OUR JUDGES


Be Manzini
Film Judge

Referred to as ‘the film-poet’, Be Manzini has found ways to uniquely combine her passion for poetry, Film, and well-being.

Be is known for her ability to create universal and nurturing spaces as a workshop facilitator she teaches adults and children alike.

A writer and speaker who has been resident at the Southbank Centre, a regular panellist for film, judge for the innovative Visionary Honours awards, Manzini is also the Director of Caramel Film Club spotlighting Black talent and supporting diversity.

Her published work appears in various anthologies including Red, edited by Kwame Dawes, she has been commissioned to write for the Theatre Royal, Hoxton Hall, Autograph B, Tamasha as well as performing for leading poetry organisations such as Apples & Snakes.

Manzini’s poetry-films have shown at the Royal Festival Hall, ICA, BFI and various cinemas and film festivals in the UK and abroad.

Boyd Hilton
TV Judge

Boyd Hilton is a journalist, author, critic and broadcaster. As well as his two day jobs of Entertainment Director of Heat magazine, where he has worked since its launch in 1999, and Contributing Editor of Empire magazine, Boyd also wrote the book Inside Little Britain with Matt Lucas and David Walliams. He has been a regular contributor to BBC Radio 5 Live and Radio 4, reviewing television, books and films for over a decade. He has written for GQ, Man About Town, The Guardian and Observer, co-hosts the weekly Pilot TV podcast, and a podcast about Arsenal Football Club. He also frequently hosts TV and film events for BAFTA, the RTS and the BFI, among many others.

Boyd said, “It’s an honour to be a judge for these unique awards which rightly celebrate the social impact that the best arts and culture can achieve.”

Emily Jupp
Book Judge

Emily is a features and arts writer and editor, TV writer and playwright. She has a decade of experience writing for newspapers, websites and magazines including The Independent, The Stage, The Telegraph, Evening Standard, Wired, The Times, the Pool and WhatsonStage.

Guy Lodge
Film Judge
Guy Lodge is a South African-born writer and film critic. He is presently the UK film critic for Variety, a weekly home entertainment columnist for The Observer and co-editor of the curated review site 'Film of the Week', while his byline also regularly appears in The Guardian, Sight & Sound, Rolling Stone and Attitude. He lives in London. Guy stated, “Around the world, artists and creators are in an exciting, constructive stage of transition and self-interrogation regarding their social responsibilities, and the way they reflect and represent the world we live in, so it’s an honour to participate in an awards show that puts these concerns first.”
Joanna Abeyie
Community Judge

The go-getting 32 year-old has blazed a trail as a multi-award-winning social impact entrepreneur, champion of diversity, inclusion and equality as well as making a mark as an award winning journalist and broadcaster.

Joanna has spent the last 12 years increasing the employment of diverse talent, launching her first charity Elevation Networks Charitable Trust at 18 alongside six colleagues, in 2008 Joanna went on to launch her own Social Enterprise Shine Media, where she placed over 3000 people from diverse backgrounds into work within the creative industries.

Joanna’s latest enterprise is founding Blue Moon, a flagship inclusive Executive Search Business and Diversity and Inclusion Consultancy Practice. Before BM, Joanna founded Hyden, part of FTSE 250 Global Recruiter SThree an executive search and consultancy business.

Leanne Alie
Podcast Judge

Leanne Alie is a podcast producer, presenter, consultant and all round creative.

She is passionate about making content for diverse audiences and is an advocate for diversity and inclusion in the audio industry.

Leanne is a leading voice in the UK podcast industry, having carved out opportunities for creators from diverse backgrounds through implementing diversity strategy across a variety of influential organisations such as Audio UK, Digital Radio UK, London Podcast Festival and The British Podcast Awards. She is also a trustee of the Multitrack Fellowship and is currently the Commissioning Producer for BBC Sounds Audio Lab, which she was also part of the founding team for. BBC Sounds Audio Lab is a brand-new accelerator programme where she develops new podcasts with up-and-coming creators.

As a podcast producer, Leanne specialises in developing content for Black audiences; she started off her production journey producing podcasts such as Dope Black Dads, Dope Black Women and Time to Talk with Alex Reads. As well as developing entertainment content she creates branded content, such as the up and coming business based podcast, Unfinished Business with start up Inspiration Space.

Rhianna Dhillon
Documentary Judge

Rhianna Dhillon has been a film critic for 10 years, beginning her career at BBC Radio 1 and 1Xtra as their in-house film critic. Now a film and TV critic on BBC6Music’s Breakfast Show with Lauren Laverne, Rhianna is also the co-host of BIFA’s This is My Cinema.

Rhianna said, “I’m delighted and honoured to be a juror for the Visionary Honours – I think now more than ever, we need to recognise diversity and representation in the arts, to find people who want to celebrate what makes them unique, to seek out stories that are trying to have an impact on society and the Visionary Honours are a great way of giving people a platform to effect such change.”

Paul Taylor-Mills
Theatre Judge

Paul is Artistic Director of the Turbine Theatre at The Battersea Power Station and of MTFestUK, a festival celebrating the process of writing musicals.

He was previously Artistic Director of The Other Palace Theatre in Victoria and Advisory Producer to Andrew Lloyd Webber and the Really Useful Groups. Paul trained at Bath Spa University and the National Youth Theatre. He is recipient of the Stage One Bursary and Start Up fund for young producers and currently runs the last standing weekly repertory play season in the UK at the Manor Pavilion Theatre in Sidmouth from June to September every year.

“I’m absolutely thrilled to have been asked to work with the Visionary Arts Foundation on their Theatre short-list for the Visionary Honours. The awards celebrate those making real and tangible differences to the world we live in so I was delighted to have been asked to wave the flag for them. And importantly, to support the incredible work that’s happening in theatre.”