Our Judges

The BBAs pride themselves on having a large panel of over 20 independent expert judges and each month we introduce you to a few:

Mark Beer OBE

Partner at Keystone Law

Mark is a globally recognized advisor and academic known for his ground-breaking work in AI, legal tech, and innovation within the legal sector. With an exceptional ability to solve complex issues, Mark has been acknowledged as one of the ‘Top 50 most influential Brits in the UAE’ and listed among the 100 Inspiring Leaders in the Middle East. 

His distinguished career spans diverse leadership roles, including his tenure as Chief Executive of the DIFC Dispute Resolution Authority and Registrar General of the DIFC Courts. Mark’s pivotal contributions have led him to be twice shortlisted as the UK’s Solicitor of the Year – In-House and as one of the UK’s most innovative lawyers by the Law Society of England and Wales. 

Mark’s passion for technology and justice is evident through his role as Chairman of the AIFC LawTech Advisory Council and his active participation in the UK Government’s LawTech Delivery Panel’s Commercial Dispute Resolution Taskforce.  

As a Visiting Professor of AI and the Law at Shanghai University of Political Science and Law, Mark continues to shape the future of law. He co-founded the Deep Tech Dispute Resolution Lab at Oxford University, a pioneering research centre dedicated to leveraging AI for dispute resolution. 

Mark is a sought-after speaker and lecturer on LawTech, blockchain, smart contracts, and the implications of emerging technologies in commerce and dispute resolution. His relentless commitment to advancing the rule of law through technology has made him a leading authority in the global legal community. 

Mark Huxley

Chairman, Breathe Points

Mark has worked within the globally iconic Lloyd’s insurance Market for nearly 50 years. He was originally a front-line practitioner for 20 years at a Lloyd’s insurer. He left this world in the late 1990s when he founded his first company that pioneered a new service solution for the industry. Growing this company to significant scale within a short timeframe, Mark exited and began what has become his primary focus for the last 20 years.

With this first business he gained a reputation for his expertise in launching startups, scaling them, operational organisation and creating brands that deliver mission and cause. This has seen him found a number of organisations helping optimise these various elements of critical structure and much else aside. Carrying on his own entrepreneurial journey, he is an insurance fintech founder and occasional angel investor. He is an active mentor and advisor, including at the Lloyd’s Lab, its own innovation hub. Most recently Mark has taken on the Chairman’s role of Breathe Points, a startup focused upon building behavioural changes in City citizens, encouraging them to reduce their personal carbon impact.

In 2017 Mark was elected a Freeman of the Company of Entrepreneurs, an aspirant Livery Company within the City of London. November 2023 will see him be installed its Master for the following year. He is passionate about social inclusivity and equity and serves a number of charities, foundations and other organisations that strive to make the workplace fairer for underserved communities. He is also an occasional visiting lecturer on Entrepreneurial Mindset and Leadership.

Sadie Groom

CEO, Bubble Agency

An entrepreneur since an early age, Sadie founded Bubble, a global PR, marketing and events company focusing on the entertainment technology, sports and AV business, in 1999 and is still very much the driving force. Sadie not only looks after the business side of Bubble and client strategy but also heavily promotes the role of women in the industries she works in. In 2017 she founded the Rise – Women in Broadcast group which is now a global group offering mentoring, training and awards across all job roles. 

Sadie has been awarded the Women in Business Champion of Change and IABM Shining Star for her work on gender diversity. Sadie is also on the board of the DPP and Buckinghamshire New University. 

In 2020 Sadie founded a new business, Marketing Leaders Circle, a global network for marketers in the media and entertainment industry, in July 2022 this business was expanded into The Circle Society welcoming the following job functions – sales, HR, finance, operations and leadership.  

Sadie is a keen traveller for business and pleasure and would like to spend more time on the golf course.  

Angeli Jackson

Founder – SunSibility

Angeli Jackson is a graduate from The London College of Fashion, a product developer who founded SunSibility and started the company back in 2001 with a Prince’s Trust Start up loan. 

SunSibility have now been pioneers in the Sun Protection Industry for the past two decades and continue to lead and constantly evolve in their field offering a fabulous array of UV Protective products and recognised for the following:

  • Most Innovative Independent Fashion Business 2021
  • UV Protection Specialists of the Year 2021
  • Outstanding Personal Achievement 2022
  • Outstanding Innovation 2022
  • Most Independent Fashion Business 2022
  • Protective Clothing Brand Of The Year

SunSibility work with and are recognised within the medical, health, beauty and fashion industry for their selection of brands & product ranges. 

Visit: https://www.sunsibility.co.uk/

Siva Kugathas

Managing Director, ServiceMaster - AAA

Siva Kugathas is the Managing Director of ServiceMaster AAA since 2017, and is an inspiring business leader. With the company growing year after year, Siva has gone from one territory to thirteen in a span of 5 years. His company specialises in custom cleaning services keeping people healthy and safe, nurturing, well-being and shaping strong and reputable workplaces – offering smart technology, best in class products and expertly trained staff.

In 2021, he won International Brilliance Business Leader of the Year, followed by SME Business Person of the Year.

Alongside ServiceMaster AAA, Siva has been actively involved in charities – such as the Police Community Clubs of Great Britain – to support and educate children about Covid and its impact. He has also been supporting YMCA – vulnerable young people & Refugees – helping refugees make the UK their home.

Visit: ServiceMaster - AAA

Nadeem Ahmad

Founder, Templeton & Partners

Many companies are transforming to fit recent D&I trends. Templeton and Partners was founded on the principle of D&I 25 years ago, operating as diverse and inclusive since 1996.

99% of recruitment companies only operate locally. Templeton build scalable, specialist international tech teams for international businesses across multiple locations. Our global team speak 25 languages to engage tech talent wherever they are in the world and deliver them to companies building tech teams across 40 countries. 

In 2021 Nadeem was named Outstanding Entrepreneur of the Year in the Best Business Awards and Business Leader of the Year in the Recruitment & Employment Confederation Awards. 

Today Templeton is a truly diverse company with an 80% diverse, 65% female workforce spanning over 20 nationalities and four generations. In 2021 Templeton doubled our global office presence from 4 to 8, by opening offices in Paris, Warsaw, Bangalore and New York. Templeton has grown into a £14million revenue business with eight global offices and a client base that includes FTSE 100 leaders, Fortune 500 companies and the world’s largest businesses. 

Visit: Templeton & Partners

Sir Michael Lockett KCVO

Sir Michael has a portfolio of businesses that operate across the communications spectrum, centred around corporate, political and institutional leadership. In essence, everything which is needed to build, protect and sustain reputation. Starting in advertising, Michael swiftly established his own business: LIVE; which became the largest independently owned live marketing company. Here he spearheaded the worldwide re-launch of British Airways and the Hong Kong Handover Ceremony. At LIVE, he was also involved in developing ‘the story’ for London’s successful bid to host the London 2012 Olympic Games. This was closely followed by the winning campaigns for Sochi (2014 Winter Olympics) and Rio in 2016.

During the 1992 General Election campaign, he assumed leadership of the Conservative Party’s presentation unit for Prime Minister John Major. After 15 years, his role concluded with the successful leadership campaign for Prime Minister David Cameron. He was director of the Golden Jubilee Concerts at Buckingham Palace in 2002 and has worked with the office of HRH the Prince of Wales since 2004. 2012 proved to be a momentous year with Michael having concluded his role of CEO on the Thames River Pageant in June, as well as chairing the companies which handled both the Royal launch of The Shard, and the Opening and Closing Ceremonies for the 2012 Olympics and Paralympics. In September 2012 he was knighted for his work on the Diamond Jubilee.

Other large scale projects include the staging of the UK hosted G8 summit in Northern Ireland in June 2013, and the Opening Ceremony of the second Global Skills and Education Forum in Abu Dhabi in March 2014. Through his private office, he also works for a number of corporate leaders to assist them in the delivery of their transformation agendas and reputation management. He is a Director of The Oracle Cancer Trust at The Royal Marsden, and in his spare time, is a fanatical sports enthusiast, and ex-player of Leicester Tigers Rugby Club.

Sharon Welch

Managing Director, Bid Writer Consultancy

Sharon is Managing Director of the multi award-winning Bid Writer Consultancy, which was established in 2014. The company’s ethos is to provide affordable bid-writing support to small- and medium-sized companies to help them win government contracts.

Following a successful 30 year career in business development roles within charities and private sector companies, Sharon understood that winning contracts was becoming increasingly important to help businesses thrive and grow. Her business model – providing freelance writing support seven days a week, and out of hours – recognises that small business owners often have to prioritise their ‘day jobs’, while trying to respond to complex bid requirements within funders’ deadlines.

As a member of the Association of Bid and Proposal Management Professionals Sharon is committed to helping companies win business by making technical writing spring to life – painting a clear picture of each companies’ experience and expertise. In the past three years, Sharon and her team have supported clients of all sizes and sectors to win contracts in excess of £130 million.

Visit: www.bidwriterconsultancy.co.uk

Neil Fineberg

Managing Director, The Finegreen Group

Neil Fineberg is the Managing Director of successful award winning recruitment & development consultancy, The Finegreen Group – focused on helping organisations (predominantly Healthcare) recruit & develop the best people to Executive / Management positions; now also providing executive education, mentoring and board governance reviews.  With 13 years of experience in his field, Neil has built up a business with excellent networks at the highest levels across the NHS, private healthcare and international healthcare arenas, as well as strong links to education, local government and large private sector providers of services to the Healthcare industry.

Finegreen helps healthcare organisations appoint to the full spectrum of specialisms – everything from Boards and Non-Executives to HR & OD, Finance, Estates & Facilities, Project/Programme Management, Procurement, Commissioning, Strategy, Business Development, Clinical & Corporate Governance and Operational Management – together with their Medical / Clinical Division where they have a particularly high quality database of senior clinicians. In short, Finegreen see themselves as a true one-stop shop for senior levels of the recruitment industry.

Recent awards include:

  • Winner – HealthInvestor Awards – Recruiter of the Year 2013, 2014 & 2016
  • Winner – Best Business Awards – Best SME 2013-2016
  • Winner – CV Magazine – Best Upper Level Recruitment 2016
  • Winner – Talk of Manchester Awards – Agency of the Year 2015
  • Winner – Best4Recruitment Awards 2013 & 2014

Visit: www.finegreen.co.uk

Nicky McCrudden FCMI

Organisational Psychology – Doctoral Researcher

Nicky McCrudden is an entrepreneur, L&D consultant and chocolate devotee, who recently returned to her first love, academia to study for a doctorate in humanistic leadership.

A fellow of both the Chartered Management Institute and the Royal Society of Arts, Nicky’s career spans the public, private and not-for-profit sectors. After managing projects for the RNIB and leading strategic service redesign projects for the NHS, she founded McCrudden Partnership, a creative learning and development company dedicated to providing highly effective learning to operational managers in 2005.  As Managing Director, she guided the company from a ‘harry potter’ business operating from the cupboard under the stairs through a decade and a half of continual growth. Surrounded by a team of highly sought-after consultants and trainers Nicky worked with clients including the Natural History Museum, England Rugby, NHS, Canon UK and Europe, and British Gypsum.  She personally designed and developed a cutting-edge digital learning platform and her ‘partnership’ philosophy won her recognition in a host of awards, including the prestigious Training Journal Awards (2019) and CIPD People Management Awards (2021).

After 17-years at the head of McCrudden Training, Nicky transitioned back to academia, now studying for a PhD with the University of Sussex’s Business School. Despite her full-time research commitments, Nicky remains a Non-Executive Director of McCrudden Training and ‘keeps her hand in’ approach as Chair of a CIC for a community interest company.

Visit: mccruddenpartnership.co.uk

Ian Hughes

Managing Director, Consumer Intelligence

Driven by his passion for information technology, Ian has made it his life’s work to help companies understand how to improve their world by helping them better understand and serve their customers. He started his career by combining his love for IT with Marketing in roles at M&S and MM Group, and went on to form eCharity.com during the .com boom.  In 2003, he launched Consumer Intelligence – an insight partner for financial services which uses its unique data offering to provide compelling consumer understanding and a comprehensive view of the marketplace, inspiring confident decisions that build consumer trust. Ian is also Fellow of the Institute of Direct Marketing, an I Love Claims Board member, and a graduate of Harvard Business School.

Visit: www.consumerintel.com

Howard McKenzie

Managing Director, HMSL

Howard McKenzie spent 30 years as a manager and academic in education and training rising from tenant dairy farmer to Principal of a large College in Scotland. In 2008 he returned to the portfolio life of a consultant building an international client base in the engineering, financial services, education and publishing sectors. He remains the senior academic consultant for Pearson plc. – Direct Delivery who deliver education and training to 20000 students across the Gulf region. He is deployed to make high level educational management interventions including a four month assignment as Interim Dean at TQ Pearson Makkah College in Saudi Arabia. Howard is a Fellow of the Institute of Directors and a Chartered Director with experience of providing high level advice and support for Boards and companies. He is also a published romantic novelist.