Johnston Press

Ashley Highfield is CEO of Johnston Press, one of the largest local media groups in the UK. He has worked in high levels in companies including Microsoft - where he was UK Managing Director (Consumer & Online) - and the BBC, where he was responsible for the development and launch of BBC iPlayer. During his tenure there he oversaw a growth in the BBC's online presence from 3.5m to 17m users. In June 2015 Culture Secretary John Whittingdale named Ashley as one of eight people on an advisory board tasked with working on the renewal of the BBC's Royal Charter, which sets out the corporation's remit. In October 2015 he was appointed Chairman of the News Media Association and also holds a non-executive role on the board of William Hill plc.

Judging panel

Anna Bassi

Editor, The Week Junior

Anna Watkins

Chief Executive

Ashley Highfield

Johnston Press

Bill Hagerty

British Journalism Review

Chris Russell


Conor McNicholas


Dietmar Schantin

Institute for Media Strategies

Esra Doğramacı

Senior Editor, Digital
Deutsche Welle

Ian Burrell

Media journalist and consultant.

Iain Hepburn

Development journalist
BBC Sport Online

James Martin

Executive editor
The Huffington Post UK

Jo Morrell

Managing Editor
The Telegraph

Jon Snow

Channel 4 News

Kate Ward

Vice President of International

Keith Walker

Digital Director, Innovation
Time Inc. UK

Kevin O'Byrne

Creative Solutions Director
Time Out

Laura Swinton

Global editor
Little Black Book

Liz Vercoe

Editor and journalist

Maggie Hitchins

Digital editor-in-chief

Megan Lucero

Director of the Local Data Lab
The Bureau of Investigative Journalism

Neil Hunter

Assistant Digital Editor (Operations)

Nick Creed

Co-Founder & Digital Director
The Drum

Patrick Falconer

Managing Director -United Kingdom
The New York Times

Paul Hood

Head of Digital – Technology Division

Peter Clifton

Press Association

Sarah Jones

Sarah Jones Reports LLC

Seb Joseph

News Editor
The Drum

Yasir Khan