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MISA Judges

All MISA entries are judged by highly regarded, independent, expert individuals led by the Chief Judge – H.E. Karin Mössenlechner (Ambassador, Embassy of the Kingdom of The Netherlands).  

After shortlisting entries to the top 3 in each category, judges do one final round of assessment during the MISA Day Program where each shortlisted nominee gives a presentation on their submission.  Judges and audience members alike are allowed to ask questions of each nominee before category judges meet privately to confer and tally up the points.  

Winners in each category are announced immediately after the Day Program at the MISA Awards Ceremony and Dinner.  This announcement is inclusive of a Judges Report on the winner’s submission highlighting the underlying core concept of MISA – the sharing of best practices which leads to an elevation in the understanding of Innovation & Sustainability.

CHIEF JUDGE – H.E. Karin Mössenlechner
Ambassador, Embassy of the Kingdom of The Netherlands

The Ambassador started her diplomatic career in 1997.  She was first posted in The Hague, followed by a posting as Head of Political Section in New Delhi, India.  From 2006 – 2010, she was the Deputy Ambassador and Head of Economic Affairs in Berne, Switzerland.  From 2010 – 2011, she was Assistant Director for European Integration at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in The Hague.  She then went on a transfer to the Royal Netherlands Football Association (KNVB), where she worked as the Coordinator for Security Policy and Public Affairs, as well as Deputy Competition Leader for the Dutch Premier League (Eredivisie). From 2013 – 2016 she was back at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in The Hague as Deputy Director Security Policy and in the latter part of that period also as coordinator for MH17.  On 1 August 2016 the Ambassador took up her post here in Malaysia.

Panel of Judges

Best Start – Up / Scale – Up in Sustainable Innovation


JUDGE A – Matt van Leeuwen
Director – Innovation & Commercialisation, Sunway University

Matt has significant entrepreneurial experience with start – ups in the UK, Singapore, and Malaysia.  Most notably, he was co – founder of SimuGen (an international genomics company), Camtech (Singaporean incubator), and Science Bridge Academy (leading provider of STEM educational programs and teaching kits in the ASEAN region.  Previously, he was a Commercialisation Specialist in PlaTCOM Ventures.  Matt trained at the University of Cambridge (UK) and the University of Utrecht (The Netherlands), where he gained a BSc in Biomedical Sciences and MSc in Science & Business.  


JUDGE B – Azman Hassan
Vice President – PEMANDU Associates

Azman’s work utilises the Big Fast Results (BFR) Methodology and he was involved in cabinet level prioritisation workshops, problem solving laboratories, enabling implementation through capacitating and coaching of local staff, and transforming national and sub – national delivery offices.  Prior to PEMANDU, he worked at a Fortune 500 MNC in various capacities from head of country office, to global logistics network strategy, supply chain re – engineering, and business unit functions at the corporate HQ.

Best Environmental Innovation


JUDGE A – Timothy Ong
Senior Vice President – Strategic Impact Projects & Head of National Biomass Strategy Delivery Unit (1MBAS), Agensi Inovasi Malaysia (AIM)

Timothy has led the development of State level biomass development action plans for Sabah and Sarawak with the local State government to help accelerate commercial progress of biomass related projects through full implementation support.  He is currently a leading member in state level biomass working committees for both Sabah and Sarawak to execute the respective plans.  He works actively with foreign governments to advance their interest in Malaysia for biobased projects and is an active member in United Nations – FAO Working Group on Sustainable Bioeconomy Policies and Strategies.   


JUDGE B – Melissa Sandhu
Marketing & Communications Director, Basis Bay

Melissa leverages the dynamics of driving sustainability through corporate responsibility efforts, including strategic evaluations and their contributions towards business outcomes.  An early adopter of practical change and purposeful collaboration, her 17 years of marketing and communications experience sees her spearheading Green initiatives from across a diverse range of industries internationally.

Best Social Innovation


JUDGE A – Freda Liu
Producer / Presenter – Enterprise, BFM

Freda has conducted over 5,000 interviews with some prominent names including author Stephen Covey, motivational speaker Nick Vijucic, former GE CEO Jack Welch, the Duke of York HRH Prince Andrew, and Wikileaks founder Julian Assange.  She has been with BFM since its inception in 2009 and previously worked at Edelman PR, and IBM in the Communications Department for Asia Pacific.    Freda was awarded the ASEAN Rice Bowl Award for Malaysia Startup Journalist of The Year and was a nominee for MAGIC’s Social Enterprise Journalist.  She is a member of the National Association of Women Entrepreneurs Malaysia (NAWEM) and the Malaysian Association of Professional Speakers (MAS).  She is an alumni of the Cherie Blair Foundation For Women (Mentor for Women in Business).


JUDGE B – Michael Warren
Director – Strategy, Advisory & Services, InvestKL

Michael brings with him over 30 years of corporate leadership and management experience mainly in Asia Pacific countries.  He has been instrumental in pioneering the start – up, operations, and restructuring of entrepreneurial, regional, and multinational organisations across a variety of industries including telcos, financial services, energy & utilities, manufacturing, and the public sector.  His career path also includes experience with MDEC, the NTT Group, Fujitsu, LogicaCMG, the Sampoerna Group, the Keppel T&T Group, Wang, 3Com, and Digital Equipment Corporation (DEC).  Currently, he is also an adjunct professor at the national university of Malaysia, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, promoting industry – academia collaboration.