A whisky stalwart is the toast of the Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival after being honoured for her dedicated service that has helped put the region on the world map.

Linda Mellis, brand support manager for Diageo, was named Ambassador of the Year.

The award was made at the Touch of Tartan dinner held at Glen Moray Distillery on April 29 when industry experts, staff, writers and visitors gathered to mark the curtain rising on this year’s Festival, which ran from April 30-May 4.

Linda has worked in the industry for 43 years, having started out as a typist in 1972 and moving up through the ranks. Her current role sees her manage brand support and marketing of malt distilling as well as the distillery visitor centres and brand homes for drinks giant Diageo.

When it comes to the Festival, she has a reputation for making things happen, using her skills and connections to ensure deadlines are met and that events are a success.

As well as her dedicated involvement in the Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival since its inception, she’s had close connections to the community events including the Bells Rotary Marafun, Moray Young Citizens’ Awards and the Classic Malts Rally.

As one of the world’s biggest Festivals celebrating of Scotland’s national drink, the Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival featured a packed programme of over 400 events, with music, crafts, food themes running alongside a wide range of distillery tours and tastings.

To find out more visit www.spiritofspeyside.com and follow the Festival at www.facebook.com/WhiskyFestival or on Twitter @spirit_speyside.

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