18 FEB 2015

18 FEB 2015 Press release

Press release

Diageo Announces Finalists for the Women's Empowerment Journalism Awards 2015

18 February 2015 - Diageo, the world's leading premium drinks company, today announced the 19 finalists shortlisted for its Women's Empowerment (WE) Journalism Awards 2015.

Established to recognise and honour outstanding achievements in the reporting on women's issues, the Awards is an initiative under Diageo's 'Plan W: Empowering Women through Learning' community strategy, to empower two million women of all socio-economic profiles through training and skills development. The programme forms part of Diageo's new sustainability and responsibility 2020 targets which include a commitment to 'Building Thriving Communities' as well as 'Advocating Leadership In Alcohol In Society' and 'Reducing Environmental Impact'.

"In our two short years we have been overwhelmed by support for the Awards and are honoured to have received hundreds of outstanding stories that shed light on women's empowerment issues. The growth in the calibre of entries indicates an increased recognition to hear the voices of women and the adversities they are facing and overcoming across the region. I am very proud that Diageo through Plan W can play a part in driving this awareness," said Sam Fischer, President, Diageo Greater China and Asia.

Following the success of the first WE Journalism Awards in 2014, the Awards has grown from 11 countries to encompass work from 18 markets across Asia Pacific including Australia, Cambodia, China (including Hong Kong S.A.R China), India, Indonesia, Japan, Laos, Lebanon, Malaysia, Myanmar, Nepal, the Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam.

Submissions came from a wide spectrum of local, regional and international media outlets across six award categories -

  • Print Story of the Year
  • Broadcast Story of the Year
  • Online Story of the Year
  • Photo Story of the Year
  • Journalist of the Year
  • Media Title of the Year

This year's Awards include the launch of a new award category, Media Title of the Year, to recognize media outlets that have demonstrated innovation, excellence and outstanding achievement in advancing women's empowerment through initiatives such as news coverage, community engagements or dedicated programmes and platforms.

All Awards entries went through several rounds of assessment by key media influencers who determined the top three finalists for each category based on the exemplary reporting of women's empowerment issues.

Due to the high standard of entries, the judges have allocated an additional finalist in the Broadcast Story of the Year category. The 19 finalists represent dailies, news wires, online portals and magazines including South China Morning Post, Telhelka, ANTV Channel, AFP, AP, Republica National Daily, Citiscope, Inter Press Service, Thomson Reuters, The Sydney Morning Herald, Vogue India, Daily Express and broadcast channels including Al Jazeera and Channel NewsAsia.

The shortlisted finalists will be judged by our panel of regional judges comprising three luminaries of journalism and social-activism including Monique Villa, CEO of Thomson Reuters Foundation, Shaili Chopra, an award-winning independent journalist from India and one of China's leading media women, Yan Mei, senior partner of Brunswick Group.

All shortlisted finalists have been invited to attend the WE Journalism Awards Gala Ceremony on 5 March 2015, in Hong Kong S.A.R China, where the winners will be announced.

The finalists for the WE Journalism Awards 2015 are -

Print Story of the Year
Finalist: Ruhi Kandhari, Tehelka (India)
Entry: How women pay the price for population control

Finalist: Bibek Bhandari, South China Morning Post (Nepal)
Entry: Rebel with a cause

Finalist: Nitya Pandey, Republica National Daily (Nepal)
Entry: Family Literacy: A Reversed Legacy

Broadcast Story of the Year
Finalist: Chan Tau Chou, Al Jazeera (Malaysia)
Entry: Solo mums

Finalist: Pearl Maria Forss, Channel NewsAsia (Singapore)
Entry: Undercover Asia - Manila's Secret Abortionists

Finalist: Pearl Maria Forss, Channel NewsAsia (Singapore)
Entry: Women Fight Back

Finalist: Pham Thi Van Anh, ANTV channel (Vietnam)
Entry: The women force on the Mekong sea

Online Story of the Year
Finalist: Bec Zajac, Freelancer (Australia)
Entry: Power and gender: how schools are taking a lead in the campaign to end violence against women

Finalist: Anuj Chopra, Agence France-Presse (Hong Kong S.A.R China)
Entry: Bicycle a new metaphor of freedom for Afghan women

Finalist: Anna Valmero, Citiscope (Philippines)
Entry: How Hapinoy helps small stores earn bigger profits

Photo Story of the Year
Finalist: Altaf Qadri, Associated Press (India)
Entry: She sought good life in Delhi, but found trash

Finalist: Rebecca Conway, Agence France-Presse (India)
Entry: The Indian widows of Vrindavan

Finalist: Utpal Baruah, Thomson Reuters (India)
Entry: Elections at Amguri Village

Journalist of the Year
Finalist: Cynthia Karena, The Sydney Morning Herald (Australia)
Finalist: Bec Zajac, Freelance writer (Australia)
Finalist: Stella Paul, Inter Press Service (India)

Media Title of the Year
Finalist: Vogue India (India)
Finalist: Daily Express (Malaysia)
Finalist: Channel NewsAsia (Singapore)




Rachel Chan, Corporate Communications Manager,
Asian Markets, One George Street, 13th Floor,
Unit 01, Singapore 049145
+65 6876 4451

Plan B Communications (PR):

Brenda Yeo / Rosemary Hayes
+65 6220 2623


Plan W is part of Diageo's new 2020 sustainability and responsibility targets which aims to build thriving communities. Through Plan W our goal is to empower two million women across all socio-economic profiles by 2017 giving them opportunities to learn and develop skills to be able to influence society and the economy. Plan W launched in December 2012 with an initial commitment to invest USD$10 million, and in March 2013, Diageo became the first beverage alcohol company to sign the UN Women's Empowerment Principles globally.

Diageo is committed to workplace diversity for our own business, as well as growing the talents, skills and capability of the women who work within our wider value chain. Our four key areas of focus for Plan W include; Our Company: ensuring a diverse and equitable workforce; Our Industry: delivering targeted skills training to women in hospitality to improve their knowledge and job prospects; Our Communities: working with partners, to train women in marginalized communities helping them to obtain jobs and start businesses; Our Consumers: raising awareness among consumers. To date, Plan W has empowered 90,575 women through learning, indirectly impacted 452,875 people and is building thriving communities across 15 countries.

Find out more about Diageo's Plan W and Women's Empowerment:

Like us on facebook.com/DiageoPlanW
Follow us @DiageoPlanW

About Diageo

Diageo is a global leader in beverage alcohol with an outstanding collection of brands across spirits, beer and wine categories. These brands include Johnnie Walker, Crown Royal, J&B, Buchanan's, Windsor and Bushmills whiskies, Smirnoff, Cîroc and Ketel One vodkas, Captain Morgan, Baileys, Don Julio, Tanqueray and Guinness.

Diageo is a global company, and our products are sold in more than 180 countries around the world. The company is listed on both the London Stock Exchange (DGE) and the New York Stock Exchange (DEO). For more information about Diageo, our people, our brands, and performance, visit us at www.diageo.com. Visit Diageo’s global responsible drinking resource, www.DRINKiQ.com, for information, initiatives, and ways to share best practice.

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