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East Midlands Finance Awards

We’re pleased to announce that our annual awards celebration will be back once again on June 27th at Nottingham Contemporary.

Read on to discover more; including how to purchase tickets for the award ceremony, our partners, panel of judges and statements from previous attendees.

Founded in 2019, the East Midlands Finance Awards (EMFA) is the only event that celebrates finance and accountancy professionals across the region. 

At Distinct, we believe that the East Midlands is the best place in the UK to build a career in the finance industry and in recognition of this, we wanted to create an event. Over recent years, we’ve been delighted to host the heroes who have navigated local and national businesses through tight reporting deadlines, furlough schemes and economic uncertainty. 

We promise a wonderful evening where local businesses can come together to celebrate their staff and let their hair down. Alongside the main award ceremony, our informal event also includes food and drink, with live entertainment and guest speakers.

2024 award categories 

Applications have closed! Discover the categories for this year’s awards, to be presented at the ceremony on June 27th.

Finance leader of the year

This is a fantastic opportunity to recognise an inspirational finance leader; celebrating their outstanding contribution to their business and/or teams over the past 12 months.

Finance team of the year (less than 10 staff)

Open to finance teams with fewer than 10 staff that have achieved excellence in providing financial support to any business or business area, in either the private or public sector.

Finance team of the year (more than 10 staff)

Open to finance teams of 10 or more staff that support any business or business area,  providing first-class financial support and insight in either the public or private sector.

Rising star

Open to individuals at any level, with any number of years experience, from QBE through to part-qualified or qualified. The winner of this award will have fantastic examples of going above and beyond, showing truly exceptional promise for their future finance career.

Unsung hero

This award is for that person your team relies on to make everything run well and who truly deserves a moment in the spotlight.  Whether it’s in the ledger team, credit control, payroll, FP&A or anywhere in finance. 

A sign for the East Midlands Finance Awards, hosted by recruitment agency, Distinct.

Event partners

This year, we are proud to partner with NOVA Community. Designed to improve the well-being and success of women in business, their network of 500+ senior female leaders “collaborate and create long-lasting professional friendships”. 

Distinct remains impartial in the selection of award winners. We use this unique opportunity to form a small panel of external judges, consisting of business leaders and industry contributors. 

For the utmost transparency, we will publicly announce our official panel on LinkedIn. Further details can be found in the “How are nominations judged?” section of our FAQ below.

The logo of our EMFA partner, NOVA Community. An organisation supporting women in finance.


EMFA tickets for the award celebration are now available! Join us on June 27th at Nottingham Contemporary as we celebrate the vibrant East Midlands finance community.

As a non-profit initiative, any money made after costs go directly to our annual charity partner, Operation Orphan.

Hear from previous attendees

“The ‘Finance Team of the Year’ award was full of outstanding nominations from great businesses, so to hear “Rutland Cycling” was an incredibly proud moment for me, knowing how much this means to the team. It means a lot to the whole business, we are very proud and grateful”. Mark Gilbert, Rutland Cycling

“A huge thank you for a fantastic event last night. Those of us who attended from Capital One really enjoyed it and we all felt that it was a much nicer atmosphere and event than a formal sit-down awards dinner. Nice job!” Alison Allsopp, Capital One

2023 East Midlands Finance Awards winner Wincent Kordula from St Mathews Healthcare with his team, having won “finance leader of the year”.

“First and foremost, I was really pleased to support Distinct’s East Midlands Finance Awards. Celebrating the wealth of talent amongst the finance professionals in the East Midlands is really important, and I’m happy to see Distinct stepping forward and creating this event.

Having no less than four finalists from SDL across all three categories was particularly gratifying, and then alongside that, seeing the sheer quality and talent amongst the other businesses really brought home just how many talented individuals and teams we have on our doorstep.

It was a real privilege to win the ‘Finance Director of the Year’ award.  With the growth SDL has gone through over the last few years, it has allowed me to build a finance team bursting with talent and hunger, position them at the centre of the business, and then let them get on and do what they do best.  They make me look good and they give me the foundation to drive the business and the finance team forward.  A big thanks to them and a big thanks to Distinct for my recognition and for creating a platform for wider recognition of finance teams across the Midlands.”Colin Anderton, SDL Group

“Receiving the ‘Rising Star’ award at the East Midlands Finance Awards was a wonderful surprise and a touching celebration of both my own work, and the incredible work of my peers within the Finance profession. Distinct Recruitment hosted the fantastic and pioneering awards ceremony in the Nottingham Contemporary and did an incredible job in recognising and celebrating finance professionals within the East Midlands. Thank you! – Jeremy Croad, Capital One

Members of Distinct’s finance recruitment team at the 2023 East Midlands Finance Awards.

Your FAQs

No, the EMFA is a relaxed and informal awards event, hosted auditorium-style. Gigantic allows you to book between 1-20 tickets in any single transaction. There is no minimum or maximum requirement.

There are no tables – the EMFA is hosted auditorium-style, in The Space at Nottingham Contemporary.

Imagine you’re going for dinner and cocktails with your friends on a Saturday night. No dickie bows and black tie, we want you to be comfortable and enjoy the occasion. One particular award winner even attended wearing shorts and flip-flops!

Tickets for the awards celebration and presentation evening cost £50 per head. In previous years, this included a welcome drink, two course meal (featuring street food from around the world), a drink on us to celebrate after the awards and a dedicated seat to hear from our keynote speaker (past events have included a Team GB Olympic gold medalist and a globally recognised award winning CFO). To purchase tickets for the event, simply visit:

Distinct play no part whatsoever in the judging of any nominations for the EMFA. We’re proud to partner with a range of distinguished event partners (previously including HSBC, the ICAEW and the East Midlands Chamber of Commerce) who take on the challenging task of judging all nominations.

Our event partners usually work in pairs to judge a couple of award categories each, working to an agreed judging model to ascertain who they believe are the worthy winners and runners-up. This judging model typically involves a meeting to understand each nomination with the individual, team, person that nominated for the award. 

Shortlisted finalists are usually announced around four-six weeks before the awards celebration and presentation evening. Winners and runners-up are announced on the night itself.

Unfortunately, entries for the East Midlands Finance Awards 2024 are no longer being accepted. The deadline for submissions was midnight on Friday, 29th March 2024. We appreciate the effort made by all who nominated and submitted entries; these are now in the very capable hands of our panel of judges. 

If you have any other questions regarding the East Midlands Finance Awards reach out to our organisers Alex Alcock or Claire Fletcher.