Out in the City G3 Awards name some of our top diversity champs

Gabriella Griffith
THE CITY hasn’t always been a place praised for its diversity but thanks to the Out in the City/G3 Readers Awards, it’s proven itself to be more inclusive than you might think.

The shortlist for the awards – which recognise outstanding commitment to promoting equality and diversity in relation to the LGBT community – was announced yesterday and it’s littered with top City names.

“It goes to show how much the financial industry has changed,” event organiser Sarah Garrett told The Capitalist.

“It’s gone from being seen as an old boys’ club to an industry looked to by others for its dedication to diversity.”

A number of City figures are in the running to be named Inspirational Role Model of the Year, including HSBC’s

Antonio Simoes, PwC’s Andy Woodfield and Richard Beaven of Lloyds Banking Group but non-LGBT banking bosses are up for gongs as well.

Chris Sullivan from RBS, Curt Hess of Barclays and Societe Generale’s Ian Fisher, will be battling it out to be crowned Corporate Straight Ally of the Year – an accolade Garrett sees as key.

“Support for diversity needs to come from high up and not just from people in the LGBT community.”

Dubbed the Gay Oscars, the event (sponsored by RBS) is on 25 April.

■ DAVID Cameron’s spokesperson was left red-faced during a lobby briefing for journalists yesterday. In light of Francois Hollande’s recent jump in popularity (which occurred suspiciously close to the revelations about his rumoured affair with French actress Julie Gayet), a journalist asked the spokesperson whether David Cameron might consider having an affair to boost his popularity. Ironically DC’s spokesperson happens to be of French descent and answered with a simple yet effective, “non”.

Cue guffawing and chat among the hacks about whether any other members of parliament might resort to such lengths to get ahead in the polls.

Meanwhile the man of le moment, Hollande, wasn’t away in some French rural hideout escaping the media glare, but instead giving a press conference regarding the country’s economy.

Needless-to-say the place was packed, with up to a third of those present reportedly from foreign media organisations - all presumably waiting to hear about one thing. Hollande moved through his economic musings at a glacial pace before one plucky French journo finally asked the “affair question”. Suffice to say, Hollande wouldn’t comment.