The Wales HR Network is extremely excited to announce two truly inspirational keynote speakers from the Duke of Edinburgh’s (DofE) Award in Wales at this year’s Wales HR Awards, just weeks before the deadline for 2018 entries.

Partnership Manager for the DofE Award charity, Ian Gwilym, who has a 30-year career supporting young people to ensure they succeed in a work environment, will give an insight into the DofE and the fantastic work they carry out, and DofE Young Ambassador, Billie Horsey, will share her journey and the heartening support she received from the DofE.   Billie completed all three levels of the DofE Awards and has since gone on to become a qualified leader and assessor. At only 22, she is now a Welsh Ambassador for the charity and has started two groups of her own in Rhondda Cynon Taf.


Speaking about the event, Ian Gwilym said:

“I am really looking forward to speaking at the Wales HR Awards and meeting some of Wales’ premier HR professionals.

“Helping further develop young people’s soft skills for work is a huge part of the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award programme, something I think will resonate with the HR professionals at the Awards.  Over 11,500 people enrol on a DofE Award in Wales every year, so it’s great to be able to show and talk about the commitment that goes behind achieving the DofE status, which of course is then a truly valuable asset for the workplace.”

The Awards, which will be held at the Exchange Hotel, Cardiff on 23rd March 2018, were created by leading recruitment and training agency, Acorn, and commercial law firm Darwin Gray, to offer HR professionals the opportunity to acknowledge the commitment, hard work and achievements of colleagues from across Wales.

Maria Larcombe, Director of Operations for South Wales at Acorn, said:

“We are extremely excited to have Ian Gwilym and Billie Horsey as our awards speakers. We have seen first-hand the absolutely wonderful effects the DofE has on young people and I know Billie’s story will inspire every single person in the room.

“This is the second Wales HR Awards and to have speakers of such high calibre really demonstrates the importance of recognising HR professionals in Wales.”

Fflur Jones, Partner at Darwin Gray and Head of its Employment Law and HR department, added:

“There is already a real buzz around the event and we have received some great early nominations. We’re expecting lots more entries ahead of the 31st January deadline. It will be a wonderful occasion; hearing from Ian and Billie will no doubt be inspirational and we’re sure everyone who attends will be overwhelmed at the richness of Welsh talent we’ll celebrate that night.”

The countdown for nominations has now begun as the deadline for entries is Wednesday 31st January 2018. Categories include:

  • HR Team of the Year
  • Best Use of Welsh Language
  • Independent HR Consultant of the Year
  • HR Director of the Year
  • HR Apprentice / Trainee of the Year
  • Best HR Professional in a variety of sectors

And new Awards for 2018 HR Star of the Year and Employer of the Year.

For more information on all categories or to enter and book tickets, please click here.