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IACCM's Contracting Excellence Awards provide global recognition for individuals whose leadership has resulted in exceptional business or social benefits. The results of the 2017 contest were announced at the IACCM Europe conference in Dublin on May 8th.

The awards ceremony was introduced by Barbara Chomicka, Associate with Arcadis and member of the IACCM Board of Directors. I had a dream to create a recognition scheme for contract management and commercial professionals who do the right thing, who can demonstrate success, and who achieve the best results. This year we were overwhelmed with your support of this recognition scheme.”

As a result of the volume and high standards of entry, awards were given for three different categories:

  • Social Benefit: the award was won by Gary Crag for his work in transforming the bidding and contracting process and document design for work by his employer, Nexen, with the Canadian native tribes. The judges applauded this initiative in social inclusion.

  • Public Sector: the award was shared by Lesley Palumbo of Watford Borough Council and Mark Mills from Portsmouth Water (UK) for their leadership in reforming approaches to buying and delivering business value in their respective organizations.

  • Corporate transformation: the award was won by Reinhard Plaza-Bartsch from for his achievement in transforming the contracting process, organization and systems being used in support of supply management at Vodafone.

Commenting on the award program, Chair of the judges Lamar Chesney said: “This program is very close to my heart. I have been a CEO, CFO or CPO in 11 companies in four decades. I would like to encourage you, each and every one, to submit next year because you are in a very special role. You may not recognize that, but if you listen deeply to what was said at this conference, we have a huge ability to see holistically and to articulate heartfully. Submitting the application is not just promoting yourself, it is a promoting the profession, and it is actually promoting progress.

IACCM CEO Tim Cummins reminded delegates of the ceremony in 2016 at the IACCM conference in Rome. “If you were with us then, you probably can remember the very emotional moment where Susan Wittenberg of the Gates Foundation won the award for her work in the elimination of polio in West Africa. As a contract manager, she assembled a team, she overcame the political challenges in West Africa. It was a phenomenal achievement, and it still makes me emotional thinking about it. It was the first time I’ve seen so many people crying about contract management!”

While this year may not have been so emotionally charged, the winners reflected the invaluable work that is undertaken by contracts and commercial staff and the scale of contribution that can be made by professionals who show such high levels of personal commitment and leadership.

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