The board plays an essential role in the management of Ukie, working in tandem with the organisation to help set its direction, support the team and ensure it is accountable to the industry. Voting is now open to fill five spaces to all paid-up Full and fee-paying Partners who will receive links to vote via email.

Voting is now open for the 2023 Ukie Board election. All of the candidates for election are listed below, alongside their personal statement explaining why they would like to join the board. 

The deadline for voting is 5pm on Thursday 7th September. The results will be announced at Ukie's AGM On Thursday 14th September, which you can sign up for here.

Ukie election rules

Contact Sam if you have a question

Alex Coulson | @Alex_Coulson | NSE | Managing Director - Business strategy, structure, and delivery

My experience stretches from overseeing the country's most active esports and gaming grassroots community, running YouTube channels for gaming content creators, leading the world's largest commercial sports awards, to delivering sponsorship campaigns for global sporting events.

The overview above gives a glimpse of my experience to date but it’s what lies ahead that is most important. As Managing Director of NSE, I am lucky to represent grassroots esports and gaming with a very talented ever-evolving student community.

This young community is our future, the consumers of our industry, now and for many years to come. I want to make sure their voice is heard. The Ukie Board boasts highly impressive skilled and experienced executives whom I believe would enjoy and benefit from hearing fresh perspectives from a mass playerbase.

Plus, judging by the talent on the Intel FutureGen programme that NSE runs, many of these students will end up leading this sector too! NSE significantly over-indexes in attracting tech-focussed students with c.70% studying a STEM subject and c.30% computer science. I am a big believer in esports and gaming elevating students’ university experience but significantly enhancing their career prospects, whatever sector they choose to work in.

We work hard to make NSE a welcoming community: 20% women & non-binary; presence across 110 universities fosters socio-economic & geographical diversity; welcoming 26% LGBTQIA; 36% ethnic minorities.

I am excited at the prospect of bringing these diverse voices to the Ukie board. Furthermore, as a core esports business that works with tournament organisers, agencies, and suppliers, I would like to help represent this element of the sector too. Lastly, I hope that my business management experience, from within and outside esports and gaming, will add benefit to and complement the skills of the Ukie Board Members.

Thank you.

Eloise Singer | @eloisesinger_ | Singer Studios | CEO

In 2017, I founded Singer Studios, a female-led, ethnically diverse and neurodiverse-inclusive company dedicated to pushing the boundaries of untold stories in games. Our broad range of perspectives make for a more creative, inclusive, accessible and enjoyable workplace.

Therefore, one of my key reasons for seeking your vote towards membership on the UKIE Board is my desire to share knowledge and experience as a female leader in the space. Singer Studios is known for its commitment to diversity and inclusivity, and I am passionate about leveraging this expertise to contribute to the incredibly important development of membership criteria that fosters Ukie’s vibrant community.

Moreover, my experience in leadership roles has granted me a comprehensive understanding of the qualities required in electing the Chair, Vice Chair and Honorary Treasurer, and I am dedicated to collaborating with fellow board members to ensure we appoint individuals who can create a cohesive, dynamic leadership team for Ukie.

Furthermore, Singer Studios is currently experiencing a significant surge in growth and success. In spite of being a small studio whose early years were interrupted by the global pandemic, we’ve developed two critically acclaimed adventure narrative VR games, Mrs Benz and The Pirate Queen, the latter which stars Lucy Liu. These games have both earned prestigious awards and recognition, such as wins at Raindance and Tribeca, while substantial funding has established Singer Studios as a prominent player in the VR industry.

This pivotal moment in my career perfectly aligns with the opportunity to serve on the UKIE Board, allowing me to actively participate in establishing the association's market position, shaping its strategic direction, and ensuring sound governance arrangements.

In conclusion, I firmly believe that my skills, experiences, and dedication to advancing the games industry make me a strong and valuable fit for the Ukie Board.

Thank you.

Nina Adams | @busynina | Sumo Group | Operations Director - Auroch Digital

Coming up on 10 years in the games industry, I started working with Auroch Digital as a tiny indie, through to the acquisition by Sumo Group in 2021, where we are now a large studio, part of a much bigger corporate group. I have a passion for helping studios of any size succeed and making the games industry the best place to work and thrive.

Coming back to the UKIE board will enable me to help make more of an impact on the wider industry, inform change, and represent the needs of the many different sized companies within it.

Maxwell Scott-Slade | @maxscottslade | GLITCHERS | Director of Games

I am a game director with over 15 years experience creating award-winning games. I have pioneered and broken new ground in bringing games to non-game audiences and in the process, engaged many first time players.

I design games that have impact and value beyond entertainment.

My work at GLITCHERS has already achieved so many world firsts for games, Sea Hero Quest was the world’s first game where anyone can help scientists fight dementia and our new projects are pushing boundaries even further.

Our current quest is to use the data from the 4.5 million players to build an engaging game that also works as an early diagnostic tool for dementia. At the same time we are building a biodiversity project which monetises the forest without cutting down any trees or killing animals.

In the process of navigating these uncharted waters, I am always discovering ways to challenge the industry, the law around the industry and the stigma attached to games and gaming. Funding these kinds of projects is a challenge, as well as getting people to understand what we are doing before they have their own a-ha moment.

I believe with myself on the board of UKIE, I can help the industry understand the full remit of the opportunity for games for good and help UKIE as a trade body engage deeper in exciting new opportunities for the industry at large.

Thank you for your consideration.

Jay Shin | @jaywshin | Arrogant Pixel LTD | CEO & Managing Director

I am thrilled to present my candidacy again for the UKIE board, advocating for the voices of smaller entities like Arrogant Pixel. During my previous term, I was highlighted as part of #Ensemble2022 exhibition during the London Games Festival and was a finalist for the Games or E-sports educator category in the Women in Games awards. With over a decade in both game development and academia, I bring a unique perspective that resonates with the evolving industry landscape.

As a seasoned practitioner and academic and Course Leader at the University of West London (BSc Games design and Animation), I have consistently championed the growth of the UK game development community. A paramount focus of mine is bridging the gap between university education and industry expectations. I am committed to developing strategies that align educational curricula with the rapidly evolving demands of the game development sector. This includes advocating not only for the implementation of effective funding and training programs to support our future graduates and entrepreneurs.

Furthermore, I would like to address the ongoing skill and worker shortage, vital issues that demand strategic solutions for the industry's sustainability. I believe that all members of the industry, whether newcomers or veterans, deserve stable career paths and environments that prioritise well-being.

By continuing to serve as a UKIE board member, I aspire to elevate the contributions of indie developers, ensuring their integral role in shaping industry trends and driving innovation. My vision is to make the UK the best place to develop video games in the world, supporting independent creators and making freelancing a viable career option for artists and developers working in the creative and innovation sector. As the UKIE board continues to steer the industry's trajectory, I am eager to continue contributing to a thriving, diverse, and forward-looking games industry.

Katherine Bidwell | @State_of_Play | State of Play Games | Co-Founder

Having previously served on the board for 6 years I’m delighted to be back after 2 years and hoping to serve again!

I have over 15 years experience in the industry as Co-Founder of the independent BAFTA-winning games studio State of Play, and have a wealth of knowledge regarding the creative process of developing games, from seeing a game through from sketchbook ideas to platform release.

As part of the Ukie Board of Directors I will be representing independent developers. I have a particular interest in encouraging children, students and adults from all backgrounds to consider a role in the games industry, to ensure a vibrant and diverse culture of creators.

I am a member of the BAFTA Games Committee. I have also sat on the Advisory Board of the London Games Festival and the BGI. I currently sit on the National Film & Television School Creative Industry Liaison Group, where I advise on a range of topics, acting as a bridge between education and industry and ensuring that learning outcomes are reflective of our ever changing industry.

My history within the industry both as a creator and an advisor hopefully demonstrates that I would be an excellent candidate for the Ukie Board.

Robert Kinder | @DocRobotnik | Payload Studios | Publishing Director

After serving two years on the Ukie board and working with the rest of the team during what has been a hugely important period (culminating in an industry showcase at Number 10 and the publication of Ukie’s Loot Box guidance, among other initiatives), I am looking for your support to allow me to serve a second term on the board and further cement my commitment to championing our industry’s interests on your behalf.

I continue to support many of the same causes, such as better child protection online and better education for parents, teachers and carers alike. I’ve taken my interest in education a step further over recent years, conducting university guest-lectures and providing advice and support to college courses on games, ensuring that the next generation of developers are equipped with the skills they need to thrive in an ever-changing environment.

D&I initiatives continue to be a pivotal part of our industry’s movement towards equality and inclusion, and is something I will continue to support by providing help and advice to teams supported by Payload Studios’ Incubator (which has completed its third year), and by helping to foster an open and welcoming environment within the spaces I have some influence.

Lastly, I wanted to say that whoever joins or re-joins the board for the next two years, this may be the most important term that Ukie has had in more than a decade. The recent departure of Dr Jo Twist, our longstanding CEO and champion of the industry, means that there needs to be more cohesion and leadership from the board than ever before. I would love to see a continuity in the stable, respectful, collaborative and engaged board that I have been lucky enough to serve on, and I am sure that will continue to be the case.

Samantha Ebelthite | Outright Games Ltd | Head of Global Sales

I joined the video games industry 6 years ago, and I have never looked back. It was the best decision of my life. I am passionate about what we do, how we do it and the joy we bring in entertaining the world. I feel so proud when I tell anyone what I do for a living, and they then tell me all their favourite games and their children's favourite games.

I love to see how we have thrived as an industry, going from strength to strength and managing the bumps and turns in the journey, but I also believe we still have so much more to achieve. The UK is an amazing place to work in video games and I love the platform Ukie gives me to drive this message and help our industry continue to thrive.

I am also passionate about diversity and inclusion in the industry and love to get involved with any projects and events that help spread the message that this is an industry we can all participate in and enjoy. Making a difference here gives me huge enjoyment. After all, it’s the people that really make video games a special world to work in.

So please vote for me, I would love to continue the great work we have the honour of doing on the Ukie board.

Serhii Kashevko | @1ikigai | Outstandly Ventures Ltd |CEO

I believe I can add to the Ukie's prosperity by being a local ''outside insider'' in the gaming industry.

Just past year I arrived in the UK from Ukraine.

Before this, I've already been in the gaming industry for 6 years: my company ( is in the game art outsourcing business, and our team is behind such popular titles as Eleven Table Tennis VR game, Stream Raiders and Nasdaq trading companies like Opera.

The majority of our customers are indie developers from all around the world, though.

Our team is remote, with me and my partner being in London and our producer and art team spread across Latin countries and Asia.

This sentiment of international gamedev experience with being in the trenches with developers all across the world could bring trend insights and in general broadened access to information/gamedevs all around the world to the Ukie board and its members, which I'm happy to share.

We're also working on our first mobile game title, and it just has been accepted into the Gamechanger accelerator in London.

I noticed current Ukie's board consists almost entirely of super hardcore experienced game veterans which is amazing and I believe when a relevant late Gen Z-er/early millennial is added to this pie — it will only improve the diversity, texture and richness of the taste.

Alright, now I'm hungry, will go cook something.

Hendrik Lesser | @vane303 | Remote Control Productions | CEO

I am lobbying for games now since 18 years. I had multiple roles and still also act as president of EGDF. Also running RCP means I have vast experience running game dev studios, 2 agencies and a label. Having worked before with T2 as an employee I also have exp. with the traditional publisher model. I would love to help not to lose contact to the mainland, help with initiatives in the UK (to prevent another loot box incident) and overall take a stance for esp. developers. As I also had other roles (inc. board of game in Germany) I am well versed to work with a NTA and also to get things done - would be an honour.

Joe Adams | @notordinaryjoe | Kepler Interactive Limited CFO

For me UKIE board is the leading voice of the UK gaming industry, and I want to be part of helping shape and deliver our message. Whether that's driving change in education around gaming, diversity equity and inclusion for both creators of games and the representation in games, supporting initiatives for the creation of new gaming companies and hubs across the UK, or in pushing Governments towards recognising and supporting the sector either through grants or improving VGTR.

I’ve worked in the gaming industry through most of my career, joining King pre Candy Crush (including working on the first year of VGTR claims), through Space Ape, with Supercell, and now at Kepler Interactive. Kepler is pioneering a revolutionary proposition - a unique co-ownership model, developer and publisher-based and out of the UK. And I want to share this approach, this thinking and these values with UKIE.

My own gaming journey didn't start with my career - forbidden from having a console as a kid, my parents gave me a PC thinking it would broaden my mind and include fewer games! They never realised I’d cadged Doom and Quake from friends, but they were happy to introduce me to Civilisation and Warcraft. Both of which I'm still playing thirty or so years later...

Now I'm thrilled to be able to work in an industry I’m passionate about. As Kepler CFO I’m helping shape a global business but what drives me is supporting and nurturing the creative talent that creates the best games. I’m also keen to be a more visible representative member of the LBGTQia+ community, and want to find new avenues to do so.

Rebecca Sampson | @RogueBx | Hangar 13 | Head of Studio (UK)

I have 16 years of games industry experience working in Operations at 3 medium-large sized AAA studios, each owed by publishing divisions:

- Black Rock studio > Disney Interactive

- Creative Assembly > Sega Europe

- Hangar 13 > 2K & Take-Two

In addition to having supported most operational functions of the companies (Operations, Facilities, Recruitment, HR, CSR, Legal, IT, and Finance) alongside the development teams, throughout those years, gaining a good understanding of policies, processes, and practices within those areas, I have also actively engaged with multiple industry partners:

- Women in Games, as a partner and advisory board member,

- Ukie, as an EDI Committee member,

- SpecialEffect, as an ambassador,

- BiG (BAME in Games), also as an ambassador,

- Into Games, as a studio partner.

I will be able to bring a unique viewpoint to the board with my background and experience, as well as my passion to continue improving the industry, especially within the areas of EDI and social mobility. I have a curious mind and like to explore multiple avenues before devising actions, and will challenge groupthink to ensure all perspectives are covered.

Thomas Hegarty | @thomas_hegarty | Roll7 | Founder & Studio Head

Having had the privilege to serve on the UKIE Board for the past four years, I am excited to submit my application for re-election for my final term. The recent departure of Jo Twist, brings both challenges and opportunities, and my intimate understanding of UKIE’s values, aims and operations will maximise UKIE’s ability to address both head on whilst ensuring the vital element of continuity; continuity of knowledge, influence and enthusiasm.

During my tenure on the board, I have lent my voice to the complex and ongoing policy discussions concerning Loot Boxes; represented and supported UKIE during several campaigns including the Responsible Play campaign; and engaged with several influential MPs - including Rishi Sunak - at Downing St.

As a business owner who has founded and nurtured independent studios through to acquisition and beyond, I’m uniquely placed to provide a balanced perspective between key commercial opportunities for UKIE and our duty of care to the players and all the incredibly talented people working in games today. To that end, UKIE has so far been a great force for good by helping to promote studios of all sizes as well as leading the charge on inclusion and diversity.

My 20-year experience as a business owner means I have unique insights into what lies ahead for UKIE; having directly repositioned organizations in line with industry evolution and in response to inevitable governmental, regulatory and statutory developments. I am keen to continue this grass roots development of the games industry through Digital School House and ensuring that new studios have access to the right funding.

In seeking your vote, I pledge to continue UKIE's proud legacy, and build on it by applying my years of knowledge, insight and expertise to pave the way for the UK games industry over the coming years.

Nick Button-Brown | Included Games | Investor & Advisor

I’ve been in the Games industry for a long time and I’ve been working to give back to the industry where I can. I was the Program Coach for UKIE’s Mobile Games Growth programme 2023 and mentored companies across Creative UK programmes. I set up The Games Angels to connect young companies with people who can give advice, support and money, investing in 20 companies in 2.5 years.

I want to help UKIE build a solid funding pipeline for UK companies, to work with government and its agencies, like British Business Investments to get more support and make sure that support is useful. We can help improve accessibility to finance, build a framework around Equity funding with networks of Angels, VCs, Private Equity and Investment funds helping to take companies as far as listing on the stock exchange. We can also enable connections to Publishers, project funding, and debt financing across the world, including specifically supporting companies with underrepresented founders.

I have been involved with lots of UKIE's work, but have never served on the Board, i’ve spent 9 years on the Games Committee at BAFTA (including as Chair), on the Recording Society’s Innovation Committee (operators of the Grammys), as a founder trustee with OKRE in their work linking research and entertainment, and on the Games London Advisory Board.

Mainly I help companies, as Chair at Outright Games, Chair at coherence, Director at Tiny Rebel and Adinmo as well as investing/advising Payload, Formation Games, Cult, Flick, Included Games, Landmark, TruePlayers, Audiomob, Playmint & Magicave, with half being companies with underrepresented founders.

I helped to build Outright Games, selling to PE, Improbable, a tech unicorn that raised $600m and Sensible Object, sold to Niantic. I worked as Head of Games for 5 years at Crytek, and 9 years at EA.  

James Dobrowski@JamesDobrowski | Sharkmob London | Managing Director

I am very proud to have been a part of the UKIE board for the last two-years – something that has given me a greater appreciation for the hugely beneficial work the team and UKIE does each and every day, and the multitude of challenges and opportunities we continue to face as an industry.

It is my strong belief that we best embrace those opportunities by working closely across our company boundaries, sharing insights and learnings where we can, and pursuing our shared interests collaboratively in the pursuit of making the UK the best place to make games.

I have been in the industry for 15-years, and founded Sharkmob London – a AAA studio - as Managing Director 3-years ago, with previous roles at CCP Games, Mediatonic, and Playground Games. I've been on the founding team of two UK studios, seen others through rapid growth phases, and been through the process of studio acquisition from both sides of the table. Overall, my background allows me to bring a strong developer-focussed voice to the board, with hands-on experience across a variety of challenges faced by development teams in the UK.

I'm a passionate gamer at heart, and as both a developer and an industry super-fan, I care deeply about seeing our industry progress both in terms of the ambition of our creative output, and the way in which we go about making games as developers.

As with my submission two-years ago, I continue to believe our industry has a bright future ahead, and it would be a genuine privilege to continue supporting and driving the great work UKIE does, especially during this period of major change for the organisation.