The judging panel is formed of international experts from the sport media industry. Our knowledgeable and dedicated panel have been selected for their range of expertise, ensuring the shortlisting process is fair and representative of the industry.
They will be forming together to shortlist three applications from each category based on the criteria of the award to maintain transparency and consistency.
Managing Director, SportsPro
Nick is responsible for all aspects of SportsPro’s industry leading media and events business. Nick has over 12 years of sports/ media experience, beginning his career in the Australian sports industry, before moving to the UK to join SportsPro in its commercial team. Since taking over as Managing Director in 2012, Nick has spent the past 5 years developing SportsPro’s array of print, digital and events platforms, whilst focusing on international growth in both established and burgeoning markets.
Founder and CEO, ISportConnect
Sree Varma has eighteen years of marketing and sales experience ranging from pharmaceutical and retail, through to the sports industry. He has worked as Publisher at Business F1 & Sports Pro, and as a Consultant for Sport + Markt and has an MBA in Marketing. Sree is the CEO of iSportconnect, the world’s largest private network for sport business professionals; a global networking platform and community.
Chief Sports Writer, TV Sports Markets
Frank Dunne has been the Chief Sports Writer for the SportBusiness Group since June 2015. Previously he had enjoyed two spells as editor of TV Sports Markets – from 2010 to 2015 and from 2001 to 2003. In the meantime, he worked as a freelance football writer on Italian football, including covering the ‘Calciopoli’ match-fixing scandal for the Independent and the Juventus doping trial for the Financial Times. From 1992 to 1999, he worked as a travel journalist. Frank’s passions are football, music, wine and sleep – preferably in that order. He supports Manchester United.
Editor, TV Sports Markets
Robin Jellis is the Editor of TV Sports Markets, the leading publication on the TV sports rights industry. TV Sports Markets provides analysis and hard-to-get information on media-rights deals around the world.
Robin began writing for TV Sports Markets as a Reporter in February 2013, where he was responsible for coverage of media rights markets in Europe, while also reporting on sponsorship deals for Sports Sponsorship Insider – the SportBusiness Group publication focused on the sponsorship industry. He was promoted to Senior Reporter for TV Sports Markets in December 2014, before becoming Editor in June 2015.
Martin is in charge of Sportcal’s online daily news and has been a key member of the team since 2004. He specialises in broadcast rights issues and has a vast knowledge of different markets, with a strong editorial focus on media rights tenders, sports marketing agencies and industry moves.
Lord (Michael) Bates is a Member of the UK House of Lords and a Minister of State at the Department for International Development. Between 1992 and 1997 Michael was an elected Member of the House of Commons and a Government Minister (HM Paymaster General). Michael has been a long time campaigner for the observance of the Olympic truce. In 2011-12 Michael walked 2900 miles from Olympia, Greece to London to highlight the London 2012 Olympic truce. In 2016 Michael walked 1880 miles from Buenos Aires to Rio de Janeiro for the Rio 2016 Olympic truce. He serves as a Board member of the International Olympic Truce Foundation. Michael and his wife, Xuelin have established the Walk for Peace Foundation to promote peace through sport.
Anne was awarded MBE in 2014 in recognition of her services towards Disability Sport and Charity work at Buckingham Palace. She became the first wheelchair racer from Sub-Saharan Africa to compete at the Paralympics Games in Athens, and joined Team GB in 2006. Athlete, author, and sporting ambassador, Anne provides a personal example of courage, commitment and determination that demonstrates the transformative impacts of sport, making her an ideal ambassador to Play for Change.
Ed was appointed Chair of UK Athletics, the sport’s national governing body, in 2007. He led the successful London campaign to host the 2017 IAAF World Athletics Championships as head of its bid committee and was appointed Chair of London 2017 to lead the staging of these Championships and of the World Para Athletics Championships in the same summer. He played a key role in securing the long-term future of the athletics track at the Olympic Stadium in Stratford and has been Chair of World Para Athletics since 2011. He completed his final term of office at UK Athletics on the completion of the two 2017 World Championships. He is the Chair of the Palace for Life Foundation, the official charity of Premier League football club, Crystal Palace FC.