Twelve judges, under my maniacal chairmanship, scrutinized up to 30 entries each and awarded up to 100 points across six columns to help decide the 2018 Digital Signage Awards Finalists, as well as High Commendations and Category Winners. The winners will all be announced next week at ISE in Amsterdam, at a luncheon.
Those folks, from all over the globe and from different backgrounds, worked diligently and impartially before finally voting in secret. I’ve been frustrated by some awards efforts that included judges, like trade publication writers, with no real world experience or insights. I’m technically a trade publication writer, but I’ve done this digital signage stuff, too.
With gratitude for their efforts, here’s a profile each of this year’s judges.
Will Amos’ experience spans well over ten years starting with London-based Litelogic, creating LED display tech, but he earned his stripes and industry passion while at NanoLumens. He joined the team at Diversified in 2015 and is now a Director in the Digital Media Group and is a Board Member of the Digital Signage Federation.
Jean-Stephane Dufresne has than 20 years’ experience in the field of digital communications and is one of the founders of Groupe Viva, bought by Stingray in 2015. He participates in the development of various campaign strategies, innovates in the digital industry and leads his team to create outstanding projects. As consequence, his production team has received many honorary awards in the industry in various competitions over the last 15 years.
Greg Giordano is a licensed architect with 25 years of experience working at the intersection of information, interactions, and the environment. He draws on the disciplines of design research, architecture, environmental graphics, graphic design, and interaction design to create comprehensive user experiences in the built environment. Greg’s role with Sensory Interactive includes leading the Design and Strategy team’s creative work on the firm’s digital media projects.
Dan Hagen of 10net has had a career spanning 20 years in leading start-up companies through omni-channel business development, strategy, and sales. The goal has always been contagious growth. He has lead diverse and international teams through a maze of complexities to bring products and services to market. Dan has built businesses to profitability, sustaining them through long-term success. He also possesses a unique aptitude for stumbling upon or developing promising business situations.
Emily Ingram is the Marketing Manager at Prendi Pty Ltd, with over five years’ experience in the digital solutions industry. Prendi is an award winning digital solutions and content provider based in Australia, delivering innovative digital solutions to clients all over the world. They specialize in hardware and content implementation including screens, video walls, LED, projection, augmented reality, animated content, touchscreen development and content management systems.
Joe’ Lloyd is an evangelist for content marketing and is a leading practitioner in the B2B space. With over 15 years working in technology, her career has spanned both client services and marketing with a strong focus in the retail world. As the Vice President of Global Marketing for NanoLumens, Joe’ is an outspoken proponent of social selling, networking and public relations, and is dedicated to providing marketing with a strong, dependable ROI.
Susie Opare-Abetia is the CEO and Founder of Wovenmedia, a company that provides software and premium content for digital signage and online video networks. Wovenmedia’s first product offering was launched in 2011, and today Wovenmedia-powered video networks currently reach 122 million viewers in over 6,000 digital signage. Prior to Wovenmedia Susie worked for a variety of media and technology companies including the BBC, Abekas Video Systems, Virage, Harmonic and Premier Retail Networks.
Randy Pagnan, president of rp Visual Solutions, with three decades of visual display industry experience, is also one of the premier educators in control room design and projection screen technology. He began his career at Electrohome (now Christie) and rose to VP of sales worldwide. In 2005 he formed rp Visual Solutions. He’s been board member, president and chairman, respectively, of InfoComm as well as chairing the Manufacturers’ Council.
Markus Pargfrieder has almost 20 years of experience within the field of digital media and innovative technology at Netural in Austria. In early 2017 he co-founded Responsive Spaces and became its CEO. The new company creates and develops tangible and walkable digital installations. Its focus is on immersive and interactive storytelling and combines any kinds of digital worlds with physical places and locations.
Stan Richter is CEO at signageOS. His team of expert engineers is developing a unique software unification platform for digital signage devices. The industry’s single API affords remote device management and content delivery to any hardware by digital signage CMS companies and developers. Before co-founding signageOS, Stan was running business incubator for early stage start ups, co-founded a Big Data analytics company and worked as a Management Consultant at PwC.
John Wang is co-founder and CEO of IAdea Corporation, a company focusing on transforming the world with out-of-home digital signage technologies. IAdea’s products empower brick-and-mortar retailers by re-inventing the store. Its innovations are licensed and distributed by leading brands globally. He is passionate about the current and future development of the digital signage industry and currently serves as the Section Chair of the Standardization Committee at the Digital Signage and Multimedia Alliance representing over 180 member companies in Greater China.
James Wilder is Head of Special Projects for Esprit Digital, the company that invented and supplied DEPs for London Underground escalators 12 years ago. Since then it has gone from strength to strength designing, manufacturing and installing many of the world’s most iconic digital media networks for Westfield, Virgin, JCDecaux, Gatwick and Heathrow, etc. 90% of business now comes from outside the UK and last year Esprit was awarded the Queen’s Award for International Trade. Continuous innovation has kept Esprit ahead of the competition.
Dave Haynes is the founder and editor of Sixteen:Nine, an online publication that has followed the digital signage industry for some 14 years. Dave does strategic advisory consulting work for many end-users and vendors, and also writes for many of them. He’s based near Halifax, Nova Scotia, on Canada’s east coast.