And the winner of our Liberal Voice of the Year award is… Mark Littlewood

by Stephen Tall on January 15, 2012

It’s a fortnight since we launched our search for the Liberal Voice of the Year with the aim of finding the individual or group which has had the biggest impact on liberalism in the past 12 months. This is LibDemVoice’s fifth such annual award, and as is our tradition, we looked beyond the ranks of the Lib Dems to find the liberal who’s most impressed our readers and is not a member of our party.

We unveiled the shortlist here on New Year’s Day. In total, 903 readers cast a vote in the past two weeks. Here are the results in full:

32% (288 votes): Mark Littlewood

Mark Littlewood, a former head of media for the Lib Dems, campaigns for market reforms in his non-partisan role as Director General of the Institute of Economic Affairs.

13% (117 votes): The Occupy Movement

The Occupy Movement, an international protest group primarily directed against economic and social inequality, currently lists 2,562 Occupy communities worldwide.

13% (115 votes): Kenneth Clarke

Ken Clarke, Justice Minister in the Coalition Government, is a Tory MP frequently referred to as the sixth Lib Dem cabinet minister for his committed belief to prison rehabilitation and due legal process.

Other nominees:

That’s a decisive victory for Mark Littlewood, a controversial figure among party members — he was the party’s head of media until he resigned in March 2007, and since then has become a doughty champion of free markets, most recently in his role as director general of the Institute of Economic Affairs. Somewhat ironically, the closest runner-up is The Occupy Movement.

Previous winners of the LDV Liberal Voice of the Year award:

2010: Aung San Suu Kyi, campaigner against political abuse in Burma.

2009: Peter Tatchell, international human rights campaigner.

2008: Campaigners on behalf of Jean Charles de Menezes (Justice4Jean.org) and Stockwell Shooting Inquest Jury.

2007: Shami Chakrabarti, Director of Liberty.