TALENTED people and businesses who are helping to make Glasgow great are being celebrated as the finalists are announced for the Inspiring City Awards.

Now in its third year, the ceremony organised by The Herald and Glasgow Chamber of Commerce in association with award winning city brand, People Make Glasgow will give recognition to the people and organisations that make Glasgow a remarkable place to live, work and play.

The nominees all demonstrate a broad range of work across a variety of sectors, from live festivals, to community sports initiatives, creating employment opportunities and innovative research.

The judging panel said it was impressed with the amount of businesses going the extra mile to give back to voluntary and community organisations.

The winners will be announced at the glittering annual awards ceremony at the Crowne Plaza Hotel, Glasgow on Thursday, September 10.

Gordon Matheson, leader of Glasgow City Council and chairman of Glasgow City Marketing Bureau (GCMB), said: “The Inspiring City Awards 2015 is the perfect platform to reward those truly remarkable individuals, businesses and organisations that consistently go the extra mile to ensure Glasgow continues to flourish.

“The nominations recognise those who are working to make a difference at every level – from inspiring action geared at improving their local communities to enhancing the city’s reputation on a global scale.

“I have been impressed by the calibre of finalists this year and would like to congratulate everyone, especially those shortlisted for the People Make Glasgow award who have made a lasting contribution to the city’s legacy.”

The aim of the awards is to celebrate the people and organisations that continue to make Glasgow flourish.

Previous award winners have included Glasgow Film Festival for its unique platform to showcase the best of international and Scottish cinema and City Legacy for creating the largest apprenticeship programmes for people across Scotland.

Amanda McMillan, managing director of Glasgow Airport, said: “Congratulations to all of the finalists at this year’s Inspiring City Awards.

“It is a real privilege for the airport to be sponsoring the Lifetime Achievement category – after all, it is the people who make this city so special.

From experience, we know that when the city does well, the airport prospers, and it is fitting that this award will go to somebody who has gone above and beyond to make Glasgow the unique place it is today.

“These awards are a fantastic way of giving credit to the people and organisations who make this city such a fantastic place to live, work and invest. We are counting down the days until the Inspiring City Awards ceremony later this year.”

Susan Fouquier, Royal Bank of Scotland’s business banking regional managing director said: “The Royal Bank of Scotland is proud to be involved in this year’s Inspiring City Awards.

“All of the finalists in each of the categories are testament to the awards’ motto – People Make Glasgow.

“The calibre of the shortlisted finalists in the Outstanding Contribution by a Business Leader category is truly outstanding they all deserve recognition for the difference they not only make to the organisations which they serve, but to the city in which they work. Their efforts help makes Glasgow a place where the world wants to do business. Congratulations to each of you and good luck to you all.”

There are 13 awards up for grabs in categories including business, education, arts, culture and sport. New for this year is the Industry & Young People Innovation Award which will recognise where industry has created an inventive project that has proven to make a significant difference to young people in the city.

Depute principal of Glasgow Clyde College, Eleanor Harris, said: “The Inspiring City Awards is a great event to recognise the wonderful work the people of Glasgow are doing.

“Today’s announcement shows the breadth of achievements for the people of Glasgow. Not only is this a personal accolade for all involved but showcases the immense talent the city has to offer.”

“Glasgow Clyde College has launched the careers of many business people and entrepreneurs in the city. We’re looking forward to recognising the achievement of this year’s winner of the Industry and Business Leader category.”

Anna Doran, Virgin Trains’ general manager for Anglo-Scottish services added: “Living up to the environmental challenges we face takes a lot of hard work and innovation, whether you’re a large organisation or community group. We’re delighted this work is being recognised and look forward to meeting the award nominees in September.”

Richard Blair, Director of AHR, said “We are delighted to be associated with the Inspiring City Awards 2015 and in particular the Arts and Culture category”.  “We know each of the finalists makes a significant contribution to the cultural scene in Glasgow either through their support of the arts or engaging with the community in art projects.”  “It has been a really great fit for us to sponsor this award and any one of the shortlisted candidates is a worthy winner”

Professor Toni Hilton, Dean of Glasgow School for Business and Society at Glasgow Caledonian University (GCU), said: “Glasgow School for Business and Society would like to congratulate all finalists and particularly, of course, those shortlisted for the Best Corporate Social Responsibility Award. To be shortlisted is itself an impressive achievement and we look forward to hearing how their organisations enhance lives and business in Glasgow.”

Stephen Flynn, vice chairman of Glasgow Taxis Ltd said: “The Inspiring City awards are wonderful as they pay tribute to those special people that make Glasgow a great place to live, but are often overlooked. Glasgow Taxis Ltd. is delighted to be part of the awards for another year. Teachers, lecturers and other educators are a huge part of Glasgow and we are delighted to support them, and help to give credit to those who help the people of the city have the best possible start in life.  Our drivers doing the school runs hear about all the wonderful things teachers do on a daily basis. Through our involvement with Glasgow’s universities and colleges, in particular through the Glasgow Taxis Cup and the Glasgow Safe Taxi scheme, we get to meet students whose lives have been enriched by their lecturers. Glasgow Taxis Ltd as an organisation always works hard to give back to the people that make Glasgow. That’s why we are once again part of the Inspiring City awards.”

Leona Seaton, Programme Manager, Developing the Young Workforce, Glasgow Chamber of Commerce, said:  “Inspiring500 are delighted to be sponsoring this year’s Industry and Young People innovation award.  “We are fortunate enough to work with some fantastic businesses at Glasgow Chamber of Commerce, who go above and beyond in terms of working with and supporting young people.  “The volume of applications is testament to what a hotbed of activity the city is in terms of engaging with young people and guaranteeing that they have a prosperous future in the city.   “We wish everyone the best of luck.”