Judging Panel

We are proud to have these experts as judges for our various awards:

Professor Dotun Adebanjo, Professor of Supply Chain Management, University of Greenwich, UK

Dotun has worked on several benchmarking projects and led the UK Benchmarking Club for the Food and Drinks Industry. He has published his benchmarking research in leading academic journals and has authored 2 book chapters and co-authored a BPIR Management Brief on Benchmarking. Professor Adebanjo has been an associate researcher and consultant for the Centre for Organisational Excellence Research (COER) for more than a decade. Professor Adebanjo served as an international judge at the Closing Sharing Day of Dubai We Learn initiative.

Dr. Ayed Alamri, President Saudi Quality Council (SQC), Saudi Arabia

Dr Ayed is Quality & Business Excellence consultant and academician member of International Academy for Quality (IQA). He led the technical team who developed Saudi Arabia National Quality Strategy that developed by Saudi Standards and Quality Org.(SASO). He participated in establishing, managing, assessing and judging many local and regional Quality & Business Excellence awards. Dr Ayed was the Chairman of Jury for 2 cycles for the National Quality Award of Saudi Arabia, king Abdulaziz Quality Award (KAQA). Dr Ayed was recognized by Kano medal for Excellence leadership.

Khashayar Ataie, Director of International Affairs, IPC Group, Iran

Khashayar is a proven business management consultant with a progressive track record in building bridges and relationships across diverse cultures, business and governmental sectors. A resourceful mediator, negotiator, and executive coach, he provides constructive counsel to clients seeking to do business with Iran and Iranian businesses aspiring to excel internationally. Khashayar serves on the board of the Global Benchmarking Network.


Ma. Teresa U. Bagaman, Director, Global Benchmarking Network, Consultant on Strategic Innovation, The Medical City, Philippines

Teresa Bagaman, MBA, Industrial Engineer, and a PhD student, is an Innovator, Quality and Process Excellence Management Expert, Design Thinking Coach, Lean Six Sigma Master Black Belt, and dedicated Lifelong Learning Facilitator on various fields such as Strategic Planning, Business Intelligence, Change Management, and Organizational Excellence Assessment. For over 25 years, she successfully implemented Innovative and Disruptive Solutions in Healthcare, Manufacturing, BPO, IT and Telco. A Gold Honor MBA awardee (Ateneo Graduate School of Business), she completed certification courses in Disruptive Innovation from Harvard Business School, Innovation Management & Design Thinking from HEC Paris and Data Science/Data Visualization, Change Management from eCornell University.


Atif Baig, Researcher, Organisational Excellence Research (COER), New Zealand

Atif is a seasoned professional with over 18 years of banking experience. He worked for Citigroup and Barclays Bank and successfully managed many performance improvement initiatives in different geographies. Atif’s exposure to different territories helped him comprehend organisational performance complexities from a cultural and leadership context. Building on his distinct professional background, Atif is currently pursuing his PhD in business excellence and investigating the Organisational Excellence Architecture required to facilitate and accelerate an organisation’s business excellence journey.


Romy Baker, CEO, Business Excellence Australia

Romy Baker as a former Chief Executive of one of the largest private hospitals in Australia, St John of God Subiaco, led the organisation through a major building redevelopment and financial and corporate reorganisation. Romy’s unique combination of business acumen, strategic leadership skills, project management, and nursing have also been utilised in planning, designing, developing, and establishing general practice medical centres and the amalgamation of four leading research centres, creating a major national research institute, Westmead Millennium Institute, Sydney, NSW. Romy has a special interest in business compliance and is an experienced evaluator with the Australian Business Excellence Foundation (ABEF) and the International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO).


Andrew Baines, CEO, Exemplar Global, New Zealand

Andrew is CEO of Exemplar Global. Originally from the UK, Andrew lives in New Zealand and has held senior management and executive roles in conformity assessment bodies. With over 35 years work experience, Andrew has worked in China, South-East Asia, the Middle East, North America, and Europe. In 2015, Andrew joined ASQ, as Managing Director for Global Operations before becoming CEO of Exemplar Global, a subsidiary of ASQ. Andrew has also held several Board roles and is currently a Board Member of NZBEF.


Professor Tony Bendell, Consultant, Trainer, Expert, retired Academic, MD of Services Ltd and Chief trainer of the Anti-Fragility Academy, UK

No stranger  to reducing fragility in organisations, Tony’s new book is titled Crisis Proof, to be published by World Scientific Publishing in 2022. He is an international expert speaker, consultant and trainer in Quality Management, Organisational Excellence, Lean Operations and Six Sigma. He was formerly the Professor of Quality and Reliability Management at the University of Leicester UK. As well as having worked with the UK, Indian and Hong Kong governments, Tony works extensively in the Gulf and has chaired the Sheikh Khalifa Excellence Award Jury since its inception, thirty years ago. He is a GEM 2.0 Assessor, an EFQM Licensed Trainer, and a Competency Assessor and Auditor Trainer for the Royal Statistical Society’s scheme for ISO 18404.


John Bullivant, Director of Governance Benchmarking, UK

John was the Founder of the Good Governance Institute. He has published and lectured widely and internationally on health governance, quality, best value and benchmarking. He now chairs the GGI advisory board supporting GGI to develop a programme which examines governance in the Public Sector to 2030. John has introduced many of GGI’s publications and products including maturity matrices, board assurance prompts, risk appetite, governance between organisations, challenge and review. He has updated the seminal Integrated Governance Handbook ten years after its original launch by the Department of Health.


Wayne Burroughs, Service Excellence Consultant at the University of Auckland. New Zealand

Wayne has a background as an executive in Defence and more recently in Government Regulatory practice organisations where he has been involved in leading and managing organisational change and projects both big and small. Wayne has on ongoing interest in using the Baldrige Performance Excellence framework to assess organisations and identify opportunities for improvement. He is an Associate Fellow of the NZ Business Excellence Foundation and a NZ Baldrige Qualified Examiner; and has worked with a number of New Zealand organisations in their journey toward performance excellence.


Ailsa Carson, Partner, S A Partners, UK

Ailsa is a Partner at the Lean training & consultancy company S A Partners and the founder and Programme Director of Onsite Insights the UK’s Best Practice visit programme; she also heads up the Lean Forum and Shingo Forum – two successful virtual networking groups. Prior to joining S A Partners, Ailsa ran the government funded Inside UK Enterprise programme; and spent ten years in Australasia working in the tourism & leisure industry as a strategy consultant. She was a guest lecturer at Auckland University and speaks regularly at conferences on the topics of ‘Best Practice’ and ‘Becoming World Class’.


Garvin Chow, Talent Planning Lead (APAC), Wells Fargos Bank, N.A., Singapore

Garvin is a seasoned HR (Talent & Leadership) & OD professional with over 18 years of practitioner’s experience in banking and public service organisations. Prior to his present stint in Wells Fargo, he worked for United Overseas Bank, Agency for Science, Technology, and Research (A*STAR), Ministry of Law, and the Civil Service College in Singapore. He had worked on several process benchmarking projects with sustainable improvements in both private and public organisations ranging from Cargill Asia Pacific, Singapore Prisons Service, Sembawang Airbase, Public Service Division, Building & Construction Authority and Agri-Veterinary Authority of Singapore, to name a few.


Chia Beng Chye, Managing Director at My Virtual Resource, Singapore

Chia Beng Chye joined Philips Singapore, in 1979. He chaired the Quality Improvement Committee to put in place quality and business excellence, Philips Singapore was the first Philips Factory outside Europe to attain Philips Quality Award in 1994. In year 2000, Nelson joined Systems on Silicon Manufacturing Company. He set up a Quality Management System and Business Excellence Framework.  SSMC attained the SQA Award in 2005 and 2013. In 2014, Chia left SSMC and set up My Virtual Resource Pte Ltd, helping MNCs and SMEs on their journey to Business Excellence. He is a National Lead Assessor since 1998.


Dr. Joseph A. DeFeo, Juran’s Chairman and Executive Adviser, United States

For over 35 years, Dr. Joseph A. DeFeo has been at the forefront of building cultures of excellence through quality management. With a career spanning education, training, consulting and coaching, Dr. DeFeo has dedicated his life’s work to the pursuit of helping organizations across the globe improve the quality of their products, processes, people and profit. As one of the world’s leading experts on the development of effective and efficient quality and operational excellence programs, Dr. DeFeo has worked as a trusted advisor to a multitude of businesses and business leaders – helping them to increase sales, reduce costs and improve their overall customer experience.


Dr Mehran Doulat, Centre of Excellence (CoE), Universiti Teknikal Malaysia (Melaka), Malaysia

Mehran served as Assessor for the Dubai Quality Award program since 2007. He has been actively involved in a number of research and benchmarking projects such as UAE Service Excellence Program (2007-2012). Dr. Doulat serves as the Editorial Board member and Associate Editor/Reviewer for several referred academic journals. He has also been nominated and received several awards for his research contributions including “the IEEE Outstanding Publication Award” in 2012 and 2013, “the IEOM Best Paper Award” in 2015 and 2018, “UOW Outstanding Alumni Award in Research and Innovation” in 2016 and “IEOM Outstanding Service Award” in 2018.


Dr Siham El-Kafafi, Director & Business Consultant, Arrows Research Consultancy, New Zealand

Dr Siham El-Kafafi is the founder of Arrows Research Consultancy Limited.  She is an entrepreneur, educator and businesswoman who is passionate about making a difference in the lives of her students and clients. She started her company in June 2014 with the aim of sharing her mentoring, training and coaching experience through tailored programs serving her clients and their needs. Dr El-Kafafi has a wide industry and consultancy experience in the medical, manufacturing and service industry besides being an academic for the past 23 years.


Dr Zeyad El-Kahlout, Senior Quality and Excellence Advisor of the Dubai Government Excellence Program (DGEP), UAE

Dr Zeyad holds a Ph.D. in Quality Management from the University of the West of England, Bristol, UK. He is an EFQM approved assessor, certified Knowledge Manager, and a senior member of the American Society for Quality. Before joining the Executive Council, he was an Assistant Professor and Assistant Dean in the Productivity & Quality Institute, Arab Academy for Science & Technology, Alexandria, Egypt. Dr Zeyad has led hundreds of consultancy projects in Quality, Excellence and Assessment of Excellence Models & Criteria.


Professor Gabriel Eweje, Professor of Corporate Responsibility & Sustainability, School of Business and Law, Edith Cowan University, Australia.

Previously, he was Professor of Responsibility & Sustainability in the School of Management, Massey Business School, Massey University, New Zealand. He is the Editor-in- Chief of Corporate Governance – An International Journal of Business in Society. Gabriel worked as a Research Fellow at the United Nations University, Institute of Advanced Studies (UNU/IAS), Tokyo, Japan, and taught for several years at Royal Holloway University of London, England. He also worked as a Research Fellow with International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED) in London.


Abraham Fenn, Chairman & President New Zealand Organisation for Quality (NZOQ), New Zealand

Abraham is the Chairman & President of NZOQ since 2015 and was the Past President for Asia Pacific Quality Organisation. Abraham has had significant contribution in building NZOQ to its current status and is very well connected with Quality Organizations from Australia (AOQ) America (ASQ) Shanghai (SAQ), Philippines (PSQ) and all other APQO council countries. Abraham was instrumental in merging NZBEF and NZOQ in 2016 offering a one stop shop in Quality, Baldrige & Business Excellence.


Ravi Fernando, Thrive35, Founder and Director, Business Excellence Australia, Director, Australia

Ravi is a Business Excellence and Innovation professional with more than 20 years’ experience working with Australian and Global organisations. Having started his professional career as a process improvement specialist with Accenture, Ravi has worked with leading management consultancies like Deloitte, CGI and SAI Global to deliver tailored improvement, excellence and innovation solutions to global clients. Ravi is currently a non-Executive Director of Business Excellence Australia and a non-Executive Director of the Australian Organisation for Quality.


Andrew Fisher, Managing Director/Owner, EcoStock Supplies Limited, New Zealand

Andrew’s journey is a story of exposure to technology from farming in Canterbury, to military engineering technology in the pacific, to night vision optics whilst on the ground in Afghanistan, to building New Zealands largest foodwaste processor and now operating New Zealands first commercial scale Anaerobic Digestor, Ecogas Reporoa.
Andrew owns and operates EcoStock Supplies Limited, large scale food-2-feed business with comparable business located in Australia, North America, UK and Europe. Andrew and his team, have won many environmental awards including the 2011 Ministry for Environment Supreme Green Ribbon Environmental Award, 2013 Joint Winners of Auckland University $1m Entrepreneurs’ Challenge Prize, 2019 Sustainable Business Network Super Star Award, winners of IBPC’s 2022 ESG Excellence Awards with an outstanding 6 Star recognition, and in 2023 won the New Zealand Energy Industry Excellence Award, for the low carbon future generation business Ecogas.


Dr. Rey B. Fremista, Board Member & Immediate Past President, Philippine Society for Quality, Inc, Philippines

Certified Lean Six Sigma Master Black Belt, Certified Learning & Development Professional, Certified Digital Transformation Professional, Certified in de Bono Six Thinking Hats®, Rey is an executive with expertise leading teams across diverse businesses, being the Director for Leadership Development and Process Excellence of an international company. He is an Appointee of the President of the Republic of the Philippines as part of Philippine Quality Award Executive Committee. He is also an Associate Academician of the International Academy for Quality (IAQ). He is one of the 2022 Philippines’ Top 30 Leaders on LinkedIn and 2021 Top 100 Filipinos on LinkedIn.


Dr Alaa Garad,

Fellow, the Royal Society of Arts (RSA). An award-winning, dynamic and multi-talented academic and practitioner with extensive expertise in Learning, Service Quality and Organisational Development offering 20+ years of experience in implementing, managing and optimising multi-level OD and strategic practices. Demonstrated leadership and success with specialised knowledge and experience managing the unique challenges and needs associated with the complex organisational structure. Successful in designing, developing, and leading PG and UG Courses and implementing and refining the long-term strategy.


Phil Guerin, Immediate Past President IMC New Zealand, Director Hague Consulting Ltd, New Zealand.

Phil has a background in operations, finance and information systems. His core skill is driving rapid business improvement – providing better service at lower cost. Phil is a Certified Management Consultant (CMC), Fellow IMC New Zealand, Project Management Professional (PMP), Strategy Implementation Professional (SIP), PRINCE2 practitioner, Lean Six Sigma Green Belt, business excellence background. Core industry experience includes Health, Education, Social Services, Property, Financial Services.


Suhail S Gupta, Managing Partner, Ideas Management Consultants, India

Skilled facilitator that brings several years of experience across various organizations globally. A Master Trainer in Edward de Bono Tools and several other workshops on developing “Thinking as a skill”. Focuses on how to be personally creative and also on how to lead teams to produce creative, sustainable and innovative solutions. Highly motivated with exceptional skills developed over 15 years of experience. Conducted over 700 interventions for leading fortune 500 companies globally.


Dr Sunil Gupta, Founder and Chief Creatologist IDEAS, Oman

Founder and Chief Creatologist IDEAS. Lifetime Master Trainer, Dr Edward de Bono. Major award winning Creativity, Innovation & Transformation projects with Government and best in class fortune 500 companies globally. Assignments with clients across 40 countries. Driven innovation and transformation in governments and best in class Fortune 500 companies. Trained across multiple lines of business and segments


Mai Haddad, Management Consultant, UAE

Mai is a Management Consultant holding a Master’s degree in Public Administration from the University of Yarmouk, Jordan. Mai has 18 years of management consultancy experience in the public and private sectors in UAE and Jordan. Her experience includes Business Excellence, Benchmarking studies, Competitiveness Analysis of international annual reports, Trend Analysis, quality and strategy planning, Innovation and Foresight. Mai worked as a Business Excellence Assessor for many of the awards in the GCC and Jordan, such as King Abdullah II Centre for Excellence, UAE Emiratization, UAE Innovation, SKEA, Taqdeer, UAEI, DGEP Excellence Module, DQA, ShjSEEN, AldANA Excellence Award.


Dr H. James Harrington, Business Performance & Quality Author & Consultant, United States

Dr. H. James Harrington, is an international performance improvement guru. He has authored over 35 books and developed many concepts; Poor Quality Cost, Total Improvement Management and Business Process Improvement. Jim is past President and Chairman of American Society for Quality and the International Academy for Quality, CEO of the Walter L. Hurd Foundation and the Harrington Institute. Jim is also a lifetime Honorary Chairman of the Asian Pacific Quality Organization. He has been given many awards including the Armand V. Feigenbaum Life Achievement Medal in 2012. “Harrington is one of those very rare business leaders who combines outstanding inherent ability, effective management skills, broad technology background, and great effectiveness in producing results,” says Armand V. Feigenbaum, the father of “total quality control.


Carew Hatherley, Managing Director, IQM Group NZ, New Zealand

Carew has a background of planning and guiding Quality, Environmental. Information Security and Health & Safety implementations for businesses successfully gaining ISO Certifications. He is a Certified Lead Auditor and Trainer for ISO 9001, 14001, 27001 & 45001. He also covers Defence and Corporate Social Responsibility for The IQM Group. Carew represents New Zealand on the ISO Joint Technical Committee 1/27 – Information Security, Cybersecurity and Privacy Protection. He is a Director of the NZ Business Excellence Foundation.


Peter Holtmann, Founder, Managing Director, Holtmann Professional Services, Australia

Formerly a CEO of a global non-profit, Peter now runs Holtmann Professional Services, a coaching-based consulting firm specialising in risk and crisis. He is a Chairman of a number of Boards and is actively involved in social enterprise globally and assesses and judges business excellence systems. He regularly presents online and in-person across a range of business and leadership topics. He is an experienced leadership coach and youth mentor.


Prashant Hoskoté, President and Lead L & S Custodian at Striking Ideas, India

Prashant has over 30 years of expertise in the Quality, Customer Experience, Innovation and Organizational Excellence domain. Prashant has a storied track record of engaging in advisory services in Business Excellence, Business Process Management, Innovation Management, along with Digital Transformation, Lean Six Sigma, Juran’s Problem Solving methodology supporting business leaders across Hospitality, Healthcare, Retail, and Real Estate. As Senior Director – Quality, Service Excellence, and Innovation for the Max Group, Prashant integrated Strategic Quality, Customer Experience, Excellence, and Innovation agenda for Max Group companies serving enterprises worldwide.


Miguel Jiménez, CEO & Founder of FFWD – Futures Intelligence and Strategic Foresight, Spain

Miguel is the CEO & Founder of FFWD – Futures Intelligence and Strategic Foresight, a firm headquartered in Madrid, with offices in Singapore and Dubai. Miguel has over 20 years of expertise helping companies and governments to raise the adoption of foresight, long-term thinking, and strategic anticipation across many industries: design (DesignCouncil Singapore, IKEA); retail (Zara, Chanel); finance (Banco Santander, BBVA, CaixaBank); food and beverages (Red Bull, Telepizza, Nestlé); technology (Microsoft, Telefónica, Movistar); media (Havas Media Group, DDB, Yellow Pages); industry and engineering (Buro Happold, ArcelorMittal, Abu Dhabi Ports) and government (Singapore, Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Ajman, Canada & Spain).


Professor Jan Jonker, Professor Jan Jonker, Consultant, Author, Researcher, International Speaker

Professor Jonker’s research interests are explicitly developing strategies for sustainability and circularity related to new business concepts and business models. Within this focus, he explores how to shape systemic change and transformation leading to organising (inter) organisational sustainability. Thus far, he has written and co-written 35 books, published over 150 articles and provided numerous contributions to blogs, talk shows and radio programs. For seven years (2009 -2015), he was nominated on the Top 100 list of most influential ‘green’ people’ in the Netherlands.


Yuen Wah KU, Chief of MTech Digital Leadership and Deputy Director of Corporate Services at NUS-ISS, Singapore

Yuen Wah brings >30 years of in-depth practitioner experiences in BPR, experience design, organisational excellence and digital transformation. Her facilitative leadership in driving transformation at OCBC Bank had enabled the win of prestigious national awards – Singapore Quality Award (SQA) in 2014 and Service Excellence Award in 2009. She served as Lead Assessor for Singapore Business Excellence over the past 13 years (2006 – 2019), and as International Assessor for the Australian Business Excellence Award in 2011. She holds an MBA (with distinction) in Strategic Management from Strathclyde Graduate Business School and BSc (with honours) from the National University of Singapore.


Dr. Prashant Kumar, Partner, Strategy & Advisory, Empact Consulting, UAE

Prashant is an expert in strategy, economic policy and program design focused on SME development, private sector support, entrepreneurship, export development and Foreign Direct Investment. Before Prashant founded Empact Consulting he served as a Strategy Expert to the Dubai Competitiveness Office and the Government of Ajman, led the Research & Advisory practice at Dun & Bradsteet Middle East and worked in research/consulting roles with leading firms in India including Evalueserve, Pipal Research and Genpact. Prashant holds a Bachelor’s in Business Administration from University of Lincoln in UK, a Masters in Applied Research from the Swiss Business School and a PhD. In Management from the Mahatma Gandhi University in India.


Suresh Lulla, Managing Trustee, Qimpro Foundation, India

Suresh Lulla has made a mark through his work in the field of Quality. He is a veteran professional with 50+ years of experience. His areas of specialization include, Problem Solving, Process Excellence, Performance Excellence, Benchmarking for Best Practices. Mr Lulla was mentored by Dr J M Juran, ‘the father of Quality’, who along with Mahatma Gandhi and Shri Ramkrishna Bajaj form the trinity of his role models. He is Chairman, IMC Quality Awards Committee which adjudges the IMC Ramkrishna Bajaj National Quality Award as well as the IMC Juran Medal. Since 2008, Mr Lulla has been on the Board of Directors of Global Benchmarking Network.


Dr Wayne MacPherson, Senior Lecturer at Massey University, New Zealand

Wayne has comprehensive knowledge and extensive experience gained from tertiary-level instruction, practice-based research, and employment in major Japanese industrial corporations in Japan over the past 25 years. His area of expertise include business and management, Commerce, management, Tourism and services, International business, organisational planning and management and quality management. His research interests focuses on sustainable business excellence for diffusion of knowledge and practice in New Zealand industry and the economy. His major objectives include providing practical management-education; developing beneficial collaborative ties between academia and the local business; and, continuing research into sustainable business excellence.


Carrie Marr, Senior Leader in Strategic Change & Health System Innovation, UK

Carrie is an experienced leader in healthcare quality and safety and has presented widely and internationally on the need for a systems approach to safety and quality. She has driven large scale change programmes across healthcare systems in the UK and Australia and supports organisations, Boards and Executives in the implementation and governance of quality improvement.


Michael McLean, Managing Director, McLean Management Consultants, Australia

Michael McLean is Managing Director of McLean Management Consulting in Sydney, Australia. Mike is a recipient of both the Shilkin Prize and Juran Medal. He is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and a supportive Member of the Australia n Organisation for Quality.Having worked for Rio Tinto, HCL Axon, PWC, Tenneco, Wrangler, AT&T and Canon, he is now Chairman of the Certex Advisory Board, a Member of the Hunter Defence Task Force, a Guest Lecturer at Macquarie Graduate School of Management and a Technical Expert on 5 ISO International Organisation for Standardisation Committees.


Dr André Moll, Executive Secretary, Initiative Ludwig-Erhard-Preis e.V., Germany

André is an executive board member of the initiative Ludwig-Erhard-Prize e.V. (ILEP e.V.). As a member of the EFQM core team, he continuously supports the development of the model. In addition to contributions to the EFQM model 2020, he coordinated a project team for the translation model to German Language.


Dr. Kamran Moosa, Chief Executive, PIQC Institute of Quality, Pakistan

Chief Executive of PIQC Institute of Quality (Pakistan), Experienced Researcher & Professor, International Trainer & Consultant, Author and Advisor to National Institutions in the field of Quality Engineering & Management. He is a Member of International Academy for Quality (IAQ). He Chairs Quality in Education Think Tank (QiETT) of IAQ. He is the recipient of the Ishikawa-Kano Silver Medal award by Asian Network for Quality (ANQ) from among three other awardees from Asia in 2020. He has also been awarded Regional Productivity Award by the Asian Productivity Organization (APO-Japan) in 2021. He is an author of five books on Quality and Lead Instructor of Lean Six Sigma Green/Black Belts.


Beryl Oldham, Managing Director, Complete Learning Solutions, New Zealand

Beryl has over 30 years’ experience in organisational learning and development, much of which was gained in the Royal New Zealand Navy. Since then she has held Human Resources and Organisational Learning and Development managerial positions in a number of organisations. Beryl is passionate about measuring results and her company, Complete Learning Solutions, is NZ partner with Docebo LMS, Organizational Excellence Specialists, and the ROI Institute. Beryl is Board Chair of New Zealand Business Excellence Foundation (NZBEF)


Keith Phillips, CEO, QBLS, New Zealand

Keith has a track record of growing successful technology companies. After delivering as a senior executive for Apple in the USA and the UK, Keith has established and invested in a range of successful technology companies. He has driven this focus through QLBS (Quantum Leap Beyond Spreadsheets) which has deployed digital assessment systems for the New Zealand Food Exporters, Tourism Australia, NSW Dept of Industries and many others.


Dr Mohammad Hossein Zavvar Sabegh, Organizational Excellence Specialists, Canada

Mohammad is a ROES with Organizational Excellence Specialists and also works as Assistant to the Project Manager on the Global OE Index and Editor of the QOR Newsletter. Mohammed has a M.Sc degree and graduated in Industrial Engineering. His research interests include: statistical quality control, excellence models, mathematical modeling, optimization, supply chain management, artificial intelligence, operational research, system analysis, forecasting methods and data mining. He has published many papers and a book-chapter in Springer, Taylor and Francis and other well-known publications.


Paulo Sampaio, Professor of Quality and Organizational Excellence, International Advisory for Quality Improvement Programs, University of Minho, Portugal

Born in Braga, Portugal, in 1978, he graduated in Industrial Engineering and Management at the University of Minho in 2002 (5-year degree). He completed his PhD in Industrial Engineering in 2008 at the University of Minho. Paulo participates as a Keynote Speaker in Quality and Organizational Excellence international conferences and he is author of several publications in the Quality field. He coordinates several research projects on Quality and also supervises several researchers.


Dr Aymen Sajjad, Senior Lecturer in Sustainability and Business Management, Massey University, New Zealand

Dr Aymen Sajjad is a Senior Lecturer in Sustainability and Business Management at Massey University. Dr Sajjad’s research focuses on sustainability issues that confront organizations and societies. He is an Associate Editor of Business Strategy and the Environment, Corporate Governance: The International Journal of Business in Society, FIIB Business Review Journal, and the International Journal of Sustainable Society. Dr Sajjad has published in top-tier business management and sustainability journals. His research interests include business sustainability, corporate social responsibility, United Nations sustainable development goals, and sustainable business strategy. He is also an active member of the Sustainability and Corporate Social Responsibility Research Group at Massey Business School..


Dr Alan Samuel, Benchmarking Consultant & Researcher (futurist & best practice), Research in AI-human Collaboration, Leadership & Life Coach, New Zealand

Alan is a benchmarking consultant and researcher (futurist & best practice) supporting the Centre for Organisational Excellence Research and researcher Prior to this, Alan was Superintendent with 16 years of service at the Singapore Police Force. Alan has won several national and ministry-level awards for community safety and security initiatives, innovation and knowledge management. Alan was also instrumental in the SPF’s attainment of the Singapore Quality Award with Special Commendation. Alan has held directorate positions in organisational development, investigation services & support, and conceptualisation & requirements (technology).


Shayne Silcox, Lecturer, Australian Institute of Management, Australia

Dr Silcox is the principal of the Strategic Leadership Consulting Group.  He has held CEO, senior management and Board positions in several industries, both in the private and public sectors. Silcox is an International Australian Business Excellence Evaluator and has personally taken an organisation to the stage of being recognised at Prize Level, the top business award in Australia and only the 3rd organisation in the last 30 years to achieve this level.


Harnek Singh, Consultant, Singapore

Harnek Singh, is Advisor /Expert, Business Excellence & Quality, for several organisations in Singapore and technical expert for APO. He is immediate past President APQO and Chair GPEA. Harnek retired as VP & Director, Business Excellence, ST Engineering Ltd. He Chairs the Quality & Core Business Processes Technical Committee, Singapore Standards Council. He serves PHC Task Force. Harnek as a Gold Jacket Lead Assessor has led many Singapore Quality Award, and BE Niche Awards (Innovation, Service, People Excellence and Productivity) and certifications assessments. He served as Honorary Secretary, Singapore Productivity Association’ and its Management Committee and was on Judging Panel for the PS21 Public Sector Transformation Awards Committee, and is an Academician, International Academy for Quality.


Lars Sörqvist, President-elect, International Academy for Quality (IAQ), President, Sandholm Associates, Sweden

Lars Sorqvist is the President-elect of the International Academy for Quality (IAQ) and President of Sandholm Associates. He is also an associate professor in quality management at the Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm and a past professor at the Shanghai University in China. As an advisor and educator, Sorqvist has conducted training and management seminars in a large number of companies and organizations in many countries on most continents. Sorqvist has written many articles and books on​​quality management.


Dr Almas Tazein, Senior Researcher and Consultant – Benchmarking and Business Excellence, Centre for Organisational Excellence Research (COER), New Zealand

Almas Tazein has contributed numerous best practice and benchmarking articles to BPIR.com (Best Practice Improvement Resource). With a medical degree, she holds a postgraduate diploma in Hospital and Healthcare Management and a Lean Six Sigma Green Belt certification. A former CEO of a Maternity and Children’s Hospital in India, she has served in various roles in healthcare organisations including chains of Fertility & IVF and Child Development Centres. Her leadership yielded successful quality improvement initiatives and bottom line growth. Since 2017, Almas has conducted prolific best practice research for Dubai Government Excellence Program’s (DGEP) Executive Program for Benchmarking.


Dr Maria Thomson, Manager, University of Auckland, New Zealand

With an impressive work portfolio, Maria leads key organisational development and performance projects such design, validation and implementation of organisational frameworks, improvement and innovation methodologies, operational effectiveness measurement. She has some great examples of how these initiatives have aligned with wider organisational goals and yielded positive feedback and significant return on investment. This includes an HR Institute of New Zealand Organisational Change and Development Award and two Good Practice Awards with the Association of Tertiary Education Management (ATEM) for Excellence in People and Culture.


Rob Walley, BEA Ambassador, Business Excellence Australia, Australia

Rob is a business improvement professional and civil engineer with more than 50 years’ experience working with Australian and Global organisations. Rob was the Awards Manager for the Australian Quality Council overseeing the business excellence evaluation process for Australia. Before this, Rob worked for over 20 years with Alcoa of Australia in Western Australia in a number of roles covering engineering construction, industrial engineering, information technology management, supply administration and quality development. Previously, Rob worked in New Zealand, Argentina, the U.K., Spain and Peru in various civil engineering roles. Rob has extensive experience in facilitating critical process identification and cycle time reduction projects as well as training groups of people at all levels in team-based problem-solving, quality concepts and improvement processes.


Dale F. Weeks, Global Leadership and Benchmarking Associates, USA

Dale is President and CEO of Global Leadership and Benchmarking Associates, a performance excellence, global benchmarking, and executive leadership focused consulting service. From 2000-2011, Dale was Deputy Executive Director/Senior Executive Officer for the Florida Department of Revenue, the 6th largest state agency in Florida, and winner of the State of Florida Sterling Award. Dale also served in similar performance excellence leadership capacities at the Minnesota Department of Revenue from 1994-2000. And, for 20 years, Dale directed major private sector initiatives for Control Data Corporation, General Mills, and Xerox Corporation.


Tonnis van Dam, CBO (Chief Benchmarking Officer), Compare to Compete, The Netherlands

Tonnis has helped many Industry Associations and Consultants with optimizing their benchmarking process, resulting in less time spend in benchmarking and more time left for advising. Tonnis is a Chief Benchmarking Officer for more than 20 years, focusing on using benchmarking to improve performance and focusing on optimizing the benchmarking process through intelligent software. As a body of knowledge in competitor benchmarking, Tonnis writes many articles on benchmarking and is a frequently asked speaker on conferences. Tonnis is a proud member of the GBN, representing the Netherlands.


Trish Wilson, Founder/Director, The Network of Us (NOUS), New Zealand

Trish has spent over 8 years networking and connecting improvement dots, in NZ and across the global community of improvement practitioners, all disciplines, industries, roles, locations. As an active practising CI person, Trish knows it’s the doing that is where the rubber hits the road. Supporting, collaborating, sharing best practice, learning from and with others is a crucial part of us all doing better together. Trish is key in setting up platforms, environments, and systems to make this happen, a specialist in networking, improvement leadership and impact.


Ron Young, Founder, Knowledge Associates International, UK

Ron Young is the founder of Knowledge Associates International, who are based at St John’s Innovation Centre, Cambridge U.K. Ron is a leading international expert and thought leader in strategic knowledge and innovation asset management. Ron advised and assisted the UK DTI Innovation Unit in the production of the UK Government White Paper ‘UK Competitiveness in the Knowledge Driven Economy’. Ron is a member of the ISO International Standards workgroups for Knowledge Management, Innovation Management and Asset Management and consults to the United Nations, World Bank, European Commission, and the inter-governmental Asian Productivity Organization. Ron is a joint author and editor of many knowledge management/intellectual capital books.


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