Judging Panel

Judging Panel

Tim Hine

Tim joined the Bank on leaving school in 1979 and spent significant part of his career in the Bank’s Credit Department gaining lending experience to a large cross section of trading businesses in the North West. He’s part of a Commercial Team of eight in Macclesfield responsible for relationships with SME businesses in East Cheshire.

Dave Lafferty

Dave retains responsibility for MEN Media’s weekly titles including the Macclesfield Express and the Manchester Weekly News. Born in Macclesfield, Dave attended All Hallows High School before heading to Bradford University. After graduating, Dave worked in America, Canada and Australia before returning to work on the Express.

Rachel Kay

Rachel has an impressive background in private and public sector leadership, having worked in top level management with a national hotel chain before a move into education. As Principal at Macclesfield College she has built a reputation for championing employability and supporting business development in all sectors by committing to empowering learners through learning.

Tony Jones

Tony Jones joined The Emerson Group in 1989 heading an experienced team that manages the provision of all services pertaining to the marketing and letting of the Group’s commercial property portfolio.  He is an active promoter of Wilmslow and Macclesfield as business locations. Tony enjoys scuba diving, mountain biking and hiking in his spare time.

Melissa Bowers

Melissa is a director at Harts Chartered Accountants working with a range of clients from owner managed businesses to foreign owned subsidiaries. She maintains a ‘hands-on’ approach and undertakes diverse advisory work from operational to strategic support. As a business owner she is able to fully understand and assist businesses with challenges they face.

Ed Williams

Ed founded Williams&Crosby almost 30 years ago after graduating with a BA in Marketing & Design. Williams&Crosby provide high quality design and marketing services to a range of SMEs, corporates and international businesses. As well as managing the business he remains active in the creative output of the studio, including web, design, strategic marketing and exhibitions.

Justine Clowes

Justine is joint head of SAS Daniels Macclesfield office as well as head of the Private Client team. She specialises in wills, wealth planning, powers of attorney and court of protection legal matters. Justine is a fully accredited member and current Chair of Solicitors for the Elderly and a fully qualified member of STEP.

Ron Smart

With a history of over 40 years experience in the textile printing and manufacturing industry, including four years in Italy, Managing Director Ron Smart, driven by both his passion and innovation, has placed RA Smart as a leader in the textile industry, working mainly in the UK and with larger manufacturing companies overseas.

Gary Cain

Director and Co-Owner of Reach Commercial Finance (a division of Leonard Curtis Business Solutions Group), Gary is a known and trusted expert in the North West financial arena. Gary is committed to the success and growth of SMEs and believes Reach is a crucial resource for companies looking for funding to assist and expand.