Sodexo UK & Ireland was named Partner of the Year at the Springboard Awards for Excellence 2024 with David Mulcahy, Food Innovation & Sustainability Director, School & Universities, recognised as joint winner for the Chris Beaumont Outstanding Contribution Award.

The Awards celebrate those who have gone above and beyond to grow their organisations, look after their people and champion the industry. 
The Partner of the Year accolade, a new special award, was awarded to Sodexo in recognition of the extensive support it has provided Springboard over many years. 

Sodexo is proud of its long partnership with Springboard which provides invaluable support to those from disadvantaged backgrounds to find employment in the hospitality industry. Many of Sodexo’s colleagues participate in Springboard’s Ambassador Programme, taking time to visit schools to talk about the hospitality industry as a dynamic and rewarding career choice.

It is also the Platinum sponsor of the FutureChef school-based culinary competition with many of its chefs providing mentoring to the children taking part. Sodexo has supported the competition for many years and provides the competition winner with the unique behind the scenes experience of the huge catering and hospitality operation for Royal Ascot.

David Mulcahy, Food Innovation & Sustainability Director at Sodexo since 2005, has been actively involved in the competition since its inception in 1999, he is current chairman of the competition and was also recognised at this year’s Springboard Awards for Excellence receiving the prestigious Chris Beaumont Outstanding Contribution Award alongside Steve Munkley and Brian Turner.

Sean Haley, CEO of Sodexo UK & Ireland, said:

This accolade is in recognition of the extensive support so many of my colleagues have provided to the organisation for many years.

I extend enormous congratulations to David, who is a longtime colleague of mine. His award, truly a highlight of the evening, is deserved recognition for his exceptional commitment and passion for the culinary arts and education within the industry.

As a Springboard trustee, I'm extremely proud to see FutureChef providing so many opportunities to inspire young talent, paving the way to bring more young and disadvantaged people into successful hospitality careers.

2024 marks the 25th anniversary of FutureChef, which has supported over 225,000 young people in developing their culinary skills. This year’s competition saw over 13,000 students take part, culminating in 15-year-old Reese Ventura winning the title. 

As well as his role with Sodexo, David plays a significant role in various national culinary competitions, such as UK National Chef of the Year.

David Mulcahy added:

I am humbled and proud to have received the Chris Beaumont Outstanding Contribution Award alongside Steve and Brian who I have enjoyed working with for many years. 

The Springboard Awards are a celebration of talent, support, endeavour and sheer determination.

The charity helps change lives and creates amazing opportunities with the support of so many across the hospitality industry through programmes like FutureChef. 

It’s a privilege to see so many young talents thrive and embark on their culinary journeys through the competition every year and we are all delighted to play a part in their futures.

The 2024 Springboard Awards for Excellence raised a total of £175,310 for the Springboard Charity through sponsorship, tickets sales and fundraising on the night. 

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