The Judging Process

All nominations submitted by the nomination deadline, 20th September 2018, will be placed before an independent panel of judges. The judges are all respected businesspeople with a passion for developing young talent.

The nominations will be scored by each judge, then the judges will then meet to discuss the nominations and together decide on the final shortlist and winners for each category. Should any of the judges have a personal interest or connection with any of the nominees they will forfeit their vote in that particular category.

The shortlist will then be announced in October, and the winners announced at the Awards Ceremony on 15th November 2018.

2018 Judges


Mylo Kaye

Chief Executive Officer – Pledge

Mylo Kaye is the Chief Executive Officer of Pledge, a charity which believes that no person should live in poverty in Greater Manchester. He is also a trustee of The Booth Centre; a charity set up 22-years ago to help homeless people rebuild their lives.

In 2017 he became an investment advisor for Fair by Design; a £20 million fund and partnership between Big Society Capital, the Joseph Rowntree Foundation, Finance Birmingham and Ascension Ventures that aims to help those living in poverty in the UK. 

Mylo is also an advisor and investor in various tech start-ups and also judges Manchester City Council’s community awards, which celebrates groups and individuals that make a big difference in Greater Manchester. 

His work with charities and businesses have been celebrated with; The Manchester Metropolitan University Business School’s ‘Inspiring Leader’ Award, the Talk of Manchester’s ‘Entrepreneur Award’ and Manchester City Council’s, ‘Business in the Community’ award. 


James Brown

Managing Partner – Hall Brown

James is the Managing Partner of Hall Brown Family Law, which is a boutique family law firm providing best-in-class services on a full range of family law services. James advises a wide range of clients from teachers, doctors, and lawyers through to celebrities and specialises in complex financial matters on divorce. After setting up Hall Brown in April 2016, James won Entrepreneur of the Year at the MYTA 2017 recognising the firm’s noteworthy success and growth.

Ben Hawley Profile

Ben Hawley

JCI UK National President 2018

Ben Hawley is a Business Advisor and helps people start and grow their business. He has helped over 400 business get up and running, ranging from lifestyle business through to fast-growing tech companies. Ben is also JCI UK National President for 2018 and travels across the country supporting chambers to make sure the members get the most out of their membership.


Ruth McCarthy

Head of Department, Real Estate Commercial – JMW Solicitors LLP

Ruth is originally from Northern Ireland and graduated from Queen’s University, Belfast with a law degree in 2000 before moving to Manchester to complete her LPC in 2001.

Ruth trained at one of Manchester’s best known and longest established law firms. She became one of the firm’s youngest partners and moved on to hold senior management positions (Head of Department) within regional and national law firms. In addition, she worked in-house as Senior Legal Counsel for a national crowd-funder.

Ruth has acted for a wide variety of clients including pension funds, institutional investors, developers, local authorities and charities on a broad range of real estate commercial matters including land and property acquisition and disposal, site assembly, investment, and portfolio management.

Ruth has a particular specialism in property finance and her clients have included major UK clearing banks, challenger banks, funds, short-term and mezzanine funders and peer to peer (or ‘crowd’) funders.

Ruth describes herself as an ‘eternal learner’ and values personal development highly. Ruth is privileged to have worked with some inspiring coaches and mentors throughout her career and is in the course of completing her professional coaching certification.


Vikas Shah

Entrepreneur, Investor, Professor

Vikas is a regular speaker and host at conferences around the world and consults for a wide range of businesses. Vikas is CEO of Swiscot Group, a diversified international trading business, a venture investor in numerous businesses internationally, and co-founder of 53 Degrees North, a feature film studio. He was awarded an MBE for Services to Business and the Economy in Her Majesty the Queen’s 2018 New Year’s Honours List.