Ironmongery experts celebrated at industry awards

Dedicated industry professionals and promising newcomers within the door hardware industry were recognised at the annual IAI awards ceremony on 23 February.

The IAI Fellowship Award is given to an individual who has shown a longstanding and ongoing commitment to the IAI over at least 10 years, and who is still actively involved within the industry and Institute. This year’s winner was Mario Del-Signore, director of CES UK and the current treasurer of the GAI.

Mario started as a committee member for the IAI South East branch before becoming branch chair. He went on to become vice chair of the IAI, and then served as chairman from 2015 to 2018. During his time as chair, Mario helped to develop the ongoing One Future Vision initiative, has been a strong voice for the Institute at Executive level and has been a tremendous support to our overseas branches.

The Paul Lewis Award for Customer Service is given to an individual, group or company that has made an outstanding commitment to customer services throughout the year.

Karen Nelson, business development manager at HOPPE (UK) and chair of the IAI Midlands branch, won the award after being nominated by one of her customers for her technical and product support.

The GAI Award for Services to the Institute is awarded to a current IAI member who has made a recent and visible contribution at branch level.

This year’s winner was Michael Spoors, managing director of Norseal and recently stepped down as branch chair of the IAI South East branch. He is also a member of the Education Committee and the CPD working party. Michael was nominated for his passion for promoting the IAI and helping to develop members of both his branch, and the wider Institute members.

The Promising Ironmonger of the Year award went to Cameron Parry, sales advisor at Locks & Fittings Ltd.This award is given to the brightest ironmongers in the early stages of their careers.

Cameron has impressed fellow Institute members with his dedication to learning the industry at such a young age. He completed the third year of the GAI Diploma at just 18, and is now working towards his RegAI status.

Jo Milne-Rowe, chair of the IAI, said;

“Each year, the awards highlight the commitment of our Institute members. The Institute relies on its members to keep supporting their branches and spreading the message about the benefits of being a part of the ironmongery community.

“It’s important that we continue to learn and grow as professionals to keep giving customers high quality advice, and that we support each other as we continue our personal and professional development.”

The IAI Awards were held on the 23 February at the Park Royal hotel, Warrington. The awards were given at a dinner following the Institute’s AGM, an event that also included a test demonstration at the UL testing lab and CPD opportunities for Institute members.

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