Our people

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Meet the people behind Power to Change

Our people

VIDHYA ALAKESON

VIDHYA ALAKESON

CHIEF EXECUTIVE

Vidhya is the founding chief executive of Power to Change. She has extensive policy experience, having worked in a number of think tanks and in government in both the UK and US. Vidhya is a board member of More in Common and a trustee of the Young Foundation.  

Impact and learning

Stephen Miller

Stephen Miller

Director of impact and learning

Stephen joined Power to Change in 2018. He leads our work using learning and evidence to develop the sector to recover, grow and deepen its impact. He is passionate about supporting organisations to develop innovative responses to 21st century challenges.  

Fergus Arkley

Fergus Arkley

Digital innovation manager

Fergus joined Power to Change in 2015 initially as a programme manager, developing our strategic programmes, then moving into a market development role. He is now responsible for supporting community businesses to strengthen their digital capabilities to adapt and thrive.

Maj Amin

Maj Amin

data officer (salesforce)

Maj joined Power to Change in 2016. He is responsible for the day-to-day management of Salesforce. He works closely with the rest of the team to improve and develop Salesforce, as well as providing training.

Susie Finlayson

Susie Finlayson

Market opportunities manager

Susie joined Power to Change in 2016. She leads on our health and social care work, supporting community businesses delivering health or social care services and working with partners to explore the role of community businesses in the future of the sector.

Suzanne Perry

Suzanne Perry

Impact and learning officer

Suzanne joined Power to Change in 2017. She ensures we produce quality research which benefits the community businesses we support and explores how we can help improve the places people live in. 

Rey Saributh

Rey Saributh

Impact and learning team officer

Rey joined Power to Change in 2020. She is passionate about sustainable community-led development, changes that enable a fair and inclusive society, minority rights, and migration. 

Edward Walden

Edward Walden

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Manager

Edward joined Power to Change in 2018 and has worked on digital transformation and diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI), with a current focus on leading the DEI work.  

strategy and programmes

Tim Davies-Pugh

Tim Davies-Pugh

Director of strategy and programmes

Tim’s involvement with Power to Change began at its inception, where he supported the trusts setup whilst working at The National Lottery Community Fund. 

John Dawson

John Dawson

Head of social investment

John started at Power to Change in 2019 and is responsible for the development of our social investment and assets strategy. John worked for Locality and has a history of working with community businesses.  

Sarah Dennis

Sarah Dennis

Programme delivery officer

Sarah joined Power to Change in 2019 and supports the new market opportunities workstream for community businesses including the Green Fund and Leadership programme. 

Matt Fazal

Matt Fazal

Financial innovations manager

Matt joined Power to Change in 2019. He is responsible for supporting community businesses to strengthen their financial capabilities and helping them to develop and maintain sustainable income streams. 

Kate Higgins

Kate Higgins

Strategy and programmes team officer

Kate joined Power to Change in 2020 and supports the director of strategy and programmes to have oversight of the team and relevant workstreams. 

Ed Howarth

Ed Howarth

Programme delivery manager

Ed joined Power to Change in 2018, initially managing Bright Ideas. Now he manages the capabilities workstream, which will provide support to community business leaders to adapt to, and thrive in, the new normal. 

Mike Lloyd Jones

Mike Lloyd Jones

Programme delivery officer

Mike joined Power to Change in 2018 and works on the capabilities strengthening workstream, identifying ways for community businesses to develop their skills and capacity.

Alexis Morcrette

Alexis Morcrette

senior consultant

Alexis joined Power to Change in 2018. Alexis previously spent ten years working internationally managing UK government-funded programmes promoting economic development. 

Alex Steeland

Alex Steeland

Programme delivery manager

Alex joined Power to Change in 2017 and focuses on new market opportunities for community businesses. She has experience in grant fund management, partnership development, community energy and research.

Will Walker

Will Walker

Climate action manager

Will joined the team in 2018 and leads on climate action. He has ten years’ experience in the sustainable energy field, working in a range of policy and programme management roles, most recently as a senior policy advisor on local energy to the UK government.

policy and communications

AILBHE MCNABOLA

AILBHE MCNABOLA

Director of policy and communications

Ailbhe joined Power to Change in 2016. Her role is to make the case for community businesses. She leads engagement with central, regional and local government to create more supportive environments for community businesses.

Natasha Bright

Natasha Bright

Communications manager

Natasha joined Power to Change in 2019 and leads on all aspects of communications. She has worked in the third sector for several years and is proud to have worked for organisations that are helping those in need, tackling inequalities and doing social good.  

Summer Brooks

Summer Brooks

Communications officer

Summer joined Power to Change in 2019. She works across external communications, digital marketing, PR and social media. Summer is passionate about environmental and social issues and was the first scholar to receive the Crispin Aubrey Legacy Fund when she was a journalism student.

Danielle Cohen

Danielle Cohen

Local economies manager

Danielle joined Power to Change in 2018. She works in places to enable the community business sector to flourish as part of the local economy. Before joining Power to Change, Danielle was deputy CEO of a central London BID.

Bonnie Hewson

Bonnie Hewson

Place-based investment manager

Bonnie Hewson joined Power to Change in 2015 and oversees our place-based work. For the past decade, she has worked with community-led projects & enterprises focused on community resilience. 

Natasha Ley

Natasha Ley

Communications manager

Natasha joined Power to Change in 2020. Having worked for The National Lottery Heritage Fund, Historic England and the Audit Commission, she has a wealth of experience delivering high-profile integrated communications campaigns. 

nick plumb

nick plumb

policy manager

Nick joined Power to Change in 2020. He works across a range of policy and public affairs projects, helping to make the case for community businesses and the policy change needed to support them. 

Jenny Samson

Jenny Samson

Policy officer

Jenny Sansom is the policy officer at Power to Change. Her background includes a wealth of experience in voluntary sector management, nature conservation and community development. 

Natalie White

Natalie White

Places officer

Natalie joined Power to Change in 2019. She supports the delivery of a range of projects focused on advocating for community business and improving market conditions.

Finance and resources

Stella Helps

Stella Helps

Head of finance

Stella joined Power to Change in 2020 and oversees our financial operations. She’s been in the not-for-profit sector all her career and is passionate about ensuring resources are used to their best effect. 

Steve Gallagher

Steve Gallagher

procurement manager

Steve joined Power to Change in 2016 and oversees how we procure and contract with our delivery partners and award funding. He has over 30 years’ experience of grant funding and contract management.

Amir Karim

Amir Karim

finance and operations officer

Amir joined Power to Change in 2019. He previously worked as a business support officer supporting various projects. He has overall responsibility of office and IT functioning across our three offices. 

Uju Maduforo

Uju Maduforo

Operations manager

Uju joined Power to Change in 2020 and has overall responsibility for office and IT functioning across our three offices. Uju has worked in finance and operations management roles for the not-for-profit, private and intergovernmental sectors.

Sarah McCall

Sarah McCall

procurement officer

Sarah joined Power to Change in 2018. She works to ensure we adhere to our obligations and policies in procurement of grants services, GDPR and internal audits. Sarah supports colleagues with the procurement of services.

ricky mitchell

ricky mitchell

finance Manager

Ricky joined Power to Change in 2018. He previously worked at Locality where he started as a volunteer and became finance officer, working alongside the finance manager producing management accounts.

people and governance

Nicola Fuschillo

Nicola Fuschillo

Director of people and governance

Nicola joined Power to Change in 2018. She has over 15 years’ experience working in HR in the not-for-profit and public sectors. She has a degree in politics and a MSc in human resource management.

Jason Mckenzie

Jason Mckenzie

governance and strategy manager

Jason joined Power to Change in 2018 and ensures that we adhere to all governance requirements. He is the liaison for the board of trustees and is responsible for monitoring the organisation’s performance.

Alexis Morcrette

Alexis Morcrette

senior consultant

Alexis joined Power to Change in 2018. Alexis previously spent ten years working internationally managing UK government-funded programmes promoting economic development. 

James Sabala

James Sabala

people and governance officer

James joined Power to Change in 2020 and supports on all HR and recruitment initiatives. He also provides the leadership team with administrative support. He has over 10 years’ experience of working in administrative roles. 

Lisa Warrington

Lisa Warrington

People and governance team officer

Lisa joined Power to Change in 2019. Working at Power to Change, Lisa now enjoys seeing how another way of empowering and supporting people is making a difference to local communities.  

Board of Trustees

Léonie Austin

Léonie Austin

Léonie Austin is director of marketing and communications and a board member at NHS Blood and Transplant. She is also a member of the Government Communication Service Board, a Government Communication Service Diversity and Inclusion Champion, a coach and mentor. 

Sam Berwick

Sam Berwick

Sam is the chairman of Thetford Academy, chairman of the Foundation and Growth Committee at Pilotlight, and a trustee of Campden Charities. He dedicates his time assisting third sector organisations become more effective in alleviating disadvantage. 

Stan Chan

Stan Chan

Stan is a trustee of Raleigh International where he also chairs the finance committee. Until recently, he was a trustee and treasurer at the Royal Parish Church of St Martin-in-the-Fields, a unique configuration of charitable, commercial and cultural initiatives rooted in a vibrant congregation.  

David Godden

David Godden

David’s executive career was spent in the private sector in the UK and overseas in a number of senior management roles. Alongside his role at Power to Change, David is a non-executive director with the Metropolitan Housing Association, and he provides support to Teach First.

Ian Hempseed

Ian Hempseed

Ian has been a partner at Hempsons since 1997 and heads their Charities and Social Enterprise Team. Ian has a wide range of experience in the field of charity, governance and commercial law looking after charities, social enterprises and public service mutuals.

Stephen Howard

Stephen Howard

Stephen has held a number of different executive and non-executive roles including chief executive of Cookson Group plc and chief executive of Novar PLC, and most recently chief executive of Business in the Community. 

Dai Powell

Dai Powell

Dai has been chief executive of Hackney Community Transport since 1993, leading the organisation as it has grown by more than a hundredfold – from a small community transport provider into a national social enterprise. Dai is also a board member of Big Society Capital.  

Carla Stent

Carla Stent

Carla provides interim strategic, financial and operational consulting to clients in the private, public and third sectors. She is also a serial angel investor, as well as a non-executive director on the boards and sub committees of JPM Morgan Elect, Marex Spectron and the Post Office. 

Christopher Stephens

Christopher Stephens

From 2011 to 2016, Christopher was chairman of the Judicial Appointments Commission. In 2016, he was awarded a CBE for services to the Judiciary. Prior to this, he was a member of the Senior Salaries Review Board and a civil service commissioner.