National Grid's Rodney Williams wearing hard hat and high vis vest

Our award-winning Young Energy Professionals

The 2020 Young Energy Professional (YEP) Awards might have switched to a virtual ceremony this year, but they still proved exciting for some of our upcoming energy professionals, who were on the receiving end of recognition.

The Young Energy Professional (YEP) Awards, organised by industry association Energy UK, recognise the outstanding contribution and achievements of young professionals in the energy sector. This year’s awards ceremony, on Thursday 1 October, was held virtually rather than in person, but it still celebrated some of our remarkable young engineers.

We’re proud to say that we had at least one employee shortlisted in each of the four categories: Rising Star; Diversity and Inclusion Focus; Recognition of Achievement in Responding to COVID-19; and, YEP of the Year. Two of our young professionals even went a step further, taking the top spot in their categories.

Winning at diversity and inclusion

In a joint win with a Centrica nominee, Rodney Williams, Lead Project Manager in our Capital Delivery team, received the Diversity and Inclusion Focus Award. Rodney said: “It’s important to get support from the top and I feel really lucky to work at National Grid, where I can speak to senior leaders from across the organisation. Creating an inclusive environment at work is down to everyone doing the right thing and I feel I can make a real difference by keeping the focus on this important topic.”

Recognised for resilience in the pandemic

Our second win of the evening came for Project Engineer Gemma Harvey-Cole, who is also part of our Capital Delivery team. Gemma took the prize in the Recognition of Achievement in Responding to COVID-19 category. She said: “I could never have envisaged running a construction site from my kitchen table. In these exceptional times, we’ve continued to deliver safely for our customers and stakeholders, despite the challenges we face.”

Shortlisted stars

As well as our award winners, four of our other young energy professionals were shortlisted too:

  • Grace Monk as a Rising Star
  • Latisha McKenzie, in the same category as Rodney – Diversity and Inclusion Focus
  • Andrew Henderson and Lewis Mellor for Recognition of Achievement in Responding to COVID-19
  • Biniam Haddish for YEP of the Year
Advice for aspiring YEPs

Another of our employees, Emma Ford, Head of Gas Construction in Capital Delivery, also attended the event as one of the speakers. She shared some of her career insights, highlighting the importance of diverse teams in helping make real change happen. “My advice for young energy professionals can be summarised into three top tips: find work you’re passionate about; know you have a right to a seat at the table; and, always be your authentic self.”