UK Programme Mentees
Alexia El Merhebi
Alexia has over 11 years’ experience in digital and offline marketing and joined Calrec, a leading UK manufacturer of audio broadcast mixing equipment, in April 2020. Her strong creative and digital marketing background spans education, healthcare and the online retail sector. Combined with her desire to work within the broadcast industry it made her a key appointment for Calrec who was looking to transform the digital marketing landscape within the company. Alexia holds a BA Honours Degree in English Literature from Lancaster University, a CIPR Advanced Certificate in Public Relations from Leeds Beckett University and is an IDM Professional Diploma in Digital Marketing (Dip DigM). Working in the broadcast industry has always been an aspiration after volunteering for local hospital radio while at high school. Alexia undertook various paid and voluntary positions including stints at Granada TV, on location in Norway, France and the UK for DIVERSE, and a European funded internship at Take 2 Entertainment in Malta where she undertook a number of production and marketing roles. This helped secure her first major PR and social media role which evolved into a broader marketing role, and in recent years Alexia has specialised in digital marketing before returning to work in broadcasting for Calrec last year, so you could say she has come full circle! A keen explorer, Alexia has travelled across 30 countries. She goes backpacking for a couple of weeks every year and hopes to incorporate international travel into her role. In her spare time, Alexia enjoys watching live music, modern art and taking on challenges for charity and has run various races including 150 Miles for MS, Age UK Leeds Abbey Dash 10K for the Pace Centre for children with motor disorders and climbed Kilimanjaro helping to raise £70,000 for Bolton Lads & Girls Club.
Amaka J Akpata
Amaka J Akpata has been in the Information Technology & Telecommunications industry for circa 8 years. She has a vast and diverse set of skills. She has experience in both technical and commercial areas and has taken up roles in Operations, Customer Operations, Project Management and Sales. Amaka is passionate about innovation and technology. Her long time interest in areas such as Broadcast and Media - content production, distribution and management) has become ubiquitous in this digital era and she is keen to contribute to these areas. She is also a new mum and is keen on managing and establishing meaningful work life balance. Her other interests and hobbies include spending time with family, sports (football, tennis), travelling, cooking and reading fictional books.
Amber currently works at QVC as a broadcast engineer. She has been working as a broadcast engineer across several TV stations for about 6 years.. Her hobbies are playing piano and guitar and practising yoga. Her recent lockdown hobby which has very quickly grown into an obsession is Aerial Hoop.
Working at BBC Studios for the past 12 years, Anjla's roles and knowledge in Global Operations expands a multitude of skills, which has led to her being promoted to Account Management Executive. In this role Anjla manages the content delivery lifecycles for BBC Studios Global Branded VOD and OTT affiliated services. This includes, but not limited to, managing relationships between BBC Studios, Delivery Partners and affiliates, whilst providing support to Sales teams when they are negotiating new opportunities. Key to her success is a core belief that building strong relationships ensures a far higher level of customer satisfaction. Outside of work Anjla is a super active mother of 2 boys who keep her very busy, when she’s not working or mothering, she enjoys long walks, learning new skills and has even become green-fingered over the past year in lockdown.
Annie is currently a HR Advisor with Gravity Media. She started her HR career in 2017, working for a Hospice, before moving to Gravity Media in 2018. She is a passionate advocate for de-stigmatising mental health in the workplace and finding ways to improve workplace wellbeing. In her spare time, Annie enjoys reading, swimming, and scrapbooking, but is happiest when walking in nature. She is thrilled to be a part of the Rise Mentoring programme and is looking forward to meeting and connecting with likeminded women in the media industry.
Mum of 3, trilingual & MBA certified Barbara Rosseel has the stamina and skills to make a difference. At Sony where she started in California she has shaped and delivered a wide range of high-impact projects, targeting some of the company’s most valuable professional customers – from television broadcasters to cinema brands. Prior to entering the world of communications, based in London she successfully implemented Sony’s CRM solution by Salesforce.com across Europe. Today Barbara is based in Barcelona & Strategic Marketing Lead for the Media & Broadcast market, driving a passionate team to deliver customer centric campaigns that generate returns.
Charlotte Kate Bell
Charlotte has over 12 years’ experience in the TV and Film industry in both production and post-production. She started out in the TV and film industry as a runner on feature films and TV shows in the North East after graduating from the University of Sunderland in 2009. She worked in several production roles before finding her love for post-production. Charlotte has worked for Timeline Television for 5 years now; first joining as a post- production coordinator back in 2016, before being promoted to post producer. She is now a senior post producer and the operations manager of Timeline North. Timeline North is an award-winning boutique post facility, based in MediaCityUK. Specialising in end-to-end post-production services for the UK’s leading broadcasters, production companies, and commercial agencies, working on a variety of genres from Sport, Entertainment, Drama, Factual, Children’s, Comedy and Features.
Christina is the newly appointed Director of Film/TV at 80Six and founder of New Chapter Production LTD, a consultancy business founded upon her accomplishments and experience across creative and disruptive technology brands within the Media & Entertainment industry, specifically Film, TV & Broadcast. Over the last 14 years, Christina has worked alongside such brands as GAME, Vertu (formerly owned by Nokia), G-Technology (a Western Digital Company), RED Digital Cinema, Ncam Technologies, Crew in a Box, 3LR Lighting, and FeverCheckerPro. She is adept at defining and implementing key business initiatives and marketing strategies to develop and position brands globally. Not just about the top line, Christina's drive is also built upon collaboration and insight to deliver innovative and impactful brand experiences that resonate with and inspire people both professionally and personally. Her passion for filmmakers and the economics of production instinctively enables Christina to nurture key industry relationships that advocate storytelling, create exposure/share of voice, and support mutual interests.
Ellis joined Pebble in 2019 as a Market Analyst where she reports on industry trends, analyses Pebble's current pipeline and carries out market research. She was previously working in the electronic components industry, specialising in the sale of passive components.
Esme is a 23 year old broadcast assistant based in the East Midlands. She have a strong passion for all things sound and Outside Broadcast in general, and is at the beginning of what she hope to be a long career in the broadcast media industry.
Brazilian born Fernanda Longo graduated in Business Administration and holds an MBA in Project Management, with 20 years of experience in project management, mostly in the telecommunications sector. From 2011 to 2018 she lived in various countries including Mexico, Peru, Chile and Cuba; managing billing project implementations. In Cuba, she managed the development and implementation of the first web page for the people to buy mobile credits online. A real challenge and historic moment! At the end of 2018 Fernanda received a job offer to move to London to start working as a project manager in the broadcast and media sector. She is currently working as a project manager at Red Bee Media, with Channel 4 as her main customer. and is learning every day about this sector that she finds to be a fascinating one.
Hello, I'm Hayley. I currently work in Content Delivery at ITV, I am a Supervisor of the Live Capture team and this is my first role within the industry. My journey at ITV started back in 2017, when I signed up for a two week work experience opportunity in Content Delivery, a year later I joined the team. My role as Supervisor entails overseeing the day-to-day coordination of the Live Capture team. This primarily includes the capturing of all of ITV’s live content for the ITV Hub and other catch-up platforms. We also support the rest of the Content Delivery department with various requests for ingesting, editing and transferring content.
Izabella holds the Head of Product position at Sky since 2018, following her MBA studies at Cass Business School (City University of London). In her current role, she leverages her experience in developing and launching compelling international product propositions that achieve a balance between high customer satisfaction and strategic business objectives. Throughout her career, Izabella has developed expertise in driving highly complex strategic programmes, leading international and cross-functional teams, and operating efficiently in uncertain and fast paced environments. She’s originally from Greece, where she kicked off her career as a strategic brand management consultant upon completing her BA in International & European Studies and traineeships (Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Institute of International Relations). Izabella has been an awarded professional mentor of the City University of London (2014-2016) and she aspires to start sharing pro-bono her experience with start-up/ Non-profit organisations, giving back to the wider digital sector.
Juliette Beahan is a Sales Operations Coordinator at BBC Studios where her role is to help facilitate the end-to-end process of BBC Studios content within the EMEA market. She has six years previous experience in Film & TV Distribution, though over the last 18 months, Juliette has found herself temping across various sectors whilst in New Zealand and doing set work on TV Productions back in the UK. Juliette was raised bilingual English/French and enjoy hiking, travelling and going to the cinema (only one of which has been possible through lockdown!)
Kat started her career in broadcast in 2013 after graduating from Southampton Solent University with a degree in Live and Studio Sound. While studying for her degree, she developed a particular interest in broadcast which resulted in her winning a trip (courtesy of IABM) to the International Broadcasting Convention in Amsterdam. This trip enabled KAt to network with people in the industry which helped her to choose my career path. She began life in broadcasting as a general assistant for WRN Broadcast and worked her way up to become a senior transmission controller before moving to Discovery Inc in 2016. She joined Discovery as a transmission operator and shortly after joining trained to do live sports on the Eurosport channels for Denmark and Norway. Kat is also trained to do live sports on the Nordic terrestrial channels which in 2018 led to her being part of the live operations team who broadcast the Winter Olympics. Since then the operations team has moved into the London Technology Hub in Chiswick and has taken on 6 more Eurosport channels including Eurosport UK. This year she is looking forward to the Summer Olympics along with the Tennis Grand slams, major cycling and snooker events. In her free time, Kat enjoys playing music, having performed since the age of 4. She also enjoys indoor climbing and more recently paddle boarding and kayaking.
I’m the Engineering Manager for the R&D team developing Grass Valley’s cloud-based Playout solution, AMPP Playout. As Engineering Manager, it’s my purpose to lead and inspire the R&D team to create high quality software solutions for our customers. Day to day, I work with stakeholders to translate the product roadmap into deliverable milestones, track the progress of these to make certain they are delivered on time and ensure that the team has the right support and motivation to achieve their short and long-term goals. My passion is personal growth and I’m always looking for ways to stretch myself and learn new skills. This is why, 3 years ago, I decided to try my hand at leading a team, having been a software engineer for nearly 20 years. It’s definitely been more of a challenge but, on the other hand, one that is much more rewarding. Outside of work, I like to keep reasonably fit and run as often as I can to try and keep the lockdown weight at bay! I love live music and entertainment and am counting the days to when venues and theatres are open and back in business again. Over the last 18 months, I have discovered a passion for art and occasionally do the odd commission.
Mirusha currently works at ITV Daytime as a Content Technology Support Engineer. She provides broadcast and technical support for her Daytime colleagues. Mirusha graduated with a First Class Honours in Computer Systems Engineering in 2018 at the University of Northampton. Her favourite colour is blue and my favourite footballer is Cristiano Ronaldo and is the eldest child of four and loves her family.
Nancy has a background in both broadcast media and language teaching, with a MSc in Media and Communications from LSE and a BA (Hons) in English Teaching from Shanghai. She currently works as Multimedia Producer for a sub-channel on Sky dedicated to content on China, where she is responsible for the daily operation of the channel. Nancy is also a trained Mandarin teacher and food enthusiast.
Neha is an enthusiastic Lead QA Engineer at Starzplay, where she runs the show by leading and mentoring the team of QA engineers. Her knack for technology has led her to work on some of the coolest gadgets - phones, Ipads, game consoles, smart TVs, Chromecast and firesticks. Apart from these devices, she exhibits exceptional expertise with microservices architecture while working on some of the crucial and core services for any OTT platforms - media layouts, Media Player, DRM, content ingestion, recommendation engine, billing and payments cycle. In her career span of over 10 years, she has endeavoured towards exploring multifaceted aspects of the Media and broadcast industry. She started her career with Reliance Jio when 4G was in articles and papers and got hands-on with the different chipsets of set-top-boxes and OTT boxes.
Niki Whittle is the global graphics operations manager at DAZN, where she oversees the live graphics and data solutions across the business. During her time at DAZN, she has led the implementation of several new operational workflows for the launch of key events across DAZN and joint venture partnership productions including remote solutions for Serie A, Brazilian Serie C and Conmebol
Having recently completed the BT Graduate Scheme, I now have a permanent role as a Product Manager in BT Media & Broadcast. I have a degree in Economics and Geography from the University of Leeds. I have a passion for sport, I like running and playing netball. I am also a huge foodie, that loves to cook and try new recipes.
Sarah is currently a Digital Media Technician at Pixelogic Media. SHe has always enjoyed working with computers, from playing PC games with her older brother when she was a kid, to learning audio programming at university. A career heavily involved in computing was always inevitable for her. One of Sarah's lecturers at university was a Dubbing Mixer and as she is a lifelong TV binge-watcher, once she learned more about his job she knew that this was the industry for her. Sarah fell into the digital media world after working as a runner at Deluxe Wardour St. It wasn't her original career goal, however she really enjoys the variety of work and is glad she ended up down this path.
Sophie is a Sound Engineer and aspiring sound Guarantee with Outside Broadcast company Telegenic. Before this she planned the satellite distribution for major international broadcast events at Arqiva, and has also served in the military as Royal Marines Musician. With a thirst for learning, she loves the challenge which comes from life on the road: working across all sorts of contracts from Sport and LE to the Proms. No day is the same, and that’s the way she likes it!
Taryn has worked at Timeline for almost 9 years. Shee started off scheduling engineers and VT ops. Over the years the business has grown rapidly, and Timeline now has broadcast centres and a large outside broadcast division. Taryn has been there throughout, lending a hand where ever was needed. Towards the end of 2018 she was leading a team of two other schedulers and a team assistant and it was decided that she would move officially into a more production based as the need within the company for this role as greater than ever. At the end of 2019 Taryn started maternity leave and returned back at the start of this year. It is definitely a new way of working with COVID around, and she is trying to navigate my way back into the work place after over a year off and many internal changes.
Tereza is currently working as a Senior Content Services and Mastering Specialist in film distribution, but has a background in audio and radio broadcasting. When she has some time to relax she loves reading books but admits that Netflix and Amazon Prime became her new best friends during this pandemic!
APAC Programme Mentees
Azrina Jane Abdullah
Since she was young, Azrina Jane has been curious to learn new things and is constantly looking to pick up new skills or get involved. She is a very versatile person, adaptable, flexible and all-round kind of person. Having to step in the broadcast industry 20 years ago was never her plan, as she was more of a IT related person, but because it is something out of ordinary in Malaysia that attracted her to the industry. Azrina Jane's family are architects and she was lucky enough to get my hands on Autodesk 3D Studio when her dad's company was the first architect firm to be digitizing back in the 90s. Ironically now, I am with Vizrt.
Catherine Van Raemdonck
atherine is a Sales professional in the media industry, and is also a third culture kid who's worked and lived across Europe, the US and Asia. Catherine has been in Asia for 13 years, working in Cambodia and Singapore in various fields of Law, Business and Media. Currently at Brightcove, she helps customers succeed with videos through the Brightcove online video platform.
After graduation, Chika had worked in the travel industry and had some experiences to conduct the tours to the foreign countries. With the interests in the international trade business she pursued a career at the NVOCC. In the middle, Chika made her dream to live & work in a foreign country happen (while lived in the US for 6 years she got the associate degree, doing some part-time jobs and then was empoyed by the local Customs broker ) She learned the cultural differences in the diverse environment and enjoyed the experiences to communicate with many people from various countries. After coming back in the home country, she continued to work in the trading related jobs, such as purchasing, logistics. Then Chika has been engaged in the order management for 13 years in Tokyo, Japan.
Karen Siaw is an Inside Sales Executive at Ross Video (Singapore) Pte. Ltd. Her main duties include conducting daily inside-sales activities, creating sales leads, initiating prospect calls, preparing quotes and managing sales pipeline for revenue generation. Prior to joining Ross Video in 2017, Karen has 11 years of extensive inside sales experience in the Semi-Conductor industry notably WPG Holdings, Venture Corporation and Future Electronics. Karen’s current portfolio requires her to deliver high quality customer experience consistently and maximize sales revenue to achieve the monthly budget set for her. Karen enjoys jogging and cycling with her family. She is also passionate in travelling, fine dining and watching movies.
Mia Tan come from a chemical engineering background but then turns into an inside sales during her second year of career journey. She in new and fresh to the live production and broadcasting engineering but it is always not too late to learn new thing. At work and life, she uses to believe "People won't remember what you said or did, they'll only remember how you made them feel". Hence, she is always smile.'
Olivia Grimshaw started her career in London in the Theatre Industry and transitioned to commercial television. After relocation to Sydney, Australia Olivia continue in broadcast operations for cable and commercial television, gaining extensive experience in managing projects and departments. More recently coming back from 3 years in The Netherlands, Olivia worked for National Rugby League managing projected across the Digital Operation department. Olivia has newly started working as a Customer Success Manager APAC at Grass Valley.
Rupali Sarkar is currently working as a Senior Sales Executive at ARK Infosolutions, Mumbai, a renowned media distributor organization in India. In this role, she is responsible for the end-end business development and management across West India for AJA Video Product sales. She works closely with end customers and resellers/partners to improve workflows and constantly build and maintain long-term relationships with them. Rupali possesses 10+ years of rich and diverse experience in Media Broadcast and AV industry across Sales, Pre-sales, Engineering and Business Development and she really enjoys the process of taking an idea and turning it into a real project. Having started her career with an intense passion to work in the creative world, she completed her education in electronics and telecommunications engineering with a post-graduation in media management. She is always keen to learn new skills and aspires to become a Coach and content Creator in the future.
Sheila Chong is currently a Senior Product Specialist with Grass Valley. She has over 20 years of experience in the broadcast industry, majority of it in an engineering role. Having worked in broadcast provider facilities, customer-owned facilities as well as on the vendor side, she understands the differences on the way each works and the challenges each faces. Sheila takes pride in setting up production systems and providing trainings for her customers in the ASEAN region.
Sing Yee Lee
Sing Yee is a senior solutions architect at Grass Valley Singapore Pte. Ltd. She is a highly experienced broadcast professional, with 16 years of experience in the news and media production industry. She is responsible for the pre-sales activities and project management in the East Asia region. Sing Yee gained a Bachelor Degree of Information Technology (Hons) from University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia in March 2005. She is keen on exploring new technologies and meeting new people.
Vivian Yu is a Regional Marketing Manager, APAC at Ross Video Limited has been working in broadcast Industry for more than 10 years, working her way up from coordinator to where she is today. She takes pride in providing the best result in her job functions. Vivian has been recognized by her highly organized, eyes for detail, compassion, strong team-player attitude, engaged across the Asia team. Allow her to be respectful across the region. She is also a very hands-on mother of 2. During her downtime, she enjoys get together with friends over cheese and wine. Spend quality time with her family members outdoor like cycling & hiking.
North America Programme Mentees
Allison is a Global Operations executive at BBC Studios Americas. With her decade of BBC experience, Allison oversees the creation and management of all descriptive metadata, artwork, and avails deliveries for North America. She also acts as an operational advisor on various special projects and was instrumental in the launch of both BritBox and BBC Select streaming services. Allison knows all too well that the details matter and bad metadata should never happen to good people.
Amanda Holtstrom is the Product Manager for Ross Production Cloud at Ross Video. A computer engineer, Amanda has spent her career designing and delivering software systems to address key problems to a variety of industries. An advocate for great design and simple interfaces, Amanda joined Ross Video over a year ago and is responsible for DashBoard and other production workflow solutions that Ross customers use to create amazing productions.
Bec has been a part of the core team at Take 1 for the past 5 years and in that time she has gained invaluable experience and knowledge in the distribution & localization processes required industry-wide. Outside of Take 1, Bec loves to hit the gym for a spin class & walks around her local area in Santiago, Chile with her pug, Pancito. Bec is a very competitive person and loves a challenge.
Carole Pelletier earned her master’s degree in 2010 and began her career as a chemist where she rapidly got involved in quality control and ISO certifications. In 2014, she joined Grass Valley’s team as a Quality, Environment, Health and Safety (Q/EHS) coordinator. During this period, she led her factory to gain multiple EHS Grass Valley awards and implemented ISO 9001 and 14001 certification for Montreal’s factory. Since 2020, she occupies the position of Q/EHS and Quality Supplier Manager where her main focus is on product quality control and assurance.
Dawn Lannon is a senior buyer and proud member of the Grassvalley team. Dedicated to the end user, Dawn has a passion for supply chain. She is no stranger to the semiconductor industry, she brings with her over 20 years’ experience as an electronic component procurement specialist. Dawn is a powerful force in the workplace and uses her positive attitude and tireless energy to encourage others to work hard and succeed. When she is not chasing chip shortages she is chasing kilometers, Dawn as an avid runner and certified nutrition coach.
Deanna Lee is passionate about people, creative problem solving, and improving efficiencies. She started in broadcast with Sony Electronics and transferred to Sony Pictures. She obtained multiple high-level awards for her performance. She obtained her BSBM in 2002 and joined Deluxe in 2015. She studied the dubbing and subtitling workflows and is currently a Senior Account Manager in subtitling.
Demi Milas is a Production Coordinator for the Creative Localization team at Deluxe where she has the tedious task of getting to watch TV and movies all day. She graduated from West Chester University in Pennsylvania with a degree in Communication Studies and moved to Los Angeles shortly after to get her start in the Entertainment Industry. Outside of work she’s always trying to find a new hobby—reading, working through the Greek Duolingo course, embroidery, working on a novel and cooking…sometimes.
Elizabeth (Liz) Guenther is a graduate of Cal State Fullerton and has worked in post-production with Deluxe Media’s Audio and Dubbing Localization teams for the last 7 years. Prior to that, she worked for radio stations including 100.3FM The Sound and Radio Disney. She is an LA native and enjoys chasing after her two kids with her husband in her free time.
Jordan Linekar, NA
Jordan Linekar is an outgoing, enthusiastic broadcast/digital media professional currently working as the Data i/o Technician at the Toronto Deluxe office. She is a graduate of the Broadcasting and Film program at Centennial College with a decade of combined experience working in television and film production. Jordan has spent time at Corus Entertainment, Accessible Media Inc and NBC in New York. She enjoys traveling and experiencing new cultures worldwide.
Julie was born and raised in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada and graduated from Mohawk College for Television Broadcasting. Since then, Julie has worn many hats working as a Videographer, Production Assistant, Data IO Operator, and Account Manager, in the Film and TV industry. Currently, Julie is the Supervising Account Manager in the Cinema department at Deluxe Distribution Canada. As an Account Manager, Julie manages a portfolio of studio clients releasing their films theatrically in Canada. She is passionate about being a contributing team leader to ensure customer happiness and loyalty.
Leah Morris is an Account Director with Deluxe. She has over 8 years experience in client services and theatrical distribution. Leah has a passion for learning and growth and is excited to be connected with driven, like-minded women in the industry.
Meg Travis is IMES' Global Head of Marketing. Meg has led the division's rebrand and marketing strategy since 2019 and oversees all aspects of client- and industry-facing communications at the intersection of preservation, technology, and entertainment. Before joining Iron Mountain in 2015, Meg spent 11 years with Accenture, leading the development of global email marketing and search engine marketing strategy before leading marketing campaign strategy for the North America Banking sector. Meg holds a B.A. from Stanford University in Vocal Performance and an M.B.A. in Marketing from the Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan. She resides in Ipswich, MA with her two children Ethan, 19, and Olivia, 12.
Priscilla Oliveira has 7 years of executive/creative production experience in Brazil, and 2 years of post-production experience in the United States. Priscilla speaks English, Portuguese and Spanish and has interests within the post production pipeline of the entertainment industry, localization and Latin America market.
Remington Maxwell is a Senior Software Engineer at Grass Valley based in Nevada County, CA. She graduated Summa Cum Laude from UC Santa Cruz in 2016 with a degree in Computer Science and minor in Computer Engineering. She has worked with local Nevada County groups to promote tech in her community. This includes teaching an introductory programming class at a local school and serving on the Nevada County Economic Resource Council Talent Development Committee; this committee supports the economic development of Nevada County by building a competitive, expanding, and sustainable skilled workforce. She has served as the Sacramento SMPTE Section Manager for 2 years and a Chairperson for 1 year. During her time at UCSC, she was involved in Project AWESOME (Advancing Women’s Education in the School of Engineering), whose goal was to promote women in engineering fields.