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Star Awards

Highlights of Last Year's Star Awards: The Winners.....


  • Tenant Participation and Community Engagement Team

Customer Focus:

  • Stephen Bly

Professionalism - Individual:

  • Derek McKay

Professionalism - Team:

  • City Wardens


  • Trevor Smith

Best Idea on Employee Voice:

  • Gordon Ritchie

Lifetime Achievement Award:

  • Doug Allan and Bill Farquhar


The Star Awards were created to celebrate service excellence by individuals and teams across Aberdeen City Council. The awards are led by the Chief Executive and her management team who believe in their staff, the work of their teams and the ability of employees to make a real difference. The Star Awards are also designed to reflect and support the Council's vision for Aberdeen – A Smarter City, in that: 'we value our workforce and their role delivering services for the city'.

2013 saw the first year of the Star Awards with over 80 submissions received by colleagues, team leaders, managers and members of the public. A summary of the awards and awards ceremony follows.

2014 Star Awards People's Champion

For the second Star Awards in 2014, Aberdeen Council is seeking the People's Champion of Aberdeen. If you know someone who has made a real difference in your community we want to hear from you! To find out more about the award, and how to nominate your Champion please see our People's Champion page.


The Star Awards dinner and awards ceremony took place at the Beach Ballroom on Thursday 2 May 2013. This event would not have been possible without the kind support of all our sponsors.


       Brakes Brothers






                Stir Fresh
  RP training   

Innovative training


To reflect the high standard of achievement and excellence in service delivery we are proud to announce the judging panel for this year's awards:

  • Chief Superintendent Adrian Watson, Police Scotland, Grampian Division
  • Councillor Barney Crockett, Leader, Aberdeen City Council
  • Councillor Fraser Forsyth, Aberdeen City Council
  • Mr Fred Dalgarno, Dean of Guild, Aberdeen Burgesses
  • Mr Garry Burnett, Group Commander, Scottish Fire and Rescue Service
  • Mr Gordon Edwards, Interim Chief Executive, ACVO
  • Mr Richard Carey, Chief Executive, NHS Grampian
  • Professor Ferdinand Von Prondzynski, Principal and Vice Chancellor, The Robert Gordon University
  • Professor Sir Ian Diamond, Principal and Vice Chancellor, University of Aberdeen

Categories and Finalists:


  • Mark Wilson
  • Homelessness Service
  • Tenant Community Engagement Team


  • Irene McKay
  • Trevor Smith
  • Homelessness Assessment Team

Professionalism: individual Finalists

  • Adele Barber
  • Derek McKay
  • Alan Robertson
  • Douglas Gibb

Professionalism: Team Finalists

  • Matthew Easton and Gareth Allison
  • City Events Team
  • City Wardens
  • A Tree for Every Citizen Project

Customer Focus:

  • Irene Pace
  • Stephen Bly
  • Community Equipment Service

Employee Voice: Suggestion of the Year

  • Promote Garden Share (Idea proposed by Gordon Ritchie).
  • Introduce City Ambassadors (Idea proposed by Gordon Ritchie).
  • Link to all corporate forms on ACC intranet homepage (Idea proposed by Brian Muldoon).

People's Champion:

  • Karen Baxter, Senior Carer
  • Mark Barnes, Newhills Cemetery Supervisor
  • Pearl Rendall, School Crossing Patroller
  • Constitution Court Carers


Lifetime Achievement Award:

  • Bill Farquhar, Senior City Events Officer

With over 40 years' service in the public sector, Bill has made a significant contribution to the wider community in Aberdeen working in a number of roles including Cost Controller in Building Standards and Leisure & Recreation Services and Sports Development Officer for Special Needs in City Arts.

In recent years, in his role as Senior City Events Officer, Bill has demonstrated a real commitment to understanding the events industry so he can deliver safe and enjoyable events for the residents of and visitors to, Aberdeen. It is impossible to count the hundreds of thousands of visitors Bill's events have brought to the city and the economic benefits these events bring to all.

Having recognised the need for strong partnership working across all agencies involved in events management, Bill has played an active role in the promotion of safe event delivery, helping event organisers from outwith the city deliver safe and enjoyable activities. He has also played a key role in delivering Aberdeen City Council's annual event's programme which includes a number of large scale outdoor events including The City of Aberdeen Highland Games and Aberdeen's Hogmanay Fireworks Celebrations.

Bill's hard work was recently rewarded when the City Events Team received the National Outdoor Events Association (NOEA) Scotland Tribute Award for their delivery of the Olympic Torch Relay in Aberdeen last year.

  • Doug Allan

Doug Allan joined Aberdeen County Council in 1971 (we believe as a Joiner). With the reorganisation of local government four years later he was transferred into the newly formed Grampian Regional Council where he became a Works Study Officer

In early 1995, Doug applied for the Supervisors position based at Bucksburn, and with his background skills and all-round council knowledge he took on his new role with great gusto and immediately increased the effectiveness of the depot operations.

He was always very committed to his job, willing to turn out and help whether there is snow, flooding, or other emergency, even dealing with an aeroplane overshooting the runway at Aberdeen Airport and closing surrounding roads. In emergency situations his knowledge and professionalism has been key to managing resources and keeping in control of the situation. Over the years he would ensure that our roads were treated, irrespective of the time of year, and was able to persuade many of his staff to work through difficult times to fulfil the delivery of the service even on days when the rest of the council was on holiday.

Doug took an active role in winter operations not only supervising the works but at times physically contributing by driving one of the small gritters to get into areas where vehicles were having difficulties and ensuring that they were able to proceed safely on their journey.

He was always active in coaching and training staff to better perform their duties. Using his knowledge, experience and patience he was always willing to support staff whether trainees, new staff or 'old hands' in order to ensure that the high standard of work required was achieved. This approach also ensured a continued knowledge transfer within the organisation.

Because of his willingness to assist, no matter what the circumstances, he was well respected by his colleagues, from Directors to line managers and the operational staff who worked for him. He retired in July 2012 having completed 41 years service.


Over 80 submissions were received for this Star Awards. All nominations and nominees will now be submitted to their directorates to ensure a record of their achievement, commitment and dedication is recorded. At least one directorate has indicated they will carry out service specific awards for their teams.