MEET OUR JUDGES

A big thank you to our judges who have the enjoyable yet difficult task of selecting the winners for each category.  

Craig Williams MP

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Craig was born in Montgomeryshire and grew up in Welshpool. He now lives in Llanfair Caereinion with his wife and two children. Prior to his Parliamentary Career, Craig held various positions in local government, Welsh Assembly and UK Government. He was elected Member of Parliament for Montgomeryshire at the General Election in December 2019, having previously been a Member of Parliament for Cardiff North between 2015 - 2017. Craig has worked as a Special Adviser to the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union. He now sits on the International Trade Select Committee, and the European Statutory Instruments Committee. Craig joined Government in March 2020 as Parliamentary Private Secretary to the Chief Secretary of the Treasury.

Thom Kennedy

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Thom is the editor of the Powys County Times. He was appointed to the role last year, having previously spent seven years as business and farming editor of the Shropshire Star, then a year as the editor of a magazine in Shropshire. Originally from County Durham, the 38-year-old is now settled in the area and has embraced life working in Powys, where he is supported by a terrific, dedicated team of talented local journalists.

Yasmin Bell

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Yasmin Bell is the Chief Executive Officer of Citizens Advice Powys.

Yasmin is a local person, who was educated and has worked in Montgomeryshire all her life. For the past 15 years Yasmin has worked for Citizens Advice Powys and in October 2020 was appointed as CEO.  She is very proud to work for an organisation that provides a free, essential advice service to those in need across Powys. Being involved in her local community has always been important to Yasmin and she currently volunteers as a leader with Newtown Police Cadets. Yasmin is delighted to be involved in the Awards, that recognises all of the excellent voluntary work that is being done in the local community.

Angela Owen

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Angela has been Head of Internal Services at PAVO (Powys Association of Voluntary Organisations) for almost 20 years. Her role includes Finance, HR, Business and Strategic Planning, Quality Assurances, IT and Internal Audit. In her younger days she was a keen member of the YFC movement at club, county and national level and is still involved in YFC, currently sitting on the Montgomery Federation Board of Management. Angela is also heavily involved in the running of Newtown Sports Club. Having been with PAVO and volunteered with many groups over the years, Angela greatly appreciates the importance and relevance of volunteers and helpers, and this has been particularly prevalent during the COVID 19 pandemic when many groups and individuals have stepped up to help out.

Paul Hawthorn
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Paul moved to Montgomeryshire in 1976 at the age of 7. He has been in the beer / pub industry for 31 years, currently self employed as a Licensed Trade Consultant looking after 16 pubs (when they reopen!)

A big sports fan, in his younger days, Paul represented Newtown in football, rugby, basketball, hockey and still plays cricket alongside his duties as Chairman.

Paul has been amazed how communities have come together during the pandemic and is passionate that those who went over and above to support them are recognised in these Awards.