West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service's Maria Tonks has been named Equality and Inclusion Champion of the Year in the first enei Awards.
Maria, who is the fire authority's Corporate Diversity Manager, scooped the prize from a prestigious line-up of equality ambassadors representing organisations such as HMRC, Transport for London, coreassets, Mets Police and Sodexo.
The Employers' Network for Equality and Inclusion (enei) Awards were held at The Law Society in London. Maria's award category was aimed as people who have made a significant contribution to improving their workplace culture.
"The scale of the challenge for Maria Tonks in this traditional sector is huge," said the judges. "The service has top level commitment and has successfully embedded equality and diversity into the way it works."
West Yorkshire Assistant Chief Officer Martyn Redfearn added that much of the brigade's success in recent years was attributable to the way it tried to reflect, understand and prioritise the needs of the diverse communities it served. "In this respect, we all owe a great deal to Maria's drive and determination to make a difference."
Maria has extensive equality and HR experience and has worked in the public and private sectors both at national and international levels. She lives in Swinton, South Yorkshire, and has a son who is a firefighter and a daughter-in-law who works in the South Yorkshire Control Room.
Posted July 18th, 2012 at 1330 by Andrew. Comment by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org