2015 Judges

The Young Digital Leader Awards has assembled a cross-section of the best senior talent in the industry to assess this year’s awards. Each set of judges are experts in their areas and work for some of the most famed names in digital.

Roberto Kussabi – Sony Playstation 

Roberto Kusabbi PicPosition: Senior Social & Community Manager

Roberto Kusabbi oversees social media and community at Sony PlayStation EMEA. Having previously worked in elite football as Global Social Media manager at Tottenham Hotspur and non-profits, he has almost 10 years’ experience in digital and social media across the globe. His recent projects include; launching the award winning PlayStation 4, rolling out Adobe Social across EMEA territories as well as social content strategies for PlayStation titles. He also launched Tottenham Hotspur on Chinese social media and was part of the team who won a Cannes Lion for the #HardandFast campaign at the British Heart Foundation. He has a Masters in Online Journalism and lives in London.

Why are you excited about the YDL Awards? 

I am really looking forward to seeing the new ideas and ways of working that young leaders are embracing in digital.  Coming from a social media background I am excited to see how some of the young leaders are innovating in the space and what their methods are. From creativity to use of data, we have never had so many tools to help us lead and produce work. I can’t wait to see the entries.

Natasha Jackson – Forward Worldwide 

Natasha JacksonPosition: Chief Digital Officer

A customer centric content and digital strategy evangelist with over 15 year’s experience of working with brands to help re-shape their digital presence.  I have worked with major global brands such as Tesco, Virgin, American Express, Honda, Boots the Chemist and the A S Watson Group.

Why are you excited about the YDL Awards? 

I genuinely believe that the most innovative, collaborative and strategic ideas come from the silent heroes in our sector – the young talent in the industry.  I am proud to be involved to recognise and reward this talent.


Amy Eagles – RKCR/Y&R 


Position: Head of Creative Production

Amy is currently overseeing all Production output at RKCR/Y&R. A background in both print production and digital production from hands on experience as a producer of both mediums at BBH, Saint and then RKCR/Y&R. At the age of 29, Amy was heading up the 20 strong Digital Production team at RKCR/Y&R. Three years later and she has taken a step up to play a key part in the wider agency output.

Why are you excited about the YDL Awards? 

I am a massive advocate of Young Digital Leaders. The way that young digital minds operate is fascinating and fearless. The recognition of having Young Digital Leaders is something that has been missing for a long time. Digital experience and knowledge vs. the length and years’ experience of a traditional leader is something that some people find difficult to comprehend; “How can you be a leader when you are so young?”.

It’s this myth that we need to dissolve, and with the Young Digital Leader Awards, this will help us take a step forward in doing so.  I’m excited to see the next generation of Leaders rise – there has been so much press about the millennial generation, so I’m interested to see what their approach to leadership will be.

Markus Hohl – Hellon 

Markus Hohl YDLA Awards Position: CEO

Markus heads up the London office for Finland’s award winning Service Design agency Hellon (previously called Diagonal). He creates unique and engaging customer experiences for companies and helps them change their culture towards a more customer centric way or working.

Previously he led a team of international UX and Service designers at Orange Labs UK, creating future products & services for Orange’s 32 countries. Until 2013 he was Head of Customer Centred Design at Telefonica O2 where he designed and introduced a customer focussed design process for all of O2 UK’s consumer product portfolio, a 9-£figure annual investment.

Markus’ background is in product design and engineering. Before joining O2 in 2006 he ran his own consultancy for 8 years where he won many international design awards for his work. He taught at the Royal College of Art and now works with the Design Council coaching SMEs and university start-ups on design and innovation.

Why are you excited about the YDL Awards?  

Embracing digital tools is vital for anyone wanting to succeed in tomorrow’s market. Having tought young entrepreneurs as part of Telefonica’a Think Big initiative showed me the difference digital design can make to young people’s lives and how enthusiastic they take it on board. So very happy to do help young people again and see the inspiring, fresh thinking they come up with.

Ed Hornby – VCCP 

Ed Hornby Position: Director of Digital Delivery

Ed has been creating digital marketing since before Google and existed. In that time he has steered the delivery of online firsts for,, T-Mobile, Unilever and RBS, among others. He led digital teams through the dot com boom and bust (and boom again) at digital agencies and Sapient, and has built and directed award-winning digital teams at integrated agencies such as BBH, Tribal DDB and Ogilvy. Ed joined VCCP in March 2012 where he leads the digital division.

Why are you excited about the YDL Awards? 

It’s incredibly invigorating to see new, real talent at work; new ideas and unexpected ways of doing things, unfettered by the accumulated norms that experience sometimes imposes on us older folks. I’m looking forward to seeing how the best young leaders in one of the UK’s fastest growing industries take advantage of the relentless pace of change that digital creates, deliver on expectations to achieve huge amounts with very little, build short-term flex and agility into robust long term strategies, and bring together multiple disparate streams and teams where no one person knows it all.

Jo Wallace – Saatchi & Saatchi 


Position: Creative Director

Jo Wallace began her career at the ground breaking HHCL & Partners. She has since worked in various London agencies from small boutique ones to global networks. Jo has also also written and directed short films that have screened at international film festivals. Outside of the day job, Jo has a strong agenda to create work that affects social change.

Recently she launched ‘There’s a Good Girl’, an exhibition which showcased the work of 20 women artists making their mark on contemporary culture which received much critical acclaim. Jo spoke at the 2015 Southbank Centre’s Women Of the World (WOW) festival where she also helped run a creative workshop with 100 teenage girls. Following that she was a discussion host at a recent East End Woman TEDx event.

Why are you excited about the YDL Awards?

 I love to see emerging technologies, fresh ideas and creative talent being recognised and supported.

Rav Dhaliwal – All Saints 


Position: Global Head of Digital

eCommerce and Digital Marketing professional with over 8 years experience in managing high turnover brands. Experience in international digital expansion as well as multi-channel and thru the line marketing based initiatives.

Why are you excited for the YDL Awards? 

We are always on the lookout for the best young talent out there to nurture at AllSaints so this gives me a good opportunity to see the ways in which young leaders of tomorrow are innovating and coming up with creative digital solutions to the demands set in today’s market.

Daniel Harris – Fjord Design & Innovation 

Daniel Harris

Position: Group Service Design Director

Interdisciplinary art & design trained, career in media production, digital design, service design.

Why are you excited about the YDL Awards? 

These awards are exciting because I’m looking for a needle, and it’s somewhere in the haystack of context, collaboration, and design. It can burst convention, preconception, and points to a magic that changes a world for a moment. And make no mistake, I don’t care how young you are – i’ll be assessing this work like the rest! Cannot. Wait.

Danny Fontaine – Valtech 


Position: Digital Delivery Manager

Danny Fontaine has an eclectic background from academic, to hands on design & build, to heading up delivery at full digital service agency A degree in Fine Art photography at Kingston University led him to a position as a lecturer in digital media, whilst getting his hands dirty in designing and building over 100 websites as a freelancer and at agencies. All of this trial and error left Danny as a big advocate of Agile and Lean methods, which meant he finally found his home at Valtech, where he leads multiple teams creating and delivering digital marketing concepts and platforms for global pharmaceutical and healthcare companies.

Why are you excited about the YDL Awards?  

I have always been an advocate of young people being involved in digital – my own children are all learning to code, and my time as a senior lecturer showed me that some of the greatest ideas come from the youngest minds. Years of industry experience are great, but without fresh ideas they mean nothing. With the right understanding and blend of technology, I truly believe that anything can be achieved with some inspiration and motivation.

 Daniel O’Connell – Barclays 

DanielPosition: Digital Experience Director

Currently in charge of digital experience on an end to end redesign of Barclays online banking. Before that Daniel was a digital strategist at POSSIBLE, WPPs largest digital agency. A bit of a jack of all trades generally. Trained as a graphic designer, have worked as an Information Architect, a Project and Programme manager, and ran a small web design shop. Daniel moonlights as a drummer when he’s not doing digital things.

Why are you excited about the YDL Awards? 

I’m really excited to see and talk about the way the industry is progressing, meet a bunch of smart people (aka my fellow panelists), and see some even smarter people (aka the people we’ll be judging).

Daniel Clarke – eBay Enterprise 

daniel clarke picture

Position: Creative Director

Educated in typographic design, Daniel began the early years of my career as a designer, working for a wide range of blue chip brands – predominantly across print, direct mail and above-the-line advertising. This background proved a strong foundation for the move into the digital world. Specialising in ecommerce, Daniel has since managed creative teams in London and Boston, handling key projects for international brands. Daniel joined eBay Enterprise in 2010 as Creative Director. Here, he oversees a creative team and work with clients on marketing campaigns that drive online purchases, retain customers and build brand loyalty across a range of digital media.

Why are you excited about the YDL Awards? 

The Young Digital Leader Awards are a great opportunity to experience first hand the broad range of talent entering the industry across the various disciplines. I have worked with many young creatives over the years which has always been an extremely fulfilling experience and I have always learnt as much from them as they have me. The young Digital Leader Awards is a another great way to connect with the future of the industry.

Alan Boyce – Axonn Media 

Alan Boyce

Position: Managing Director

Alan has worked in the digital sector since 1998 – first for parliamentary monitoring business DeHavilland where he was editor in chief; then later for online news provider Adfero, where he was chief operating officer. Adfero morphed into Axonn Media at the beginning of 2013 – when Alan became managing director – although prior to that it had transformed dramatically from a content provider as such to an SEO business and subsequently to a content marketing firm. Constant change is endemic to any internet business, so two of Alan’s biggest professional interests are change management and identifying future trends.

Why are you excited about the YDL Awards? 

Success in digital business comes from the quality of ideas, perhaps more than in any other field. Young entrepreneurs and innovators are drawn to our sector by the chance to create the future out of an almost limitless field of potential, free from barriers to entry and “professional” constraints that exist elsewhere.

For me, seeing great ideas put into action, talking about them and taking inspiration from them is one of the most exciting parts of my job. So I am not only honoured to be a YDLA judge, but I am also looking forward to being presented with some amazing food for thought.

Vineet Vijayraj Thapar – Digitas Health Life Brands 

Vineet ThaparPosition: SVP, Creative

I lead creative for Digitas Health LifeBrands in London. My very global team and I love learning, conversations, and the creative process. And making things that matter for a wide range of clients, from Pfizer and AstraZeneca to ResMed, Boots, and more. I moved here five years ago after spending almost four in our Philly office. There my partner and I led a team of 90 people with almost $24mm billings across twelve brands. And we made sure our team had an amazing time in terms of fun, fulfilment and profits. I’ve spent eighteen creative years in brand-centered, user-focused digital marketing, media, advertising and experiences at Digitas Health LifeBrands, Razorfish, Jaape and Oden. Six years before that in traditional media with JWT and Oden. My teams have won many awards like Clios, Webbys, Globals, AdAge, PMs, etc. along the way. More are listed below. Recently a few friends and I started a group called The WARD : London Health Creatives. We promote ideas and conversations at the crossroads of health, creativity, technology, people, culture and science. Sixty eight agencies are currently represented on the group through almost ninety members, and it’s growing.

Why are you excited about the YDL Awards? 

To me young digital talent is always the freshest edge of thinking because they grow up native with the latest technology and experiences. They instinctively take a digital-first approach, even as it isn’t identified as such because to them digital is just a way of being. Taking a digital-first approach to ideation is fun and that excites me. It helps brands stay relevant to the way people are living now. People are tired of advertising interrupting them. We’ve spent too much time getting in their way. Now we have to appeal for their attention and deliver real value. Being mindful of their journey helps brands deliver that, improving engagement and creating enduring belief. I like doing that. And digital is constantly evolving keeping things fresh. So I want to do anything I can to help young digital talent thrive.

Marshall Manson – Ogilvy & Mather 

Marshall MasonPosition: SVP, Creative

Marshall Manson is Managing Director of Social@Ogilvy for Europe, Africa and the Middle East, and a leader in the field of online strategy, social media marketing, and digital communications and reputation management. He looks after Ogilvy’s teams of social experts in more than 40 offices across the region.

At Ogilvy, Marshall is responsible for the planning and execution of the social media components of corporate branding and marketing initiatives for BP, Nestle, Puma, American Express and others. Prior to joining Ogilvy, Marshall was Managing Director of Digital, EMEA, for Edelman, where he led social media strategy and execution for RIM (later BlackBerry) and HP. Marshall has also led global social media brand assignments for Unilever brands like Dove and Lipton as well as drinks brands like Johnnie Walker. He has provided real-time crisis counsel to organizations like Diageo and the BBC.

Marshall has led organizational change initiatives rooted in social behavior for Purina and a large quasi-governmental agency in the UK. And he has extensive experience managing corporate reputation challenges, having worked previously with energy, corporate and B2B clients including Shell, Anglo-American Minerals, and BAE Systems. Marshall recently authored an Ogilvy “red paper” entitled Facebook Zero, which evaluated the consequences of the decline in organic reach for branded Facebook communities. The paper attracted wide-ranging coverage from titles including AdAge, Business Insider, Mashable, and many others. Prior to joining Edelman, Marshall worked in U.S. political campaigns. He lives in London.

Why are you excited about the YDL Awards? 

I’m excited about the prospect of recognising the best up and coming talent in our industry. Nuturing the next generation is a critical role for any industry leader, and these awards present an excellent opportunity to do so.

Yuri Misnik – HSBC 

Yuri Misnik

Position: Global Head of Digital Platform, Retail Bank and Wealth Management

Yuri Misnik is the Global Head of Digital Platform and for the Retail Bank and Wealth Management business of HSBC. His day to day responsibilities include driving technology definition, architecture, implementation and innovation of the HSBC retail digital capabilities.

He has 15+ years of IT experience ranging all the way from a core development to solution architecture of mission critical systems. Yuri lived and worked in US, Australia, Singapore and London helping businesses like Siemens, Australian Tax Office, Commonwealth Bank of Australia, London Stock Exchange, Scandinavian Data Center, Toyota, Nokia and others to use information technology to innovate in the digital space and solve practical business problems. Before HSBC Yuri was the Head of Technology for Amazon Web Services UK and Ireland where he was responsible for driving the technical conversations with AWS customers and bringing the next wave of innovation using the power of cloud technology. Yuri’s team created the customer-centric, agile and innovative technical culture which AWS in the UK and Ireland are famous for.

Prior to that Yuri has been leading Mission Critical Solution Architecture team for EMEA and APAC in Microsoft helping customers build modern and robust IT systems as well as hiring, growing and developing some of the very best architects in the industry. He is personally passionate about enterprise IT, modern software design and architectures, cloud computing and economics as well as big data and the amazing capabilities it brings to the industry.

Why are you excited about the YDL Awards? 

If the last epoch in the industry innovation defined by an increase in productivity driven by information workers and adoption of PCs and Internet, the current one will be defined by digital and cloud. This will include rapid innovation in all industries with retail companies already leading the way. The urgency of acting is acute, even the most conservative financial services industry has three to five years at most to become digitally proficient. Revenues and profits will migrate at scale toward companies that successfully use digital technologies to automate processes, create new products, improve regulatory compliance, transform the experiences of their customers, and disrupt key components of the value chain.

For enterprises to be relevant in the digital space, we need to look at young generation of digital professionals, entrepreneurs, designers, developers. We want them to come to the traditional business (like banking, for example) with disruptive views and ideas.

I am incredibly excited to be involved in the Young Digital Leader Awards program and looking forward to seeing great expertise and passion, new exciting ideas and excellence in execution. We at HSBC are also looking for best performing young professionals to bring into the bank and this event is a great opportunity to spot new talent.

John Perkins – RAPP 

John perkinsPosition: Managing Director

I am MD of RAPP London – We are an agency delivering High-precision brand engagement for a digital-smart world. We deliver innovative digital solutions for blue chip clients including Johnson and Johnson, Mercedes, Dulux, Paypal and Virgin Media.

Why are you excited about the YDL Awards? 

There’s nothing more important than people in our business and if we can recognise the stars then that’s only a good thing for our industry.

See Our Latest Job Opportunities

Visit our dedicated permanent and freelance job pages for details of all our latest permanent and temporary jobs and to apply for roles.

Our Partners