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About Headstar

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Headstar is run by a dedicated, close-knit team of people who take pride in producing world-class journalism and hosting lively, welcoming events and conferences that people enjoy and find of strong value to their work.

We have wide national and international networks of partners, but our core team is:

Dan Jellinek, co-Founder and Managing Director

John Neame, co-Founder and Events Director

Ian Hook, Finance Adviser

Fred Perkins, Board Member

Tristan Parker, Senior Reporter

Derek Parkinson, Associate Editor

Mel Poluck, Associate Editor

Julie Payne, Finance Officer

Nicola Bell, Events Manager

Elodie Robertson, Events Assistant


Dan Jellinek, co-Founder and Managing Director

dan-1Headstar co-Founder and Managing Director Dan Jellinek is a journalist and publisher with 20 years' experience writing about technology, politics and the internet. In his early career he contributed extensively to The Guardian and the BBC's WebWise campaign to help adult internet beginners.

In 1999 he wrote the first ever guide to UK government websites, published by the Stationery Office. In 2001 he was a co-founder (with others including mySociety founder Tom Steinberg) of VoxPolitics, the first think-tank set up to examine the use of the internet in democratic elections. In 2002 he contributed analysis of internet politics to Whitaker's Political Almanack (editors Vanessa White and Gyles Brandreth).

Dan is a former chair (2008-11) of the Sussex Community Internet Project, a non-profit body helping community groups to use ICT. From 2006-09 he served on the international board of E-Democracy.Org, a non-profit citizen-based project founded in Minnesota by global e-democracy pioneer Steven Clift, with a mission to improve participation in democracy through the use of information networks.

In 2004 Dan was voted among the top 10 people in the world having the greatest impact on the way the Internet is changing politics, at the Fifth World Forum on e-Democracy in Paris.

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John Neame, co-Founder and Events Director

john1John Neame, co-founder of Headstar, is the Managing Director of Enterprise Events, a company specialising in online events, partnering networks and the staging of innovative brokerage events that bring communities together to conduct business and exchange best practice.

Enterprise Events is a pioneer on how the internet can transform networking at physical events, originally working with Microsoft in the US to introduce the concept of structured networking into its business partner conferences. The company now runs online and physical networking events focused on medical innovation and in a variety of low carbon sectors, including energy efficiency, micro-renewables and offshore wind energy.

Previously, John was Managing Director of EMAP International Exhibitions Ltd, a subsidiary of EMAP plc, running a portfolio of market-leading IT trade shows.

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Ian Hook, Finance Adviser

Ian1Ian is a Chartered Accountant whose career has spanned media and technology. As a Director of two of EMAP's business publishing divisions, Ian was involved in the rapid growth of this Group at a time when technology was challenging many conventional publishing models, business strategies and management methods. Subsequently Ian has worked in the technology sector running the professional services division for Dimension Data Uk, the leading UK network integrator and more recently the specialist retail software business, Pierhouse.

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Fred Perkins, Board Member

fred1Fred Perkins is founder of Information TV, which operates four channels on the Sky, Freesat and Freeview platforms (Information TV, RT [Russia Today], Showcase and Showcase 2). The business acts as host or incubator for a wide range of new and emerging digital TV channels and 'micro-channels', and has been used for embryo 'Local TV' propositions including Liverpool, Capital of Culture and Lakes TV.

In December 2010, Information TV won the Eutelsat Hotbird Lifestyle Channel of the Year for its "innovative approach in creating an open platform for new editorial concepts".

Formerly, Fred was CEO of The Stationery Office, the UK government's publisher. He has served at chairman or executive level on many public bodies, including the Digital Content Forum and the Broadband Stakeholder Group. For the DTI, he chaired the Innovation and Growth Task Force for Software, Digital Content and Related Industries, and was on the Executive of the Information Age Partnership.

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Derek Parkinson, Associate Editor

derek1In the early 90s, Derek studied for an MSc in artificial intelligence, and has hung around with geeky types ever since. He has been online since 1993, and like a lot of people he knew the web was going to change the way we live. He was very curious to see how, so he became an IT journalist, covering e-commerce in the lead up to the "dotcom boom" and the crash that followed.

He switched to writing about the impact of the internet on all aspects of government, and security emerged as a key concern, from the policy, legal and regulatory perspectives as well as the more narrowly technical. This interest grew stronger through his work with the Parliamentary IT Committee (Pitcom), a group with members from both Houses and across industry sectors: Chairman Alun Michael MP once said that the challenge of security on the internet is the most complex issue we have ever faced.

Currently, Derek's work is focused on information security.

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Mel Poluck, Associate Editor

mel2-jpgMel is a freelance writer and communications manager keen on producing and editing plain English, no-nonsense, jargon-free content. A decade's experience working in communications in the UK and internationally has given her great insight into what the media wants to hear about, and how it wants to hear it. With a background in journalism and a particular interest in the ways in which the web improves society, government and everyday life, she has written on issues including public sector IT, and sustainability for The Times, the Guardian, the Jewish Chronicle and The Ecologist.

Mel has run a series of international press campaigns for global travel IT company Amadeus, and continues to run national PR campaigns and write copy for companies including Accenture, BT, Compila, Dataflux and Nokia Siemens Networks and trade associations IATA and Constructing Excellence. She recently began running communications training for SMEs.

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