Slugger Awards: The shortlist…

There’s been a fair amount of speculation as to who has made the shortlist and who hasn’t. Some of the choices made themselves and there will certainly be some surprises. But this is who you have nominated, the readers panel with the judges finally picking the winners. The list is not, nor was it ever meant to be definitive. And I have no doubt there are potential winners not mentioned. Once in the year, it’s our attempt to recognise the moments in the political cycle when our politicians (and the people who have a hand in reporting them to the public) were caught out doing something good. So let us have your thoughts?


Up-and-Coming Politician of the Year, presented by Common Purpose

Steven Agnew

Simon Hamilton MLA

Michelle O’Neill MLA

Local Newspaper of the Year, presented by the Equality Commission

Andersonstown News

Dungannon News and Tyrone Courier

The Gown

Local Council of the Year, presented by WIMPS

Belfast City Council

Down District Council

Limavady Borough Council

Local Councillor of the Year, sponsored by 4iP

Cllr Conor Maskey [corrected]

Cllr PJ McAvoy

Cllr Cara McShane

Cllr Maire Hendron

MLA of the Year, presented by NICVA

John O’Dowd MLA

Dawn Purvis MLA

Peter Weir MLA

Campaign of the Year, presented by the MLA of the Year

Belfast Airport Watch campaign

Belfast Telegraph ‘Sit Down and Sort it Out’ campaign

Employers for Childcare Vouchers campaign

Participation and Involvement Award, presented by the British Council

Assembly Commission- Assembly Roads and engagement programme

Inclusive Mobility and Transport Advisory Committee (IMTAC)

Public Achievement

Journalist of the Year, presented by Johnsons Solicitors

Mark Devenport

David Gordon

Julia Paul

Suzanne Breen

Political Blogger of the Year, presented by the Commissioner for Public Appointments in NI

Alan Meban (Alan in Belfast)

Daithí McKay MLA

Splintered Sunrise

Committee Chair of the Year, presented by Stratagem

Fred Cobain MLA

Paul Maskey MLA

Jim Wells MLA

Politician of the Year, presented by Slugger O’Toole

Jim Allister

Arlene Foster MLA

Martin McGuinness MP MLA

  • anna

    I see its a bit of a Sinn Fein awards night then…

  • Michelle

    Am I wrong or is there a Sinn Fein person in every category?? I am quite confident to say that there are hard working politicians and councillors from every party… but unfortunately awards ceremonies like this dont give them the recognition they deserve!

    For example, I do recall seeing Margaret Ritchie quite a lot being nominated for MLA of the year and cant recall seeing Peter Weir. Again, I cant see Julia Paul’s name anywhere for journalist of the year… unless there was secret nominations I am a bit shocked at the short list!!

  • Good luck to all those on the shortlists and commiserations to those who fell by the Awards wayside.

    But we could all play a part in making free speech and political blogging the real winners today. That’s by getting behind a campaign to free two bloggers who have recently been imprisoned in Azerbaijan for daring to ‘do a Slugger’, by holding their government to account.

    Emin Abdullayev (blogger name Emin Milli) and Adnan Hajizade are blogging activists who use lots of the new media tools to advance accountable government – blogging, YouTube, Facebook, Twitter… and they have just been sentenced to two-and-a-half and two years respectively.

    Wouldn’t it be great if Northern Ireland’s blogging / online community could come together to adopt their cases and run a campaign to get them out of jail. Anyone up for it?

    Full story with links here.

  • milo

    The question is – if John O’Dowd wins MLA of the Year and the Belfast Telegraph’s ‘Sit Down Sort it Out’ wins Campaign of the Year, will he present the award?

    Three words Mick: make it happen.

  • salem

    LOL Mick – you have to admit Milo has a good point !

    Just on one point – two SF councillors in for councillor of the year ! This just makes me laugh as I spoke to someone yesterday who said they are trying to make the sluggers a real cross party event.

    Also if Steven Agnew does not win the Up and comming – this total event has been a farce !

  • Anna

    I agree with Salem. Steven Agnew to give the event a bit of optimism.
    And if I heard correctly this morning on Nolan, Paul Maskey said that he has stepped down as Councillor as of 2 months ago.

  • nmc

    I was gonna take the piss there, but in fairness, I’ve actually seen Paul Maskey in the community on occasion, dishing out trophies to the kids at the football that kind of thing.

  • Remember that the shortlists are a subset of the nominations made by Slugger readers. So if politicians weren’t nominated, they couldn’t be shortlisted.

    You get who you vote for, and in this case, you get who you nominate.

  • I’m a bit miffed that the Louth woman Ruane didn’t make the nominations for ‘Campaign of the Year’, for her futile attempt to destroy our children’s post primary education. Was Hermann Munster’s nomination as MLA of the year, a consolation prize for this glaring omission?

  • Anna

    Alan in Belfast,

    Were there private nominations made too? Just after having a wee look in the MLA nomination thread and had it been based purely on the nominations there, Peter Weir should not be in the category considering he only received one nomination. I can see that John O’Dowd and Dawn Purvis were popular choices however IAnna Lo and Margaret Ritchie received the same number of nominations as Purvis, all gaining 4 a piece.

    So where Peter Weir comes from is beyond me, and on what grounds Lo and Ritchie were excluded is questionable.

  • BOM

    I would be interested to see how this short list was established. I seem to remember seeing quite a few other names up for Councillor of the year more so than one or two that have been shortlisted.

    Please explain how this system works?

    Am disappointed that the SDLP are not represented – they do have some very good representatives and were nominated but none of the names are on the shortlist.

  • Drumlins Rock

    so we only have any unionist councillors councillors, was about to get ready for the treck down, not sure if I will bother now.

  • Drumlins Rock

    mucked that one up, no good at huffing, usually slam the door on my fingers. what I meant was I see there are no Unionist councillors shortlisted despite numerous nominations, and some of those shortlisted hardly seem to have un-nanimous support.

  • Mark McGregor

    If it works the same as last year:

    All the reader nominations from the website are presented at the readers panel meeting.

    The readers panel last year was pretty decent and left personal politics at the door (I didn’t go this time).

    They help create the shortlist.

    That list goes to the judges panel.

  • Drumlins Rock

    dont know Mark about the cerdibility of the whole process, it has moved on from just a bit of fun as you will prob see “winners” using it for self promotion. Might still go down for the crack, but dont have a big pile of faith in it atm.

  • Mick Fealty

    I hear what people are saying, but seriously, this is all down to the people who nominate, and those who volunteer for the reader’s panel. It is a self election. May be we need to be more rigorous in getting the message out next year, but…

    I’m on Evening Extra this evening…

  • Drumlins Rock

    Mick there were 2 strong unionist councillors nominated so that excuse cant be used. no idea who what or where the readers panel was
    but for a site promoting free discussion and fair play if all seems too random and easily manipulated.

  • Drumlins Rock

    PS.
    I went down afterall, had a good night, got to meet a few of yous and hobnobbing a bit 🙂
    most of the awards were fair enough, will let them away with it this time.

    PPS. think Sammy wee video slot on blogging was the hi-light of the night!

  • Moochin Photoman

    Drumlin… good to meet you (at the bar)
    Sammy Wilson did get the biggest laugh on his video response to blogging and what it meant to him.
    Great night all round and great to make the virtual real.
    Heres a quick post of the Politics blogger of the year ….Alan in Belfast

  • Mark McGregor

    Sore head. I remember slabbering at Liam Clarke and Paul Evans and booing Bob Geldolf (that piece was a bloody disgrace). Other than that I’m a complete blank, must have been a good night if a little (lot) corporate.

  • BOM

    Well who were the winners??

  • nmc

    Dawn Purvis was one, and Marty McG. another. They only mentioned about 3 awards, they more or less led with the teenagers celebrating the turning on of the xmas lights.

  • Pam

    I enjoyed the event, and thought the winners were all worthy.

    I have a suggestion for a new category next year – how about a ‘Best single Speech by elected politician’ category ?

  • JoMax

    Somebody told me that two of the judges who compiled the short list and picked the “winners” were Chris Donnelly, a committed (and astute) SF activist and Brian Feeney, who is full of bile and venom against the SDLP and all its works.

    How can these people stake any claim to objectivity and impartiality?

    Also, I hear the lugubrious Quinton Oliver played a major tole. QO is trying to be NI’s 21st century Ken Bloomfield, a wannabe Lord Goodman, who is trying-quite unsuccessfully, I hope-to sell the idea to cash-rich gullible international foundations and sceptical Iraqis that people like Alex Maskey have anything positive to contribute to any peace process anywhere.

    The front page of the Irish News a couple of weeks ago was beyond satire: two stories, one about the search for Gerry Evans, one of the ‘disappeared’ in a bog in the South and the other about Gerry Kelly “doing all he can to help” to free the elderly kidnapped priest in the Philippines.

    Alan Lehrer stopped doing satire when Henry Kissinger won the Nobel Peace Prize because he said nothing ever wrote could cap that.

    I have advice for Newwt Emerson: you’re good, but give it up now, no satire you write can ever match the public discourse of this God-cursed place.

  • Moochin Photoman

    My head has just about stopped throbbing!
    Mark you were in fine form and the European Parliament will never be the same for me after your lil story 🙂

  • @BOM – You’ll catch some by skimming down through http://search.twitter.com/search?q=mickfealty+#slugger09

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