Ex-SA advertising industry creative named on jury of New York awards

By our News Team | 2023

Jason Xenopoulos, top entrepreneur and co-founder of South African agency VMLY&R, joins jury of NY Festivals Advertising Awards.

A former top South African advertising industry executive has been named as a member of the 2023 Executive Jury for the annual New York Festivals Advertising Awards.

He is Jason Xenopoulos, former co-founder of Native, which rapidly grew to be Africa’s leading digital marketing agency and is now VMLY&R South Africa.

Advertising Awards

Jason Xenopoulos. Photo courtesy of VMLY&R

Before leaving the country’s shores, he was named ‘All Africa Entrepreneur of the Year’ by business broadcaster CNBC and ‘Entrepreneur of the Year’ by the publication SA Jewish Report

Xenopoulos subsequently moved to the United Kingdom with VML and then to the US, where he is now Regional Chief Creative Officer for VMLY&R North America and the Global Chief Creative Officer for WPP on the Ford automotive account.

Apart from his stellar advertising career, Xenopoulos has also made his mark in South Africa as an award-winning screenwriter and film director.

Co-author of a book on branded entertainment

After judging the Branded Entertainment category at Cannes Lions, he and his jury co-authored the book, ‘The Art of Branded Entertainment’, which made it onto the Amazon Bestsellers list.

He joins a host of other prominent creative leaders on the New York Festivals Advertising Awards jury, with judging scheduled to take place 14-16 June in NYC.

“I am honoured to work in person with this incredibly talented group of world-class creative leaders,” said Scott Rose, President of the New York Festival Advertising competitions.

“Their exceptional reputations for crafting innovative creative [content], combined with their global perspective honed working on prestigious national and global brands, guarantee that this year’s entries will be judged with both respect and thoughtful attention.”

New York Festivals Advertising Awards receives entries from more than 80 countries. Entries are judged by more than 400+ members of NYF’s Executive Jury and Grand Jury from 60 countries worldwide, who collectively cast their votes to select the year’s trophy-winning work.

Entries for this year’s awards closed in late April.

Dr Kin Kariisa

Group CEO - Next Media

Dr. Kin Kariisa is an extraordinary force at the helm of Next Media Services, a conglomerate encompassing NBS TV, Nile Post, Sanyuka TV, Next Radio, Salam TV, Next Communication, Next Productions, and an array of other influential enterprises. His dynamic role as Chief Executive Officer exemplifies his unwavering commitment to shaping media, business, and community landscapes.
With an esteemed academic journey, Dr. Kariisa’s accolades include an Honorary PhD in exemplary community service from the United Graduate College inTexas, an MBA from United States International University in Nairobi, Kenya, a Master’s degree in Computer Engineering from Huazong University in China, and a Bachelor’s degree in Statistics from Makerere University.
Dr. Kariisa pursued PhD research in Computer Security and Identity Management at Security of Systems Group, Radboud University in Nijmegen, Netherlands. As a dynamic educator, he has shared his expertise as a lecturer of e-Government and Information Security at both Makerere University and Radboud University.

Dr Kin did his PhD research in Computer Security and Identity Management at Security of Systems Group, Radbond University in Nigmegen, Netherlands. He previously served as a lecturer of e-Government and Information Security at Makerere University in Kampala, Uganda and Radbond University in Netherlands.

Dr Kin did his postgraduate courses in Strategic Business Management, Strategic Leadership Communication and Strategies for Leading Successful Change Initiatives at Harvard University, Boston USA.

  • Other current and previous roles played by Dr Kin Kariisa:
  • Lecturer of e-Government and Information Security to graduate students at Makerere University, Kampala and Radbond University in the Netherlands
  • Director of Eco Bank Uganda Limited, one of the largest banks in Africa
  • Chairman of the National Association of Broadcasters, an umbrella industry association for all Television, Radio and online broadcasters in Uganda.
  • Chairman of Board of Directors of Nile Hotel International, that owns the leading hotel in Uganda, Kampala Serena Hotel.
  • Chairman of Board of Directors of Soliton Telmec Uganda, the leading telecom company in Optic fibre business managing over 80% of optic fibre in Uganda.