DUBAI — Weber Shandwick was named Agency of the Year at the 2017 Middle East Public Relations Association’s (MEPRA) annual awards last week, retaining the honour that it won in 2016 and 2014.

All told, Weber Shandwick picked up three gold awards, two silvers and the Outstanding Young Communicator of the Year award.

Other big winners included Four Communications with four golds and three silvers; Memac Ogilvy with two golds, one silver and three bronzes, and Hill+Knowlton Strategies with one gold, one silver and two bronzes.

Dabo & Co’s co-founder Camilla d’Abo was named the recipient of the Chairman's award for her contribution to the industry.

For the first time, this year’s MEPRA Awards recognized national initiatives. Weber Shandwick was applauded for its McDonald’s Beef Nation work in Kuwait. Abdul Latif Jameel Motors won in Saudi for its road traffic safety initiative. Memac Ogilvy won in Lebanon for its Ana Hader campaign with UNICEF to support education for refugee children. Reflecting the region’s political landscape, Grey won in Qatar for its #MadeinQatar campaign.

In total, MEPRA received 222 entries, with the most entries for the best use of traditional media, the best use of digital PR, and the best live event.