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Asian Women of Achievement Awards: The 2012 winners

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An inspiring evening at the London Hilton Park Lane hotel draws to an end. Tonight celebrated the success of Britain’s pioneering Asian women – and an amazing celebration it was. 

The Asian Women of Achievement Awards, hosted by Real Business, Pinky Lilani OBE and Caspian Media, took place for the 13th time tonight and once again presented an incredible list of talented, ambitious nominees from ground-breaking entrepreneurs, passionate philanthropists to City professionals.

“Tonight’s winners have all shown courage, intelligence and determination to succeed in their chosen fields and will certainly help to inspire the next generation of ambitious women keen to make their mark in the professional, business or cultural sectors,” commented Chris Sullivan of RBS, the Asian Women of Achievement Awards’ main supporter.

The Awards’ founder Pinky Lilani said: “We’re now in our 13th year of the Asian Women of Achievement Awards and the wealth and variety of the talent we unearth year-on-year never ceases to amaze me.”

“These women are remarkably talented and are true trailblazers in their individual sectors and specialities, but they all share one common goal: to make a positive difference for young Asian women.”

From a shortlist of 52 candidates, the winners of the eleven categories are:

The Arts and Culture Award 

Indhu Rubasingham, artistic director, The Tricycle Theatre, for her “astounding achievements” in theatre, having also directed at the National Theatre, The Royal Court and The Almeida.

Business Woman of the Year 

Vicky Shu, lead project engineer, Shell UK, for her delivery of ground-breaking projects in the offshore gas industry and her support of young female engineers entering the industry, “a future trailblazer”.

The Social & Humanitarian Award 

Rena Amin, head of medicine management, Greenwich PCT – a passionate contributor to numerous community initiatives, she had “an exceptional personal story”.

Young Achiever of the Year 

Jia-Yan Gu, researcher, BT Group – for leading collaborative scientific research projects across the world, and her charity work supporting female victims of sexual abuse, “her moral compass is extremely strong”.

Professional of the Year 

Tasmina Ahmed-Sheikh, solicitor and actress, Hamilton Burns W.S. Solicitors – providing legal services to black and minority ethnic women, whilst aspiring to be Scotland’s first Asian female MSP, “a whirlwind of passion”.

The Public Service Award 

Mei Sim Lai, principal, LaiPeters & Co – “for her phenomenal dedication to public service throughout her adult life”, and as the first Chinese and female partner of a leading firm of City chartered accountants.

The Sports Award 

Salma Bi, the first and only Mulsim woman to play the Worcestershire Country Cricket Club, who is now employed by the England Cricket Board as a cricket coach.

Media Professional of the Year 

Sangita Myska, BBC News correspondent – for her involvement in the secret filming of Bulgarian child traffickers and being a key reporter in last year’s London riots.

The Entrepreneur Award 

Farida Gibbs, CEO and founder of GibbsS3, Europe’s fastest-growing IT staffing and consulting business.

The Chairman’s Award 

Sungjoo Kim, CEO and chairperson of luxury fashion brand MCM Holdings AG for “overcoming widespread prejudice and family opposition to become one of her country’s most highly respected entrepreneurs”.

The Community Award 

Cisco– for making a difference in the community through their academies and teaching schemes, with “a credible strategy of progress and implementation with positive and emerging results”.

Key supporters of the Asian Women of Achievement Awards include: RBS, Etihad Airways, Land Rover, PwC, Sodexo, MITIE, Asda, Aviva, Visa, the Independent on Sunday and Said Business School.

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