Our Team

Our staff and trustees are passionate about climate action. See how they’re helping create a low- carbon future – or take a look at our job opportunities.

Ashden Team member Jo Walton

Joanna Walton - Joint Co-COO and Director of Communications & People

Jo has been at Ashden since 2005 and is responsible for our communications. She is also a member of the Executive Management team with particular responsibility for HR. In her time at Ashden she has overseen the smooth delivery of 15 Ashden Awards ceremonies with speakers including former US Vice President Al Gore, Sir David Attenborough and Ashden’s Patron HRH The Prince of Wales.

She is a keen gardener, dog walker and reader and trying to be a better piano player.

Ashden team member, Ed Dean

Edward Dean - Joint Co-COO and Director of Business Development

Ed leads on building the funding partnerships Ashden needs to deliver its mission and create impact. Success for him is much more than what the balance sheet looks like; it’s about a long-term relationship with the individuals and organisations that share Ashden's purpose.

Ashden team member, Giles Bristow in a RNLI life jacket and holding a helmet

Giles Bristow - Interim CEO and Director of Programmes

Giles is the Director of Programmes at Ashden where he leads our work with local authorities transforming the UK’s towns and cities, directs a campaign to decarbonise the UK’s 32,770 schools (and further FE and HE colleges), and Ashden's work with enterprises, NGOs and policy makers to accelerate the delivery of universal access to sustainable energy in the developing world.

Before working with Ashden, he was Director of Programmes at Forum for the Future with responsibility for its systems change work in energy, food and marine environments. He found his way to Forum from a previous career as an environmental lawyer in the City of London.

When not thinking about energy, innovation and system change, he is swimming in the sea or wearing his yellow RNLI wellies.  Please note, if his pager goes off, he will need to leave your meeting to head to Lyme's Lifeboat station!

Ashden team member, Lucy Blackburn smiling in black and white

Lucy Blackburn - Senior Corporate Partnerships Officer

Lucy is responsible for the stewardship of Ashden’s corporate partners and fostering new relationships, both in the UK and internationally. At its heart this means the development of partnerships that are mutually beneficial and based on a shared commitment to sustainability.

Ashden team member, Craig Burnett standing with a coffee in a yellow jacket

Craig Burnett -

Craig makes sure Ashden's voice is powerful and passionate. As well as thinking about the climate stories we want to tell, he writes and edits articles, pieces, reports, video scripts and more.

Ashden team member, Chhavi Sharma smiling at the camera

Chhavi Sharma -
Programme Manager (Sustainable Energy for International Development)

Chhavi manages Ashden’s International Awards and Business Support programmes. This involves overseeing the application and judging processes and helping find our new cohort of winners as well as providing them with the support they need to grow and scale their work. 

Ashden team member, Alex Green smiling in black and white

Alex Green -
Programme Manager - Schools

Alex is the Schools Lead for Ashden and leads on Let’s Go Zero 2030, a campaign that supports UK schools working together to be zero carbon by 2030. She managed Ashden’s sustainable school awards and peer to peer LESS CO2 programme for 7 years before launching the Let’s Go Zero campaign in 2020.

Alex has a Masters in Environmental Management from the University of Cape Town and has previously worked running an environmental business awards scheme for a local authority, supporting small businesses to cut carbon and regulating industry at the Environment Agency.

Ashden team member, Simon Brammer smiling behind a sailing helm

Simon Brammer -
Head of Cities

Simon heads up our cities programme that aims to create liveable, sustainable cities. At the heart of this approach is a network that brings together the UK metro mayor regions. Using our winners to demonstrate the possibilities, we are showing policymakers that by tackling climate change you can simultaneously address a multitude of other challenges. Challenges such as cleaning up toxic air, providing affordable warm homes or creating new, fairly paid jobs. We want a just transition.

Ashden team member, Cara Jenkinson sitting in front of a row of solar panels

Cara Jenkinson
Cities Manager

Cara works with Simon Brammer to support our UK Award winners, helping them to share best practice and showcase their work to influential audiences including policymakers. She also works with Steve Hall on the UK Awards process, including researching potential applicants and undertaking visits of shortlisted applicants.

She has been involved in community energy for several years, and appreciates the impact of promoting innovators in sustainable energy.

Ashden team member, Kasia Brookes standing in front of a waterfall

Kasia Brookes -
Awards Co-ordinator

Kasia takes care of the whole awards process – setting up the application forms, helping applicants, arranging judging meetings and visits, looking after our winners during awards week and everything in between.

Ashden team member, Anita Henderson, smiling and sitting at a table

Anita Henderson -
Operations & People Manager

Anita has overall responsibility for organisational systems and processes that underpin Ashden’s work, ensuring the team have the tools and resources they need to work effectively. She provides leadership support to the Trustees, CEO and Director of Communications & People.

Ashden team member, Suzy Van Den Eynde siting at a table with tiramasu

Suzy Van den Eynde  -
Let's Go Zero Coordinator and PA to Giles Bristow and Ed Dean

Suzy joined Ashden in 2008 and manages the Let’s Go Zero sign up process, liaising with campaign partners and  participating schools. Suzy supports our fundraising team with administration and events organisations. She also provides PA support to the directors of programmes and development.

Ashden team member, Sue Wheat sitting in dungarees

Sue Wheat -
Press and PR Lead

Sue shares the powerful examples of our climate champions with media around the world. Prior to joining Ashden, she worked as a journalist and a communications professional specialising in environmental issues, refugees and international development.

When not working, she loves honing her green building skills.

Ashden team member, Matt Ahluwalia smiling

Matthew Ahluwalia  -
Programme Officer

Matthew supports Ashden's UK awards work by carrying out research into new award themes, such as Citizen Engagement and Green Skills. This includes investigating both sectors to better understand how the Ashden Awards can have the greatest impact, whilst beginning new conversations with potential applicants for the awards. He also supports the Cities programme through providing research for our range of publications and events.

Ashden team member, Nashwa Naushad smiling in front of a wall of leaves

Nashwa Naushad - Consultant

A sustainable urbanist turned energy access specialist, Nashwa leads Ashden's award and programmatic work in humanitarian energy, while also helping design the other energy access awards. On behalf of Ashden, she manages the Power Up coalition campaign that is calling for increased adaptation funding into energy access in Africa.

When she is not working on energy access, Nashwa is planning her next dive trip, learning about coral reef restoration or enjoying delicious food in India!

Ashden team member, Emma Seery smiling with a pond behind her

Emma Seery - Digital Communications Lead

Emma looks after Ashden’s online presence, making sure our website is the best it can be, positioning Ashden as a bold voice for change across our digital channels, and growing our online community to maximise reach and impact.

Fiona Duggan -  Impact and Policy Lead

Fiona is Ashden’s policy and impact lead. She is responsible for making sure all our work is anchored in our strategic goals and informed by evidence, data and insight – and focused on impact.

Previous to Ashden she held planning and policy positions at EIT Climate-KIC, Amnesty International and Theirworld. She holds an LLM in International Law and International relations.

Ashden Team member, Frieda Wignall. a woman wearing glasses and smiling at the camera

Frieda Wignall - Junior Programme Officer

Frieda works alongside Matthew, Cara and Emma Jones in the Cities Team. She is based in Nottingham, where she was born and raised, having also recently graduated from the University of Nottingham. She investigates inspiring local and grassroots examples of innovative climate solutions across the UK.

Ashden team member, Catherine True, a woman wearing a green coat on a hill with the countryside behind her

Catherine True - Grant Fundraising Strategic Lead

Catherine works alongside the Director of Business Development to ensure Ashden has the financial resources to pursue its mission.  This involves fostering relationships with government and philanthropic funders and developing grant funding proposals.

Prior to joining Ashden she held fundraising positions at ActionAid UK, British Red Cross and Frontline AIDS.  When not working, she can often be found walking on the South Downs.

Ashden Team member, Suzanne Gibbon smiling at the camera

Suzanne Gibbon - Programme Coordinator

Suzanne is part of the team leading Ashden's schools' campaign, Let's Go Zero 2030, a campaign that supports UK schools working together to be zero carbon by 2030. She helps to build the movement of change by engaging with local authorities and organisations. She also speaks with schools directly, collecting inspirational stories that have made strides on their path to zero carbon.

Suzanne has a Masters in Climate Change: Environment, Science and Policy from Kings College University. She has previously worked for an environmental charity with a focus on community engagement, environmental education, and green space consultation.

Ashden team member, Krissy Lenartowicz wearing a brown coat and smiling at the camera

Krissy Lenartowicz - Fundraising Officer

Krissy works within Ashden’s fundraising team. She manages fundraising systems, organises fundraising-related events, and researches prospective partnerships. She is also responsible for the stewardship of Ashden’s individual giving programme.

Before joining Ashden Krissy worked in marketing. She is currently studying part-time for a Master’s degree in Sustainable Development from the University of Sussex.

Ashden team member, Stephen Hall wearing waistcoat with a moss wall behind him

Stephen Hall - Head of Awards

Steve leads the development and delivery of the prestigious Ashden Awards. With our UK and International team Steve explores the latest challenges for global climate action and searches for the best solutions in the world. Steve joined us from a research career where he published extensively on sustainable energy systems, energy transitions, sustainable cities and climate policy and economics.

Outside work Steve is a volunteer lifeboat coxswain, keen gardener and angler; he is interested in regenerative cultures as a response to the climate emergency.

Ashden team member, Fran Tute sitting on haybail with a coffee and sunflowers in the background

Fran Tute - Communications Assistant

Fran works with Emma and Sue, assisting with digital and press communications across Ashden’s work. She supports and maintains the website, social media and shares relevant and inspiring stories. Before joining Ashden, Fran worked at the Sainsbury Family Charitable Trusts on a wide variety of communication projects.

Ashden team member, Alice Sullivan smiling at the camera sitting at a table

Alice Sullivan - Senior Finance Partner

Alice has worked in finance for 10 years, starting in local practice before finding a home in the not for profit sector. She leads the finance team to deliver both operational and strategic financial support.

Alice’s drive comes from breaking down the barriers many non-finance professionals have when it comes to numbers. Her passion is freeing delivery staff to do what they do best, with an accounting framework stable enough to let them reach new heights. Enabling and building confidence in the numbers for all non-finance staff is at the heart of everything the Finance team strives to achieve.

Alice is a member of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) and has been with Ashden since 2018. When not working you can normally find Alice in her garden with her dog, weeding or enjoying a glass of wine-sometimes both!

Ashden team member, Dawn Stevenson wearing a purple beanie and smiling with a river in the background

Dawn Stevenson - International Senior Programme Officer

Dawn helps run Ashden’s International Awards, searching for the most game changing solutions globally and collaborating with thought leaders so that we can deliver the most exciting and impactful awards possible. She is constantly thinking about how Ashden can keep creating opportunities for innovators to tell their stories, reach new audiences and get the support they need to thrive.

Before Ashden, Dawn worked on UK government international climate and energy programmes.

Outside of work, she loves adventure travel, always planning the next surf, ski or mountain climbing challenge. She also loves painting and salsa dancing.

Ashden team member, Alison Lasenby wearing a ski helmet and black ski clothing on a ski slope.

Alison Lasenby - Programme Officer

Alison is part of the Let’s Go Zero team, helping schools on their journey to zero carbon. She works on the OVO Foundation Nature Prize, which awards schools for creative nature projects that inspire climate action and bring students closer to nature.

After teaching for nearly a decade, Alison is excited to focus on helping schools lower their environmental impact and become more sustainable. She is currently in the last year of a master’s degree in Sustainability and Behaviour Change at the Centre for Alternative Technology.

Ashden Trustees

Sarah Butler-Sloss -
Chair of Trustees

Sarah Butler-Sloss has been internationally recognised for her work in the field of green energy over the past 20 years, best known for founding the Ashden Awards for Sustainable Energy in 2001. She led Ashden as Founder Director from 2001 to 2019. Sarah is a regular contributor to UK and global policy debates in the field of sustainable energy and an active member of the UN’s International Sustainable Energy for All practitioner network. Sarah is also the founder and trustee of the Ashden Trust and a trustee of ClientEarth.

Richard Azarnia -

Richard is co-founder of Mlinda, which helps people rural India access renewable energy. Richard created Mlinda's vision and approves strategy. His ambition for a scalable and replicable business able to influence production and consumption defines Mlinda's approach to rural electrification. His strengths in business advisory and finance guide Mlinda's strategy. Richard is also active in asset management and sustainable investments.

Emma Colenbrander -

Emma is a social entrepreneur and international development professional. She leads the Energy Markets portfolio at Practical Action, where she heads up the Global Distributors Collective, and is a co-founder of Pollinate Energy, a multi-award winning social enterprise in India that brings clean energy products to urban slum communities. Emma has also worked with the Australian Agency for International Development (AusAID), focusing on development finance and innovation.

Caroline Holtum -

Caroline joined We Mean Business as the Communications Director following a spell as an independent consultant on sustainability content and strategy for a range of clients including Unilever, The Crowd and Bloomberg. Prior to that she was head of content globally for Guardian Sustainable Business, which she helped launch in the UK and US. She was the site editor and also held responsibility for delivering content partnerships, events and strategy.

Nick Mabey -

Nick is Chief Executive and a founder director of E3G (Third Generation Environmentalism). In addition to his management role, Nick leads E3G’s work on European climate change policy, climate diplomacy and foreign policy, and the security implications of climate change. Nick was previously a senior advisor in the UK Prime Minister’s Strategy Unit leading work on national and international policy areas. Before he joined government Nick was Head of Economics and Development at WWF-UK. He came to WWF from research at London Business School on the economics of climate change, which he published as the book ‘Argument in the Greenhouse’.

Agamemnon Otero -

Agamemnon is Founding Director of Energy Garden, Brixton Energy, Repowering, and Community Energy England and has a wealth of experience in community energy policy, finance, project development, management, and operations.

He helped launch UK industry advocacy body Community Energy England, and draft the Europe’s first national community energy strategy. He project managed energy coops Brixton Energy 1, 2, & 3,  Banister House Solar and Vauxhall Energy.

He is currently CEO of London’s largest community-owned solar project, Energy Garden. Previously, he was Director for Renewable Energy Project Finance and Social Responsibility at a financial institution and CFO for a renewable energy trading company. 

In 2014, he was made a London Leader; in 2016, he was awarded an MBE for services to community energy in the UK; and in 2017, he was named one of the 51 Most Impactful Green Leaders globally by CSR Congress.

He is frequently asked to speak about sustainable, low-carbon economies and has a master’s degree in Architecture: Advanced Environment & Energy and a Baccalaureate in Pre-Medicine, Literature and Fine Arts. His story is featured in the documentary “We the Power”, which had over 1 million views in its first month.

Andrew Reicher -

Andrew’s 43-year career has been in finance, private equity and development finance and investment. He joined CDC in 1999 and was Head of Infrastructure there and later at Actis, where the bulk of investments were in the electricity sector in Africa, Asia and Latin America. He advised the founders, invested and joined the investment committee of Berkeley Energy, a leading developer and operator of renewable energy plants in Africa and Asia. Since 2010, Andrew’s family have been active business angel investors in energy access in Africa.

Mark Campanale - Trustee

Mark is the Founder of the Carbon Tracker Initiative and conceived the ‘unburnable carbon’ capital markets thesis. He commissioned and was editor of Unburnable Carbon – Are the World’s Financial Markets Carrying a Carbon Bubble? in November 2011.  More recently, Mark co-founded ‘Planet Tracker’ which focuses on agriculture, seafood, forestry, water and textiles.  Mark is responsible for management strategy, board matters and developing their capital markets framework analysis. Their goal is to align capital markets with natural ecological limits to growth.

Prior to forming these groups, Mark had twenty five years experience in sustainable financial markets working for major institutional asset management companies.  Mark is a co-founder of some of the first responsible investment funds firstly at Jupiter Asset Management in 1989 with the Ecology Funds, NPI with Global Care, the AMP Capital Sustainable Future Funds, and Henderson Global Investor’s Industries of the Future Funds.

Mark served on the World Business Council for Sustainable Development working group on capital markets leading up to the 1992 Earth Summit; was a Member of the Steering Committee of UNEP Financial Sector Initiative (1999-2003). Mark is a Founder Director of the UK Sustainable and Responsible Investment Forum (UKSIF), 1990-2006, a member of the Advisory Board of the New Venture Philanthropy’s ‘Conservation and Markets Initiatives’; is Hon Treasurer of The Rainforest Foundation UK and on the Development Board of the Ashden Awards. Mark is an advisor to Consilium Capital, to Faith Invest and serves on the Advisory Board of Tribe Impact Capital. Additionally, Mark is Visiting Lecturer at the Master’s Course of the University of Cambridge’s Institute for Sustainability Leadership.

Mark has a BA in Politics & Economic History and an M.Sc in Agricultural Economics.

Louise Marix Evans - Trustee

Louise has over 18 years’ experience of tackling climate change with local authorities and city-regions with a strong focus on citizen engagement and delivering action.  As a Director of Quantum Strategy and Technology, she has supported Greater Manchester Combined Authority and various North West local authorities for over 12 years. She maintains her local focus through community renewable energy, local resilience groups and has set up a Repair Café in her village which is a haven of waste reduction and chatting over tea and cake.

During 2020 she was a Senior Advisor to the Climate Change Committee, focusing on local delivery of the sixth carbon budget. She researched and wrote Local Authorities and the Sixth Carbon Budget published alongside the Sixth Carbon Budget in December 2020.

Her early career focused on human rights in the Middle East, at Amnesty International and landmines charity, MAG.

Rebekah Shirley- Trustee

Rebekah is the Director of Research, Data & Innovation at WRI Africa, where she works to create widespread public access to high-quality data and insights for mobilizing sustainable development solutions.

Prior to joining WRI, Rebekah was the Chief of Research at Power for All, a global non-profit organization advancing universal energy access. Over her tenure she built a novel energy research dissemination engine that fills critical knowledge gaps for practitioners and decision-makers on implementing integrated utility energy services, unlocking agricultural value-addition, and creating livelihoods in the African context, receiving multiple awards for this work.

Rebekah earned her PhD and MSc from the Energy and Resources Group at the University of California, Berkeley, where as a University Chancellor’s Fellow she designed innovative tools for power system planning in emerging markets. She has fourteen years of experience leading energy and environmental research across Southeast Asia, Africa, and the Caribbean.

Hailing from the West Indies with roots in Jamaica and Trinidad, Rebekah now lives in Nairobi with her husband and family. Together they enjoy exploring Kenya’s great outdoors.

She is also a Visiting Research Fellow at Strathmore University, where she mentors young students and researchers

Jane Muigai Kamphuis - Trustee

Jane has over 15 years of global experience in the practice and application of international human rights, humanitarian and refugee law with United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR) in various countries - Kosovo, Sudan, Ghana, Kenya and Switzerland. While in UNHCR, she designed and implemented multiple empowerment projects for youth, women, and refugee communities in various areas including security, basic education and gender mainstreaming.

She designed and implemented training programmes, key among them including Training of Trainers (TOT) Curriculum for Camp Management for displaced persons. An accomplished researcher, Ms Muigai Kamphuis has conducted studies on various legal, policy, regulatory and skills training topics. In 2020 and in 2019, she authored Gaps in Kenya’s Regulatory Framework on Workplace Based Training and A Synthesis of Inter-Agency Knowledge on Workplace Based Training Applicable to Skills Training for Vulnerable Youth in Kenya, respectively, for United Nations International Labour Organization (ILO). In 2017 she authored Standards and Instruments for Pedagogical Upskilling of Master Craftsmen in Kenya for World Bank and Government of Kenya Youth Employment Opportunities Project (KYEOP).

Previously, she authored and co-authored various publications, including Camp Management Toolkit, a global tool for NGO, UN and Government officials running refugee and displaced persons camps

This site uses cookies to provide you with the best user experience. By using the Ashden website, you accept our use of cookies.

Stay up to date

Be the first to know about our latest projects and news