More than 300 industry leaders packed Plaisterers’ Hall, the largest livery hall in the city of London, this week to celebrate outstanding contributions and achievements of individuals in the finishing and interiors sector at the 2016 FIS President’s Awards.

There were winners announced in four award categories:

Lorrie-Ann Frater (photograph above), apprentice quantity surveyor at MACS Plasterboard Systems, won the Apprentice of the Year. The judges were particularly impressed by how Lorrie-Ann, in just a short space of time, has gained the respect of her peers, developed a wide technical knowledge, and excelled in customer care and financial awareness.

FIS President Steve Coley commented: “The way in which she embraces challenge and the fact that she has already been given projects of her own to manage is commendable.”

The other finalist were Corey Parker, apprentice ceilings and partitions fixer at Taylor Hartn and Vijay Baines, apprentice plasterer at Taylor Hart.

The Outstanding Employee category was won by Andy Parkin, a director at The Window Film Company UK. The judges commented: “Andy’s commitment to the organisation is demonstrated by his relationship with all members of the organisation. He inspires confidence in those around him through the experience he has gained, as he has helped grow the business.”

Other finalist included Frank Lohan, from  Stortford Interiors (UK)and Damian Hill, from SIG.

Stephen Byrne, project manager at Stortford Interiors (UK) won the Future Leader award and Claire Ratcliffe, associate director of design at  Paragon Interiors Group, was runner up.

The Lifetime Achievement Award was presented to Howard Winter who retired last year after completed 25 years with Sound Interiors. His unrelenting enthusiasm, drive and knowledge has benefited everyone he has come in to contact with, whether they be manufacturer, supplier, main contractor or end user.

Howard was nominated by former colleague Graham Flynn, who said: “I don’t believe it is unreasonable to suggest that he is not only a loss to the business but also a loss to the industry. Some would say he was forceful in his approach but I would argue that he was passionate, dedicated and determined, and who wouldn’t want him fighting in your corner?”

Photograph : L-R Steve Coley (FIS President), Howard Luft (Managing Director of CCF), Lorrie-Ann Frater (Winner of Apprentice of the Year), Dominic Frisby (Guest speaker, writer and comedian).

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