The CEO of one of Newcastle’s most prominent enterprise organisations has been recognised with a prestigious business award.
Dr Dawn Cranswick, Chief Executive of PNE Group, was named the North winner of the ‘Building a Better Working World’ accolade at the Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year award ceremony.
The annual event, which is currently in its 19th year, recognises the spirit and contribution of exceptional entrepreneurs, and celebrates those who are building and leading successful, growing and dynamic businesses.
Rachel Clacher, founder of telecommunications business Money Penny, presented the award, which was given to Dawn in recognition of her work dedicated to enabling positive social and economic change, both in the North East and around the world.
Commenting on the award she received, Dawn said: “It is an honour for me to have been recognised with the EY Entrepreneur of the Year Awards in the ‘Building a Better Working World’ category. Using an entrepreneurial approach to create social and economic value is at the heart of everything we do at PNE Group, and it is very important to me personally.
“It’s fantastic to see our work, in the UK and internationally, being recognised at such a significant event. Businesses of all sizes are empowered to create real, positive change across our communities and I am very proud to lead an organisation which can support them to build a better future for us all.”
Dawn joined PNE Group, then known as Project North East, in 1989 as a Sales Manager, a role which enabled her to work closely with local entrepreneurs and small businesses, providing sales advice and helping hundreds of small firms to develop their export markets. She later worked with the professional services firm Deloitte to evaluate the impact of a major international enterprise development fund and managed a three-year national Challenge Fund for the Health and Safety Executive (HSE). She was appointed CEO of the organisation in 2011.
Since taking on the role of CEO, Dawn has guided PNE Group through a transformative period including a restructure and rebrand. Under her vision, PNE Group overcame the challenges of a quickly evolving sector and was able to make a significant impact for the clients and communities PNE Group work with, including supporting a client to deliver a fund reaching over 56,000 disadvantaged individuals over a three-year period and last year launching a new initiative to support North East businesses to scale-up and fulfil their potential as employers.
“The EY Entrepreneur of The Year programme brings together the UK’s most innovative and forward-thinking business leaders at events held up and down the country every year, where they can share knowledge and ideas, debate the challenges of the day, and form lasting contacts and even working partnerships.
“It serves to support the enviable entrepreneurial community we have in the UK and celebrate the contribution that it makes to the economy, creating wealth and hundreds of jobs.”