November 25, 2020

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SHP Trailblazer Awards

Finalists announced for SHP’s Trailblazer in Positive Social Impact Award

The SHP Awards judging panel has selected four finalists for SHP’s Trailblazer in Positive Social Impact Award.

SHP Awards Trailblazer

New for 2020, the SHP Trailblazer Awards celebrate those who are going above and beyond to make a positive difference, the real pioneers of health and safety.

Trailblazer in Positive Social Impact recognises individuals who have shone a spotlight on an ethical issue, addressed social challenges or helped the community. This could be through volunteering or initiatives at work.

The SHP Trailblazer Awards are brought to you as part of the wider SHP Awards, in collaboration with the HSE and IATP.

The winners will be announced in mid-December.

The finalists are:



Blair Boyd, SHE Manager, SSE

Blair BoydBlair is part of the IOSH West of Scotland Branch and has been instrumental in keeping the voice of safety during the COVID-19 pandemic. He has set up the ‘Safer Than Your Average Podcast’, speaking to industry leaders and safety professionals. The podcast provides a real insight into the background of the individuals and how they came to their positions.

Judges commented how Blair’s podcast has “reached audiences that perhaps other podcasts haven’t” and described it as a “down to earth chat between two safety professionals.” It was developed to support new entrants into health and safety. In the podcasts Blair has conducted interviews with eminent professionals as well interviewed survivors of major disasters including Piper Alpha and 9/11.

Judges noted how he has clearly helped others, including young people in the profession.

Blair is a Programme Manager for the Contractor Safety group and Lead SHE Assurance Auditor at SSE. He has worked in a variety of industries including construction and rail infrastructure engineering, before moving to his current roles.

Thomas Dunning, Director, Mental Health Runner

Thomas DunningTom has worked at British Sugar since 2009. After completing his mechanical engineering apprenticeship and achieving his HND, he moved into a Process Technician role from 2012. Outside of his day job, he devotes most of his time to help improve the mental health of others as “Mental Health Runner”. Tom accidentally found out how running helps with mental health – being in a world where he was hearing and seeing things, psychotic rages and countless attempted suicides, running would be a main contributor to saving his life. He is an international keynote and TED speaker who shares his mental health journey explicitly to show the world that it really is “okay to not be okay”.

The judges were impressed with how Tom has turned a negative into a positive and opened the subject up to a much wider audience. It was described as a ‘simple concept, personally driven, but one that has had an impact on others”.

It was also noted how Tom doesn’t work in mental health as his day job, he’s a mechanical engineer. Nevertheless, he got his employer, British Sugar to sign up to the mental health at work commitment by working with the board of directors and staff from all different sites.

Judith Grant, Director of Health & Wellbeing, Mace Group

Judith GrantJudith has shared her very personal struggle with long-COVID on LinkedIn, with regular posts during the pandemic, educating others about the condition. She has spoken openly about her trips to A&E, breathing difficulties, her intense fatigue, headaches, nerve paid and mental health. Many of her posts have had hundreds of likes and thousands of views. Her posts have sparked a lot of conversation and many other people have shared their own experiences with long-COVID and other illnesses in the comments section. Judith has also actively shared other information resources about long-COVID.

Judges commented how she has ‘shone a light on long-COVID and brought it to the fore’, helping the wider community. They also pin-pointed how she has demonstrated vulnerability and courage that, although is aligned to role, is a personal commitment beyond the job description and has impacted many.

Jag Sidhu, Managing Director, NBC Group

Jag’s nomination commented how had ‘not just survived but thrived through COVID’. Judges commented on how the entry highlighted Jag’s role as a ‘strong mentor’ outside his day job. He was described as being ‘selfless in his support’ and it was highlighted by the judging panel how, whilst construction is moving towards stronger equality and diversity, there is some way to go, but that Jag is a diversity role model and has encouraged people to enter construction that had never considered construction before. His work as described by the judges as a “great example of being an active positive ambassador for diversity & inclusion and supporting his community.”

Judges were impressed at the idea of “looking at diversity and inclusion, which is just not something we really talk about in safety. Actually going back to some basic principles of making safety an ethical choice and placing then placing safety in the context of ethics.”

Jag was awarded Fellowship for Highways & Transport in December 2020.

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