Bob Holt, chairman of several PLC companies, including Mears Group PLC, which is working in partnership with Leeds City Council, has been honoured with an OBE this year and celebrated this highest appreciation at Buckingham Palace when he received his medal. Mears is responsible for undertaking repairs and maintenance on 39,500 of Leeds City Council's properties and, typical of Bob's values, Mears is of great social value to the City. Under way is the Mears and Groundwork Leeds Urban Oasis Project which aims to inspire people to improve pockets of green space through practical activities such as clean ups, planting and food growing – all in favour of encouraging healthy eating! Forever helping others, Mears operatives also dug the trenches for the planting of daffodil bulbs as part of the Cottingley in Bloom Bulb Bonanza. Mears was joined by corporate volunteers from Costa Coffee and the local community – as a result 3,450 bulbs were planted in just one day! Via sheer hard work and dedication, Bob has devoted his entire working life to build success in order to help others both in the UK and across the world. He often spends many proud moments celebrating both his own charitable endeavours and those of his passionate volunteers as they achieve huge success in the large number of projects they undertake. Now it is time to celebrate the reward. He recently announced "This tremendous reward has encouraged me to take on even more projects and reach even further. Despite the ongoing efforts made by charitable organisations across the world, there is always more work to be done". Bob was born in Oldham, Lancashire and has spent all of his adult life demonstrating his belief that hard work and commitment will achieve success and reach goals. His ultimate aim has always been to use his success to inspire others and to benefit as many people as possible which is why he set up his charity, The Footprints Foundation. One of the most gratifying aspects of the charity, is the high energy, dedication and selflessness shown by all the volunteers, many of whom are also employees and Trustees of Bob's companies. Another is the continuous camaraderie that exists between the various teams – all working together to improve peoples' lives throughout the UK and the world. Bob very much believes in linking ways of helping those who are in the most need such as the disadvantaged, vulnerable or those suffering ill health, to those who simply need encouragement and opportunity. One of the ways he masters this, is to nurture the skills and qualities of young people through learning opportunities and help them to develop their self esteem by promoting them in a positive attitude. By not only being physically involved himself, Bob also uses his creative mind and business acumen to draw together teams that work jointly on a charitable project which results in helping to change lives for both teams; the beneficiaries and the benefactors. Mears Leeds branch currently employs 46 apprentices across 6 trades. By offering local people a first step on the career ladder, Mears demonstrates a commitment to improving neighbourhoods and improving lives – one of Bob's most important visions. As a proud royalist, Bob is enormously proud but is already planning on how he can 'share' this award by employing his encouragement to achieve even greater things in the future.