Emmanuel Ray, a London-based fashion presenter and emerging actor has become the first ever Asian to be nominated for London Personality of the Year 2012 at London Lifestyle Awards.
Emmanuel has been short listed in the toughest category at the London Lifestyle Awards, facing competition from Mayor of London Boris Johnson, Baron Sebastian Coe KBE, film director & producer Danny Boyle, singer and record producer Gary Barlow and a few other established public figures.
Emmanuel also raises funds for various charities and supports human rights campaigns.
He grew up in a poor family in war-torn Sri Lanka. His life changed after being spotted by a photographer while selling seafood snacks on the beach when he was 15 years old.
This paved the way to a modelling career which took Emmanuel to different Asian countries, the Middle East and Europe.
He later had a mental breakdown, and became a drug and alcohol addict
This year, Emmanuel struggled with severe depression and stopped working in May 2012 in order to take a break, only to become broke and face homelessness.
“I came very close to giving up on my career this year due to the numerous problems I was facing in my personal life. Being nominated for London Personality of the Year 2012 has given me hope and the boost that my career needed so badly. I have now made a full recovery and am back where I belong, thanks to all my audience and fans who nominated me for this prestigious award,” he said.
Last year, Emmanuel won Fashion Icon of the Year 2011 at the inaugural Fashions Finest Awards by garnering maximum votes from the public, becoming the first foreigner to win a Fashion Icon award in Britain.
"I am honoured to have been awarded that title,” he said. “I have represented Britain in various international projects and owe my entire career to my audience and the British public. My work in fashion aside, I strongly believe I won this award because of my work with charities and human rights campaigns,” he added.
The London Lifestyle Awards were founded in 2010 to honour the lifestyle businesses in the capital whose work has made a real difference and a true contribution to London and the people living in the city.
This year, 4,127 businesses and personalities were in the running to be shortlisted for a London Lifestyle Award.
This year’s ceremony will be held on Wednesday 17th October at the renowned Hurlingham Club in Fulham, West London and is expected to be the biggest and most hotly contested yet.