The award recognises a staffer who currently works for a Member of Parliament with a constituency based in Northern Ireland, who has gone above and beyond. The Award is open to staffers working for any party, in either a Westminster or constituency office.
James Lawlor, Parliamentary and Constituency Assistant, Gavin Robinson MP
James is a Parliamentary and Constituency Assistant at the Office of Gavin Robinson MP. He has become the go-to person for Immigration Advice, his kind and compassionate approach, diligent efficiency & determination has made him a hugely helpful resource across Northern Ireland.
Developing and maintaining an impressive relationship with UKVI, they value his approach and similarly, those within the legal sphere often draw upon knowledge and contacts. He ensures that those who need effective parliamentary representative receive a first-class service.
Following Operation Pitting and the allied withdrawal from Afghanistan, James has assisted around 100 Afghan Interpreters who were under threat as a result of their work. Similarly, since the beginning of the Ukraine War, James has assisted a large number of Ukrainian Families who have sought refuge in the UK. His dedicated research and diligence built up over the last five/six years has benefited scores of constituents.
Ruaidhrí Ó Donnell, Senior Political Adviser and Office Manager, Colum Eastwood MP
Ruaidhrí Ó Donnell is a Senior Political Adviser and Office Manager for Colum Eastwood MP, in the past year he has gone above and beyond in ensuring that throughout the ongoing cost of living crisis record numbers of constituents have been helped, which includes the most deprived areas in Northern Ireland.
Similarly, he supported in drafting an application to the Nobel Peace Prize Committee to nominate the Bloody Sunday families and help deliver the campaign to oppose the Government’s legacy plans, including organising a series of events in Parliament such as a performance of the play, The Crack in Everything.
In addition to this, he has been working across parties on efforts to save their local radio station Radio Foyle from BBC cuts, to ensure delivery on commitments are made. Ruaidhri has a well-developed network of Parliamentary contacts, and engages with other parties on business to ensure a seamless running of procedural and legislative matters.