Judging Panel

Sir John Southby Bt
 
Having graduated and trained as an electrical distribution engineer, and holding various engineering posts throughout the East Midlands, Sir John Southby Bt came to Milton Keynes in 1991 as District Manager. He quickly became involved in the business community. This led to the formation of the Large Employers Association (LEA) which he Chaired until 1998. The LEA represented large businesses both Local and International in Milton Keynes, and has now evolved into Milton Keynes Business Leaders Partnership (MKBLP).
 
Whilst also being involved with Rotary International, both in Milton Keynes and at a wider District and National level, Sir John continues to support MKBLP and attends as many events as possible. Throughout his time in Milton Keynes Sir John has been committed to supporting businesses of all sizes and is delighted to be able to help recognise their achievements tonight. 
 
Steve Hill, External Engagement Director, The Open University
 
As Director of External Engagement, Steve is responsible for all external engagement activity, overseeing the Marketing Unit, Communications Unit (including Government and External Affairs), Development Office and Business Development Unit. He has a key role in helping the University to respond to the opportunities in the external environment and to project the University to a global audience.
 
Steve began his career at National Westminster Bank, where he worked for 11 years in corporate and international banking and held various senior management positions. He joined Lipper, a Reuters company as Head of EMEA, Business Development and became their Global Commercial Director.
 
In 2011 Steve joined The Open University as Commercial Director, responsible for driving the implementation and development of the University’s international and corporate strategies. He was appointed Director of External Engagement in December 2015. Steve is an Open University graduate.
 
Jon Corbett, Director; Head of SME, South East Midlands & Cambridgeshire, Barclays
 
The Regional Head of  SME for Barclay across the Beds, Bucks, Northants & Cambs area, Jon has previously worked across a variety of roles within Barclays having joined the organisation in 1987 in Milton Keynes.  Predominantly Jon’s career has been within the corporate environment where he has led various teams across the Northern Home Counties and South Midlands area.
 
Having lived in the Milton Keynes area all his life, Jon was delighted to be appointed the as Head of Larger Corporate Banking for the Northampton and Milton Keynes team in 2009. Subsequently Jon has been leading the Barclays Corporate & Business Banking Team across the counties Beds, Bucks and Northants before taking on his current additional broader responsibilities during the course of 2016.   During this period of time Jon has also over seen the opening of the Corporate Banking Teams new premises based in The Lakes, Northampton
 
Jon is a Board Member of the Northamptonshire Enterprise Partnership, an envoy for South East Midlands Local Enterprise Partnership and is on the steering committee for the High Performance Technology and Motorsport Cluster Report.  Furthermore Jon sits on the Strategic Oversight Board for the Midlands Engine Investment Fund where he represents the South East Midlands LEP’s
 
An avid sports fan Jon is a passionate Derby County supporter whilst he also played football to a semi-professional level up until his retirement and is also a Uefa B Qualified football coach. More recently Jon has become a committed runner, having completed several marathons.
 
Jon is married to Alison with 3 children Sam, Jacob and Molly and lives in Milton Keynes.
 
Gordon Mellor, Director, University Campus Milton Keynes
 
Dr Gordon Mellor is the Director of University Campus Milton Keynes, having formerly led the University of Bedfordshire’s Business School. He started his academic career as an historian- philosopher with roots in education and sport. He has lectured on a broad range of topics both nationally and internationally. As an Olympic scholar he was closely involved in the media coverage of the London Olympic Games in 2012. He has also written and presented on the development of sporting clubs and field sports between 1760 and 1914. A champion of the student experience, Gordon is an advocate of high quality, vocationally relevant and accessible higher education provision.  
 
Julia is a Trustee of the MK YMCA, Board Director of Business Leaders and a member of MK Gallery’s Steering Group which provides support relating to their large capital fundraising for the gallery’s expansion. 
 
Previously Julia was Chief Executive of the MK Community Foundation, where her strategic role included developing philanthropy, community engagement, leadership and creating opportunities for developing the property portfolio.
 
Julia was a Trustee and Vice Chair of UK Community Foundations (UKCF) and continued to work closely with them to develop Community Foundations in the UK. She chaired UKCF’s Quality Accreditation Committee, which developed the ‘Quality Mark’ for all Community Foundations. She was a lead member of the UKCF’s Steering Group which created Vital Signs research that identifies the successes and issues in our community.
 
Originally from Somerset, Julia worked in London prior to moving to Milton Keynes. Working in education in some of the most deprived communities influenced her decision to work in the voluntary sector, to develop philanthropy and bring about change. Julia and her husband are donors of the MK Community Foundation, building their own family fund.
Carole Mills, Chief Executive, Milton Keynes Council 
 
Carole joined Milton Keynes Council as Chief Executive in July 2014.  
 
MK is one of the UK's fastest growing cities so her focus is on the growth agenda, City development and increased demand at a time of great change. The Council asked the MK Futures 2050 Commission to take stock and consider how this might best be done. Their July 2016 report Making a Great City Greater advocates six big projects to take the city forward. 
 
Carole also leads an internal change programme placing commercialism, commissioning and customer access at the heart of service design and delivery. Carole was previously Deputy CEO & Corporate Director for Resources at Nottingham City Council - one of England's Core Cities - where she worked for six years. 
 
Here she led a successful and extensive transformation programme, which delivered renewed city vision, improved leadership and a new operating model alongside high quality commissioning, financial management and commercialism. 
 
Whilst Acting CEO in 2012, Carole oversaw the launch of the Nottingham Growth Plan, the landing of the City Deal and led the transfer of Public Health into the City Council.