About The Judges

Olivia Ahmad
House of Illustration
Olivia Ahmad is House of Illustration’s Curator and is responsible for its exhibitions programme, residencies and commissions. She graduated from Cambridge School of Art in Illustration in 2008 and from Newcastle University in Museum Studies in 2010. She has previously held roles at Tyne & Wear Archives and Museums, Seven Stories National Centre for Children’s Books and the Northern Design Festival.

Sheri Gee
Art Director
The Folio Society
Sheri studied Illustration at The Kent Institute of Art and Design Maidstone (now UCA Maidstone), graduating in 1997. Some months she later started at The Folio Society. During the course of her 17 years with the company, Sheri has learnt about all aspects of fine book production and was made Art Director in 2010. Many of her commissions and art direction have won awards in UK and international illustration and design competitions.

Alan Marks
Winner, Book Illustration Competition 2016
Alan Marks studied at the Medway College of Art and Design from 1976–7, and at Bath Academy of Art from 1977–80. He has worked as a freelance illustrator since leaving college illustrating for literary and editorial magazines and on a wide variety of books with some excellent publishers and authors. His illustrations for War Horse won the 2016 Book Illustration Competition.

Colin McKenzie
House of Illustration
Colin McKenzie studied Art History at the University of Sussex before beginning his arts career at London’s Barbican Centre. After 5 years in charge of fundraising there he went to the National Gallery where he was Director of Development for 12 years. In 2006 he became Director of the Charleston Trust, responsible for the running of Charleston, the country home of the Bloomsbury Group. He joined House I of Illustration as Director in 2014 and was a judge on the 2015 and 2016 awards. He is a trustee of the Towner Art Gallery.

Tom Walker
Editorial Director
The Folio Society
Tom Walker is Editorial Director at The Folio Society. Joining soon after he completed a degree in English Language & Literature at New College, University of Oxford, Tom edited the Folio fiction list for a number of years prior to becoming director in 2014. He was a judge on the 2011, 2013 and 2014 BIC awards.

Lucy Worsley
Historian and Jane Austen biographer
Leading historian Lucy Worsley is Chief Curator at Historic Royal Palaces and presents history programmes for the BBC. She is author of a number of non-fiction books, including Cavalier: A Tale of Chivalry, Passion and Great Houses, Courtiers: The Secret History of Kensington Palace, A Very British Murder, which accompanied a BBC TV series and If Walls Could Talk, which was also a BBC Television series. She has published one novel for children, Eliza Rose, set in the court of Henry the Eighth, and a second, My Name is Victoria, set in the household of the young Queen Victoria, will be published in 2017.

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