A KaleidoScot journalist has been named in a list of shortlisted candidates for the inaugural Icon Awards.
The shortlist has been released today after an astonishing 20,000 public votes were cast in the online ballot, with KaleidoScot’s Andrew Page has been confirmed as a finalist in the Journalist of the Year category alongside Peter Ross (Scotland on Sunday), Vicky Allan (Herald & Times), Karen Greenshields (STV) and Gerry Cassidy, (STV Glasgow).
The nomination confirms KaleidoScot’s growing influence as a respected news provider within the Scottish LGBTI community, following a similar nomination in the Equality Network’s LGBTI Awards for Media Outlet of the Year.
Other categories likely to be hotly contested include “Employer of the Year” – finalists include the Army and Royal Navy, Glasgow’s Manhattan Nails, The Royal Jubilee Hospital, Balfour Beatty and the Marriott Hotel group.
Shortlisted finalists also include the new acclaimed BBC TV Series Transsexual Stories produced by Peachtree films which is up for the “Media Portrayal” gong and renowned make up brand Illamasqua which has reached the final of the awards “Beauty” prize.
Another category receiving a huge amount of votes was Venue of the year, with finalists from as far as The Rusty Nail in Ayr and Cheerz in Aberdeen. Also appearing is The Glasgow Marriott Hotel, the award winning Waterloo Bar in Glasgow and Edinburgh institution Cafe Habana.
Michael Macfarlane, Event organiser for The Icon Awards is “astounded” by the response and says he “couldn’t be happier with the choices of the Scottish Public”.
He added “It’s very important to me that we get the public behind The Icon Awards, and let them decide who should go through, and I am delighted at the results. The sheer number of votes and the level of finalists show how far as a country we have come, and proves to me that the time is now to recognise what’s needed here in Scotland”.
Recognising the community has been at the forefront of The Icon Awards campaign, and the committee has had the painstaking task of looking through all nominations for the community based prizes.
Scott Barclay, chair of The Icon Awards Board, believes “the LGBTI community has done well in highlighting true unsung heroes across Scotland”.
He added “it’s very important to recognise those that often go without any recognition at all, and picking the top five in these categories wasn’t easy for anyone involved. I firmly believe that the shortlists created reflect the LGBTI community across Scotland, and showcase the best of the LGBTI community across the country.”
Community based categories include “Volunteer of the Year”, the “Community Spirit Award”, “Role Model of the Year” and a special “Uniformed Icon Award” for those working within uniformed professions across the country.
Popular organisations Leap Sports, Highland LGBT Forum, The Gay Police Association and Pride Glasgow have all been shortlisted in various categories.
The awards final set for Glasgow’s Crowne Plaza Hotel on October 9th will be hosted by Edinburgh based comedian Bruce Devlin and will see performances from GAMTA, local star Angela G Brown and Scottish comedian and LGBT role model Rhona Cameron. Rhona, who now resides in London, is looking forward to getting back to her roots for the event. “I look forward to visiting Glasgow for this special LGBT celebratory evening, I haven’t been there in years, do they have vegetables now?” she joked.
There will also be a special closing performance from Eurovision 2014 winner Conchita Wurst, who will be flying into Glasgow from Vienna for the first time to attend the event.
On commenting on her imminant trip to Scotland, Conchita said; “I am very pleased to visit Scotland for the first time in my life, it is about time! To be at the night of the Icon Awards 2015 is a huge privilege for me and I hope the LGBTIQ commmunity in Glasgow will have a fabulous and encouraging evening”.
Conchita has agreed to do a select meet and greet at Light Nighclub after the event, before flying back out to Vienna in the early hours.
Other guests will include renowned LGBTI activist Michelle Visage who will fly in from Los Angeles to collect a special “Straight Ally” award, Scottish singing legend Horse Macdonald, and Waterloo Road star and singer Heather Peace who is “excited” to co present the nights “Role Model” award with David Sinclair from Pride Glasgow.
The night is also expected to attract stars, politicians and respected dignitaries from around the country, all coming together to show support and celebrate Scotland’s bustling LGBTI community, with personal messages in from First Minister Nicola Sturgeon and UK equalities minister Rt Hon Nicky Clarke.
The Politician of the Year prize, one of the most sought after on the night, will be handed out by sponsor The Sunday Herald and has received support from both Holyrood and Westminster. Shortlisted finalists include SNP minister Derek Mackay, Scottish Greens leader Patrick Harvie and Scottish Conservatives leader Ruth Davidson but surprisingly not the First Minister.
The evening will be in aid of Edinburgh based HIV and Hepatitis charity Waverley Care, and it is hoped a substantial amount will be raised from activities throughout the night.
Grant Sugden CEO of Waverley Care said, “The ICON awards are a fantastic platform for Waverley Care to raise awareness of HIV and Hepatitis C in Scotland and we are delighted to be chosen as the beneficiary charity for the awards.
Like the Icon Awards, at Waverley Care we celebrate diversity and no matter who we work with, we strive to make sure that every person we meet feels respected and encouraged.
There is still so much work to do in the treatment and prevention of HIV and Hepatitis C. The money raised will be vital in helping us continue our work across Scotland reducing new infections, getting people diagnosed and supporting those affected both emotionally and practically.”
The night’s most prestigious award, The Icon Award, which will go to an individual that embodies everything the Icon Awards stands for, will be presented on the night to an unsuspecting guest at the close of the evening.
Tickets for the awards are available and can be purchased by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling 0141 774 5272.
Full List of 2015 Finalists
Volunteer of the year (Presented By UK Black Pride)
Tommy Clarke, Safe Zone
David Sinclair, Pride Glasgow
Christopher Lang, Castlemilk Youth Complex
Mark Mciver, Waverley Care
David Barclay, Beatson
Community Spirit Award (Presented by Gaia Magazine)
Gay Police Association
Loud & Proud Choir
Highland LGBT Forum
Uniformed Icon of the year (Presented by Royal Air Force)
Douggie Graham, Army LGBT
Frazer Robertson, Brittish Transport Police
Douglas S Ward, Royal Navy
Jane Christie Flight, NHS, Golden Jubilee Hospital
Alan Sneddon, Police Scotland
Sporting Icon of the year (Presented by Stonewall)
Leap Sports Scotland
Role model of the year (Presented by Pride Glasgow and Heather Peace)
Rev. Scott Rennie, Church of Scotland
Karen Dunbar, Comedian
Jai Latto, Miss Transgender Scotland
Jennie Robertson, Trans Activist
Julie Clarke, Author, Becoming Julie
Derek Ogg QC
Businessperson of the year (Presented by Aamer Anwar)
Nick Cohen, PCR
John Amabile, Amabile Designs
Lee Beatie, Wire Media
Steven Mcleod, Aurora Hotel Collection
Craig Mathieson, CM Financial
Wedding Venue of the year (Presented By Tartan Partnerships)
29 Private Members Club
The Corinthian Club
The Parsonage at Dunmore Park
Venue of the year (Presented by Absolut Vodka and QS magazine)
The Waterloo Bar, Glasgow
Planet OUT, Edinburgh
Cafe Habana, Edinburgh
Katies Bar, Glasgow
Rusty Nail, Ayr
Marriott Hotel, Glasgow
Entertainer of the year (presented by Xpress Radio & Michelle Visage)
Business of the year (Presented by Gaydio)
Cafe Nom De Plume
Ginger & Lime Events
Fergus & Glover
Pets N Vets
Abandon Ship Apparel
Marketing Campaign of the year (Presented by We Are AD)
#Be Happy, Pride Glasgow
Gilead Sciences, ChemSex campaign
SHHH!, LGBT Youth Scotland
Gay Is Ok, Lush
Journalist of the year (Presented by Gina Mckee & Viovet)
Peter Ross, Scotland on Sunday
Vicky Allan, Herald & Times
Karen Greenshields, STV
Gerry Cassidy, STV Glasgow
Andrew Page, Kaleidoscot
Politician of the year (Presented by The Sunday Herald)
Ruth Davidson, Scottish Conservatives
Patrick Harvey, Scottish Greens
Angela Crawley, SNP
Mhari Black, SNP
Derek Mackay, SNP
Employer of the year (Presented by Suki Sandhu from OUTstanding)
Golden Jubilee Hospital
Glasgow City Council
Media portrayal award (Presented by Kiehls)
Transexual Stories, Peachtree Films, BBC
BBC River City
Beauty Industry award (Presented by Mr Gay World Stu Hatton)
Terry Dunn Hair
Butterfly Medi Spaa
Rainbow Rooms George Square
Craig Andrew Hairdressing
Star Tanning & Beauty
Waverley Care Award (Presented by Waverley care)
To be decided
Straight Ally Award (Presented by G1?)