Shield Security’s Aaliyah Marritt may only be 17-years-old, but she has already made a name for herself in the business world having been named East Yorkshire’s top employee at the Hull Daily Mail Business Awards last night.

Aaliyah was presented the award in front of her delighted family, Shield Security colleagues, and more than 350 business leaders at the Willerby Manor Hotel, including the likes of City of Culture 2017 chair Rosie Millard, and guest speaker Lord Mandleson, the High Steward of Hull.

The judging panel said they had been overwhelmed with the amount of responsibility Aaliyah had taken on in her role at Shield since joining straight from school, showing maturity well beyond her years.

The audience also heard how she ensures the firm’s security officers – more than 300 in total working across the North of England – all have their uniforms, information and keys to hand for each of their jobs, as well as arranging shifts to ensure all security requirements are met.

BBC watchdog presenter Helen Fospero also told the audience how Aaliyah’s quick thinking prevented a potential break-in at the Bedes View Care Home in Hull, when she was monitoring cameras as part of the team in Shield’s 24-hour Control Centre.

“It is overwhelming to have won this award and to be named the Employee of the Year for the whole of East Yorkshire,” said Aaliyah.

“To be one of the finalists alongside so many successful businesses and business people was special. To win the award is a moment I’ll never forget. I have to thank the team at Shield for giving me a chance, and for showing their faith in me and allowing me to prove I am capable of handling key roles within the business.”

Managing director Dave Frank said: “We are all delighted for Aaliyah. She is fully deserving of this award as she is so confident, and reliable, we often forget how young she is. She is willing to go the extra mile each and every day that she comes into work.

“We have a track-record at Shield of supporting young people in getting into work. We take on many young people for work experience, and mentor students from the Archbishop Sentamu Academy. If young people are given a chance, and responsibilities, they often shine, and Aaliyah is a prime example of that, and someone other young people can look up to and follow.”

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