City region duo in Rising Stars final

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Two retail specialists from Rotherham have been shortlisted for prizes in this year’s National Skills Academy for Retail Rising Stars Awards.

Paula Windle, a retail trainer at The Source Skills Academy in Sheffield, has reached the finals of the Trainer of the Year award.

Meanwhile, Paul Paxon , a trainee at The Source, who works at clothing retailer USC’s store in Doncaster’s French Gate Centre, is in line for the Retail Apprentice of the Year award.

Dianne Wainwright, head of operations and business development at The Source, nominated Paula Windle for the Trainer of the Year Award.

She said: “Paula brings training to life using her own experiences to excite and inspire, making the subject interesting and relevant.”

“Delivering training is never enough for Paula. She instantly builds a genuine rapport with people and ensures her audience fully understands the subject matter. She is inspirational.”

Franca Kelly, from The Source, praised Paul Paxon, now a floor manager for USC, for his skills.

“Paul is patient, encouraging, and honest,” said Franca Kelly. “He is level headed, and is able to look at the bigger picture while balancing business needs with the needs of his staff.”

“He fully deserves the award having worked hard to motivate and manage the team to drive their own personal development.”

Paul Paxon said: “It’s fantastic to be nominated for the award. The apprenticeship has given me many skills. It has increased my confidence and gave me the knowledge required for a retail management role.

“An apprenticeship was perfect as it allowed me to develop my skills get a recognised qualification and earn at the same time.”