Inside 2018’s Autism Hero Awards


An awards event thats in place to showcase and celebrate the excellence taking place in the world of Autism took place at the weekend.

The Autism Hero Awards 2018 now in their 3rd year took place at the outstanding Radisson Blu Portman Hotel in Central London.

With various individuals and organisations being honored for their work in the autism community we spoke to some of the attendees and winners.

Kristel Burgess, mum of Liam Burgess one of the finalists commented “So proud of Liam and all the nominees, such inspiring people who all deserve recognition for everything they do and achieve.”

She added “I’m so grateful for the opportunities Anna Kennedy has given Liam, also the friendships that have been made not only for Liam but myself too, the support within the AKO charity is priceless, people that truly understand, accept and support each other without judgment, a place where perceptions and barriers are removed so each and every person can shine.”

Meet the winners:

Outstanding Education Award – Melanie Whitfield

Sibling of the Year Award – Sarah Yasini

Creative Arts and Media Award – Kathryn Tonkiss

Lifetime Achiever Award – Lesley Fisher

Top Journalism Award – Steve Downes

Outstanding Community Award – Libby Hill and Steve Whitmore

Peoples Autism Hero Award – Vicki Taylor

Parent/Carer Award – Rebecca Taylor

Personal Achievement Award- Mickey Mayhew

Leading Business Award – Toby Gorniak

Online Social Network Award – Chris Bonello

Entrepreneurial Award – Oliver Wendt PHD

Special Recognition Award – Paula McGowan #JusticeforOliver

Charity Volunteer of the Year – Adrijana Owen


The night welcomed star’s Antony Costa, Kacey Ainsworth, Stephen James and Abbi Beaumont who all turned out to support autism charity AnnaKennedyOnline.

Autism Hero Awards organiser Dr Anna Kennedy OBE wowed in a dress by Lace and Beads London and she welcomed the success of the awards telling us This honourable occasion was a unique opportunity to acknowledge the outstanding contributions and achievements of individuals, teams and organisations who have proved excellence, dedication and commitments to impacting lives that have been making a real difference.

Marie Glen who attended the night with her son Calvin told us “Anna Kennedy does a fantastic job of beinging us all together and making every single person in the room feel worthy. For Calvin and for me as his mum it is the only place we can truly be ourselves without judgement.”

All proceeds for the evening were donated to the Anna Kennedy Online Charity to continue its dynamic work in raising Autism awareness within society.