Meet The Newest Webby Judges
Members of the International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences (IADAS) devote their time to reviewing and choosing the very best of the Internet, while pushing innovation in their industry.
As the Internet continues to grow and change, so does IADAS: and this year we are excited to welcome a range of new judges to lend their expertise.
Desus Nice is a multitalented comedian, podcast host, author, and one half of the comedy duo Desus and Mero (aka The Bodega Boys). He currently co-hosts their late-night show Desus & Meroo n Showtime, as well as the long-running and wildly popular Bodega Boys podcast. Elsewhere in television, he has lent his voice to Adult Swim’s The Shivering Truth, Netflix’s animated series Neo Yokio, and Disney’s Star vs. The Forces of Evil. Desus and Mero will release their life advice book, God-Level Knowledge Darts: Life Lessons from the Bronx, on September 22, 2020 through Random House.
She’s Senior Curator at The Museum of Modern Art in the Department of Architecture & Design, as well as MoMA’s founding Director of Research & Development. Her most recent exhibition, Neri Oxman: Material Ecology, opened at MoMA in February 2020. She is also currently working on an iteration of Broken Nature that will be on view at MoMA starting in the fall of 2020, and on @design.emergency, an Instagram and book project on the role of design in response to the Covid-19 pandemic, in collaboration with critic Alice Rawsthorn.
Investigating how technology and business are transforming humanity is Manoush’s passion and expertise. Her book Bored and Brilliant: How Spacing Out Can Unlock Your Most Creative Self and TED Talk are guides to surviving the “Attention Economy.” She was one of Fast Company’s 100 Most Creative People in Business for 2018. Manoush created and hosted the podcast Note to Self from 2013-2020, in partnership with WNYC Studios.
Swizz Beatz and Timbaland
Both Swizz Beatz and Timbaland are legendary artists, record producers, DJs, and entrepreneurs. We are excited to welcome them both into the academy this year, after producing this year’s most exciting Instagram Live battles: Verzuz. Since launching the Verzuz battles, Swizz Beatz and Timbaland’s creation has become an educational platform for hundreds of thousands of viewers, highlighting the deep catalogues of producers and songwriters behind pop culture’s most influential songs. From battles like T-Pain vs. Lil Jon, to Brandy vs. Monica, to the battle that literally broke the Internet: Babyface vs. Teddy Riley, Verzuz demonstrates Timbaland and Swizz Beatz’ belief in the Internet as the perfect tool to entertain people while educating them on music.
Follow @verzuztv to stay tuned for the next battles
Sima Sistani is Co-Founder of and CEO at Houseparty. Prior to launching the group video chat app, Sistani worked at Tumblr as Head of Media and at Yahoo! as Director of Mobile Growth and Director of Business Development & Strategy. She has spent time at The Creative Artists Agency and Goldman Sachs as well. Sistani earned her undergraduate degree at Duke University and MBA from Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management.
Michael Aragon is the Senior Vice President of Content at Twitch overseeing the company’s global broadcaster partnerships, esports, Twitch Studios, content development, and content marketing. Michael comes to Twitch from Ellation, parent company of Crunchyroll, where he served as General Manager and managed the launch of VRV. Prior to Ellation, Michael worked at PlayStation Network where he served as Vice President and General Manager. During his 8 years at Sony, Michael managed PlayStation Network’s digital video, music, and original content services for consumers across Sony’s mobile, desktop, living room, and video game console devices in over 30 countries. Michael holds an MBA from The Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth College.
Jill Scott is a three-time Grammy Award-winning singer-songwriter, New York Times best-selling poet, and critically acclaimed actor. Before having the #1 album in the country with “The Light of The Sun” and performing at The White House, the triple threat began her career collaborating with musical icons such as The Roots, Will Smith, and Common in the late 90s. She currently plays the role of “Hazel” in the BET+ remake of the 1996 romantic comedy, The First Wives Club. She is the founder of Blues Babe, a registered 501(c)3 foundation that supports minority students pursuing college degrees.
Follow her on social media at @MissJillScott.
As Chief Client Officer at The Martin Agency, Danny is uniquely qualified to work with account management and creative to protect and sell stimulating, breakthrough creative ideas that fight brand invisibility and help create opportunities for success through cultural influence.
After all, you don’t find many former group creative directors who have an MBA, have worked in brand management and have founded their own ad agency known for leveraging pop culture. In addition to being a cofounder of Vigilante, Danny was the creative leader and writer there behind award-winning campaigns for Sprint, Major League Baseball, Snapple, Heineken, Pontiac, and advertising and event business for Johnnie Walker Black Label. He also wrote and art directed the first television commercials for Jay-Z and Foxy Brown, just to name a few.
Nikole Hannah-Jones is an award-winning investigative reporter who covers civil rights and racial injustice for The New York Times Magazine. Nikole got hooked on journalism when she joined her high school newspaper and began writing about students like her, who were bused across town as part of a voluntary desegregation program.
Prior to joining The New York Times, Nikole worked as an investigative reporter for ProPublica in New York Ciy, where she spent three years chronicling the way official policy created and maintains segregation in housing and schools. Before that, she reported for the largest daily newspaper in the Pacific Northwest, The Oregonian in Portland, Ore., where she covered numerous beats, including demographics, the census and county government.
If you haven’t, dive into her incredible series The 1619 Project for The New York Times Magazine.
Rashad Robinson is President of Color Of Change, a leading online racial justice organization. Driven by 1.7 million members working to build political and cultural power for Black communities, Color Of Change is creating a more human and less hostile world for all people in America.
Rashad has led the organization in developing cutting-edge strategies to accelerate reform in the criminal justice system and win justice for its victims, increase electoral participation, cut off corporate support for right-wing organizations, and change the representation of Black people and social issues in news and entertainment media.
You can follow him on social @rashadrobinson
Andrey Khusid is building the world’s most popular online collaborative whiteboard platform. Currently, he’s the Founder and CEO of rapidly growing Miro, funded by Accel and Iconiq. Miro has over 8 million registered whiteboarding fans who use it for brainstorming & ideation, research & design, agile ceremonies and many more. They have more than 40,000 paying customers, including teams inside Netflix, Twitter, Skyscanner, Qlik, Upwork, Expedia, Spotify, eBay, Cisco, Sapient, Geometry, Unbounce, Autodesk, PwC, Deloitte, and many others. Prior to Miro, Andrey was the Founder of Vitamin Group, an award winning creative agency.
We’re thrilled to welcome all of our new judges to IADAS, and look forward to having their expertise for this hallmark season of The Webby Awards. Learn about our new categories, and enter the 25th Annual Webby Awards!