The Rt. Hon. The Lord Dholakia DL, OBE
Lord Dholakia was schooled originally in Tanzania and India before coming to the UK to study. His overriding belief is that we all have a right to be treated fairly without reference to colour, race, nationality or ethnicity. He became a politician in 1966 and was Development Officer for the National Committee for Commonwealth Immigrants and later pursued work with the Community Relations Commissioner. In 1969 he became Secretary of the Liberal Party’s Race and Community Relations Panel. Then, from 1976 worked for the Commission for Racial equality and most recently, a member of the Commission on the Future of Multi-Ethnic Britain. “There are many people in communities across the UK, from multi-cultural backgrounds, who are positively contributing to the lives of those around them. Their contributions often go unnoticed, can sometimes be taken for granted, and are rarely recognised. The British Citizen Awards is a way for the nation to thank these special people. By recognising the good work that these people are doing we may inspire others to do the same”
Bradley Walsh, TV presenter
My filming schedule usually precludes me from being an active supporter of many charities but, when I was invited to be the new patron of the British Citizen Awards and heard about the brilliant work they do honouring the nation’s unsung heroes, how could I refuse?
Championing the work that these amazing people do for others is a great honour and I only hope I can do them justice. Just reading about the contribution that today’s recipients have made to our society is truly humbling.
I wish them all the very best in their many divergent endeavours – continue to light up the world with your selflessness. – Bradley Walsh
Michael has a wealth of live television presenting experience and with the rare ability to work across entertainment and factual programming; he is one of the most talented and likeable presenters on our screens today.
In 2016 he returned for series two of ITV’s prime time current affairs programme Real Stories with Ranvir Singh, has narrated a twelve part parkour show for Insight TV called Running the World and has recently gone back to breakfast television as the regular guest Entertainment Editor on Good Morning Britain and reporter for This Morning.
In 2013 he hosted his first prime time Saturday night show Let Me Entertain You for ITV. Michael has also presented ITV’s film specials as well as OK!TV and Celebrity Wish List for Channel 5. Not just a talented television presenter, Michael proved his worth on radio when he landed the job hosting an all new daily breakfast show for Heart Radio in 2013.
Michael was sent to Australia to cover I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here for GMTV, before returning to host the National Television Awards, National Movie Awards and the British Soap Awards for ITV2. Michael also indulged his love of sports by appearing on Dancing On Ice in 2008; a stint cruelly cut short by a broken ankle after just three rounds.
After graduating with a teaching degree from Plymouth University, Michael began his career at BBC Radio Northampton. He landed a researcher position at the station, where he spotted an ad looking for a new children’s TV presenter. After a successful application, he appeared on the BBC One Saturday night show Whatever You Want, where he won a six week presenting job on CBBC. Michael stayed at CBBC for three years, honing his skills on live television providing the links, games and entertainment between the programmes. He was then poached by CITV where he went on to present four series of the hugely popular Jungle Run, Eliminator and The Big Bang before joining ITV’s flagship Saturday morning show Ministry of Mayhem.
Michael showcased his skills on CITV interviewing A-list stars including Will Smith and Tom Hanks, and soon it seemed natural to step away from children’s TV. He was instantly snapped up by GMTV and given the role of showbiz reporter and co-presenter on Entertainment Today. This allowed him to cover three years of major showbiz events and conduct huge celebrity interviews on both sides of the Atlantic.
For three years up until 2015, Michael hosted his own gaming and technology feature on talkSPORT Radio, as part of the hugely successful Hawksbee and Jacobs show. He wrote, produced and presented the item which was a popular feature with the listeners. As well as an interest in gaming, Michael has a huge passion for cooking. This came in handy when he appeared on Celebrity Masterchef, making it all the way to the final. He also appeared on Celebrity Mastermind where his chosen specialist subject was ‘James Bond: The Roger Moore Years’.
As well as TV and Radio, Michael has hosted numerous corporate events and awards shows including two World Skills Awards (London and Leipzig) to more than 25,000 people.
Being a family man is hugely important to Michael. He tied the knot with fellow TV presenter Angellica Bell in New York and the couple have two children. He is also an accomplished poker player and is currently studying upholstery.
“Having presented the very first British Citizen Awards in 2015, it’s a real honour to be invited back. I’m looking forward to seeing how the event has grown and of course meet the incredible people being recognised for their contribution to their community.”
Journalist and broadcaster Fiona Phillips is best known for her 12 years on the sofa as popular lead presenter for GMTV. Throughout her career Fiona’s genuine warmth, intellect and sense of humour has won her the affection of a national audience. Most recently Fiona fronted BBC1’s The Truth About…. Sugar as part of the channel’s investigative science documentary series and she will present another strand in the recommissioned The Truth About series this year. She is a regular presenter/reporter for BBC1’s Watchdog and has appeared on ITV’s Daybreak, Channel 4’s Countdown, BBC Two’s Daily Politics and The One Show. Fiona is an ambassador for the People’s Postcode Lottery. She writes a weekly column for The Mirror and has contributed to Tesco Magazine, Saturday Express Magazine and an Agony Aunt column for New Magazine.