Judith Butcher Award

Page owner: Membership director

Sketch of SfEP honorary president Judith Butcher

The Judith Butcher Award (JBA) was set up in 2011. Named after our first honorary president, and with her kind permission, it is intended to identify members of the SfEP worthy of honour because they have:

  • made a clearly identifiable and valuable difference to the way the SfEP is run, and/or
  • carried through a specific project that has been of particular value to the SfEP and/or its members.

The award aims to identify not only those who have made highly visible contributions to the SfEP and its membership, but also individuals who have made important but perhaps less obvious contributions. It replaces the awarding of honorary membership for individuals within the SfEP, which was discontinued in 2010.

It is expected that the award will be presented annually, but if insufficient or unsuitable nominations are received it will not be awarded.

Winners of the JBA are chosen by the JBA sub-committee from nominations it receives from SfEP members and Corporate Subscribers. The sub-committee consisted initially of the individuals involved in the setting up of the award and is now a mix of existing honorary members (i.e. those appointed until 2010) and long-standing members.

The JBA was first presented at the Society's 2012 AGM.

Winners of the Judith Butcher Award

The Judith Butcher Award for 2017 has been given to Louise Harnby. Members will know her blog 'The Proofreader's Parlour' and 'her ongoing support of all proofreaders and editors, through her free provision of PDF stamps, the vast array of resources available freely on her website and also … her books'. These 'are the most visible of many efforts on behalf of members, as are her always thoughtful, thorough and polite posts on SfEP forums'. She sets 'a great example by showing us how best to market an editorial business'.

JBA citation for Louise Harnby

Regulations

  1. The call for nominations will go out each year, normally in early March, to members and Corporate Subscribers of the SfEP.
  2. The closing date will normally be the third Monday in April.
  3. Individual members of the SfEP are eligible to receive the JBA. Serving council members and existing honorary members are not eligible, and services for the Society while on the council shall not be taken into account.
  4. Nominations (one or more) may be sent in only by SfEP members and Corporate Subscribers. No one may nominate themselves.
  5. Each nomination must include the name and membership number of the person submitting it, plus a short text (max. 150 words) explaining the nomination. Any nomination without supporting text will not be considered. Nominations should be emailed to jba@sfep.org.uk.
  6. Nominations will be received and considered by the JBA sub-committee. The sub-committee will evaluate the nominations received in the light of the supporting texts received and any further enquiries the sub-committee may make if required. Not all nominations received will be made public. A short-list of those being considered will be published, normally during June.
  7. The winner will be decided by the subcommittee no later than the first Monday in July. (S)he will be informed and offered expenses to attend the AGM for the presentation of the award; or (s)he may nominate someone to collect it.
  8. If in any given year the sub-committee does not receive nominations deemed suitable, the award need not be made that year.
  9. Any persons listed in the short-list but not given the award will be ineligible for one year thereafter.
  10. The JBA sub-committee is made up of seven members, who will serve for a three-year term, renewable once. New members will be recruited first from among existing honorary members and recipients of the JBA, and then from among current members of the SfEP (including Retired Members). The council must approve any new appointments to the sub-committee, and shall have the power to nominate members if the need arises.

Louise Harnby, 2017 Judith Butcher Award winner

Members will know Louise Harnby's blog 'The Proofreader's Parlour' and 'her ongoing support of all proofreaders and editors, through her free provision of PDF stamps, the vast array of resources available freely on her website and also … her books'. These 'are the most visible of many efforts on behalf of members, as are her always thoughtful, thorough and polite posts on SfEP forums'. She sets 'a great example by showing us how best to market an editorial business'.

Anne Waddingham, 2016 Judith Butcher Award winner

Anne has been a member of the SfEP almost since its inception. With David MacDonald, she developed and ran the successful onscreen editing courses that helped many SfEP members get to grips with editing in a new medium. Her humour and patience encouraged many to adjust to an unfamiliar way of working. Anne has also delivered many workshops and talks at conferences, and regularly shared her knowledge through the column 'Word Wrinkles' in Editing Matters. Her work over the last 20 years has done much to shape the discipline of 'on-screen editing' as we now know it.

Rod Cuff, 2015 Judith Butcher Award winner

Rod has been a driving force within the SfEP ever since he joined in the mid-1990s: on the committee from 2001 to 2003, developing and maintaining the Society's website and its online Directory, and moderating SfEPLine, the precursor to the Society's forum. As well as these activities, Rod has been the official proofreader for Editing Matters and its predecessor CopyRight for the past 12 years. He has used his long experience of the SfEP by working voluntarily in and eventually heading the Membership Working Group and the Futures Group, leading the many hours of research, thinking and work that led to the new membership arrangements.

His energy seems boundless and his research is thorough. He is not afraid of challenging received ideas or of having his own ideas challenged; he enthusiastically explores new ones, and is dedicated to seeing a task through once he's taken it on. He's also a key member of the Linnets (the SfEP's informal choir), and flew the flag for editors on the TV quiz Only Connect.

Averill Buchanan, 2014 Judith Butcher Award winner

Averill Buchanan is described as ‘the driving force behind the Northern Ireland SfEP local group’, and was nominated for ‘organising training courses in Northern Ireland, encouraging local editors to attend these courses (and to join the SfEP) and using her social media profile to spread the word about the SfEP’. As well as running the Northern Ireland group, Averill set up and jointly ran the Society's Twitter account and later organised a team of Twitter volunteers. She also served as moderator on the SfEP forum.

Helen Stevens, 2013 Judith Butcher Award winner

Helen won the Award for significantly raising the national and international profile of the SfEP, and the work of editors and proofreaders in general, through her voluntary work on social media. While managing her team of volunteers with charm and understanding, she organises material to ensure good-quality posts and makes herself available at all hours to reply to comments and ensure that posts are appropriate.

Lesley Ward, 2012 Judith Butcher Award winner

Lesley Ward is perhaps best known as a tutor, and has often been the first member of the SfEP whom newcomers meet, through the training courses she runs. Her guiding hand has set them on their way with renewed confidence.