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RTPI Yorkshire Young Planner of the Year 2024

Young Planner of the Year Winner

Rajlaxmi Gaware, Ashfield District Council 

Rajlaxmi is a Graduate Regeneration Officer at Ashfield District Council. Rajlaxmi has undergone a number of roles including as Departmental Councillor at the University of Sheffield and as a RAC student member for RTPI.  She is also the RTPI EDI Champion and participates in the RTPI International Group. She is passionate about serving as a role model for other young professionals.

Judges‘ comment: "Rajlaxmi is clearly a very talented and innovative individual, who is progressing the theory side of planning whilst working on the ground in planning policy and regeneration."

Young Planner of the Year Highly Commended

Richard Riggs, Calderdale Council  

Richard is a Principal Planning Officer at Calderdale Council. He has risen quickly through Local Authority planning departments to become a trusted specialist in major and infrastructure developments. During his career, Richard has worked on a range of housing developments. He is one of the Council’s representatives to the Planning Officers Society Young Planners network and is also a Member of the Institute of Leadership (MIoL) and an alumnus of the Local Government Association's Leadership Academy. 

Judges‘ comment: "The extent of Richard's achievements speaks for itself, and he has clearly excelled to have been so deeply engrained in several, varied major projects. This demonstrates a varied and in depth understanding of the planning system across geographies as well as a willingness to inspire others."