2021 Director of the Year Awards "Non-Executives - The often unsung heroes" (JEP - 14 July 2021)

In the last of our series focusing on the IoD Jersey Director of the Year award categories, this week it is the turn of non-executive directors. It is quite ironic that non execs are the last category we are looking at because in many ways they are the final oversight of an organisation.

NEDs are also mostly in the background while the executives get on with the day to day running of the business. However, they are incredibly important and can have a major impact on the success of a venture so it’s fitting that we celebrate the best non-execs in Jersey through our awards.

NEDs sit on the board of an organisation and provide objective oversight and advice. They play a critical role in the corporate governance of the company and let’s be clear, their role still carries the same legal duties and responsibilities as an executive director. There has been a completely erroneous view of NEDs in the past, that they just turn up once a month, have a meeting and then go home with their pay cheque. In fact, NEDs are experienced professionals who are legally expected to protect a company’s assets and a good board will provide a balance of skills, experience, and diversity, as well as a fresh objective pair of eyes to the business.

The IoD has been providing career development training for new and existing directors for decades. Our Certificate in Company Direction qualification, for example, gives a full in-depth view of the role, responsibilities, and legal duties of a director, as well as the processes for formulating strategic business plans and leadership. We also help prepare directors by replicating the issues of a ‘real’ organisation to give hands-on experience. There are courses running throughout the year. 

One of the key areas we campaign in is to have more diversity on a board. I’m not just referring to diversity of skill sets, or even gender, there needs to be diversity in all forms. It has been proven many times that a diverse board makes better decisions and better reflects an organisation’s customer base. Had Blockbuster, the now bankrupt video rental business, had a more diverse board, they and the company might still be trading, albeit with a radically different business model that embraced online disruption. Age, background, skills, gender, and ethnicity are just some of the diversity criteria, and each organisation will have different needs.

We last included Non-executive directors in our Jersey IoD Awards, in 2018. This year the category has returned, kindly sponsored by Club NED, as we celebrate those who have led organisations through these incredibly challenging times. NED’s are just one category of an expanded award list of ten, kindly sponsored by overall gold sponsor, Appleby. Other category sponsors include; Quilter Cheviot, Jersey Post, Highvern, Butterfield Bank, Jersey Water, Voisins, JJ Fox Trading Limited and Accuro.

Nominations have now closed and our judges are currently looking through entries for the Non-executive who has not only impacted on the financial success of their organisations, but has demonstrated high ethical standards and promoted good corporate governance. Our judges will look for the individual who has used judgement and wisdom to gain their colleague’s respect and in addition helped to promote sustainability, equality, diversity, and inclusion within their organisation.

The 2021 IoD Jersey Director of the year Awards’ full list of categories is:

Large Business

SME Business

Family Business


Third Sector

Public Sector


Equality, Diversity & Inclusion



We have an excellent panel of judges, some of Jersey’s finest directors and former directors from a range of business sectors and backgrounds, who are reviewing the entries. The panel is chaired by Kevin Keen who is joined by John Henwood MBE, Brendan McMahon, Dr Lesley Dickie, Kate Wright, Kristina Le Feuvre and Tom Hacquoil.

Finally, we shall celebrate our 2021 Award winners at a black-tie ceremony at the Royal Yacht on Friday September 17th. Tickets for this dinner can be purchased on Eventbrite and are selling fast! I do hope as many people as possible will join us.

Back to news