Region’s Tech Sector Celebrates its Stars

THE superstars and rising stars of the region’s growing tech sector were celebrated at a glittering awards night.

More than 450 people attended the Dynamites 19 Awards which were hosted by North East actor Daymon Britton and organised by Dynamo, the industry-led network focused on growing’s the region’s tech sector.

The sixth annual awards were held in Newcastle Civic Centre’s Banqueting Hall, and sponsored by Gateshead College. There were 12 award categories in total, including two new categories.

Chair of the Dynamites judging panel, Anne MacDonald, explained the importance of the region’s tech sector, and the role of the Dynamites: “The region continues to impress with its innovation and digital expertise. Tonight is about giving recognition to some of the amazing work that is happening in our tech and digital companies and organisations.

“Raising the profile of our region to ensure we secure investment and sustained business growth is essential and the awards help to achieve that. The calibre of entries this year was nothing short of amazing and gave the judging panel some tough decisions.”

Other members of this year’s judging panel included: Pete Watson, Atlas Cloud; Nicola Japp, Accenture; Deni Chambers, Gateshead College; Fay Cooper, DWP; Siobhan Fenton, Teesside University; Sue Ormerod, Nigel Wright; Alison Cowie, North East Times; Reece Donovan, Nomad Digital.

Professional services company Accenture won two awards on the night. Business analysts Abi Ridley and Eve Little picked up the Diversity and Inclusion Award on behalf of the company, while Technical Architect Zohaib Tesneem collected the award for the Project of the Year, Corporate, category.

“It’s been an amazing night, and an amazing experience,” said Abi. “Accenture takes diversity and inclusion extremely seriously so it’s great to see the commitment recognised by such a prestigious award.”

Zohaib said it was the first time he’d been to the Dynamites, but was thrilled to pick up an award: “The BTF Athlete Genome project has been an interesting project to work on and I’m delighted it’s been rewarded.”

Opencast Software won the Project of the Year, Public Sector/Not for Profit, category, for a major mainframe modernisation programme at NHSBSA. Opencast’s Managing Director Carl Shovlin said: “I’m so proud of the team. People said it couldn’t be done, but working very closely with our partners at NHSBSA, we delivered and solved a problem that had been there for some time.”

Northumbria University’s Charlie MacDowall was named Digital Cluster Champion for her work supporting the digital construction sector. Judges said her work and commitment on the IC3 bid “was outstanding and will have a huge impact on the region.”

Charlie said: “I was thrilled to have been nominated and shocked to win! I worked in PR for many years and used to fill in entries for other people, so it feels odd to have won myself. But it’s a great honour for me – I really enjoy what I do and never think of rewards like this, but they’re lovely when they come along.

“It’s also important that the project has been recognised. There’s so much more to do and this will help to spur us on to make a real difference for the sector and the region.”

Jim Mawdsley, CEO of Generator, the business support agency for the creative digital and music sectors, was awarded the Dynamites Lifetime Achievement Award, while Hive HR won the People’s Choice Award with more than 15 per cent of the 870 public votes registered.

Charlie Hoult, Chair of Dynamo, added: “The Dynamites are a perfect way to recognise the tech talent in the region, and for people working in the sector to come together and let their hair down for a great night out.

“Dynamo is all about raising the profile of the sector – making some noise, and we did just that during what was a great night for the region’s tech and digital sector.

“I’d like to congratulate all of our winners and thank all of our sponsors, particularly our headline sponsor Gateshead College.”

The many companies and organisations present at the awards included Sage, tombola, Zerolight, Scott Logic, University of Sunderland, Education Partnership North East, Nomad Digital, BT, Connect Health, DWP, Procter and Gamble, Atlas Cloud, Waterstons, Biosignatures, Notify Technology, NBS, Sunderland Software City, Wordnerds, Womble Bond Dickinson and Newcastle City Council.

View the full winners list and visit the gallery

 

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