Jason Atherton started out working alongside great chefs including Pierre Koffmann, Marco Pierre White, Nico Ladenis and Ferran Adria at el Bulli, before launching ‘Maze’ restaurant, first in London and then another five globally. In 2010 Jason launched his own restaurant company, Jason Atherton Ltd. His flagship restaurant ‘Pollen Street Social’ opened in April 2011 in Mayfair and was awarded a Michelin star within just six months of opening, alongside 4 AA Rosettes and No.3 in The Good Food Guide’s best UK restaurants.
Since then, Jason’s ‘The Social Company’ has grown into a globally renowned restaurant group, with a portfolio of restaurants which include the Michelin-starred Social Eating House, 5 Social, Berners Tavern – named ‘the defining restaurant of the decade’, Michelin-starred City Social and Hai Cenato. Alongside his London restaurants, Jason has also opened critically-acclaimed restaurants in Shanghai, Dubai and a Michelin-starred restaurant in New York.
Helen Moon, is a CIM qualified events and marketing professional with an eclectic mix of experience that spans 20+ years. Currently Marketing & Communications Manager for Royal Greenwich Heritage Trust, Helen started her career journey back in the late 90’s in event co-ordination and venue operations in the North West for Marriott and Paramount Hotels, before moving to central London in 2004 and spending 10 years in proactive venue sales for the likes of Millennium and Park Plaza Hotels as well as the Barbican Centre. Helen understands first-hand the busy role of an event professional from the position of both a supplier and a planner, but also a busy personal life as a wife and proud mum of a young daughter. Aside her role with RGHT she is also known for her role as the managing director and founder of EWL Club, and recognised as the founder of EventWell Ltd, the event industry’s first charitable social enterprise dedicated to providing a resource for wellbeing advice, knowledge, and support.
Jamie is an influencer and thought leader within the Event Tech space, he brings his considerable experience of leading business's and sales teams to ensure he is never far away from commercializing technology. Many years leading SaaS and Mobile firms including product envision and roll-out. Jamie joined Cvent in September as Head of Sales for Europe, prior to Cvent Jamie worked at Glisser as a Chief Commercial Officer following over two years as the Managing Director of Eventbase.
Richard Dodgson is the founder and creative director of London-based events company Timebased. Since its inception in 1996, he has led a team organising high-profile events and activations for visionary brands including Vogue, M&S, The Prince’s Trust, Selfridges and Ferrari. The company’s dedication to cultural relevance and aptitude for theatricality, hailing from Richard’s performance arts background, has seen them produce the GQ Men of the Year Awards for 22 years running, design a star-studded intergalactic funfair for the Naked Heart Foundation and for the third consecutive year launch the Covent Garden Christmas lights for an audience of many thousands with artists including Kylie Minogue, Paloma Faith and the casts of the West End shows 42nd Street and Matilda.
Simon has worked in the events and hospitality industry for more than 15 years and has extensive experience in event marketing, design and logistics. As The Brewery’s Creative and Marketing Director for the past seven years, Simon has overseen the venue’s marketing, brand management and public relations strategies. Having developed The Brewery’s distinct personality and style, Simon has contributed to the continued success of one of the most respected and recognisable brands in the global events market.
Richie, or “The Breath Guy”, is a leading figure and evangelist for Breathwork, the next revolution in health and wellness. He is a Breathwork coach, author and speaker and it is his mission to spread the life changing possibilities of Breathwork to the world. Having worn many hats, from a corporate management consultant to digital entrepreneur, Richie eventually discovered Breathwork which was a catalyst for a life changing journey that completely shifted his own life and beliefs on the potential of human beings. Richie spent years traveling across five continents learning from many of the modern-day masters of Breathwork and continuously witnessed the transformative effects of when people became aware of their breathing and started to use it as a tool to create physical mental and emotional benefits. This free medicine is available to everyone and it's Richie mission to remind the world how to breathe with purpose.
Eleanor’s knowledge stems from working directly with clients across many different industries on their digital marketing presence over the last 5 years, with social media being her specialty. Eleanor has trained both small scale start-ups to large corporate businesses on departmental social media strategies, written social media and digital marketing audits and provided both face-to-face and webinar training for overseas clients. She is fully Google Qualified and Bing Advertising Qualified which helps the team keep on the ball when it comes to the ever-changing digital landscape.
Lisa Boissel is the Managing Director of Miss Jones PA- London's Leading Assistant & Event Planner network. Recognising the importance of the role of the PA/Event Booker in Business today and keeping them in the know of the best venues and suppliers across the Uk are her main objectives. Lisa has been in the industry in London for just under 6 years.
Emily has over 13 years experience working in marketing for category-leading FMCG and hospitality businesses including Heinz, PizzaExpress & Premier Inn. She currently leads strategy and innovation as Marketing Director at One Water. One Water is the UK's leading ethical drinks brand. The sale of every bottle, carton or can of One Water funds sustainable clean water projects in areas that need it most and to date they have helped The One Foundation raise £20m changing the lives of over 3.6m people. One Water is also committed to minimising its impact on the planet while maximising its impact on fight water poverty and a big part of Emily's role is building the brand's long term sustainability roadmap.
Simon has been working in the creative industry for twenty years. As Founder of Marmalade on Toast, he has led an award-winning creative studio to over ten years of success, working with clients such as Harrods Estates, Samsung, Imperial College London and Unilever. He is also a published author and illustrator, having been commissioned by Mazda, Tate Galleries, The Guardian and Hugo Boss.
Samme Allen is a multi-award winning in demand professional MC, facilitator, moderator and coach working with a range of audiences and sectors internationally. With vast business acumen and knowledge of meeting architecture and design, Samme has a wide-ranging understanding of not just how to get the very best out of her client’s events, but also how to structure content to ensure the very best return on their investment. With global experience of working with corporate clients such as pharmaceutical companies, to medical associations, societies and trade shows, Samme works on a diverse range of events around the world with the ability to tackle sensitive topics, manage energetic debates and address cross cultural issues all within pressurised and time sensitive environments.
Director of Boulevard Events, multi-award winning, family run event catering company. I come from a family of food and catering entrepreneurs and I spent most of my youth hanging around the kitchen in our family restaurant 'Boulevard.' I was always intrigued by food and the way it's prepared to enhance different flavours and then presented immaculately. After school I worked full-time as a Chef for Boulevard Catering before attending University to study another passion of mine in Sports Science. It was there that I found I had a passion for health and human performance. I've spent over a decade improving my own health and wellbeing, dedicating most of my spare time to learning what I can about nutrition, exercise and sleep. I'm a strong advocate for health and I try to help others, wherever possible, to take better care of themselves. When I'm not doing that, I'm running our family events catering company with my brothers and sister.
Having spent over 10 years working in the events industry, Ali has extensive experience in developing and executing events both in-house and venue-side. Ali is currently the Head of Events at Dentsu Aegis Network UK & Ireland where she oversees the strategy, curation and delivery of events spanning clients, colleagues and partners. Outside of work, Ali heads up a committee, Gala on the Green, which organises an annual black tie charity ball raising money for youth homeless.
Born in London, Matt Thomas’ driving force has always been hospitality. Having spent his early and more formative years in the US, studying at the University of New Hampshire on the East coast for his Bachelor of Science, Matt went on to secure employment with Marriott Hotels on the West Coast. Five years later, he returned to the UK. Still fascinated by the academic side of the industry, he pursued a postgraduate diploma in personnel management at the University of Portsmouth, whilst working in London for Compass. Matt’s has been with WSH since 2002, when he joined what is now BaxterStorey as a Sales Manager. He went on to become an Operations Director and in 2008 was appointed London Managing Director for BaxterStorey. He has also held responsibilities for HR and marketing, and has been instrumental in assisting with acquisitions, mobilisations and start-ups for the group. In 2017 Matt was promoted to the role of Managing Director for Searcys by Alastair Storey, WSH’s Chairman.
Paul is currently Head of Business Events within the convention bureau team at London & Partners, the Mayor of London’s official promotional agency. He is responsible for business event sales and citywide events from across all markets, including leading on key projects such as London Tech Week and London Climate Action Week. Paul has been in the industry for over 14 years having previously been director of European sales for NYC & Company (New York City convention bureau), as well as heading up Hills Balfour MMGY’s MICE division working on behalf of city and national convention bureaus based in their London office.
Managing Director of the Exclusive Collection founded in 1981, a family-run independent group of 6 country house properties, two spas, golf club, cookery school, inn and award winning restaurants. Danny is actively involved in the wider hospitality industry and is Chairman of the Master Innholders, he was voted Hotelier of the Year in 2014 by the Caterer. Committed to learning and development within Exclusive, being recognised for innovate programmes such as its Chefs’ Academy and Graduate Management training programme. Innovation and sustainability are at the core of Danny’s philosophy as demonstrated by the opening of the spa at South Lodge with its biomass boilers, wild swimming and Botanica an innovative restaurant catering for vegetarians, flexitarians and free from all sourced locally and sustainably. Exclusive now employs over 800 people, has an annual turnover of £60m and has secured the coveted title of being one of the ‘Best Places to Work in Hospitality’ for the last 3 years, with Acorn award winners, St Julian Scholars, MasterChef and Great British Menu winners, and just a great team of talented people.
Melissa Noakes is a curator and creator of experiences. For the past 15 years she has delivered world-class events and experiences for Santander, Sony Mobile, Sony, Shell, L'Oreal, Budweiser and Disney to name just a few. She has a passion for building experiences that create impact and is regularly cited as one of the most influential people in the UK's event industry. She is the co-founder of ELEVATE, a UK wide mentoring programme for the events industry, and is a regular guest lecturer at Sheffield University for their Event Management degree.
Alice has over 15 years of experience managing global events for some of the world's largest brands, including Virgin Media, Facebook, PlayStation and Honda. Joining Wonder in 2015 she heads up the project department and leads their Google account, which includes Google Cloud EMEA's biggest event to date. Alice believes that world peace is achievable through a really well built spreadsheet, and loves working in a job where making amazing things happen is not just a profession but also a hobby.
Ben McCormack is a London-based journalist who specialises in writing about restaurants. For the last 11 years he has been the editor of SquareMeal and since 2013 has been the Classics Revisited expert for Telegraph Luxury. Ben has also been a contributor to Marie Claire, Men’s Health, The Observer, House Notes, Time Out and Caterer and Hotelkeeper. Ben has been eating out for a living for the last 20 years and sincerely hopes that his knowledge of the British food scene has expanded at the same rate as his waistline.
Neil has been in the event industry for over 20 years working initially for the Littlewoods group and then for a med-comms agency until 2005 when he started his own events business - Red White Blue Ltd. Organising mostly pharmaceutical events and working with clients all over the world, Neil then set up The Delegate Wranglers Facebook group in 2014 to help him do his job better by the power of collaboration with the other members. The Delegate Wranglers is now widely considered as THE go to group for the events industry, with current numbers standing at over 16,000 members, growing by around 250 members each week. Neil now travels the UK and Europe, working with venues and suppliers, speaking regularly at industry events and was also named as M&IT Personality of the Year in 2019 after being nominated and awarded this prestigious award by his peers.
Adam is passionate about innovation in the meetings and events industry - as an Associate Director for the ITM and as Vice Chair of the HBAA Technology Committee, he takes a keen interest in both technology and strategic meetings management. In September 2017 he won the Global Future Leader Award for IACC and in May 2017 he spoke at the Event of the Future conference in Dublin on the subject of The Venue of the Future. Voted onto the Event 100 list in 2016, Adam was one of only five suppliers to make the cut. As Director of Marketing and US Sales at the fast expanding etc.venues he’s been instrumental in developing the Conference and Exhibition product for the group. Adam has seen etc.venues double in size through new openings and more recently the company’s US expansion.
Lucy has worked in the events industry for over 10 years at some of London’s foremost heritage, unique and listed venues. In her role at the iconic Natural History Museum, Lucy works proactively with new clients, agencies and businesses. Her motivation is to create opportunities for growth for events and filming hires at the Museum by working collaboratively with current clients as well as new brands. By hosting an event at the Museum, Lucy’s clients are directly supporting work to preserve the collections for the future, inspire the next generation of scientists and promote vital research into the big challenges facing our planet. Prior to this, Lucy managed the sales team at the Museum and other heritage venues and has had the pleasure of working on some incredible events. Her list of clients have included the Financial Times, Mercury Music Prize, Microsoft, UBS and Warchild, to name a few, along with some fantastic couples and private clients.
Inspirational speaker, storyteller and workshop leader, Deborah led there Financial Services events team at EY - bringing her background of psychology and marketing to both corporate hospitality and speaker-led events. Since then she has spoken herself on stages and led workshops all over the world for organisations such as Microsoft, Accenture and AmEx to the MOD and British Army. Her tried and tested approaches have developed out of her qualifications and experience in NeuroLinguistics and Clinical Hypnotherapy as well as the influence of her grandmother - a storyteller and dramatist who awakened the storyteller within her. Her book: ’Your Leadership Story: Use your life experience to influence and inspire’ was a finalist in 2019 Business Book Awards.
Richard’s background has been in hospitality since he started his own catering company in 1986. After a peripatetic early career in bars, the wine trade and as a directors’ dining room chef, Richard launched Richard Groves Catering & Events working in prestigious Central London venues and private houses. Following a merger with two of his clients, Business Pursuits and the Ultimate Experience, came the formation of the Concerto Group. Over the next decade under his stewardship, RGC&E was re-branded as create food and party design which was voted in the top three most influential catering companies in London and was turning over £14 million per annum when he left to join Smart Group in 2014. Having worked closely with Smart during the 2012 Olympics, the Group was a natural home. Richard is now Opportunities & Relationship Director reaching out to new clients and venues and retaining existing agency contacts, venues & end clients.
Richard is a past President of the International Special Event Society, (ISES now ILEA), a London & Partners Ambassador and personally champions staff training and skills, food sourcing and promoting excellence and creativity in catering for private and corporate events. He is working with his alma mater Oxford Brookes University on their mentoring programme.
A prominent figure within the events industry and voted as one of the top 50 current industry influencers, Max Fellows, Director of Client Services at MCI Experience and founder of ELEVATE, the industry’s largest mentoring and training provider has spent the last decade consistently and successfully building agency brands. Max has carved out a position within the industry as a well-connected and influential key player. He has worked with major global brands, including Google, Samsung, Facebook and LinkedIn. With a strong background in strategy and planning, creative and talent management. Max now utilises this his experience and personality to share his learnings, insights and industry best practices through practical, engaging and entertaining speaking and compere engagements on an international level. Max is an action orientated exec with a proven track record of winning new business, creating significant results for clients and driving significant agency growth.
George is a Director at Wise Productions, a creative technical production company based in London. Wise Productions is an accredited production supplier to over 35 venues in London, providing lighting, sound, video, set design and staging for events in the capital’s most iconic venues, museums and Historic Royal Palaces. From staging a Duran Duran concert in Kensington Palace to projection mapping the inside of the British Museum’s Great Court, George’s team has been lucky enough to work on hundreds of unique and challenging client briefs which have pushed the boundaries to ensure audience expectations are surpassed. In this session George will share some insights on how AV technology and innovative production design can take your event to the next level, whilst also translating some of the technical jargon that comes with it!
Kat is the Venue Manager at BMA House – home of the British Medical Association. Having started a career in events in 2008 at De Vere Venues, Kat moved over to the BMA in 2015 as Sales Manager and in 2019 took up the role as Venue Manager. In 2017 BMA House achieved a Gold accreditation with Green Tourism, at the time only five venues in London had this and certainly not easy for a Grade II listed building BMA House has been awarded ‘Greenest Venue’ at the Hire Space awards in 2018 and in January 2019 awarded ‘Most Sustainable Venue’ at the London Summer Event Show. More recently shortlisted for further sustainability awards at 2019’s London Venue Awards and Hire Space awards. Kat was heavily involved in hosting their first fully sustainable awards ceremony in 2018, (the Global Good Awards), featuring an all-vegan menu with Carbon Balanced delegate travel. The Global Good Awards returned in 2019 and have booked again for 2020. As a current mentee on the FastForward15 programme founded and run by Fay Sharpe of BCD M&E, inspiring and empowering women in the events industry to be the best they can be, to help women aim for top level positions in the industry, Kat is leading the way in both sustainability for BMA House and a future leading woman in the events industry.
Madolyn is an events specialist with over 10 years’ experience in the arts, commercial, luxury and charity sectors. Currently Events Director at Hearst Live, she is responsible for a diverse programme of immersive events and live experiences for titles including Harper’s Bazaar, Elle, Cosmopolitan, Esquire, Women’s Health, Red and Country Living. In addition to overseeing the execution of renowned events such as Harpers Bazaar Woman of the Year, Esquire Townhouse, Red Smart Women Week, Women’s Health Live and more, the team also deliver ‘white label’ events which give brands the opportunity to utilise the team’s expertise in organising bespoke events on their behalf.
Prior to joining Hearst, Madolyn lead the Special Events Team at Unicef UK, where she worked across the UK and globally on high-value fundraising events for the charity. Madolyn started her career working in theatre in Australia. Since moving to the UK, she has worked extensively in the visual and performing arts, including the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. Prior to joining Unicef UK, and subsequently Hearst, Madolyn was Head of Events at the National Portrait Gallery where she worked with world renowned artists, influential individuals and business leaders to produce high-profile events. Madolyn has developed business development and communications strategies for established and emerging brands and has delivered corporate and private events globally, namely across the USA, Europe and Australia.