Mediaweek’s Next of the Best Awards: Judging panel revealed

Next of the best

The Mediaweek Next of the Best Awards will celebrate people under the age of 40 in the media industry

Mediaweek is excited to announce the judging panel for the inaugural Next of the Best Awards.

The Mediaweek Next of the Best Awards will celebrate people under the age of 40 in the media industry that work in Sales, Advertising, PR, Ad Tech, Marketing, Media Buying/ Planning, Radio, Television, and Publishing.

The event will take place May 26, 2023, the first night of Vivid, at the Doltone House – Heritage Wharf at Jones Bay Wharf, with nominations now open.

In alphabetical order, the judging panel consists of:

Alisha Buaya – Agency editor – Mediaweek
Brigitte Slattery – Head of Strategic Marketing APAC – Samsung Ads
Gai Le Roy – CEO – IAB Australia
Greg Graham – Contributing editor – Mediaweek
James Manning – Editor-in-chief and publisher – Mediaweek
Jo Dick – Chief Commercial Officer – CRA
Kim Portrate – CEO – ThinkTV and Premium Content Alliance
Marcus Betschel – General manager – Ryvalmedia 
Mariam Veiszadeh – CEO – Media Diversity
Ricky Chanana – Chief Growth Officer – JUSTEGGS 
Rochelle Burbury – Principal – Third Avenue Consulting
Sam Buchanan – CEO – IMAA
Sophie Madden – CEO – Media Federation Australia
Trent Thomas – Editor and GM – Mediaweek 

The awards ceremony will also name a Grand Prix Award winner at the end of the night, chosen from the winners of the first 17 awards. Addtionally, The Awards will also name the top 50 influencers in Australia.

See also: Mediaweek Next of the Best Awards: Categories confirmed and nominations open

ThinkTV and Premium Content Alliance CEO, Kim Portrate said, “People are the heart and soul of what we do. Without them, the most important ingredient needed to create a passionate, vibrant, thriving industry wouldn’t be possible.

“So it’s no surprise I’m thrilled to be a part of Mediaweek’s Next of the Best Awards. Because, first and foremost, it’s all about recognising and celebrating the people that will undoubtedly become the industry leaders of tomorrow.”

Marcus Betschel, Kim Portrate, and Sophie Madden

For the inaugural Mediaweek Next of the Best Awards, nomination entry fees will be free.

IMAA CEO, Sam Buchanan said, “Awards that celebrate the fantastic talent we have in this industry are very welcome, however it has to be said that while much younger talent are celebrated, those who are more established in their careers have been overlooked – until now.

“By the time people in the industry are in their 30s, they have achieved amazing things – both in business and in life – and are primed to move into senior leadership and C-suite roles, if they haven’t already.

“A list of the best up-and-coming talent will be inspirational reading. After Mediaweek’s outstanding inaugural Power 100 awards and event in 2022, the IMAA warmly welcomes ‘Next of the Best’ and anticipate that our members will have a strong showing.”

Next of the Best

Sam Buchanan, Gai Le Roy, Ricky Chanana, Rochelle Burbury


Ryvalmedia general manager, Marcus Betschel said, “It’s an honour to be asked to judge the work of peers who I continue to be inspired by. Despite so many global recent challenges, we continue to see challenging and impressive work delivered across our industry – with the people in this category under 40 being no different.”

Media Diversity CEO, Mariam Veiszadeh said, “It’s a great privilege to be named a judge in the most prestigious young talent awards in the Australian media industry. Recognition of young talent across the industry is vital to helping elevate representative talent and help set them up for future success.”

Jo Dick, Brigitte Slattery, and Mariam Veiszadeh

Head of Strategic Marketing APAC – Samsung Ads Brigitte Slattery said,  “Under 40 is such a pivotal time in your career when you’re either making it, breaking it or building something bigger.

“It is really important to surface the next gen of leaders not just on their impact but also on the merit of how they evolve themselves, people around them & beyond.”

Next of the Best

James Manning, Trent Thomas, Alisha Buaya and Greg ‘Sparrow’ Graham


Key dates:
Entries open: 13th February 2023
Entries Close: 13th March 2023, this date is final and there will be no extensions provided. The system will automatically prevent entry submission after the deadline.
Shortlist: Announced late March
Awards presentation ceremony: 26 May 2023

Submit your Next of the Best nominations here.

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