FORMER Co-operative Union Chief Executive Lloyd Wilkinson received the Rochdale Pioneers' Award at the ICA Congress in Oslo.
Mr Wilkinson had a distinguished career at the Union for over 38 years, 25 of which were as Chief Executive.
The ICA said: "He was the youngest appointed and longest serving General Secretary. He has been a national representative bringing practical benefits to the Union and its member societies."
At an international level, he represented the Co-operative Union at numerous ICA meetings and Congresses and was an ICA board member during 1982/1988 and 1997/2001.
Mr Wilkson, pictued with his award, shares this year's prize with 100-year-old Francisco Luis JimÃ©nez Arcila, a leading co-operative figure in Colombia. With a career spanning over 75 years Mr JimÃ©nez Arcila participated in the creation of nearly 200 co-operative organisations and has contributed to co-operative development in Latin America.
A committed co-operator, he has worked as professor of philosophy, economy and co-operative legislation in different universities and been the Director-General of the Federation of Housing Co-operatives of Colombia and President of the Co-operative High Studies Centre.