Leading Lives chair crowned ‘Employee Owner of the Year’

Social enterprise company Leading Lives, headquartered in Maidstone and Ipswich, is one of five winners at the UK Employee Ownership Awards 2016

Lucy Humphrey from Leading Lives was declared Employee Owner of the Year at the UK Employee Ownership Awards last night. The awards are delivered by the Employee Ownership Association (EOA) to celebrate the success of the employee ownership sector, and are sponsored by Baxendale.

Presented as part of the EOA Annual Conference, this award celebrates an individual, irrespective of their seniority and whether they operate on the front line of the business or not, who has done the most to promote and develop employee ownership inside an employee owned organisation. The judges recognised that Lucy has made an invaluable contribution to the employee ownership culture within Leading Lives and beyond through her advocacy of the model.

Lucy has played an integral role at Leading Lives since the organisation spun-out from Suffolk County Council in 2012 and has consistently built her profile within her sector and region, championing and promoting the employee ownership model. Leading Lives is an employee owned cooperative with over 20 years’ experience in providing the highest quality social care, and is recognised as one of the top 10 social co-operatives in the UK.

Lucy was voted on to the Leading Lives board and subsequently became its Chair in 2014, contributing to the company’s success in achieving business growth in and beyond the county borders.

Deb Oxley, Chief Executive of the EOA said: “Lucy has worked tirelessly to engender a successful culture of employee engagement within her organisation. It is clear the Lucy lives and breathes Employee Ownership, and is well deserving of the title

“At a time when the role of employees in businesses are high on the politica agenda, this is a perfect example of the type of success elected employee representatives can deliver.”

Lucy Humphreys, Leading Lives, said:

“I’m proud to be nominated and to have won the award. It’s a lot to take in and overwhelming, especially in front of the huge audience.

“The sessions I will go to at the conference tomorrow will also inspire me and leave me going back to work feeling more creative. So I will take away a lot with me from this year’s conference.”

Ewan Hall, Director of Legal, Baxendale, said: “Congratulations to Employee Owner of the Year Lucy Humphrey from Leading Lives, which celebrates her commitment to championing employee ownership throughout her workplace and beyond.

“Employee ownership is at the core of what we do so we’re proud to sponsor the UK Employee Ownership Awards, run by the EOA, for a second year and delighted to celebrate the stories of success. The awards hold a special significance as the successor to the Philip Baxendale Awards, which grew over 10 years from our internal celebration of success into a national celebration of the UK’s employee owned sector.”

A full list of the UK EO Awards is available to view here.