Last night at MILSPO® Network CIC we held our annual Christmas Party & Awards night, celebrating our epic year and featuring our five award winners.

Milspo is a community of over 1,300 military spouses, partners and other-half business owners, who usually miss out on the stability that our non-armed forces community friends have. Our solution – a network that moves with us. So of course, not wanting to miss out we would also have our own Christmas party. Milspo’s posted all over the world can join us online to build businesses that survive and flourish in this bonkers military world, and enjoy our online events.

All of our members are epic, but we could only award five with a very special Milspo.

Award No.1 – Milspo New Talent Award

This award is for a new military spouse, partner of other half with a business that has launched in the last 18 months.

Our winner this year is a new business that has gotten thoroughly stuck in to the Milspo community. She’s worked really hard this year getting her business to where it is, and is very proactive at taking advice and implementing it, collaborating with other Milspo businesses to get there. The advice she gives is always well thought out and wise, and it’s been wonderful to see her become such a great advocate of all things Milspo in such a short space of time.

Our 2022 winner of the Milspo New Talent Awards is Zoe Poulton, Glass Ripple Consulting

We also need to make a special mention to Holly Murphy, who had an outstanding nomination. Holly hosted our Web Design Virtual Networking event, which made a massive difference to many of our members. Thank you, Holly.

Award No.2 – Milspo Collaboration Award

This award is for a spouse, partner or other-half business owner who can demonstrate examples of working with or alongside other Milspo or related organisations in a mutually reciprocal way.

Our award winner this year creates beautiful images that communicate your brand story and values that reflect all that you are throughout her skilful photography. We have enjoyed seeing many MILSPO businesses have her images pop up on their profile, and then we’ve watched their confidence and businesses grow as a result. She also worked in collaboration with another Milspo at the first Celebrating Forces Families awards. She is a keen supporter of the Milspo group, assisting with bid writing and fundraising opportunities.

Our 2022 Milspo Collaboration Award winner is Helen Holt – Helen Holt Photography

We also need to mention Neil Hallsworth, who was part of a very strong group of nominated businesses. Neil stood out due to his collaborative nature, always helping Milspo’s as he works on his own business, Explorer Coffee. Thank you, Neil, for your support and for keeping us caffeinated!

Award No.3 – Milspo Advocate Award

This award recognises a business owner from inside or beyond the Armed Forces Community that regularly champions all things Milspo®, including other businesses from within the group.

Our winner became an online business manager because she loves making a difference and helping people. As a socially minded business owner, she regularly donates a percentage of her profits to Maggie’s Cancer care and The Royal British Legion. She only works with spouses and veteran-based businesses and is a regular attendee of our Milspo events, despite living in a different time zone.

Our 2022 Milspo Advocate Award winner is Suzie Stanier  – Business Solutions

Award No.4 – Milspo Ad Astra Award

Taken from the RAF motto ‘from adversity to the stars’ this award recognises a spouse, partner or other-half business owner who has shown strength through adversity and has flourished in the business and Armed Forces community.

This winner established her business in 2013. After many years of working for corporates, when meeting her serving husband, she encountered the age-old problem of an assignment order where she couldn’t work remotely. Not being deterred, she took the bold move to leave employment entirely and set up a practice supporting small business owners with their accounts and taxation.

She is very approachable and has many Milspo and military community clients. She is always friendly and helpful, open to collaboration and supporting others. She’s had a tough year with deployment and medical needs, facing it all with a smile and a positive attitude.

Our 2022 Milspo Ad Astra Award winner is  Caroline Hocking – Mona Accountancy

Award No.5 – Milspo Network Award

The Milspo Network Awards showcases our network’s favourite spouse, partner or other-half business owner that has demonstrated resilience, determination and a profitable business and has been trading for over two years.

Starting her business in lockdown 2020 this business owner made a quick pivot once she realised where her true talents lie. She’s gone from strength to strength since, building a brilliant business throughout the inevitable house moves and health issues she faces. She’s usually one of the quickest to reply to questions in the Facebook group and is always happy to help out where she can and share her knowledge, and after narrowly missing out last year on the new talent award we’re thrilled to be able to acknowledge her this year with this award.

Our 2022 Milspo Network Award winner is Alex Coward