I’ve got many a reservation about the ‘Awards’ culture in today’s society – cue more cries about my continuing slide into miserabilism. However, I did manage a genuine smile at the news that this week Naomi Thompson was the recipient of the Woman of the Future Professions Award. I’m not sure about the notion of the future as in the here and now Naomi has contributed significantly to the world of youth work as a youth worker and lecturer, as a writer, her latest book being ‘Young People and Church since 1900: Engagement and Exclusion’ and, not least from our point of view, as a passionate and committed member of the IDYW steering group.
The Professions Award recognises women who are making a significant contribution in sectors such as legal, medicine, accounting and education, and who are tipped to reach the top of their field.
The judges described her as ‘an ambitious role model for students, especially with her mixed methods research experience and focus on youth work, religion and crime’.
Naomi Thompson said: “I was humbled and delighted to win the Women of the Future Award after being short-listed alongside some incredible women. The judges commended my research in many areas and my journey from becoming a young parent at aged 20.
“However, the award is a recognition not just of my journey but of the people who have supported me along the way, including the academics and students who supported my nomination – proving no woman is an island.”