To judge a competition like Coffee Masters™, we had to recruit the best of the best for our panel of judges and MCs. Comprising of legendary names from the world of specialty coffee, we are delighted to announce…
TIM STURK - HEAD JUDGE
Coffee Masters Head Judge is Tim Sturk. He's Director of Coffee Education at Cherry Coffee Training LTD. He's been playing a pivotal role in global coffee education, development, and training for over 10 years. He became a Licensed Q Grader in 2016 and has directly led the alignment project between SCAE & SCAA (Speciality Coffee Association of America) to create the world’s first global coffee education system.
Tim judged the 2021 London Coffee Masters, has been a Head Judge for the UKBC (UK Barista Championships), Italian, Romanian, UAE, Saudi Arabian, and Dubai Barista Championships. Tim's been a certified sensory judge for the World Barista Championships (WBC) since 2015.
Freda Yuan is a professional coffee taster and buyer; a licensed Q-grader; and a member of the Coffee Roasters Guild leadership council. She is currently devoting her career as the Director of Coffee at Origin Coffee Roasters.
Freda’s passion and dedication to the world of speciality coffee have been celebrated through numerous accolades. As winner of the SCA UK Cup Tasters in 2017, 2018, and 2020, as well as securing 3rd place in the World Cup Tasters in 2017, and 5th in 2021, her talent and skill are evident, and she’s influential across all aspects of the industry—her recent win as Best Coffee Writer, in the Sprudgie’s 13th annual awards, a testament to the industry’s trust in her voice.
Throughout her career, she has worked across all sectors of the coffee supply chain, including stints as a barista and roles in coffee event management, roasting, quality control, green sourcing, and coffee farming. During this journey, she found her true passion in the sensory elements of coffee, which started after her struggle and recovery from bulimia.
David’s Cape Town based cafe, Truth Coffee, has been named the best in the world by a prominent UK Newspaper or two. He believes in results, individuality, playing on people’s strengths and hates excuses.
He is also the owner of The Art of Duplicity, revolutionary Cape Town speakeasy that has gained the admiration, reputation, and recognition it deserves, both locally and internationally. Besides being one of the Mother City’s best kept decadent secrets, The Art of Duplicity holds several prestigious titles and awards, including the ‘2020 Cocktail Bar of the Year Award’ presented by The South African Bartending Accolades and Recognition (B.A.R.) Awards.
Within the world of coffee, there isn’t much James hasn’t done, he’s worked busy bars, managed, owned, and consulted for cafes, won coffee masters, given talks internationally, judged competitions, coached champions, illustrated for global coffee brands, worked with some of the worlds best roasters and helped bring new products to market.
DIANA JOHNSTON LEDEZMA
Diana has been in the coffee industry for 17 years, across two continents, having started her journey whilst in high school back in the Americas. She has worked within and across the value chain in roles including, but not limited to, roasting, training, quality control, and operations. From cafe through to green coffee importer.
Diana is no stranger to competition and has been very active on the scene since 2013, having competed in every SCA discipline, and twice competed in Coffee Masters. She is the current UK Roasting Champion, a SCA UK Sensory Judge, a certified AST in Sensory and Green, and a licensed Q Grader Arabica.
James is part Owner/Operator of Rosslyn in the City of London, two (soon to the three) of the industry’s most reputable and busiest coffee shops. Having spent a number of years as part of the team at Five Senses Coffee in Melbourne and Caravan Coffee Roasters here in London in addition to judging at the Australian Barista Championships and London Coffee Masters 2021, James brings a wealth of coffee knowledge and experience to this year’s panel.
AND THE MCS…
Actress & Top Coffee Barista, coffee expert and consultant. Born in New Zealand, Celeste has held top positions in leading artisan cafes all over the world for over a decade. Since migrating to the UK, she has been listed as one of London’s top five Baristas in The Financial Times and noted for her excellence in a plethora of other publications. Celeste also writes all things coffee for Olive Magazine as their resident coffee expert. You can see everything she is up to here: www.thegirlinthecafe.co.uk
Sierra Yeo is the Coffee Specialist for Danone Alpro U.K. She is also a certified Q-Arabica Grader and freelance coffee writer, having written for notable coffee publications like Barista Magazine (@baristamagazine), Urnex/Biocaf (@urnexbrands and @biocafcleans), Perfect Daily Grind (@perfectdailygrind), SOLO Magazine (@solomagazine), and Fresh Cup Magazine (@freshcupmag) among others.
Sierra is also the founder of The Kore Directive (@thekoredirective), a diversity, equity and inclusivity group founded on feminism within the UK and global coffee scene.