Awards ceremony recognises Aberdeen City Council staff achievements

Aberdeen City Council has recognised the excellence of its staff with a series of ‘Star Awards’, presented to the winners at a special gala event at the Beach Ballroom on Thursday 15 June.

Judges from Robert Gordon University, the University of Aberdeen, Aberdeen Guild of Burgesses, Aberdeen Council for Voluntary Organisations and from major public and private sector organisations in the city selected the category winners from more than 200 nominations from City Council colleagues and members of the public.

Rising Star

This award celebrates an individual who has shone in their new role in the Council.

Winner: Angus Beacom – Crematorium Manager, Communities, Housing and Infrastructure. Angus has been in the post 2.5 years. He was nominated for his leadership, hard work, attention to detail, dedication and professionalism.

Finalists: Mark Aitchison - Education and Children's Services and Arlene Dunbar - Corporate Governance.

Team of the Year

This award is for a team who have either achieved outstanding performance levels and customer satisfaction or worked in a focussed and unified way to deliver a desired objective for the Council and City.

Winner: Children's Social Work - Reception Team. The team were nominated for the way they tackle the difficult situations they face every day with exceptional levels of patience, professionalism, efficiency and deliver a service that is of the very highest standard. All of this is done with the children involved being the focus of everything that is being done.

Finalists: Environmental Services Team and the Housing Support Team.

Improving Staff Experience

This award is for an individual or team whose behaviour creates a positive culture

and enhances the experience of our staff.

Winner: Jean Stewart-Coxon. Jean led the Social Care Commissioning, Procurement and Contracts Team through a merger of the previous Aberdeen City and Aberdeenshire teams which included the Aberdeenshire staff being transferred to Aberdeen City.

Finalists: Emma Cowieson - Education and Children's Services and Susan Gray - Corporate Governance.

Improving Customer Experience

This award is for an individual or team who has either demonstrated exceptional

customer service or has enhanced how customers experience our services.

Winner: Ross Allan. Ross runs the volleyball programme at Aberdeen Grammar School and promotes not only young people in sport, particularly girls, but has also established Aberdeen City on the national volleyball map.

Finalist: Debbie Dionne - Communities, Housing and Infrastructure and Kat Rzewnik - Corporate Governance


The collaboration award is for an individual(s) or teams who have demonstrated excellence in working together.

Winner: Seaton Park Team – In 2016 collaboration and partnership working resulted in significant improvements and investment in Seaton Park. The park is now an award winning green space packed with colour and biodiversity. The transformation of Seaton Park is all the more remarkable when considering the damage inflicted on the park as a result of Storm Frank in early 2016. The entire park was under water with the formal gardens and paths being swept away.

Finalists: Maria Thies, Education and Children's Services and the Community Safety Hub.

Use of Resources

This award is for an individual or team that strive for best value, effectively managing their resources whilst still delivering outcomes.

Winner: Countryside Rangers – The Countryside Ranger Service has for a long time worked closely with local communities to deliver much of the countryside site management works needed to encourage a good range of biodiversity on the sites and encourage engagement with the local environment. This is done through extensive engagement with the public and volunteers.

Finalists: Claire Cowan, Education and Children's Services and Louise Napier, Planning.

People's Champion

This award is for an individual or team who are an unsung hero and deserve recognition for the work they do.

Winner: Mike Chalmers, Communities, Housing and Infrastructure. Nominated by The Foyer has been very supportive of the Foyer for a number of years, particularly their Training and Employment services and Impact project.

Finalists: Mike Philips and Sinclair Laing, Communities, Housing and Infrastructure


This award recognises an individual or a team who have demonstrated an innovative

approach and improved the way we do business. The award for Innovation is announced at the award ceremony.

Winner: Gilbert Road Children’s Home who strive to work in innovative and creative ways that are sensitive and promote healing.

Innovation Finalists: Lindsay Dawson - Education and Children's Services; Project and Partnerships Team, Economic Development and Gilbert Road Children's Home.

Shining Star

This award has been endorsed by the Chief Executive and is presented to John Anderson for his outstanding compassion, understanding, professionalism and willingness to help and by doing so, making a dramatic difference to a member of the public.

Winner - John Anderson, Corporate Governance

City Council Leader Councillor Jenny Laing said: “Our staff are at the heart of Aberdeen City Council. Our schools, our social work, our housing services, our streets, parks, waste collections and many other services are all kept running only because of the dedication of very able teams and individuals.

“It is a huge pleasure to be able to recognise the unsung heroes and heroines of this great city and to get together to celebrate the excellent work that they do.”

Chief Executive Angela Scott said: “Aberdeen City Council staff serve the citizens of our city every day of the year. Whether they are running summer events or clearing the winter roads they aim to give our citizens the best service we can provide.

“The Star Awards give colleagues and the people of Aberdeen the chance to say ‘thank-you and well done’ to those who have gone out of their way to serve the people. We can be proud of the winners, the finalists and all the nominees, who are a credit to the Council and to the city.”


Judges were: Chief Superintendent Campbell Thomson, Police Scotland; Mr Andy Coueslant, Head of Service Delivery – North Fire Scotland; Professor Sir Ian Diamond, Principal and Vice Chancellor, Aberdeen University; Professor Ferdinand Von Prondzynski, Principal, Robert Gordon University; Ms Joyce Duncan, Chief Executive, Aberdeen Council for Voluntary Organisations; Lord Dean Mr Colin Taylor, Dean of Guild Aberdeen, Guild of Burgesses; Councillor Stephen Flynn, SNP Group Leader, Aberdeen City Council; Councillor Alan Donnelly, Conservative Group Member, Aberdeen City Council; Mrs Linda McDonald, PA to Directors, Aberdeen Football Club; Mrs Sandra Ross, Director, Bon Accord Care; Mr Graeme Cumming; Interim Managing Director, AECC and Mr Duncan Sinclair, Chief Executive, Aberdeen Sports Village.

The Star Awards dinner and ceremony was fully funded with the kind support of sponsors Xerox UK Ltd, Instock Group, McWilliam Aberdeen Ltd, Brakes, Arco, Passell and First Bus.