Artist, author, DJ, broadcaster
Ana Matronic is an artist, musician, author, DJ, radio and television presenter, and public speaker. She is best known as the lone female member of rock group Scissor Sisters. A frequent guest on international television, covering a wide range of topics from pop culture to artificial intelligence, politics and human rights, Matronic is also a founding member of activist organisation Witches Against Fascist Totalitarianism (WAFT). In April 2017, Ana launched her weekly BBC Radio 2 show ‘Disco Devotion’. Her first full-length book, Robot Takeover: 100 Iconic Robots of Myth, Popular Culture and Real Life, was published in 2015.
Award-winning author, historian of women and war
Clare Mulley is the award-winning author of The Woman Who Saved the Children (Daily Mail Biographers' Club Prize), and The Spy Who Loved, now optioned by Universal Studios. Clare's third book, The Women Who Flew for Hitler, a dual biography of two extraordinary women at the heart of the Third Reich, has just been published. A regular contributor to TV and radio, Clare also lectures in London and Paris on wartime female special agents, and writes for the Spectator, History Today and the Telegraph. Clare was Chair of the judges for the Historical Writers Association 2017 Non-Fiction Prize.
Social entrepreneur, global strategist, curious thinker
Elizabeth Filippouli is a serial entrepreneur. She is the Founder & CEO of Global Thinkers Forum, an international organisation that works as an agent for positive change by connecting thought leaders and promoting values-based leadership, collaboration and cross-cultural understanding. Elizabeth’s background is in journalism. Her international career kicked off when she joined the CNN family in 1999, as a CNN Fellow and Athens-based correspondent. In 2016, Elizabeth was named among Oxford University’s Said Business School’s 42 top graduate entrepreneurs.
People manager, networker, lover of shopping
A graduate of the University of Edinburgh (MA Business Studies), Jayne is also a Chartered Marketer. After completing her studies, Jayne entered a career in event management, working in Belfast and Glasgow before becoming Event Manager for Legal-Island, an award-winning employment law training company. Within 3 years Jayne was promoted to her existing role of Managing Director leading the company to significant growth and awards such as the successful accreditation of Investors in People Gold. Jayne is Vice Chairperson on the Board of the Orchardville Society, is active in the Institute of Directors NI and has mentored through WIB.
Property developer, leadership coach and international equestrian
Originally a Chartered Landscape Architect, June is probably best known for her 2008 development of a city centre car park into the 5* Fitzwilliam Hotel Belfast, and then successfully establishing the business despite coinciding with the worldwide recession. June also has 40 years experience of working with and learning from horses and competing at international level for over 20 years. She has now brought all her experiences together in her new venture – experiential workshops focussed on leadership, teambuilding and emotional intelligence. What makes them innovative and effective is that they involve interaction with horses. June is passionate about developing communication skills in all individuals as she sees this as the way forward in business, peace and reconciliation, trauma recovery and life in general.
Freelance journalist, writer, editor
Lyra McKee is a freelance journalist based in Belfast, Northern Ireland. She has written for publications including BuzzFeed, The Atlantic, and Private Eye. In 2006, she was named Sky News Young Journalist of the Year. In 2016, Forbes Magazine named her one of their 30 under 30 in media in Europe. She is represented by Janklow & Nesbit, a literary agency based in London and New York, and is currently working on her second book, with the first soon to be published. She is also an editor of Mediagazer, a media news site based in Silicon Valley.
Journalist, broadcaster, Belfast girl
Award winning international journalist and broadcaster Maxine Mawhinney has had an astonishing career spanning over 40 years. From Belfast, she was a newspaper reporter before moving to broadcasting for BBC, ITN, SKY, GMTV and Reuters based in Ireland, London, Tokyo, Frankfurt and Washington DC. She became one of the most recognisable BBC TV news anchors presenting BBC News at One, the BBC News Channel and Dateline London. Among many highlights of her career were covering the Clinton presidency and single-handedly broadcasting across the globe on BBC World TV the night of the death of Princess Diana.
Digital educator, ideas developer, roving risk taker
Naomh McElhatton is Director of Digital Education at SMART NI and House of Comms (UAE). Specialising in delivering digital transformation training and marketing consultancy services to international clients including Abu Dhabi Health Authority, Dior, Dubai Police, Emirates Airlines, Export Technologies, Gulf News, Marriott Hotel Group, and Spar UK. Naomh is founder of the DANI Awards, sits on the board of the Digital Catapult and is a STEM Ambassador.
Writer, artist-in-residence at the Lyric Belfast
Rosemary Jenkinson is a short story writer and playwright from Belfast. She has published two collections of short stories, including Aphrodite’s Kiss, and her plays have been performed in London, Dublin, Belfast, Edinburgh, Washington DC and New York. Her first play, The Bonefire, was winner of the Stewart Parker BBC Radio Award. Here Comes the Night premiered on the main stage of the Lyric, Belfast, in 2016. She has taught English in Greece, France, Poland and the Czech Republic. She lived in London as writer-on-attachment at the National Theatre Studio and is currently artist-in-residence at the Lyric Theatre, Belfast.
Professional storyteller, urban explorer, seeker of magic
Vanessa Woolf specialises in stories for adults in urban environments – derelict housing estates, muddy foreshores, urban forests and midnight cemeteries. Her tales are stitched together from local histories, weird folklore, legend and myth. Her story projects for adults and children include residencies at the Southbank Centre, a ghostly podcast for the Guardian, a two-year project with UCL using fairytales to discuss women's sexual health (it won the Provost Award for public engagement) commissions for the British Academy of Arts & Sciences, the V&A Museum, the Royal Academy of Arts, Kensington Palace, Royal College of Music and many more in the UK and overseas.