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Rewriting The Rules - Unlocking People Potential - Guest Speakers

Alfie Joey - Compere

Alfie Joey

Artist, broadcaster, podcaster, comedian, communication coach, Ted X speaker, impressionist, interviewer, charity auctioneer, motivator, children's author, MC... take your pick! Alfie Joey has covered a lot of ground & cultivated many skills in his time. 

For over 2 decades Alfie has been in demand as a host, comic and speaker in the corporate, entertainment & charity sectors. He has motivated and inspired people at Ted X, MC'd Wembley Arena, acted in sitcoms and pantomime and his BGT appearance was watched by over 10 million people on prime-time TV and has been viewed over 3 million times on YouTube. 

His many years hosting the BBC Newcastle breakfast radio show was highly regarded and he can still be heard presenting his podcast, 'Speaker's Corner with Alfie Joey'. 

Alfie's artwork is in constant demand and his children's books are being enjoyed by children all over the world. He is very happy hosting drawing workshops in schools and for new artists.


Simon Forsyth - Keynote Speaker 

Simon Guest Speaker

With a passion for organisational and personal development, Simon Forsyth has been leading culture change across the GSK Pharmaceutical supply chain operations for the past 18 months. Simon came to this role with strong credibility as a senior leader and a MSc in Organisational Psychology (Birkbeck University, 2019).

Simon’s 30 year career history began in Operations at The Body Shop, before a 10 year period with Novartis across Planning, Compliance and Production, including SAP system implementation. Simon then moved to GSK in 2010, broadening his career in Operational Excellence and lean manufacturing, before taking the role of Quality Director for the multi-dose form Barnard Castle pharmaceutical facility, leading a team of 300 Quality personnel. Simon has two children, age 10 and 14, and now lives with his partner in Darlington.

Speaker Topic:

This 45 minute session will combine theoretical concepts with shared learnings from industry. We will explore leadership and motivation, using practical examples to bring meaning to the discussion. Using the backdrop of a manufacturing site facing significant change, within a global organisation at the brink of transformation, the session gives practical ideas and personal reflection. It will consider the importance of personal flow, inclusion, resilience and engagement, creating space for everyone to be themselves, and the impact this has on individual and business performance. Culture matters in unlocking potential and this interactive session explains why.


Karen Marshall - Panellist and Breakout Session

Karen Marshall

Karen has worked for over 30 years with Digital and Technology companies, supporting strategic collaborations to influence and advise on the development of qualifications, products, services, policies and strategies to address skills needs. She currently manages Accenture’s Degree and Masters/Career Changer Apprenticeship Programmes across the North of England and in Scotland, with responsibility for the recruitment and support of 150+ Apprentices.  She sits on the NELEP’s Skills Advisory Board and is a Trustee of a youth charity, a school Governor and a Trustee of a Multi Academy Trust. Karen works with education partners, Local Authorities, the Third Sector and employers to develop and deliver engagement activities to enhance employability skills, to promote the digital sector and its career opportunities.  She oversees the delivery of Accenture’s outreach and engagement programmes reaching over 10,000 young people, teachers, parents and carers each year.

Speaker Topic:

At Accenture we are encouraged to embrace change, with ‘let there be change’ as our strapline we adopted new approaches and strategies to tackle some of the key issues that stifle our talent pipeline.  How do we encourage more girls and women to consider a career in Tech? How do we widen our reach to all communities so more people are aware of the opportunities to start a career in Tech? With challenging targets:  50:50 gender split in our workforce by 2025; 25% BAME, 12% Black Heritage, we continue to evaluate and develop new ways of engaging and recruiting underrepresented groups but also identifying support systems throughout the recruitment, onboarding and induction processes for new joiners.


Radmila Turner – Panellist and Breakout Session

Head of National Federations & Sport / Youth & Anti-Doping Europe

 Radmila Turner

Following a 12-year professional sporting career that includes medals from European Championships and participation of Olympic Games and 2 World Championships, Radmila made successful transition to sports administration and management.

Past roles include high level management positions at English and British basketball, basketball clubs in various countries and in the private sector. She also had academic roles in UK universities and colleges including Module leader in Coaching science and academic lead in high performance. Speaker at numerous conferences and mentor of male and female current and former athletes transitioning into new careers.

Current responsibilities in FIBA include overseeing strategic and development programs for 50 European national federations, leading all youth investment programs, and management of the anti-doping and medical services in European competitions. Co-author and academic lead of the TIME-OUT, WiLEAD and SWISH (integrity) programs of FIBA.

Holds two master’s degrees in sports management and education and leadership and a senior coaching qualification.

Speaker Topic:

The challenges of changing the status-quo in relation to attracting, developing and retaining talent from cultural and political perspectives across FIBA. The breakout session topic: ‘From doping and match-fixing to managing bad behaviour, the value of integrity in an organisation’.



Kelly Simkiss - Panellist

Kelly Simkiss 

Kelly has been CEO of Cybit, a cyber, data and cloud focussed IT managed services partner since September 2021. She has a wealth of experience from over 15 years in leadership roles in both corporate and private equity backed environments. Kelly’s career history spans many industries including tech, utilities, retail and aviation. Kelly is passionate about delivering great customer service through engaged people.

Speaker Topic:

Neurodiversity in tech.


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