Pepi Sappal, Founder & Director, FairPlayTalks

Pepi Sappal is Founder & Director of – a recently launched global D&I/wellbeing online platform, covering all diversity spectrums across all industries. Pepi has been writing on diversity, business, management, HR and international issues for the past two decades, as a business journalist/content creator for a variety of online and print business publications. She was also the Wall St Journal columnist, covering diversity and recruitment issues, as well as the former Editor of HR World and Global HR, and former Commissioning Editor of the UK’s Human Resources magazine.

Name a public or professional figure you believe is making a major contribution to the diversity and inclusion agenda.

There are so many people making a contribution to the D&I agenda. I speak to them and feature them everyday on – so it would be unfair, and biased of me, to name just one. Apart from public figures in the UK, there are so many business leaders who are increasingly endorsing the importance of the DE&I/wellbeing agenda - not just because it’s the right thing to do, but because there’s a solid business case for it now.

Is there an awards category that intrigues you most? Why?

The awards category that intrigues me the most is probably the Unsung Heroes Category because it’s usually these people who go beyond the call of duty to help create a diverse and inclusive workplace. The unsung heroes are often employees who have taken on D&I responsibility, sometimes as an ambassador, and usually on top of their existing role/responsibilities, simply because they are so passionate about equality and levelling the playing field. These unsung heroes are doing so much more behind the scenes that it’s vital to recognise their contribution.

That said, the Male Diversity Champion of the year and the Mentor of the Year are also two categories that particularly intrigue me, simply because we need those male champions both as mentors and allies to help women to get ahead in law (and other male-dominated sectors) more than ever to really move the dial. It really is about a joint collaboration between men and women in the profession, and equality will only be achieved if we have them on side, supporting change and cheering women on. 

What will you be looking for as a judge in these awards?

As a judge I’ll be looking for entries that stand out, which are not only engaging and/or innovative, but can ideally also demonstrate the achievements/improvements made through statistical/anecdotal evidence.

The deadline for entries is at 5pm on Friday 28 February 2020 .