As the Soldiering On Awards nominations close this year, we are delighted to announce that 275 individuals, partnerships and organisations have been nominated for an award, the highest number in SOA’s 10-year history and a 20% increase from 2020.
As well as this fantastic news, we have been adding to our brilliant line-up of Category and Independent judges, both made up of a diverse mix of people, representing all three services; from Army Sergeant Major Gavin Paton, Laura Blair, employment Director, The Officer’s Association to Commander Debbie Whittingham, Deputy Governor of the Tower of London and Charlie Wallace, Scottish Veterans Commissioner, and many others. This process ensures our judging process is as fair as possible.
Chair of Soldiering On Awards, Lt. Col. Ren Kapur MBE, commented:
“We could not do any of this without our amazing sponsors, partners and supporters who got involved and helped to spread the word. It has been another record year for nominations and registrations, which is particularly poignant at such a challenging time where many are struggling. So many inspiring stories of hard work, dedication and extraordinary selflessness have been put forward, and to see the incredible work our Armed Forces community continue to do is truly humbling.”
Brand new Category Judge, Gillian Russell, Senior Program Manager, Worldwide in the Global Military Affairs team at Amazon:
“I am delighted, and a little daunted, at being asked to be a judge of the Soldiering On Awards. The contribution that members of the Armed Forces community make to UK society is immense, but often unseen; these awards allow their impact to be publicly celebrated.”
Independent Judge David Richmond CBE, Independent Veterans Advisor and Vice Chair of the Veterans Advisory Board:
“It is a privilege to be involved in the Soldiering On Awards which celebrates the fantastic work done by individuals and organisations big and small in support of the Armed Forces Community across the country every day.”
Independent Judging Panel:
Other new independent judges include: Anne Marie Piper, Solicitor, Charity Law, Army Sergeant Major Gavin Paton, Charlie Wallace, Scottish Veterans Commissioner and Brigadier Robin Simpson, RCGP Veterans Champion and is the Professor of Military Primary Healthcare and Veterans Health University of Chester.
Other new category judges include: Karen Porter, Communications Manager at Landmarc, Mark Ormrod, Previous SOA Winner and Royal Marines Veteran, and Vicki Gosling, Chief Executive at British Ski and Snowboard
WO1 (Comd SM) Dean Morgan – Home Command and Standing Joint Command (UK):
“It is an absolute honour and privilege to be able to see first-hand the great work of our people, who continue to thrive in the current extremely challenging world”
Clare Crookenden, Grants Manager at FIMT, said:
“We are delighted once again to be sponsoring the Working Together award. It’s a wonderful opportunity to celebrate the collaboration which we know takes place across our sector at many levels, and to encourage others to follow in the footsteps of our previous winners and finalists.”
SOA President and Chair of Judges, Lord Dannatt commented,
“All these submissions can only mean one thing – a very, very tough job for our eclectic roster of judges – including me! – over the next two months. Thank you so much for all of your amazing nominations, and all the positive energy you’ve directed towards the awards over the last few months, it really is so important that we continue to give those without a voice, a platform, and those who deserve it – recognition.”