Judy Bakieh and Sarah Alsalem, account managers at Gambit Communications in Dubai, are the winners of this year’s prestigious Cannes Young PR Lions competition, making them the first individuals from their region to achieve this remarkable prize.
This year’s Young Lions PR competition brief was supplied by EcoTree, an NGO that sustainably manages forests and ecosystems, in which it asked competitors to create a PR strategy that effectively communicates their offering of carbon credits. At the global final, Judy and Sarah competed against 28 national winners, with their campaign #BestBadInvestment, to be crowned the world’s best young PR creatives.
Expressing her delight at their achievement, Monika Fourneaux, Head of PRCA EMEA, stated, “Congratulations to Judy and Sarah on their remarkable success. PRCA MENA annually organises the regional Young Lions PR competition, which acts as a stepping stone to the Cannes competition. This year, Gambit Communications from Dubai showcased their prowess and stood out among numerous participating agencies to secure the victory.”
Commenting on their win, Judy Bakieh said, “We are proud and privileged to bring home the first ever Young PR Lions Gold to the MENA region, and even prouder to do it as part of an independent agency from Dubai. We knew that the Cannes PR Young Lions would be an opportunity for us to break some of the global stereotypes around Middle Eastern women, and showcase the talent, passion and potential that exists across the diverse countries that make up our region. I hope this win encourages the young talents in our region to get here and show what they can do.”
Sarah Alsalem added, “We came to Cannes with one objective – bring home a Gold, and we did just that! We knew that with just 24 hours to put together a global campaign, competing against the best young minds from around the world, we needed to be brave enough to take risks and decisive in our creative decisions. That decisiveness saved us crucial time which allowed us to give the campaign an important touch of finesse in the final hours. Thank you to PRCA and the Cannes Festival of Creativity for the experience of a lifetime!”
Khaled Al Shehhi, Executive Director of Marketing and Communications at UAE Government Media Office, welcomed the winners and expressed his pride in the team’s achievement, stating, “Judy and Sarah have proven themselves to be exceptional talents in the field of PR. Their victory at the Cannes Young PR Lions competition is a testament to their hard work, creativity, and dedication. This incredible accomplishment reflects the nurturing environment we have in the UAE, where talent can flourish and dreams can be realised. It showcases our robust ecosystem that supports, encourages, and propels young creatives to unleash their full potential.”