SMMT Communications Manager Janet Wilkinson was last week presented with an MBE for services to the motor industry and charity.
Janet joined the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders in 1974 from the Toyota GB press office and has spent most of her career in communications for the sector, where she has been responsible for many of SMMT’s activities and events that promote the automotive industry to thousands of people in the UK and around the world.
These include the British International Motor Show, the Commercial Vehicle Show, the SMMT International Automotive Summit and SMMT Test Days.
Janet is also a Trustee of the Guild of Motoring Writers’ Benevolent Fund and, significantly, Chairman of the charity Woman on the Move Against Cancer, raising funds and awareness for a variety of cancer charities.
She is due to leave SMMT in December after more than 40 years at the organisation and the annual GoMW dinner will be her farewell party this week.
After receiving her award from The Princess Royal at Windsor Castle, Janet said, “I am so proud to receive this honour; it’s a lovely way to end my time in an industry which I have enjoyed immensely.
“SMMT is a unique and exciting place to work with a wide variety of different activities, which has enabled me to fulfil many roles in so many different places! One of the most rewarding aspects of my time at SMMT is seeing many colleagues starting their careers here and going on to successful roles in the industry.
“I have been fortunate to work with some wonderful people over the years, people who have helped me enormously so I have always tried to give something back to an industry that has given me a fantastic career.”
Mike Hawes, SMMT Chief Executive, said, “Janet has worked tirelessly for SMMT and our members across the broad spectrum of the British automotive industry.
“She will be missed by all who have worked with her and benefitted from her knowledge and experience. This award is richly deserved, and a fitting end to a life’s work devoted not only to the industry, but to a number of charities, especially WOMAC, for which she has given so selflessly.”
Western Group of Motoring Writers’ chairman, Robin Roberts, added, “In a career spanning four decades, Janet has been the commensurate professional and a welcome source of help who never let you down and who appreciated regional writers and groups.
“Janet has been an immense help to thewesterngroup ever since it started in the early 1980s, and has been a keen supporter of the legendary driving day from the outset so the group wishes her well in a well earned retirement but, secretly, we still hope to see her around.”