Panel of Judges

Brian Sparks

Brian has extensive experience in the field of marketing communications having worked both on the client and agency side. He started out his career with Irish Distillers before moving to Irish International Advertising, now part of BBDO, where he was Client Service and Board Director. In 1981, he moved back to the client side serving in a variety of senior marketing roles within Guinness (now Diageo) most notably Marketing Director of Guinness Brewing Worldwide based in London, Marketing Director of Guinness Malaysia based in KL and Marketing Director of the Guinness African Region based in London, where he first worked with David Wethey.

In 1997, Brian returned to the agency side as Managing Director of McCann Erickson Dublin developing the agency into one of the most highly regarded creative and award winning agencies in Ireland. Four years later, he joined Agency Assessments International in as Managing Partner.

Since joining AAI in 2001, Brian has managed dozens of reviews for clients in Ireland, UK, France, Germany, Austria and Switzerland. He became Managing Partner of AAI in UK and Ireland in late-2009.

Valerie Rice

Valerie Rice is Managing Director of Valerie Rice & Associates, which is is strategic commercial & brand partner to blue chip clients, both international & domestic, across a broad range of sectors. Valerie founded her company in 2008 following a successful career in the food, drinks and retail sector. With Board level experience as Commercial Marketing Director with Superquinn until 2008, she has worked for leading domestic and international organisations across senior Commercial, Marketing & Retail roles including Diageo, Grand Metropolitan, Guinness Ireland and Castle Brands Spirits. Valerie is passionate about brands and the impact that they can make on customers and consumers as well as adding value to organisations. With clients across food, drinks, healthcare, retail, energy, semi-state companies, telecos & B2B she works with leadership teams to define a strategy, understand customer/ consumer insights through research and lead commercial marketing teams to implement an appropriate strategic plan.

Valerie is passionate about Ireland’s food industry and has been a mentor for Bord Bia for small food companies as well as a partner trainer for Origin Green, Bord Bia’s sustainability programme.

She is a Graduate of The Marketing Institute of Ireland (MMII) and has a Diploma in Languages & Business from Dublin Business School. She is a Member of The Institute of Directors and a member of the Irish Management Institute guest lecture programme for Strategic Marketing.

John Milne

John has over 30 years of experience in both the London and Dublin advertising markets, giving him a broad view of creative trends. In London he worked for some of the leading abtl companies including Y&R, BMP and GGT TBWA, before moving to Ogilvy Ireland in 1999. Here he became Creative Director responsible for Ogilvy’s direct, activation and digital output for 12 years. He led campaigns that won over 100 awards at the APMC and other industry awards, before returning to the UK. He now works as a freelance consultant for London and Irish clients. For the avoidance of any doubt, John would like to make it clear that he voted Remain in the Brexit referendum.

Alvaro Alés

Marketing & Communicatios profesional, both as a client and on the agency side with more than 20 years experience in the industry.

Marketing & Communcations Director (Interim Mangement) Bodegas Barbadillo

C.E.O. 360º Marketing & Communications Agency

C.E.O.-Founder Gastropass Tourism & Gastronomy Guide (Printed & On line)

Alvaro holds a Bachelor Degree in Law at Seville’s University and a Masters in Business Administration at ESADE Barcelona, Spain. He also did major studies in Marketing in HEC Montréal the affiliated business school of the Université de Montréal, and the oldest management School in Canada. Level 2 Wine & Spirit Education Trust.

From 2011 to 2013 he was Chairman of the Integrated Marketing & Communications Council of Europe (IMCC). The IMCC represents Integrated Marketing Associations from several European countries and is part of the European Association of Communications Agencies (EACA).

He started his career in 1990 as Secretary General of the regional Employers Union of Commerce in Andalusia (CECA)

He worked for five years in the marketing Department of Diageo, first in London for brands such as Croft, Gonzalez Byass and later in Spain for J&B Scotch Whisky. He also worked 4 years for Pernod Ricard where he was responsible for marketing Larios Gin, Jameson and Wild Turkey amongst other brands. He moved briefly to the telecoms industry in 2000 working as Marketing Vice-President for Telefonica B2B. He then became Marketing Director of Bodegas Luis Caballero, a well known wine and spirits company in Spain where I worked from 2001 to 2004.

In 2004 he founded the agency Lateral Marketing & Communications and in 2007 founded 360 Marketing and Communications agency initially integrated in Arena Media, part of Havas Group (2007-2010) then under a 60/40 agreement developing in an independent way Integrated Marketing and Communications activities (2010-2014) and finally from April 2014 working completely independently for his own  company 360º M.&C.

pm_pr_masterPeter Mahon