Lisburn entrepreneur Trevor Annon has picked one of this year’s Janus Awards for his outstanding contribution to the hospitality sector.
Organised by the Institute of Hospitality in Northern Ireland as a celebration of professionalism, the Janus Awards have been dubbed the ‘Hospitality Oscars’.
Award-winner Mr Annon is the founder of Mount Charles, hailed “Ireland’s largest independently owned foodservice and outsourced business support organisation”.
Under his leadership over the past 28 years it has grown from an employee base of one to almost 2,000 across the UK and Ireland and has diversified from contract catering alone to become a multiservice organisation with a turnover in excess of £30m, offering contract and retail catering, cleaning, vending and security services.
Moving from the role of Managing Director to that of Chairman in 2013, Trevor remains an integral part of the business, fully involved on a daily basis with employees, clients and contracts.
He said: “The Outstanding Contribution Award was the last of the evening.
“When the Chair of The Institute of Hospitality (NI) was explaining the criteria used by the panel to make this award, I was sitting at our table chatting to my colleagues.
“He then started to describe the background and credentials of this year’s appointee and it was only then it started to dawn on me who he was referring to.
“Glaring eyes and smiling faces started to look in my direction and eventually my name was announced. At this point my hands quite literally started to shake with disbelief and surprise.
“The next thing I remember was walking towards the stage to collect the award thinking ‘I did not see that coming, what am I going to say?’ For anyone who knows me, I am not usually left short for words.
“I have been privileged to collect numerous awards on behalf of the company, but this was the first occasion in my career when I have been the recipient of an award.
“For the panel to honour me was a humbling experience, but I felt so proud that my peers within the industry considered me to be worthy of the award. It was also great that I could receive the award in the company of my colleagues and my wife Kate.”