The property personality of the year in Northern Ireland is Eric Cairns. He was awarded the title by the judging panel in the Belfast Telegraph Northern Ireland Property Awards 2007 sponsored by Ulster Bank.
One of the most familiar faces on the Northern Ireland property scene, he founded the Eric Cairns Partnership in 1992, and has seen his property agency grow significantly in the past 15 years.
Mr Cairns has developed the business, which has offices in Holywood and Belfast, into one of the province's leading practices.
Apart from his business acumen, the judging panel also applauded his commitment to charity work, such as his support for the Men Against Cancer campaign, which was established to raise funds to build the UK and Ireland's first dedicated facility for men's cancer in Belfast City Hospital.
Mr Cairns was presented with the Ulster Bank-sponsored property personality of the year award at a glittering gala dinner in the Ramada Hotel in Belfast.
The accolade is the only non-entry category in the annual awards and is presented to an individual who has made an outstanding contribution to the property industry in Northern Ireland.
Henry Elvin, a member of the judging panel and head of corporate and property banking with Ulster Bank, said Mr Cairns had shown great skills and commerciality over many years.
The winners of The Belfast Telegraph Northern Ireland Property Awards 2007 were:
- Property personality of the year - Eric Cairns.
- Commercial property agency of the year (over 20 employees) - Colliers CRE.
- Commercial property agency of the year (20 employees and under) - Gary McDowell Chartered Surveyors.
- Investment deal of the year - BTW Shiells.
- Residential property agency of the year for resale - Templeton Robinson.
- Residential property agency of the year for new developments - Eric Cairns Partnership.
- Commercial developer of the year - Benmore Developments/Straben Developments.
- Residential developer of the year - Hagan Homes.
- Commercial property development of the year - The Outlet (GML).
- Residential development of the year - Malone Square (McGinnis Developments).
- Property marketing initiative of the year - Osborne King.
- Young property agent of the year - Mark O'Kane, Colliers CRE.
See today's Belfast Telegraph for a special in-depth supplement on all this year's winners and finalists.