Our very own Rebecca Leppard has been named Automotive PR of the Year at the prestigious Newspress Awards, described as being the Oscars for automotive journalism and PR.
The founder of Eventageous PR was the only independent – and the only woman – in a category of automotive manufacturer PRs including KIA, Honda, Suzuki, Audi and Citroën. Rather than putting themselves forward, those shortlisted had been voted for by members of Britain’s automotive media. She is pictured with Tim Barfoot, Managing Director of Newspress.
After a 10-year career as PR and Marketing Manager with Haynes Publishing, Rebecca formed Eventageous PR in 2004 as a specialist automotive agency. Working predominantly in the classic-car scene, she is entrusted with managing PR and events for a number of high-profile clients, including – among many others – the Royal Automobile Club, the Henry Surtees Foundation, Credit Suisse, Evro Publishing and Derek Bell. During which time she has also worked with motorsport greats such as Sir Stirling Moss, Sir Jackie Stewart, John Surtees, Damon Hill, John Barnard, Brian Redman, Adrian Newey and Gordon Murray.
‘I’m very honoured to be recognised by industry peers,’ said Rebecca, ‘and especially up against the global car manufacturers who have large budgets, PR teams and resources compared to the likes of me. It means so much and I’m so grateful to all those who voted for me and felt that I was worthy enough to win this prestigious award.
‘It’s also great not only for me to be recognised, but the classic automotive scene. I feel exceedingly fortunate to have carved out a niche in an industry that I’m passionate about. I get paid to promote and manage events that, if I wasn’t working at them, I’d be paying to go to myself!’
Renowned writer Giles Chapman said: ‘Rebecca is a one-woman phenomenon of creative energy for clients in the classic car, events, personality-representation and publishing sectors of our industry. She goes to extraordinary lengths to build interest in events with a historic motoring theme, and she helps journalists get great stories that stoke enthusiasm among readers.
‘Rebecca’s PR is hand-crafted and personal. She rarely has a multi-million pound budget to work with, and so concentrates on personal relationships and creativity. She thoroughly deserves the award.’
Upon the award announcement, the host said: ‘A worthy winner, indeed, one enthusiastic hack commented that Rebecca is very proactive when it comes to generating ideas – and brilliant at setting things up at short notice when we need them. If all PRs shared her zest and initiative, the industry would run much more smoothly. She’s an absolute gem.’
Photo by Jakob Ebrey