Counter Terror Awards: Outstanding Contribution
The Counter Terror Awards acknowledge excellence in the global fight against terrorism. For the last two years, organisations and individuals from the UK and overseas have been recognised across 20 categories for their contributions to reducing the threat of global terrorism.
On 8 June, the winning organisations and individuals will be announced across a number of categories. Here, we look at the Outstanding Contribution to Counter Terrorism Award.
Recognising an organisation or individual from either the private or government sector whose contribution to worldwide anti-terrorism efforts has been outstanding, the Outstanding Contribution to Counter Terrorism Award is considered the stand-out category. In the inaugural Counter Terror Awards, Mark Rowley, then the Assistant Commissioner for the Metropolitan Police, was the recipient, and last year the award was split between public sector contribution, won by Chief Superintendent Keith Gilert, Senior Police Adviser at the Defence Science and Research Laboratory, and private sector contribution, won by SecuriGroup’s Allan Burnett.
This year, the category shortlist begins with Assistant Commissioner Neil Basu, who succeeded Rowley in March 2018. Unlike Rowley, Basu has spent his whole career serving with the Metropolitan Police. The 52-year-old, never trained as a firearms officer himself, was the commander in charge of armed policing between 2013 and 2014, before being appointed Deputy Assistant Commissioner in 2015. Basu’s first counter terror operation was to respond to the Novichok poisonings in Salisbury, and, having previously been shy in front of the camera, Basu stepped forward last year in stressing how a no-deal Brexit deal would harm the UK’s safety and security. Basu also led the investigation following the terrorist incident on London Bridge last November, as well as the incident at the start of this month.
“As the mother of a victim of terror, I don’t have the power to prevent other parents or families having to bury their loved ones like I did. But you do.” Those were the words of Figen Murray, the mother of Manchester Arena attack victim Martyn Hett, as she opened the third annual Step Change Summit at the Farnborough Exhibition Centre in March last year. Speaking to a 300-strong audience of business leaders and security experts, Mrs Murray explained the devastating personal consequences of the attack at the Arianna Grande concert - providing a heart-wrenching reminder why the Step Change Programme is so important. She also provided the keynote address at the International Security Expo in December, introducing Martyn’s Law in memory of her son and has grown into a vocal advocate for better security measures across the UK event venue scene.
Completing the shortlist for the Outstanding Contribution to Counter Terrorism Award is Deputy Assistant Commissioner Lucy D’Orsi. Having joined the police force in 1992, D’Orsi has a background in covert firearms operations and heading policing for London boroughs. At the end of 2016, she was promoted to Deputy Assistant posted to Specialist Operations, leading on Protection and Security, including Royalty and Specialist Protection, Parliamentary and Diplomatic Protection, Aviation Policing and Protective Security Operations. For the last few years, her job has led on Counter Terrorism Policing’s engagement with private businesses, Operation Temperer, protective security and preparedness.
Make sure to keep checking the Counter Terror Business website, for more information on the categories and shortlists.