Organisers cancel this year's Valerie Baker Memorial Award

Organisers cancel this year's Valerie Baker Memorial Award | Insurance Business

Organisers cancel this year

The organisers of the Valerie Baker Memorial Award have announced that the 2020 edition has been cancelled.

The award, which recognises excellence in professional practice in the general insurance intermediary sector, was due to open for entrants in May, supported by Steadfast, AIMS, and Gold Seal, along with Lloyd’s.

The prize was to include an expenses-paid trip to London, an education experience tailored to the winner’s special interests, and a thorough familiarisation with Lloyd’s of London and the workings of the London market.

Read more: Valerie Baker winners return from London

However, disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic has forced the organisers to cancel the award.

“We are conscious that previous winners and finalists have received a considerable boost to their business opportunities through the Valerie Baker Award,” said Sheila Baker, chair of the judging panel and managing director at Gold Seal. “Now is potentially the most important time for these to be created, but similarly the level of disruption to intermediaries and their clients means entering could be an additional distraction. At the end of the day, an award that includes a trip to London is simply not practical in the current environment.”

Gold Seal said that plans are in place for the 2021 edition of the award to open for entrants in 12 months’ time.

“I expect next year’s applications to include impressive stories of how people have responded to this unprecedented situation,” said Baker.