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2021 LNG Power Play awards open for nominations

The third edition of ExxonMobil’s signature Power Play awards has been launched—this year with more awards categories and an even more diverse panel of international judges

The Power Play was founded in 2016 by ExxonMobil’s Tracy Lothian, senior vice-president Rovuma LNG Marketing, and Sarah Howell, ExxonMobil LNG Marketing communications manager. They held the first event at LNG18 in Perth to bring together women working across the LNG value chain, to network, and conduct business.

Where it began

Discussing where the driver for Power Play came from, Tracy says, “The inspiration to do something different came following a gas conference I attended in 2015. When asked by a colleague whether I attended the ‘women’s event’ at the conference, my answer was ‘no’.

“The reason being—it was at a conference hall away from the main action, the agenda focused on the challenges women face and the sessions lasted several hours. My focus at the time was on business development objectives and making contacts at the conference to try and find new business solutions.

“The idea of Power Play was to provide a platform to connect people who understand the benefits of a more diverse future for the LNG industry and to discuss business objectives. We did this by bringing our female colleagues working across the LNG value chain and the networking action to center stage and onto our exhibition booth.

“Power Play has been designed as a celebratory event—helping women make connections, focusing on their achievements, and bringing positive energy to those associated with the network. But it cannot be successful without the support of everyone—it takes a team effort to accelerate progress and create a more diverse and inclusive energy future.

“Recognising this, for 2021 we opened up two of our four awards to all professionals working in the LNG value chain. We are encouraging nominations from all genders in the categories of ‘Ambassador’ (formerly the Vanguard category) awarded to an LNG professional who displays positive energy and collaborative leadership while inspiring those around them; and ‘Pioneer’ for an LNG professional who has delivered outstanding business results or innovation and technology leadership.”

Power Play and the pandemic

2020 was an extraordinary year for us all. As we gradually came to terms with the pandemic, the real implications of adapting to new ways of working came as quite a surprise to most of us, and the lockdown came as quite a shock.

Speaking about the effects of the pandemic on Power Play, Sarah says, “Power Play stepped up to the plate during the pandemic with the awards programme continuing and our networking event moving to an online format. This helped to ensure that our female colleagues and other professionals that support and empower women throughout the industry remained connected.

“It also opened doors and connections to new participants who do not necessarily make it to the in person industry events where Power Play is present.

“Reflecting on the pandemic, we decided to create a new award this year to honour the ‘Conqueror’. The award is designed to recognise the challenges faced during the pandemic, and in particular the challenges faced by women.

“Two reports released this year delivered some stark commentary on just how serious an effect the pandemic has had on women. According to its ‘Women in the Workplace’ annual US focused study, consultancy McKinsey predicts that up to two million women in the US alone may consider leaving the workforce due to Covid-19 related challenges.

“In addition to this, the World Economic Forum report on gender equality found that the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic increased the time estimated to close the gender gap by a generation from 99.5 years to 135.6 years.

“Power Play is having an positive impact by tackling these issues—either through our awards programme highlighting the challenges faced by finalists and demonstrating how they have conquered them, or by providing practical support in connecting individuals who believe in the value of a more diverse and inclusive energy future via our networking events.”

Meet the Power Play awards judges and past award winners

A key element of the Power Play awards programme is the independent panel of judges who are invited each year to select the award finalists.

The 12 industry experts who will serve as the official judges of the third annual Power Play Awards are:

You can read more about their backgrounds at

To understand what it might take to win a Power Play award, you can review the list of past winners below.

  • The Rising Star—presented to an outstanding female professional under the age of 35
    • 2019 - Jocelyne Machevo, Interface lead, Total, Mozambique
    • 2020 - Mervin Azeta, Product and service delivery manager, Schlumberger, Nigeria
  • The Vanguard—given to an LNG professional who displays outstanding leadership
    • 2019 - Julie Mayo, Partner, Baker Botts, United States
    • 2020 - Tolu Longe, Manager, production support, Nigeria LNG, Nigeria
  • The Rainmaker—awarded to a female professional who has delivered exceptional value and business results

If you are feeling inspired, please nominate someone you feel is deserving of the Power Play recognition —or even nominate yourself. The final categories for 2021 are:

  • The Rising Star—presented to an outstanding female professional under the age of 35;
  • The Ambassador—given to a person who displays positive energy and collaborative leadership while inspiring those around them;
  • The Pioneer—awarded to a person who has delivered outstanding business results or innovation and technology leadership;
  • The Conqueror—recognises a female professional who has overcome challenges in the workplace, particularly in light of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The closing date for nominations is 18 June 2021.

To learn more about the Power Play Awards and to nominate an LNG champion, visit



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