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Aberdeen Asset Management boss wins top Scottish director award

Business leaders from the north and north-east won four of the top national honours at the 2019 IoD Scotland Director of the Year Awards last night.

The region’s successes included Robin Watson, chief executive of Aberdeen-based energy services giant Wood, who came away with the award for large company director of the year.

Jamie McGowan of Hebridean candle and home fragrance business Essence of Harris was named top director in the small to medium-sized enterprise category, while

Inverness Kart Raceway operations director Michael Golding scooped the young director of the year title.

Hugh Little, who enjoyed a 29-year career with Aberdeen Asset Management as head of acquisitions and private equity and is now chairman of Aberdeen-based charity Clan Cancer Support won the non-executive director of the year award.

Among the regional director of the year award winners at last night’s event in Glasgow was Graham McWilliam, managing director of Aberdeen-based social enterprise Glencraft, and Port of Cromarty Firth chief executive Bob Buskie.

They joined other high-achievers in collecting gongs in a celebration of the best in Scottish business. The winners of the 11 national categories now progress to the prestigious UK Director of the Year Awards, in London, in October.

After accepting his award, Mr Little said: “I suspect it reflects more on the quality of the organisations for whom I work, rather than on any specific efforts by me, but I am nonetheless very proud to receive it.”

Mr Watson was hailed by the judges for “showing leadership in circumstances which required bold and decisive action”, as well as a “personal yet professional approach and honest self-appraisal and respect for others.”

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