Diary: The Times gives Beattie's PA her time in the spotlight

Being the PA to an agency executive is often a thankless task. Late nights in the office, fielding endless calls, desperately trying to get a last-minute place at The Ivy. But Antoinette de Lisser, Trevor Beattie's PA, has achieved some deserved recognition.

De Lisser, who's been Beattie's right-hand woman for the past four years, came runner-up in The Times Creme and Hays Secretarial PA of the Year competition, and bagged a full page in The Times, where she recounts a few of the tasks she has performed that were beyond the call of duty.

Aside from the last-minute visa requests, she recounts a mission to Miami to help free a wrongly imprisoned British girl, who'd been locked up after drunkenly joking she had a bomb in her bag.

She also tells of Beattie's request that she get Bill Clinton to sign a book when he was signing copies of his autobiography at Waterstone's.

She queued for six hours only to find the book that Beattie had handed her was Monica Lewinsky's autobiography. But even after having the door closed in her face, she managed to get Clinton's signature by cornering him as he left.

Despite these requests, de Lisser manages to keep a level head. She says: "When you work for someone who's infamous in the industry, it's not really hard to get meetings in. It's more about maintaining a certain level of respect within the industry and the office."