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2005 Judges

Martyn Lewis - Chair of Judges

Having spent over 32 years as a TV journalist, Martyn is now Chair and Co Founder of Teliris. He also chairs YouthNet UK, a charity he founded in 1995 to create a comprehensive Internet site signposting young people to every conceivable opportunity of form of help they might need. Martyn has been closely involved with the Hospice movement for over 20 years and is now a Vice-President of the three major national hospice charities - Help The Hospices, Marie Curie Cancer Cure and Macmillan Cancer Relief - as well as many individual hospices. He is also President of United Response and a Trustee of the Windsor Leadership Trust, helping develop the leaders of tomorrow.

In 1994 Martyn made two controversial and widely-debated speeches arguing for a shift in the agenda of TV news programmes to achieve a fairer balance between the positive and the negative, and report and analyse achievement just as much as failure.

The six books he has authored include the first layman's guide to the Hospice movement 'Tears and Smiles - The Hospice Handbook', and 'Reflections on Success', for which he interviewed 67 prominent achievers from many walks of life. Martyn was awarded a CBE in the 1997 New Year Honours List. He accepted the position of Chair of Beacon's Trustees in May 2005.

Ram Gidoomal

Ram Gidoomal is an entrepreneur, and former UK Group Chief Executive of the Inlaks Group, a multinational business with seven thousand employees. He and his family were forced to leave wealth and prosperous business interests behind them when they came to Britain from East Africa as refugees.

Made a CBE in 1998 for service to the Asian Business Community and Race relations, he is Chair of the Hendersons Global Investors SRI Advisory Committee, The Employability Forum (helping refugees into jobs), Citylife (Industrial and Provident Society) Ltd, Winning Communications, South Asian Development Partnership, London Sustainability Exchange, President of the National Information Forum, a member of the Home Office Immigration Nationality Directorate (IND) Complaints Audit Committee, a Board Member of Think London and the Institute for Employment Studies and a Freeman of the City of London. He is a governor of Kings College School, Wimbledon, a Crown Appointee of Court & Council, Imperial College and a visiting professor of Entrepreneurship & Inner City Regeneration at Middlesex University.

He was a founder trustee and chairman of the Christmas Cracker charity, which has given thousands of young people direct entrepreneurial experience and has raised over £5 million for projects in developing countries.

A Trustee of Forum for the Future, he is author of several books including The UK Maharajahs and The British and how to deal with them: Doing business with Britain's Ethnic Communities. He is governor of Kings College School, Wimbledon, a Crown Appointee on the Court & Council, Imperial College, a visiting professor of Entrepreneurship & Inner City Regeneration at Middlesex University.

Professor Peter Guthrie

25 years ago, Professor Peter Guthrie founded the charity RedR - Engineers for Disaster Relief - which responds to crisis situations, alleviating the suffering caused by disasters by selecting, training and providing competent and committed personnel to humanitarian programmes worldwide. The concept of RedR was Peter's own but, more than this, through his leadership he has guided a creative idea into an efficient and effective organisation.

In 1979 Peter, a civil engineer, was seconded by Oxfam to work with the Vietnamese 'boat people' arriving in Malaysia. During his three-month assignment as the only engineer in the camps, he designed and built shelter, drinking water supplies and sanitation systems for refugees who were in desperate need. On his return, he saw how difficult it was for relief agencies to recruit skilled workers. The experience inspired Peter to create RedR, with the help of his wife, Lorna (then a student nurse), receiving early support from Jim Howard, the then Technical Director at Oxfam.

The original concept was to provide a register of carefully selected engineers that could be called out at short notice to work with front-line relief agencies, such as Oxfam, Medecins sans Frontieres, Save the Children and others. It was designed to support and improve the effectiveness of these agencies. The general concept still continues but has been broadened by widening the skills base on the register (it now includes environmental health workers, water specialists, logisticians, project managers and accountants) and increasing the period of assignments.

Peter's endless commitment and enthusiasm as Chairman of the governing council and Board of Trustees have now resulted in RedR International, which has groups in Canada, Australia and New Zealand, India and Nairobi. As well as his hands-on role as chair, he has been mentor and advisor, interviewer and trainer. He is now Vice-President of RedR, whose President is HRH The Princess Royal.

Peter has been the Royal Academy of Engineering/DEFRA/AEA Technology plc Professor of Engineering, for Sustainable Development, at Cambridge University since 2000. Prior to this he worked for 25 years in consulting engineering and has lived and worked countries including Nigeria, Lesotho, South Sudan, Ethiopia, Botswana and the Philippines. Peter is the 2004 Overall Beacon Prize Winner.

The Rt. Hon. the Lord Hylton

Lord Hylton was educated at Eton College, and Oxford University. He has been an active member of the House of Lords since 1971, an independent member since 1982 and an elected member since 1999. He has a particular interest in Russia/CIS, Northern Ireland, and the Middle East.

In the past he has been Chairman of the following organisations; National Federation of Housing Associations; Catholic Housing Aid Society; Housing Associations Charitable Trust; Help the Aged Housing Trust.

He founded the Kilmersdon Rural Housing Association; helped start the Ammerdown Centre (A Christian college promoting inter-faith dialogue) and Kilmersdon Grain Cooperative.

Presently active with Forward Thinking (an organisation aiming to bridge the gaps between Muslims and the rest of the UK community); Partners in Hope (an organization to help street children and young people in Russia); and Chairman of MICOM (working towards conflict resolution in several countries).

Rt. Hon. Sir Philip Otton, former Lord Justice of Appeal

Retired as a Judge of the Court of Appeal in 2001, he was appointed a High Court Judge (Queen’s Bench Division) in 1983, to the Court of Appeal in 1985 and to the Court of Appeal in Gibraltar in 2004. He continues to sit in the Privy Council and the Court of Appeal (on occasions). He was President of the Society of Construction Law, President of the Personal Injury Bar Association and is an Honorary Fellow of the Institute of Judicial Administration Birmingham University.

At the Bar he was Junior Counsel to the Treasury (Personal Injuries) 1970-75 and appointed Queen’s Counsel in 1975. He appeared as Counsel and acted as Arbitrator in commercial and construction disputes.

He is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators and an Accredited Mediator by the Institute. He is an Appointed Arbitrator to the NASD, a Member of the American Law Institute, of the American Bar Association and has served on the Faculty of NITA.

His experience covers a wide range of cases, principally in the general commercial, insurance, oil and gas and energy fields as Arbitrator and Mediator. In addition to his legal professional appointments, Sir Philip Otton was also Chairman of the Royal Brompton & Harefield Hospital NHS Trust and Chairman of the National Heart & Lung Institute. He was a Governor of Imperial College, London.

He is a Surveillance Commissioner (under the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act – appointed by the Prime Minister). He is a Consultant to UBS Investment Bank and Honorary Legal Advisor to the Order of St John. He has Chaired and spoken at various Conferences around the world including USA and China.

Angela Sarkis CBE

Currently an Independent Consultant, Angela Sarkis has wide experience of working in the voluntary and public sectors as both employee and Trustee.

Angela was chief executive to the Church Urban Fund, between 1996-2001 and Director of the DIVERT Trust, a national organisation providing consultancy in crime prevention and community led initiatives for young offenders between 1990-1996. Angela has a background in the Probation Service and the Family Service Units and has considerable experience of establishing and running local and national community regeneration programmes.

She is experienced at senior level in organisational change management and has contributed to a number of Government Committees and Advisory Groups including the Social Exclusion Unit at the Cabinet office. Angela is a former non-executive director on the National Offender Management Board at the Home Office, Commissioner on the Interim House of Lord’s Appointments Commission and Adviser to the DfES on teacher workload management and School Leadership. In October 2002 she was appointed to the Board of Governors at the BBC.

Angela is an Adviser to the Esmee Fairbairn Foundation, and Vice President of the African Caribbean Evangelical Alliance. She was a Commissioner on the Coulsfield Enquiry looking at Alternatives to Imprisonment in 2004 and has agreed to serve on the recently launched commission looking into the future of volunteering.

Angela was awarded CBE in 2000 for her contribution towards the alleviation of poverty in the UK.

Sir Stephen Sherbourne OBE

Stephen Sherbourne was educated in Manchester and read PPE at Oxford. He was a teacher at a grammar school; worked at the merchant bank, Hill Samuel; joined the Conservative Research Department; worked in industry; and became a Special Advisor in the Department of Industry. Between 1983 and 1988, he worked for Margaret Thatcher at Downing Street as Head of the Political Office. From 1988, he worked with Tim Bell at Bell Pottinger becoming a Director of the holding company, Chime Communications. It was at Bell Pottinger that he worked with Emily Stonor on the establishment of the Beacon Fellowship. In 2003, he became Chief of Staff to the Conservative Leader, Michael Howard.

Since the summer of 2005, he has been working in his own communications business with a wide range of clients including charities, banking, individuals and overseas companies.