This year we attended the virtual CIEEM Awards which was a little bit different from previous years, but still enjoyable! It was wonderful seeing so many professionals in the field of ecology being recognised for their dedication to their work. We had the honour of sponsoring the Most Promising Professional and the Member of the Year 2021 Awards.
The Promising Professional Award is available to any member, graduate, qualifying or Associate, in the early stages of their career. The winner achieved this award by demonstrating above average competance and a strong commitment towards development, evidenced by achievements, knowledge, skills, leadership, passion and commitment, and inspiration for others, in the field of ecology and enviromental management. This award had four Promising Professional finalists:
- Rebekah Beaumont, JBA Consulting - Rebecca has been with JBA since 2018 as an Assistant Ecologist, and has been working on a variety of projects, collaborating with geomorphology, fisheries, engineers, and hydrology teams on habitat monitoring, master planning, mitigation design, and habitat restoration. She has led on three river restoration projects in the last year, improving river diversity and function. Her hours of voluntary work have totalled over 900 hours, with over 3000 birds ringed.
- Elizabeth 'Libby' Brooks, Arcadis Consulting - Libby began her career in 2018, and is known as highly enthusiastic, personable, and highly motivated. She shows care and consideration to others, she has natural leadership qualities, and impressive ecological knowledge and skills. Libby has been involved in ecological surveys for the Lower Thames Crossing Project, as well as assisting with the writing of the environmental statement chapters and technical appendices for ornithology. She has also led on the tidal bay tidal bird surveys, undertook reptile surveys and was one of the lead ecological clerk of works on Lamby Way Solar Panel Farm.
- Ellen Davies, Atkins - Ellen joined Atkins in 2017 as an assistant ecologist, and was the most junior member of staff to be appointed on a species lead during the writing of the environmental statement on the East-West Rail Project Phase 2, due to her knowledge of UK and invasive crayfish ecology. Ellen queried the methodology that had been suggested, and remodelled the methodolgy following a critical review of procedures, published guidelines, and discussions with in-house specialists. She displays an outstanding motivation towards her own development, as demonstrated by her commitment of over 140 hours volunteering with Shropshire Botanical Society and Birmingham Bat Group. She also actively volunteers on a local meadow restoration effort, and hopes to publish a joint paper on novel approaches.
- Joshua Styles, Tyrer Ecological Consultants Ltd - Joshua is a keen and commited ecologist and botanist, and is regularly consulted for his expert botanical advice when it comes to habitats, flora, and impacts on more sensitive sites. He is consistently able to identify rare species and hybrid taxa in the field. He has worked on sites where he has accompanied more senior surveyors where specialist botanical knowledge was required. Joshua is an excellent tutor on vascular and non vascular plants, and is an avid video maker. He is also the founder and project coordinator of the North-West Rare Plant Initiative.
Congratulations to Rebekah Beaumont for winning this award.
The Members Award celebrates the CIEEM member that has made a significant contribution to ecology and environmental management, and/or support for the profession on a regional or national scale. The three finalists were:
- Dr. Martina Girvan - Martina is a Chartered Ecologist with over 25 years experience in demonstrating the benefits of biodiversity in delivering productivity, stability, and resilience of ecosystem services. She consistently drives forward best practice, sharing her expertise and innovation. In addition to papers, she has written or contributed to 14 guidance document, messaging and evidencing the relationship between biodiversity and quality green infrastructure on ecosystem services, social climate, and financial stability.
- David Morris - David is a self taught botanist who dedicates much of his time to the survey and conservation of habitats. As the Botanical Society of Britain and Ireland (BSBI) vice county recorder for Oxfordshire, David spends much of his time collating and validating vascular plant records received from local volunteers and other sources, and recording the flora of the county for local and national projects. He is responsible for the conservation of two locally rare and threatened species - the flat sedge and small leaved sweet briar. He is a founding commitee member of the Oxfordshire Fens Project which aims to restore rare fen habitat in the county.
- Claire Wansbury - As Atkins Biodiversity and Natural Capital Technical Authority Claire provides engaging training on a range of subjects, such as biodiversity net gain, natural capital, environmental law, bat identification, and green bridge design. Claire actively supports individuals in a variety of ways so that they excel in their careers.
Congratulations to Claire Wansbury for winning this award.