Matthew Hodson is 2017 Social CEO of the Year

Hodson is chief executive of NAM, which shares information about HIV and Aids

2017 winner Matthew Hodson (photo: Dan Smyth)
2017 winner Matthew Hodson (photo: Dan Smyth)

Matthew Hodson has been named as overall winner in the 2017 Social CEOs awards.

Hodson, who is chief executive of the charity NAM, which shares information about HIV and Aids, was at the head of the top 30 nominees in the awards, which recognise and encourage the work of charity leaders online.

Five individual awards were also made this year alongside the top 30 to recognise excellence in social media and digital leadership.They were won by James Cusack of Autistica (Best Senior Leader), Kirsty Marrins of the Small Charities Coalition (Best Trustee), Clare Laxton of Clic Sargent (Best Rising Star), Steve Ford of Parkinson's UK (Best Digital CEO) and Lara Burns of Age UK (Best Digital Leader). The last two are new awards created this year for charity leaders who have led digital transformation.

Now in their fifth year, the awards proved a breakthrough for women in the sector as, for the first time women, (19) outnumbered men (11) in the top 30; last year there was a 50:50 split.

More than 100 nominations were received, and they were judged by a panel of digital leaders chaired by Simon Blake, chief executive of the National Union of Students. The other judges were Lang Banks, executive director of WWF-UK, Ruth Ibegbuna, chief executive of Reclaim (and 2016 winner), Jo Wolfe, managing director for London at the social enterprise Reason Digital, Lucy Caldicott, chief executive of UpRising, and Clive Gardiner, head of digital at the NSPCC.

Matt Collins of Platypus Digital, which founded the awards with Zoe Amar Communications, said: "Every year our winners’ use of online channels shows how charities are moving forward with digital, and the winners of our new digital categories have raised the bar even higher. They also show how excellence can be achieved even on a small budget. To succeed in digital you don’t always need a lot of money, but you must have a really clear idea of what you’re trying to achieve and be prepared to prioritise ruthlessly to do it."

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