The Great Hall, 17 March 2022


Take a look at our 2021 Judges...

Charles Pallot

Partner, Ashfords LLP

Charles has been supporting the Exeter business community for 30 years in the resolution of employment issues, including preparing Employment Contracts, managing sensitive HR processes, advising on staff transfers in business sales, negotiating termination packages for senior employees, and resolving Employment Tribunal claims. Charles is recognised as a leading employment lawyer by both Legal 500 and the Chambers Guide to the Legal Profession.

Hannah Overton

Marketing and commercial manager, Princesshay

Hannah is a creative and experienced marketer, responsible for the strategic planning and delivery of Princesshay’s marketing campaigns and events. A ‘people person’, she likes to get to know the teams working on the ground and is passionate about collaboration, particularly teaming up with key stakeholders from across the city to make exciting, innovative and fun stuff happen in Exeter! Hannah lives in the city with her husband and three kids and is proud to be a trustee of Park Life Heavitree, a charity centred around the local park with the aim of supporting and growing community.

James Court

Local enterprise manager, NatWest

James has worked with SMEs for over 20 years, from start-ups to corporates. He created #NatWestBoost for Exeter in 2016 and took it to one of the best attended networking events in the city, with inspirational business speakers, creating a community of entrepreneurial activity and inspiration for business owners. He is a columnist for a local business magazine and very much a champion for businesses across the great city of Exeter. He also won the 2020 Exeter Living Awards Business Services category!

Jemma Mitchell

Owner, Rendezvous Wine Bar

During her time studying at Exeter Uni, Jemma noticed a gap in the market for somewhere you could go for a good quality glass of wine. At 25 years old, Jemma started Rendezvous Wine Bar in 2006. This basement wine bar come restaurant boasts interesting wines from around the world and delicious lunch and evening menus that change daily.

Kai Horstman

Group relationships director, Burrington Estates

Born and raised in Zimbabwe, and educated at boarding school in England, Kai started his professional rugby career in 2001 with Harlequins before moving to Worcester Warriors in 2005 and Exeter Chiefs in 2012. Kai made over 200 first-class appearances and enjoyed silverware successes. After retiring in 2018, Kai joined the commercial team at Sandy Park before his current role heading up the commercial sales with Burrington Estates. In his spare time, Kai loves spending time with his wife Caroline and two daughters.

Louise Simpson

Head, Exeter School

Louise is Exeter School’s first female head. This is Louise’s third headship and seventh school. She is an environmental scientist and has enjoyed a varied background in schools around the country, all within the independent sector. Louise spent six years as head of a British international school in Brazil before her current role at Exeter School.

Paul Giblin

Director, Phonic FM

Paul has lived in Exeter since attending university in 1981 and has been involved in many cultural activities over the years. These include: co-ordinating Exeter Respect Festival from 2003 to 2013, for which he was made an Olympic Torchbearer; being one of the founding directors of community radio station Phonic FM, on which Paul hosts weekly and monthly shows; promoting events at Exeter Phoenix and other venues under The Future Sound of Exeter banner and running a local record label; DJing at events and compering at Glastonbury Festival and Beautiful Days festivals; and working for Devon County Council.

Sarah Martin

Owner, Nourish Zero Waste

Sarah is a pioneer in a now well-established ‘zero-waste’ sector. Her Nourish stores were among the first of a new breed of packaging free shops in the UK, offering something no other retailer could match. Within her first year she was won the Exeter Living Awards Retailer category, Exeter Business Awards’ Best Start-up, and runner up in Britain’s Best Small Shop awards 2020. She was recognised as one of the top 15 businesswomen ‘Devon can be proud of’ for International Women’s Day 2020. Not complacent, she now mentors other similar business owners and is starting to consult in business sustainability management.