Meet our independent judging panel

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The award programme is about delivering "value-in" participation to all nominees. The independent judging panel is made up of people with business expertise and entrepreneurial spirit who will provide valuable insight and feedback to award participants during the judging process.



Greg Cross image

Greg Cross
Cross Ventures, PowerbyProxi and PureBlack Racing

Greg is a serial entrepreneur who spends most of his time working with his wireless power company PowerbyProxi and New Zealand’s first professional cycling team PureBlack Racing which is in its second season competing on the international stage in the US. Whether its building a global tech company or taking PureBlack Racing to the world, building international teams which deliver against their vision is in his DNA.


Portrait image of Bill Day

Bill Day
Seaworks Limited
Winner 2000 Entrepreneur Of The Year
World Entrepreneur Of The Year Judge 2002

When Stephen Spielberg and Peter Jackson want to get their feet wet, Bill Day is their first port of call.  Anything to do with being at one with the sea is his domain. From movie marine management through to aquatic robots for exploration under the waves, if it needs to work at sea anyone else but Bill will only be making waves.


2011 Judging Panel Diane Forman

Diane Foreman
Emerald Group
Winner Entrepreneur Of The Year 2009
World Entrepreneur Of The Year Judge 2011

At first glance you might think Diane Foreman’s business successes are built on a random gathering of potential, but closer analysis reveals a natural entrepreneur who is astute, tireless, deliberate and planned in her approach.

Diane’s holding company, Emerald Group, has three main businesses; Healthcare Holdings, Emerald Foods and Emergent Recruitment. These businesses employ 4,110 people and have a global reach that spans 32 countries. As the winner of the 2009 New Zealand Entrepreneur Of The Year award, Diane went on to impress the judges at the world event and has been invited back to sit on the judging panel in Monte Carlo in June 2011.


Emma Hill

Emma Hill
Deputy Chair Michael Hill International
MBA distinction

Emma Hill is Deputy Chair at Michael Hill International and has worked for the family owned and listed company for over 25 years. She was responsible for the feasibility study, set up of operations and profitable roll out of the Michael Hill business model in Canada from 2002 to 2007, during that time she opened 16 stores across the country.  In 2008 Emma joined the board of directors, the following year the company entered the American market through acquisition of 17 stores in the Chicago area. Michael Hill now has 270 stores across four countries and is steadily growing towards its vision of being a global jewellery brand.

Emma is also the Managing Director of The Hills Golf Course, and a Director of Michael Hill Tourmanents charged with delivering the ultimate golf tournmant experiece through The NZPGA Pro Am and now the New Zealand Open at The Hills. She has an MBA with distinction from Bond University. Mother of five year old twins; for relaxation Emma runs 100k ultra marathons.

Tim Aple JUICY

Tim Alpe
Winner Entrepreneur Of The Year 2010

Attitudes are Contagious, is yours worth catching? This is a philosophy that Tim Alpe lives by at JUCY.  

From the outset, Tim and brother Dan wanted to create a business that was truly unique and based on attitude. As he says: “We wanted to create a business that was next generation and in the process develop a tourism brand not just a tourism business.” The idea was to create a business that embraced the latest technology which enabled travelers the ability to drive, sail and sleep JUCY.

JUCY now has over 2,700 vehicles on the road and offices throughout New Zealand, Australia and the US. The brand also encompasses a JUCY Hotels in Auckland City and Queesntown, JUCY CRUIZE in Milford Sound, New Zealand first and only car share business called JUCY Cityhop as well as  JUCY by Design where the company’s camper vans are custom built.