The Judges

  • June O’Sullivan MBE

    June O’Sullivan MBE is CEO of the London Early Years Foundation (LEYF), one of London’s largest charitable social enterprises, operating 39 nurseries in some of London’s most disadvantaged areas. An inspiring speaker, author, podcaster and expert on early years, social business and child poverty. June is a tireless ‘disruptor’, striving to make society a better place for all children and their families.

  • James Hempsall OBE

    James Hempsall OBE is director of Hempsall’s training, research and consultancy, managing editor of Children’s Centre Leader, and national programme director for Childcare Works. With more than 30 years’ dedicated service to the children’s services sector, James works to drive improvement and change, supporting high-quality and sustainable childcare.

  • Rageena Tahir

    Rageena joined Fennies as a Regional Quality Manager, with over 11 years of experience working in nurseries and teaching children English as an additional language. She developed her role to become Head of Education. Holding a level 6 qualification in childcare herself, Rageena now works alongside the internal education specialists to curate specific modules and refine learning activities within Fennies nurseries.

  • Sue Cowley

    Sue is an experienced teacher, writer and presenter, specialising in behaviour – about which she writes regularly for Teach Early Years – and creative teaching and learning. A qualified primary school teacher, she helps to run her local preschool, as chair of the management committee. Her latest book is Learning Behaviours: A Practical Guide to Self-Regulation in the Early Years.

  • Jamel C Campbell

    Jamel C Campbell is an early years educator, consultant and children’s author. He has been in the industry for over 20 years and is one of the UK’s Men in the Early Years ambassadors. Jamel is passionate about the importance of having a balanced, diverse and inclusive workforce, curriculum and pedagogy. He offers training workshops based around approaches to practice, representation and staff wellbeing.

  • Emma Davis

    Emma is an early years lecturer having previously managed an outstanding preschool. She is a PhD student, forest school leader and mental health first aider. Emma is a regular contributor to Teach Early Years, both in print and online, sharing inspiring ideas and best practice as well as book reviews. She particularly enjoys outdoor play, picture books and loose parts play.