Founder, Beach Buddies, community clean up of beaches
Born in St John’s in the Isle of Man, Bill started a career in journalism at the age of 18, working his way up to become editor of all the local newspapers, apart from the Isle of Man Courier. Bill founded the Isle of Man Gazette in 1985 and the Manx Independent in 1987, before leaving to start a career in freelance writing, public relations and photography in 1990. In 2011 he launched The Southern Chronicle and the NorthWestern Chronicle in 2014, taking over full ownership of both newspapers in 2016. In 2006, he founded the charity Beach Buddies. What started with just two volunteers and five dogs, now numbers 8,000 volunteers (and sadly just one of the dogs).
Founder, WellTube.im Well Being
Courtenay was previously retained as a Healthcare Innovation Consultant to two Isle of Man Government Departments: Economic Development and the Cabinet Office. He is the co-founder of the ManxBioMed Cluster and co-organised the annual ManxBioMed Conferences. Since 1985, Courtenay has been in the founding team of four Companies, all of which are still in business. He relocated to the Isle of Man in 2008 to co-found Bladon Jets, while the Company has since gone on to raise £60 million. Courtenay is passionate about holistic Wellness to stay pill free for as long as possible and is an enthusiastic long distance walker. In November 2016, he co-founded Jurby Wellness with Protein Scientist and fellow social entrepreneur, Dr Farid Khan, to focus on: Transparent Science, Restorative Medicine and Natural Botanicals: WellTube.im
Teacher, School In The Cloud SOLE Implementor
Helen Moyer, a senior leader, is developing the practice and ethos of SOLE - Self Organised Learning Environment - at Willaston School. She was inspired to do so by Sugata Mitre, a Professor at Newcastle University, famed for his ‘Hole in the Wall’ experiment and winner of the TED Prize 2013. SOLE can exist anywhere there is a computer, Internet connection, and students who are ready to learn. Within a SOLE, students are given the freedom to learn collaboratively using the internet. An educator poses a Big Question and students form small groups to find an answer. The environment created through SOLEs lift the lid on learning, prompting challenge, curiosity and motivation. Recently, Sugata visited Willaston School to see SOLE in action and to develop further links with the Isle of Man Department of Education & Children, in a continuing drive to challenge learning and thinking. Helen will shares her journey about SOLE.
CEO AstroManx, Astronomer, Dark Skies Expert
An astronomer since childhood, Howard was inspired by the space race in the 1960s and has been teaching astronomy since 1985. He is a founder member and former chairman of the IOM Astronomical Society. Howard was elected as a fellow of the Royal Astronomical Society in 2013, recognising his work in education and outreach. In 2009, Howard hosted a live link with the International Space Station, speaking with US astronaut Nicole Stott. In recent years he has designed astronomically themed stamps, marketed throughout the world. In 2013, Howard established an astronomy consultancy company, AstroManx, and obtained Dark Skies discovery status for 26 sites throughout the Isle of Man. He regularly appears on local TV and radio and hosts a monthly astronomy radio programme, and writes a monthly column for a local publication. In 2013 he appeared on the BBC’s Songs of Praise talking about the Star of Bethlehem. and earlier this year Howard appeared on BBC TV promoting the Island's Dark Skies sit
Expert in Middle East Politics and Culture
For the last six years, Laura has pursued an academic and professional career specialising in Middle East politics and culture. She has lived, studied and worked in the Arabian Gulf and speaks Arabic, Spanish and French. Laura is now the Director of Al Ishara Consulting, which provides bespoke advice to businesses, governments and organisations with an interest in the Middle East. She is also the Founding Editor of Pink Jinn, a politics, culture and travel blog focusing on the Middle East and North Africa. She has two first class degrees in Middle East Politics and Arabic, and her areas of focus include security and extremism in the Gulf. Above all, Laura is a passionate traveller who believes that active learning and cross-cultural interaction will make the world a better place.
Prior to working as a user experience designer with startups, small businesses and Fortune 500 companies, Liam graduated from Loughborough Design School with a First Class Honours degree. Along the way, he won scholarships while on the Isle of Man that gave him the opportunity to travel the world to present new ideas. He continues to work with fast-paced companies and non-profit initiatives on their digital strategy while in London and Manchester.
Jules Verne Theory brings together the talents and experience of Richard Slee and Arron Clague. Their first two releases, the ‘Exposure’ EP, and the ‘Sunlight’ EP were released in 2014 to critical acclaim with both entering the iTunes Electronic charts. Their first album ‘Black Swan’ came out in Summer 2015 by which time they had supported multi-million selling artists The Human League and Heaven 17 at their respective Isle of Man concerts. Streaming figures for subsequent singles ‘Apex Predator’ and ‘One Hit Wonder’ have continued to demonstrate that the band is attracting a growing global listenership along with the fact that 14,000 people now following them on their Facebook page. Jules Verne Theory are signed to US record label Ninthwave Records, an independent record company which is part of BuGoudi House.
Singer and Performer
Simon has more than 16 years of experience as a software developer and has written a series of educational books and video courses on the subject, along with being heavily involved in the production of many other courses in the Smart Method series, and being the sole developer of its website. Outside of writing and programming, Simon also runs the Wild Flowers of the Isle of Man Facebook page and manxwildflowers.com website. He hots visitors to the Island and sings - something he has been doing since his grandfather taught him the words to 'Ellan Vannin' at the age of five.
Vim’s using her expertise in helping build companies that are for profit and for purpose, gained from working at FutureEverything and Dotforge, to help transform digital services for users at the UK Department for Work and Pensions. She also runs a variety of community initiatives, including SheSaysMCR, which gives people who identify as women a voice in the digital and creative industries, and recently launched a mentoring programme. Vim is on the board of the charity Youth Charter, which is dedicated to creating opportunities for people from diverse backgrounds to get ahead in non-diverse environments. In 2016, she was voted a Top 50 ‘Future Leader’ at the inaugural Northern Power Women Awards. She has spoken at national and international events, on everything from innovation and empathy, to tech for good funding.