"Richard personifies integrity, loyalty, tenacity and professionalism. Having started his career in 1996 at Emap, he moved to Austin West, then MEC before finding his home at John Ayling & Associates. Richard joined the board in 2013 aged 39. He became MD in 2017 and was promoted to CEO in 2021. This nomination is about Richard’s actions over the last year. Many agency leaders have faced challenging times but we believe Richard stands out and deserves recognition. After the tragic loss of former CEO, Rob Stephens to COVID-19 in May 2020, Richard has inspired and galvanised the agency."