hon Tessa Jowell MP.

The 2012 Women of the Year Lunch is sponsored by Barclays, Good Housekeeping, Sacla’ and ITV1’s Lorraine.