Games industry leaders Dr Jo Twist and Debbie Bestwick have been named in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List.
Dr Jo Twist is the head of games industry trade body UKIE and receives her OBE for services to the creative industries.
Twist is a former journalist and held various roles at the BBC and Channel 4, including commissioning games. She joined UKIE as CEO five years ago and has led a team that has made a serious impact in the British games industry – most notable of which has been in creating a strong relationship with UK Government, which paved the way for the introduction of Games Tax Relief.
She also received the Outstanding Contribution award at last month’s Women In Games Awards. She is a London Tech Ambassador, and is heavily involved with BAFTA. She is also a VP of the charity SpecialEffect, which changes the lives of disabled children through video games.
Debbie Bestwick, meanwhile, receives her MBE for services to the video games industry. She is the MD and co-founder of Team17.
The company, best known for its work on the Worms franchise, has become a leading light in the indie games publishing market under Bestwick’s guidance. Recent successes for Team17 have included signing and working with Playtonic on Yooka-Laylee and the huge success of The Escapists, from Mouldy Toof. Bestwick and Team17 are highly regarded by independent studios for their support in growing their businesses.
Bestwick was also named Person of the Year at the MCV Awards 2015, and won Businesswoman of the Year at last month’s Women In Games Awards.
Elsewhere, Eben Upton, pioneer of the Raspberry Pi, has become a CBE.
Check out this video about Jo from last month’s Women In Games Awards.
And now check out this video about Debbie from 2015’s MCV Awards.