Award Ceremony Postponed due to Covid-19

Celebrating Neurodiversity Awards - Winners and Highly Commended Awards

Just because we had to postpone our award ceremony, doesn’t mean we don’t want to celebrate with our lovely winners and commended finalists.

We are delighted to announce all our wonderful winners, and all those finalists who were highly commended in our 2020 Awards.

A really big thank you to everyone who took time to nominate – we loved reading them all.

Big thanks to our sponsors, Microsoft for all their support and assistance.
Hopefully we will be able to put all our plans into place later this year.

Also big shout out and thanks to Siena Castellon who had such an amazing Neurodiversity Celebration Week and we can’t wait to see her again and celebrate her amazing achievements this year, with her book and nearly 1,000 schools signing up to her Neurodiversity pledge.


The nominations this year were amazing, we received over double the nominations from last year.  The judges had such a hard job in choosing the final winners, and our thanks go to all of them for all their time and effort in doing such a fantastic job.

 Tumi Sotire, Roxanne Hobbs, Paul Stevenson and Lucy Hobbs making all the big decisions.

Not only is this event about celebrating the achievements of neurodiverse individuals and the strides being made in inclusion and research; it is also in aid of raising money for a charity who champion the neurodiverse. 

We are excited to announce that this years nominated charity is the PDA society

Logo of the PDA Society

Winner: Dr Mickey Mayhew

Highly Commended Finalists (in no order):

Becca Lory Hector

Bev Shah/ Hive

Owen Bevan Thomas

Jonathan Andrews

Josh Mainstone

Winner: Bea Marshall

Highly Commended Finalists (in no order):


Claire Ryan/Chatterpack

Be Shah/ Hive

Detective Richard Burton of Derbyshire Constabulary

Meike Bliebenicht

Tom Gwilliam

Pete Wharmby 

BDA Cultural Perspectives Committee

So, You’re Autistic?

Winner: Jane Sedgwick

Highly Commended Finalists (in no order):

NavSta Summary by Calvium

Mickey Mayhew – Winner’s Story

Mickey left school in his early teens with no diagnosis and no qualifications. After eventually receiving a diagnosis of Autism and Dyspraxia, and some support, he embarked upon many incredible achievements.

Not only does he have three Master’s degrees and a PhD, he has also written many excellent books inspired by his love of history.

He was awarded a publishing deal by The History Press and has seen great success with ‘The Little Book of Mary Queen of Scots’, followed later by ‘I Love The Tudors’.

His impressive achievements culminated in 2019 with a post as a researcher at London South Bank University on a project studying autistic adults.

The judges were blown away by Dr Mayhew, a very worthy winner indeed!

Bea Marshall – Winner’s Story:

Bea Marshall first rose to notoriety in the press for her barefoot running, with the tabloids even nicknaming her ‘the woman who runs through dog pooh’!

Rather than hide away from this attention Bea used her platform to start talking about her alternative parenting style and began her own company, Yes Parenting.

Bea now advises parents who are seeking to raise their children with less conflict and fewer rules whilst still supporting them to be happy and achieve their goals.

Bea has recently revealed that she is also autistic which makes perfect sense since her techniques are so perfectly suited to raising neurodiverse children. Many of us know how inadequate traditional parenting advice can be for our neurodiverse families, thank goodness Bea has stepped in to fill that gap!

Jane Sedgwick – Winner’s Story:

Jane’s study ‘The positive aspects of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder: a qualitative Investigation of successful adults with adhd’ seeks to reframe perceptions of ADHD by demonstrating the many positive aspects of the condition.

Jane is a researcher at Kings College, a professional in mental health and an ADHDer herself.

She is open with both colleagues and students about her ADHD diagnosis as she hopes to break the stigma surrounding the condition and demonstrate its many benefits.

We love to see work that challenges misconceptions about neurodiverse conditions, and our judges felt that Jane’s study fit the bill perfectly. We can’t wait to see how her research breaks down barriers and benefits the community in the future!

Winner: Kingsmead School

Highly Commended Finalists (in no order):

Bea Marshall

Professor Nichola Martin

St Michael’s Woolmer School

Alistair McNaught

Mrs Kemp

Joint Winners: Potential Kids / Heathrow & the ADHD Foundation

Highly Commended Finalists (not in any order):

Tab Ahmad / Employability


Essex County Council & Capita Plc


Sue Sanford

Bev Shah/ Hive

Meike Bliebenicht

Dr Abi James and BDA

So, You’r Austistic

Dyspraxia Foundataion West Midlands

Winner: Tab Ahmad /Employability

Highly Commended Finalists (not in any order):

Tracey Atkinson

Sue Sanford

Lesley Roshier

Tracy Prentice

Jennifer Ockwell

Kingsmead School – Winner’s Story:

Located in Hoylake Wirral, Kingsmead school was nominated by children and parents alike. We were overwhelmed by the number of nominations we received and every single one was a touching story about how the school had changed their lives for the better.

Whilst Kingsmead is not a specialist school it seems that neurodiverse children who were struggling in mainstream education have found that they can truly be themselves there.

Kingsmead puts a focus on providing bespoke education rather than a one size fits all approach which is surely the definition of true inclusion. By making space for everyone to be who they are, it is absolutely clear that Kingsmead are excelling as an education provider, keep up the good work!

Potential Kids – Winner’s Story:

This Hertfordshire based charity provides social and learning opportunities for neurodiverse children and young people.

We loved reading stories of young adults who previously felt excluded and unsure about their future, finding purpose and gaining work experience through Potential Kids. One in particular who used his IT skills to help the charity improve their website and has gone on to mentor younger children really impressed our judges.

They offer a wide range of activities appropriate for all ages from stay and play through to yoga, judo and Minecraft skills. The families that access the service are encouraged to make suggestions and provide feedback, and the hard-working volunteers do their best to adapt and change with their needs. What a fantastic place!

Heathrow Airport & the ADHD Foundation – Winner’s Story:

In 2019 Heathrow airport partnered with the ADHD Foundation to install 300 colourful umbrellas at Terminal 5.

Their goal was to raise awareness about ADHD but also to highlight Heathrow as an inclusive airport both for travellers and employees.

The original inspiration behind the project came from Jenny McLaughlin who is an ADHDer herself.

Everyone that passed underneath the installation had the opportunity to stop and learn about the condition, and the umbrellas made a perfect and beautiful representation of diversity.

We love a creative project that is also educational, and were delighted to read about the positivity towards neurominorities coming from the most senior people at Heathrow. Congratulations to all involved for pulling off something so spectacular!

Tab Ahmad – Winner’s Story:

The work Tab Ahmad does through her company EmployAbility is truly lifechanging.

Tab is a master of understanding and gaining the right accommodations for disabled graduates trying to navigate the job-hunting process.

Not only does Tab work closely with the graduates helping them prepare, and empowering them to ask for the accommodations they need, she also advises companies in how best to support disabled applicants and employees.

Her holistic approach ensures that the businesses and individuals she works with go away from their experience with knowledge that will serve them well in the future, not just for a one-time success.

This is an incredibly vital service and her clients could not have been more positive about her!


Winner: Clicker app/ Crick Software

Highly Commended Finalists (not in any order):

University of London (integration of ReciteMe technology)

EA Draffan

Mente Technology

Clicker App – Winner’s Story:

 The idea for Clicker came to John Crick when he was working in a special school for children with physical disabilities. The opportunities inherent to personal computers inspired him to develop a literacy support tool that would give children across the spectrum the opportunity to develop their literacy and language skills. Clicker is a supportive word processor that has been specifically designed for working with children in primary school. It provides learners with various supports and scaffolding for them to write with whole words and confidently tackle literacy tasks.

For over 25 years clicker has been leveling the playing field for children who experience barriers to reading and writing. We applaud any tool that improves access to learning and communication, well done Clicker app!

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