Recognising the brightest, newest talent in the industry, this award was given to someone who has made a real impact with their passion, ambition and commitment and is making an outstanding contribution to our industry.
IBC2019 Young Pioneer Award Shortlist
What we were looking for in the shortlist was, most importantly, real talent, a stand-out individual making a real difference in the industry. We were also looking for a lasting legacy, for the Young Pioneer to be a leader today and a media guru of the future.
David Levine, VP, Programming - Kids, Europe & Africa/UK & Ireland, The Walt Disney Company and Chair of the Judging Panel
Winner - Vera Bichler
Vera Bichler, alumni of Broadcast Academy live sports direction training course, exudes confidence by breaking the glass ceiling and becoming the first women football director at Austrian national broadcaster ORF. Being one of the youngest women directors, she heads a team of five young assistants (three men and two women) who all aspire to become directors in future.
Bichler has directed five matches from the Women’s Football Bundesliga, matches from the Austrian Women’s football league and the qualifier game for the U21 Austrian national team against Russia where Austria qualified for the European Championships.
Ahmed al Ghandour
Ahmed is the host of the first of its kind Arabic digital show on the AJ+ digital platform. The show, ‘Al Daheeh', has revolutionized media and education in the Arab world by presenting scientific concepts through comedy. This mix has made Ahmed among the most influential thought leaders in a region that suffers a lack of quality education.
With 160 episodes and counting, the curiosity-driven content has achieved over 250,000,000 views in total! This is, by all means, revolutionary, considering the subjects discussed in the show like neuroscience, AI, blockchain, quantum mechanics and sometimes controversial topics like evolution and cosmology. Through his work and passion, he is an inspiration for millions.
Oliver Janesh Christiansen
Oliver possesses a mix of creativity with technical know-how, which he combined with relentless drive and often contagious enthusiasm to make his vision of a novel form of cinematic expression come to life. In the process he made a significant addition to cinematic language and storytelling and impressed the most accomplished filmmakers by extending their creative possibilities.
Oliver's short journey from starting as an inexperienced graduate filmmaker to winning industry-wide recognition, collaborating with giants such as Arri and being flown across the world to work on Hollywood feature films prove that age and experience should never be a hindering factor.
Dominik started in BT on a graduate scheme, 18 months into his career at BT he was trusted to manage a multi-million TV Outside Broadcast portfolio for BT. Portfolio he manages is responsible for delivering Premier League at unprecedented bandwidths, market leading UHD services and many world firsts. He has achieved exceeding financial results, multiple product developments and led on multi-million tenders. Dominik is also responsible for our Graduate & Apprenticeship programme at Media & Broadcast, shaping the schemes and getting the absolute best out of young talent. He sets an example with his desire and drive to succeed.
Samantha is the CEO of Virtual Umbrella, a consultancy & agency that works specifically within the immersive sector. Samantha started the business in 2015 when immersive technology was just beginning to take off and she has been supporting the industry along the way.
She has been a mentor and advocate for many women in tech, especially in immersive. Additionally, Samantha is a mentor for the Princes Trust helping young people start businesses in the UK.
Samantha lost her mother suddenly in October '18 and has used this experience to try and remove the stigma that comes with talking about grief.
David Harnett graduated from Ravensbourne in 2011 before joining Arena TV as a Junior Sound Engineer. Within 2 years he was promoted to Sound Guarantee and joined Timeline’s newly formed OB division in 2015. Growing the sound division from 1 to 7 people, David was promoted to Head of OB Engineering for Sound in 2018. He played a key role in winning a number of high-profile projects including the FIFA World Cup and supports the outside broadcast division with his skills in technical drawing and systems design. In 2019 he was promoted to Head of Operations at Timeline’s Head Office.
Matej Michalko is a blockchain pioneer with 8+ years of Bitcoin, blockchain and cryptocurrency experience. Matej is the founder and CEO of DECENT. He co-founded ALAX, and organized China's first international Bitcoin Conference. As a blockchain advocate, he hosted, spoke and led many conferences, such as BitcoinExpo 2013, BTC2B, BitcoinExpo 2014, BitcoinExpo 2015 and more. Matej founded the first Bitcoin Marketing agency in the world. He also founded the first Cryptocurrency e-Gaming Consulting Firm and served as a consultant of the Isle of Man. Matej was recognized by Forbes Slovakia and given the 30 most talented people under 30 award.