Jury President

Doug Place
Chief Marketing Officer
Nando's Africa, Middle East and South Asia

 Prior to Nando’s Doug held the position of Marketing Executive of Ster-Kinekor Theatres. Before joining Ster-Kinekor, Doug worked at Cadbury South Africa.

He has received more than 100 international and national marketing and advertising awards including 3 Loeries Grand Prix awards. In 2019 Doug was named the most admired Marketing professional in South Africa in the Scopen report, and Nando’s the most admired brand. In 2018 Doug was awarded the Marketing & Innovation Award at The Loeriestm.  Destiny Man Magazine rated him as one of South Africa’s ‘Young and Powerful’ industry leaders in 2015 and in 2014 he was named one of the “Top 40 Under 40” in South African media personnel by The Media publication. 

He is a public speaker and guest lectures at various universities and also serves as a judge on a variety of marketing and advertising award panels.

Doug is a Wits graduate and holds a B.Com B.Com Honours Degree (cum laude), and was the top graduate student in both Marketing and across all disciplines in the business school. He is also a registered Chartered Marketer (CMSA), sits on the Professional Designations Board (PDB) and is a board member of MASA.


Pepe Marais
Founding Partner/Group Chief Creative Officer
Joe Public

Pepe Marais is  the founding partner and Group Chief Creative Officer of Joe Public United. Joe Public United is a 100% locally owned, purpose driven brand and communications group, which exists for the growth of its people, clients and country, and is currently ranked as the number one creative agency on the African continent.

Pepe has been the recipient of numerous local and international industry awards, was ranked as the number one creative leader by the industry’s Loerie Awards in 2018, and voted by marketers as the ‘Most Admired Industry Professional’ in South Africa.

He believes that accolades are merely the building blocks toward a vision of creating an organization that inspires greatness, and that all of Joe Public’s past and future successes  will be because
of its people.

Pepe lives to bring out the best in those around him.

Christelle Kwizera
Water Access, Rwanda

Christelle Kwizera is an award-winning, female mechanical engineer and social entrepreneur. She founded Water Access Rwanda in 2014 to address the water crisis and youth unemployment in Africa. Since then the company has provided water to over 160,000 individuals, farms and businesses using boreholes and safe water mini--grids named INUMATM. The Rwandan company has been awarded with the Africa Entrepreneurship Award, the EDF pulse Africa Award, WeEmpower SDG Award, and is also recognized as an SDG innovator by UNSDSN. More recently, It was dotted with the Jack Ma Africa Business Heroes Award and recognized and funded as a transformer through IsDB’s Transform Fund.

She is a Resolution fellow, a Sierra Club GPEP fellow, a MILEAD fellow, a princess Diana awardee and Fondation Channel’s 2019 Woman Entrepreneur of the Year; all awarded on account of her leadership in addressing social issues, particularly those tied with environmental justice and Youth issues.


Khensani Nobanda
Group Executive for Marketing and Corporate Affairs 

Khensani Nobanda is the Group Executive for Marketing and Corporate Affairs at Nedbank. Her marketing career spans 18 years, working across a number of local and multinational organisations. Her first marketing role was at Unilever where she started as the Rama Assistant Brand Manager. Kensi’s Unilever career culminated in her running the Skin Category for Unilever in Africa, Middle East and Turkey, based in Dubai. She has also worked at Diageo, South African Breweries and Vodacom where she was before she joined Nedbank in September 2017. Kensi is passionate about brands, especially brands that are purpose led, and embody that purpose in everything that they do.


Michelle Cloete
Head of Marketing 
Coca-Cola south East Africa

As a seasoned commercial marketeer, I’ve spent the last 15+ years, building brands and connecting with consumers across multiple African markets (South, East, West) across multiple industries (Healthcare; Household Cleaning + Fragrance; Beverages (Alcoholic + Soft Drinks))

I have been privileged to work and play in many of Africa’s beautiful markets, on both big and small brands. I’ve learnt that no experience in life should be wasted and that nothing of significance was ever achieved by an individual alone!


Judith Sidi Odhiambo 
Group Head of corporate and Regulatory Affairs  
KCB Group

Judith Sidi Odhiambo, is the Group Head of Corporate and Regulatory Affairs at KCB Group. KCB Group operates regional units in Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda, Burundi, Ethiopia and South Sudan. It also owns KCB Insurance Agency, KCB Capital, KCB Foundation and National Bank of Kenya. Here role as Head of Corporate and Regulatory Affairs is very crucial for the bank as it establishes relationships with other organizations in the corporate world, while maintaining relations with internal and external stakeholders. She responsible for coordinating KCB Group’s relationships with its key stakeholders.

Judith has also advised the bank on key strategic initiatives such as signing to the The United Nations Environment Programme Finance Initiative (UNEP- FI), United Nations Global Compact, market intelligence on markets of interest as the bank looks into growing in the region as well as emerging issues on banking an human rights. She leads the Sustainability Strategy and Women in Leadership Network for KCB Group. She has also been instrumental in building the Group’s CEO visibility globally through engagements with international stakeholders in media, governments and regulators.

She is a former Board member of KCB Insurance Agency after serving for a three-year term. She is currently a Board member for Women on Boards Kenya, Public Relations Society of Kenya and in her private capacity serves in other community boards in Kenya.


Sharleen James 
Group MD 
King James

Sharleen James has over 20 years’ experience in Communication and Marketing having spent most of her career at Ogilvy, where she was a board member for over 10 years. She led and developed one of the largest Account Management Teams in South Africa, successfully building strong relationships between clients and agency. Over and above that she played a key role in driving the transformation agenda within the agency. Together with Prof Sandra van der Merwe she created and introduced the Co-lab structure which is Ogilvy’s integration model.

She has vast experience with complex clients like Multichoice, DStv, KFC, SARS, South African Tourism, BP, Nike, Unilever, Coke and the 2010 Fifa World Cup. Over the past four years she has assisted Business Heads in driving new and organic business across the KJ Group.

She has a keen interest in developing talent and coaches young talent within the industry during her spare time.
She AAA Advertising and Strategy, MDP GIBS, Professional Coaching – UCT.
ACA Board Member. ACA Portfolio Member: Education Portfolio and External Bodies Portfolio Member of International Coach Federation


Xola Nouse
The Odd Number

Inspired by his passion to deliver real value for clients, Xola Nouse set about co-founding The Odd Number agency in 2015. Operating as its CEO, Xola overseas this independent shop with an entrepreneurial flair that resonates with clients and the market alike.

Spending the majority of his career in the financial services industry, FMCG sector and management consulting at Ernst & Young (EY) South Africa, Xola honed his skills in strategy, marketing and business development. Along the way, he developed a keen understanding for what makes a successful, customer-driven business, tick. 

Xola holds a Master of Commerce Business Management, Bachelor of Commerce Honours Marketing Management, as well as a Bachelor of Commerce Marketing Management degree and is an honorary member of the Golden Key International Honours Society. Although, he endeavours not to just succeed in theoretical matters of business, but in practice too. In 2019, he proudly helped guide the 100% black-owned agency to be recognised as Small Agency of the Year at the 2017 and 2019 Financial Mail AdFocus Awards.


Thabang Skwambane
Managing Director
FCB, Joburg

Thabang is the Managing Director of FCB Joburg, the flagship agency within the FCB Africa group, the largest and first ever creative services agency group in South Africa. Thabang is a well-known social activist, social entrepreneur, philanthropist, motivational speaker and businessman with a flair for successfully combining capitalist and philanthropic principles.

Since joining FCB in February 2015 and with no formal marketing and advertising experience, Thabang has led FCB Joburg to be recognized as the AdFocus Agency of the Year and Large Agency of the year for the last two years and Sunday Times Top Brand Agency of the Year in 2016. He has been on the board of the Association for Communication and Advertising South Africa and is now the Deputy Chairman.

He left a successful career in banking at Standard Bank to co-found Kaelo, a healthcare company focusing on HIV and Aids, which has now become South Africa’s leading wellness provider and primary healthcare company.

He founded Aluwani, formerly The Lonely Road Foundation in 2007 when he cycled alone and unsupported from Johannesburg to Kilimanjaro, a journey of 6000 kms, surviving on the generosity of the people across all 6 countries to raise funds and awareness for Orphans and Vulnerable Children (OVCs). Aluwani enables rural communities to take care of OVCs and currently have over 3,500 children in their ambit of care.

Thabang has a Bachelor of Commerce (Finance and Accounts) from UCT and a Masters in Public Administration from Harvard, he is a Mason Fellow of Public Policy and Management and an Archbishop Desmond Tutu Leadership Fellow.