2019 Judges | African Digital Media Awards 2019

African Digital Media Awards 2019

11 Sep 2019
South Africa

2019 Judges | African Digital Media Awards 2019

2019 Judges

To judge this year's awards we've brought together a panel of thought leaders, who draw on decades of expertise spent leading Africa's most significant media organisations.

Meet the Judges:

Accountability Lab Global Communications Manager, South Africa

Sheena Adams is the Global Communications Manager for Accountability Lab - a non-profit working on good governance in Africa, South Asia, the United States and South America. The former Group Editor-in-Chief of a magazine publishing house, she's experienced in brand and social media management, journalism and strategic communications.

Chief strategic officer, Wunderman, South Africa

Astrid Ascar has 29 years’ experience in the media industry. She began her career as a radio and TV journalist and producer, and started working in the digital media and marketing space in 2004. She has worked for media brands including DStv, Carte Blanche, Summit TV (now Business Day TV), The Home Channel, CNBC Africa, SABC TV, SAfm, Highveld and in more recent years co-hosting an online radio business show on Hot919 fm. 

Astrid’s consulting work focus for the past 10 years has been digital and integrated marketing and communications strategies, content creation and production, key messaging and copywriting, website audits including UI and UX consulting, helping clients implement plans across owned, earned and paid digital platforms, and using data analytics to generate business insights. She also MCs, gives talks, and facilitates workshops and conferences, and offers training in digital media and marketing, key message crafting, media interview skills, presentation skills, and crisis comms. 

Since March this year Astrid has been fulfilling the role of Chief Strategy Officer for the Wunderman South Africa group. 

ICFJ Knight Fellow

Catherine Gicheru is an International Center for Journalists Fellow. Gicheru is a veteran journalist with two of the leading media organizations in the region. She was the first woman bureau chief and the first female news editor of the Nation Media Group in the region. She is also the founding editor of the daily newspaper, the Star.
She co-founded PesaCheck, East Africa’s budget and public finance fact-checking and verification initiative. She is a member of the Advisory Board of the Reuters' Institute for the Study of Journalism at Oxford University, was a member of the advisory board of the Open Society Foundation’s Fiscal Governance Program which seeks to promote openness, accountability, and equity in fiscal and economic systems around the world. She was an advisory member of the State of Technology in Global Newsrooms survey conducted by the ICFJ which looked at how media professionals are adopting and adapting to digital technologies.

Gicheru is a Nieman Fellow at Harvard University, a Reuters Institute Journalism fellow at Oxford University, and a 1992 IWMF Courage in Journalism award winner.

Premium Times Newspaper Publisher and CEO, Nigeria

Dapo is currently the publisher of Nigeria’s leading investigative news platform, Premium Times.[www.premiumtimesng.com] Previous to this, he served as policy director and chief of staff at Nigeria’s leading anti-corruption agency, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC.  His work as editor during the years of military dictatorship in Nigeria earned him the 1995 International Editor of the Year Award of the World Press Review; the 1996 PEN Center (West) Freedom to Write Award; and the Press Freedom Award (1996) of the National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) New York.  In 2017, the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) awarded him its Press Freedom award; that same year, the Nigeria Institute of Journalists [NIJ] conferred him a fellowship award; and the Diamond Awards for Media Excellence, DAME, announced him as recipient of its Lifetime Award.   Back in 1991 he was founding editor of the now defunct Nigeria Journalism Quarterly (NJQ), published by the Nigerian Union of Journalists. He is currently the Vice President of the transnational investigative body for West Africa headquartered in Burkina Faso, CENOZO. In 1995, he founded the well regarded Wole Soyinka Centre for Investigative Journalism [www.wscij.org] to help construct a civic mechanism, through the media, to hold political and economic power accountable in the country. Ten years after, he co-founded the first Investigative journalism newsroom in Nigeria which is perhaps the most influential and most trusted fact-based news platform in the country today, [premiumtimesng.com]. In 2014 he also co-founded West Africa’s first journalism innovation and development centre, [www.ptcij.org]. He was educated at the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Nigeria, the Washington College of Law of the American University in Washington DC, and the University of Oxford, in the UK.

Founder and editor, MarkLives.com, South Africa

Herman Manson (@marklives) is an established business journalist and media commentator and the founding editor of MarkLives.com.

Independent consultant & New Media lecturer, Media and Communications Department, Nelson Mandela University, South Africa

Jude Mathurine has worked extensively in journalism education and media development in South and Southern Africa for over two decades.He led the Journalism programme at the Cape Peninsula University of Technology for over four years where he helped set new standards in curriculum development, programme leadership and teaching and learning. At Rhodes University's School of Journalism and Media Studies (2007), he wore several hats including head of the New Media Lab, digital editor for South Africa’s oldest independent newspaper, Grocott's Mail. Jude has held roles at the Media Institute of Southern Africa and the Konrad Adenauer Stiftung Media programme for sub-Sahara Africa. Jude has consulted widely as a digital journalism trainer and speaker. He has also held academic and leadership roles positions at the Durban University of Technology. Jude is a new media lecturer at Nelson Mandela University where he works to educate the next generation of smart journalism and media creatives for social good. His research focuses on media development and digital media leadership and innovation.

International Crisis Group Horn of Africa Project Director, Kenya

Murithi Mutiga is Project Director for the Horn of Africa at the International Crisis Group, a conflict prevention research organisation. Before taking that role, Murithi was for seven years an editor and reporter for the Sunday Nation, East Africa’s biggest newspaper. He also covered the Horn of Africa for the Guardian (UK) and was a Contributing Op/Ed Writer for the International New York Times. He holds an MSc in Comparative Politics from the London School of Economics.

Juba Monitor Editor in Chief, South Sudan

Anna Nimiriano Nunu Siya is a career South Sudanese journalist with more than fifteen years wealth of experience in print and broadcast journalism. She is one of the founders of Juba Monitor, a daily English publication and currently serves as the Editor In Chief of the paper and previously worked for the defunct Khartoum Monitor as Editorial Director and subsequently Managing Editor. She was recently named the 2019 Africa Laureate for the WAN-IFRA Women in News Editorial Leadership Awards. This Award was given in recognition of her exceptional contribution to the newsroom, editorial integrity, and outstanding leadership.

Committee to Protect Journalists Africa Program Coordinator, USA

Before joining CPJ in 2016, Angela Quintal worked as an editor and journalist for more than two decades in South Africa. She was the editor of Mail and Guardian, one of South Africa's leading investigative newspapers. She also edited The Witness and The Mercury newspapers and held several senior positions in South African newsrooms, including group political editor at the Independent Newspaper Group and parliamentary editor for the then-national news agency, the SA Press Association. Quintal changed direction from a career in human rights and constitutional law to become a journalist in 1992 during South Africa's transition to democracy. She was presidential correspondent during Nelson Mandela's term as South Africa's first democratically elected president and travelled extensively. She has served as the secretary-general and treasurer of the SA National Editors' Forum and before joining CPJ was media freedom committee chair in South Africa for Wan-Ifra's program on strengthening media and society. Quintal holds a Bachelor of Journalism and a Bachelor of Laws from Rhodes University.

Deputy CEO at Code For Africa, South Africa

Chris Roper is chief engagement strategist and deputy CEO for the continent’s largest federation of civic technology and data journalism labs, Code for Africa (CfA).

Leveraging over two decades of insights from building Africa’s largest online news and content portals, Chris shapes CfA’s civic engagement and scaling strategies. He also serves as director for CfA’s forensic data initiative, the African Network of Centres for Investigative Reporting (ANCIR), where he managed the participation of 18 African newsrooms in the Panama Papers transnational investigation, as well as an investigation by 13 newsrooms into worker safety lapses at Australian mines across Africa.

Chris’ role at CfA is underwritten by a Knight International Fellowship, with the International Centre for Journalists (ICFJ).

Prior to joining CfA, Chris was editor-in-chief of Africa’s first newspaper to establish an internet presence, the Mail & Guardian. He rebuilt the newspaper’s digital offerings, boosting audience engagement and, within a year, facilitating a growth in unique monthly visitors from under a million to over two million. The increased audience reach helped M&G boost the impacts of its investigative reporting, including the Nkandla scandal, which first exposed the extent of State Capture in SA and which was influential in the eventual resignation of President Jacob Zuma.

Before M&G, Chris was editor-in-chief of Africa’s largest online publisher, 24.com, where he managed the merger of MWEB and News24 editorial content into the biggest digital content offering in Africa. 

Chris has taught journalism courses at the Universities of Pretoria and Western Cape, and the Polytechnic of Namibia. Chris has served as a judge on, among others, the SA Bookmark Digital Awards, the British Council Future of News competition, the NuMedia Plum Awards, and the PICA Awards. He frequently consults to publishing houses in his capacity as a Code for Africa strategist.

Award-winning journalist, author, scriptwriter, speechwriter and media trainer, South Africa

Gus Silber is an award-winning journalist, author, scriptwriter, speechwriter and media trainer. He has an extensive background in newspaper and magazine journalism, as a reporter, columnist, feature writer and editor. He is the author of several commercially-published books, covering a wide diversity of themes and subjects, from South African sociopolitical satire (It Takes Two to Toyi-Toyi) to innovation in business (Radical Innovation) to social entrepreneurship (The Disruptors) to mobile technology (Mobinomics). As a media trainer, Gus has run workshops and mentorship programmes on social media, mobile journalism, feature writing, and general aspects of journalism, for publishing companies, Government and private sector organisations, and special-interest groups. He also serves regularly as a mentor and external examiner for Journalism Honours student at the University of the Witwatersrand. Gus is currently a part-time MA Journalism candidate at Rhodes University, with a special interest in digital journalism.

Senior Strategy Consultant, Kenya

Nomusa Taylor-Dube is one part South African, one part Canadian, and all Afracanah podcast. She is diaspora many times over and now calls Nairobi, Kenya home. During the day, she runs an agriculture and digital consultancy. The rest of the time she is engaged in all things podcasting, women in business, and tacos. She is the co-host and co-founder of the Afracanah podcast which provides a platform to amplify the work and voices of young women across Africa and the diaspora. There are also a lot of jokes. Nomusa is wildly passionate about podcasting as a medium and shares what she has learnt with new and older podcasters alike. She has a TED Talk on podcasting, is the author of “Podcasting 101: A How to Guide”, has taught podcasting at the International Women in Media Foundation and Aga Khan University, and is an advisor for the upcoming Nairobi Podcast Festival.

African Digital Media Awards 2019