CEO Magazine’s Executive of the Year Awards were held on the 26th November at Crown Melbourne. The glamorous night recognised the outstanding achievements of Australia’s best businesspeople in terms of their business acumen, personal achievements and their contribution to their company in terms of financial achievements, new initiatives and growth.
The winner of the coveted CEO of the Year was Christine Holgate, CEO of Blackmores Group. Under Christine’s leadership, Blackmore’s sales have grown by 36% and profits have grown by more than double this, with Blackmores securing leadership in their market, becoming the most trusted brand in the vitamin and supplement industry.
What was absolutely inspiring to see was how Christine accepted her award; it spoke volumes as to why she is such a success! When you think of a CEO accepting an award, you tend to think of it as a serious moment where the award winner will be the picture of calm, collected professionalism. You think of a well-considered speech which thanks all the necessary people and outlines the business’s future plans. But what was so refreshing to see was a CEO showing how passionate they are about their business and how much they love their work and their team.
Holgate showed her authenticity when she ran to the stage, kissed Eddie McGuire (the MC for the evening) and Chris Dutton (CEO of CEO Magazine) and jumped up and down on the podium with excitement. She was truly the personification of passion and enthusiasm. Her speech was from the heart; she thanked the people who helped her when she first moved to Australia, she thanked CEO of Swisse Vitamins, Radek Sali who helped grow the supplements industry and she shouted “I love you guys!” to her team, thanking them graciously for their efforts. She spoke about how much she loved her company and her industry. There was so much excitement and gusto in her voice and in her body language it was undeniable that she is a leader who drives change through passion. It was infectious. Congratulations Christine!
Other winners of the evening included:
- Chairperson of the Year, Barbara Yeoh, Board Chair from Monash Health
- Managing Director of the Year, Andrew Stewart, MD of Australia and Asia Wood Group PSN
- Not-for-Profit Executive of the Year, Louise Baxter, Chief Executive from Starlight Children’s Foundation
- CIO of the Year, Ajay Bhatia, Chief Product and Information Officer from Carsales
- CFO of the Year, Michael Da Gama Pinto, CFO from Swisse Wellness Pty Ltd
- HR Executive of the Year, Robyn Batson, Group People & Development Manager from Sportsgirl/Sussan Group
- Marketing Executive of Year, Michael Howard, Director of Marketing from Swisse Wellness Pty Ltd
- Sales Executive of the Year, Matthew Kates, Sales Director ANZ of Zerto
- The Start-Up Executive of the Year, Anurag Chakradhar, Founder and CEO of Blrt
- Young Executive of the Year, Adam Schwab, CEO and Co-founder of AussieCommerce Group
- The Executive Assistant of the Year, Dimitra Zographos from Western Union Business Solutions
- Financial Services Executive of the Year, Chris Ridd, the Managing Director of Xero Australia
- Retail Executive of the Year, Michael Ford, CEO at The Good Guys
- Innovation and Design Executive of the Year, Frank Seeley AM, Executive Chairman from Seeley International Pty Ltd
- Construction Executive of the Year, Jonathan Hallinan, who is Managing Director of BPM
- Energy and Resources Executive of the Year Ian Murray, Executive Chairman, Gold Road Resources Limited
- The Hospitality and Tourism Executive of the Year, Barry Robinson, President and Managing Director of Wyndham Hotel Group
- IT and Telecommunications Executive of the Year, David Dicker, Chairman and CEO at Dicker Data Limited
- Health and Pharmaceutical Executive of the Year was given to David Cade, Global Medical Director of Sirtex Medical
- Transport and Logistics Executive of the Year, Kerrie Mather, Managing Director and CEO of Sydney Airport.
- Media Executive of the Year, Luke Littlefield, CEO of Dentsu Aegis Network.
Congratulations to all the winners of the evening! Great leadership is the driving force of business and with leaders like this, Australia is well-placed in the global economic climate!