Fundraising Now speakers

Without fundraising, charities wouldn't exist. This conferences encompasses everything you need to know and do, from writing your applications to delivering your project.

Fundraising Now offers you training from experts in the field who will guide you every step of way to ensure that you’re ahead of the game.

Meet your speakers

Rachel Stephenson Sheff

Philanthropy & Fundraising Advisor, Lightful

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Rachel Stephenson Sheff works at London's digitally-focused, beyond-profit, Lightful, and is a Philanthropy & Fundraising Advisor for sister strategy and management consultancy, I.G. Advisors. In her role, she works on both sides of the philanthropy-fundraising equation – advising donors on how to structure and strengthen their impact, and advising charities on how to design dynamic fundraising strategies that support their ambitions. She is also the producer and host of I.G.’s podcast, What Donors Want. Prior to this role, Rachel was a New York-based major gifts fundraiser (Metropolitan Opera, Jazz at Lincoln Center, Housing Works) and theatre producer (The Public Theater). She approaches her work from an international perspective, and hopes to spend her life creating platforms for important voices to be seen and celebrated.

Stephen Follows

Creative Director, Catsnake

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Stephen Follows is a writer, producer and storytelling consultant. He is an expert in how to use storytelling to achieve measurable, pre-defined goals and has taught staff at numerous major organisations including the BBC, Google and the National Trust.

Stephen’s scriptwriting has won Virgin Media Shorts, the Reed Film Competition and IVCA awards; has been nominated at the British Independent Film Awards, Viral Video Awards, LA Movie Awards and long-listed for a BAFTA; and has been championed by Mike Newell, James King, Stephen Fry, the Daily Telegraph and Le Monde.

As a producer, he has created work for a wide variety of clients ranging from computer game giants (Bethesda), technology giants (Nokia Siemens Networks) and sporting giants (Jonny Wilkinson) but sadly no actual giants. He’s shot people in love, in the air, on the beach and on fire (although not at the same time) across over a dozen different countries in locations ranging from the Circle Line to the Arctic Circle.

John Baguley, PhD, MBA, FinstF

Owner, International Fundraising Consultancy (IFC)

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John is a Fellow of the IoF and in 2016 received its Lifetime Contribution Award. He heads the International Fundraising Consultancy (, which he founded in 2000 to change the world. It now has offices in ten countries.

His clients include the top UN organisations, international NGOs and game changers of all sizes and in all fields.

John has worked and lectured around the world and is the author of several books on Amazon including ‘Fundraising & Zombies’ a charity survival guide.

He has also developed IFC’s free Top Table breakfast discussions for heads of fundraising in the Gherkin and free First Friday fundraising clinics in several countries as well as Fundraising TV on YouTube (IFCvideo1).


(The National Cyber Security Centre)

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The NCSC is helping to make the UK the safest place to live and work online. It supports the most critical organisations in the UK, the wider public sector, industry, SMEs as well as the general public. When incidents do occur, the NCSC provides effective incident response to minimise harm to the UK, help with recovery, and learn lessons for the future.

Kathryn Holloway

Head of Individual Giving & Supporter Care, Friends of the Earth

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Kathryn started her NGO career at a small animal rights organisation in 2005. She joined Friends of the Earth in 2010 and now heads up the Individual Giving and Supporter Care teams, responsible for leading efforts to maximise income through engaging fundraising methods and a fantastic supporter experience.

Alex Aggidis

Supporter Recruitment Manager, Friends of the Earth

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Starting out in direct dialogue fundraising Alex has worked in a number of fundraising roles from Corporate to Major Gifts to Product Innovation, before specialising in Individual Giving. Alex works across numerous channels, but can most often be found cooking up digital direct response campaigns as Supporter Recruitment Manager at Friends of the Earth.

Ali Walker Davies

Head of Planning and Strategy, Open

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Ali has a geeky fascination for all things digital, having been Head of Digital Fundraising at Shelter and joining us from Blue State Digital. She’s worked for clients like Google, the Labour Party and WaterAid and, at Open, is creating campaigns that deliver real results and bring about change. If you have an email journey, she’s on it.

Cathy Shimmin

Senior Training Consultant, Directory of Social Change

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A trainer and performance coach with 25 years of experience in learning and development, Cathy has worked across the UK and Ireland in voluntary sector infrastructure and support organisations and is currently Senior Training Consultant and Performance Coach at DSC.

Cathy helps individuals and organisations to identify their L&D needs, then designs and delivers tailored programmes. A skilled facilitator, Cathy is the perfect choice to support team away days or creative sessions, as well as reviews of organisational vision, mission, objectives and values.

Cathy’s main focus is bringing DSC’s quality products and services to the regions beyond London, offering new perspectives and solutions for individuals, teams or the whole organisation.

Eileen Browne

Training Consultant, Directory of Social Change

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Eileen joined DSC in January 2018, and having worked within the commercial teams in charities and social enterprises and brings a wealth of experience of working in the 3rd sector. Eileen is a member of the training team as a Training Consultant and is dedicated to supporting clients both current and new in accessing the varied and excellent products and services DSC provides.

Eileen enjoys being part of a team that is genuine, professional and totally committed to building sustainable charities with well trained, confident trustees, employees and volunteers.

Kathy Roddy

Owner, Kathy Roddy Research and Consultancy

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Kathy has been a fundraising consultant and trainer for almost 20 years, and a DSC associate since 2005. Previously she was an executive director of a national animal welfare organisation. In 2001 Kathy gained the Certificate in Fundraising Management and then became a qualified assessor for the programme. Kathy co-authored ‘The Art and Science of Fundraising’, a master’s degree module delivered by the University of Kent.

Kathy’s areas of expertise include fundraising strategy, fundraising from individuals and grant-making trusts, fundraising regulation, business and strategic planning, and project management. A librarian early in her career, she is an expert in research skills, especially in relation to gaining evidence of need and outcomes to strengthen a charity’s case for support.

Katie Rabone, MInstF (Dip)

Grants Consultant, The E Y Foundation (Ernst & Young)

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Katie has been a professional fundraiser for 17 years, working across all disciplines including bid writing, individual giving and corporates. Katie has a Diploma in Fundraising from - and is a member of - the Institute of Fundraising.

Her achievements include raising over £1million for a local authority and £400,000 for a women’s refuge, for which she also secured the first major gift. She spent 6 years with Brighton Festival & Dome working with high profile individual donors and managing major corporate accounts.

Katie has been sharing her fundraising expertise as a consultant for 7 years and as a trainer for 4 years. Her clients include The Clock Tower Sanctuary, People United and Community Works. She is also the Grants Consultant for the EY Foundation (Ernst & Young).

Leesa Harwood

Business Owner, By The Waves Charity Consulting

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With 27 years' experience in major charities in the UK and USA I have extensive fundraising, strategic development, transformation and leadership experience. Now, I use that experience to help charity leaders and fundraisers navigate through one of the most transformational periods of third sector history so that they develop and lead sustainable charities with business and funding models designed for the future.

Nick Day

Managing Director, MAILMAX LIMITED

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Nick’s 30 years in marketing began in advertising, developed through direct marketing and now focuses mainly on maximising the many opportunities presented by digital media.

As well as being a practitioner, Nick leads a variety of training. He has delivered accredited marketing qualifications for over a decade and has delivered in-house training for commercial and charitable organisations including Sony, British Airways, Royal Mail, Parkinson’s UK, Age UK and Amnesty International.

Nick graduated in Business Studies and holds a Diploma in Direct Marketing and a Diploma in Education and Training. He is a member of the Chartered Institute of Marketing and the Institute of Direct and Digital Marketing.

Cathy Johnson


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Cathy is an experienced safeguarding professional having worked for local authority and the charity sector. After managing a charity supporting families affected by HIV, she moved to Russia to develop good practice in drug rehabilitation centres. Now at Thirtyone:eight Cathy oversees training, consultancy, and advice given by our 24hr Helpline.

Gabby Edlin

CEO & Founder, Bloody Good Period

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Gabby Edlin, 32, is an activist campaigning for menstrual equity, and the founder and CEO of charitable organisation, Bloody Good Period. Bloody Good Period now has a squad of over 200 volunteers who provide more than 6000 menstrual and hygiene products a month to people living in ‘period poverty’ across the UK. Bloody Good Period provides menstrual products and toiletries to asylum seekers, refugees and those who can’t afford them. The current recipients are a blend of asylum seekers, refugees and LGBTQ people living in poverty. These products are currently distributed through 25 drop-in services and groups in London and Leeds.

James Dawe

Senior Art Director, Open

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James Dawe is a leading Art Director and Designer in the charity sector. He has worked across extensive fundraising and campaigning projects with the creative team at Open.

His passion for integrating strategy and creative has resulted working for global non-profits, a highlight being the lead designer on the ACLU Stand for Rights telethon.

Back at home he has worked across a wide range of channels and UK charities including Unicef, WWF and World Animal Protection.

James is passionate about the future of fundraising and spends a lot of his time working on digital first projects - combining the best of digital design and payment.

James Gadsby Peet

Director of Digital, William Joseph

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Before joining William Joseph, James led the digital team at Cancer Research UK, the UK’s largest charity. There and in his previous roles at Battersea Dogs & Cats Home and Variety he was responsible for the development of digital products that met user needs and drove business value, through his experience across Digital Marketing, UX, Analytics, SEO, Content Strategy, Development and Solutions Architecture.

Jane Montague

Director, Majestic Publications MD Jane Montague Consultancy

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I’ve had the honour of working with charities all over the UK for the past 20 years through our family business, Majestic Publications. Over time, my work with charities has developed way beyond the production of their free-of-charge fundraising publications, and I now spend a significant proportion of my time acting as an advisor, a networker, and trainer for wider issues too including GDPR, Direct Mailing, and working with commercial participators.

Graeme Reekie

Director, Wren and Greyhound Limited

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Graeme Reekie leads Wren and Greyhound, a creative management consultancy based in Scotland. He is the author of ‘The Lasting Difference’ toolkit, the go-to guide for sustaining non-profit organisations and their impact. He finds it difficult to practise what his company preaches, but he tries, and he’s better at it than writing about himself in the third person.

Lucy Edwards

Managing Director, Open

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Lucy sits right at the heart of Open. She’s a problem solver, she brings us closer together and she’s passionate about the use of data to drive change. All the while, she has one eye on the future and keeps us moving forward. As if she wasn’t talented enough, she also plays hockey every Saturday and makes a mean left wing.

Paul Brollo

Trainer, Facilitator and Coach, The Steam Crossing Company Ltd

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Paul Brollo is an independent trainer, facilitator and coach who has nearly fifteen years’ worth of experience in helping people to communicate more clearly in the workplace. Paul’s key focus is to inspire communicators to develop their personal power through developing self-awareness, and then to communicate from that position of strength.

Peter Wright

Head Of Marketing and Communications, Thirtyone:eight

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Originally from Southwest London, Peter has worked in communications and fundraising for over 15 years. Motivated by his faith, he has worked for a variety of local and international charities over the last 10 years, focusing on issues of poverty, justice and human rights. Most recently he worked for Kent's largest hospice care charity raising awareness on end-of-life care issues for children and adults. Peter has a heart for speaking up for vulnerable people and serves in leadership and children's work in his local Baptist church.

Sara Rees

Executive Engagement Director, World's Big Sleep Out

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Sara has a successful track record in leading teams to deliver and develop high value, mututally beneficial charity/corporate partnerships (worth up to £12.5m p.a.). With 15 years’ experience in new business and account management, including industry-leading partnerships. Sara is on the female executive talent pipeline programme The Pearls and has a post graduate certificate in leadership & management through a 15 month Talent Development Programme.

Simon Scriver


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I'm an award-winning fundraiser that has worked in the charity/non-profit sector for about 15 years now. I love it. I have a background in Sales and also in Finance. Put these two together and you get Fundraising...but you sleep better at night. I believe in good fundraising, and I understand what motivates donors to give - both on-line and off-line. I believe in donor-centricity but I'm fundraiser-centred.

Tessy Ojo

Board Member, Comic Relief

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Tessy is the Chief Executive of The Diana Award. Tessy is passionate about engaging young people in social action and helping them reach their full potential. She is an inspirational speaker and regularly consults and comments on issues around youth participation, charity growth, diversity, women in leadership and other social issues affecting young people. Tessy is a fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, a member of the Institute of Directors. She has also won various awards recognizing her contribution to the sector such as The Precious Award, Inspiring Leader 2015, Women in Business Rising Star 2015 (London Region), Excellence Award from Eva Longoria’s Global Gift Foundation and many more. Prior to joining the Diana Award, Tessy worked in the corporate sector for over 10 years and helped to implement the robust operational planning systems for IBM UK, Borders UK and others.

Helen McEachern

CEO, Cherie Blair Foundation for Women

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Helen joined the team in 2017 after over a decade at ActionAid, most recently in the role of Director of Fundraising for ActionAid UK. She brings over 20 years’ experience in international NGOs and has held senior leadership positions at Greenpeace and ActionAid International. Helen has a BSc. in Social Policy from Birkbeck, University of London, and an International Executive MBA from the IE Business School in Madrid.

Jazz Browne

Chief Executive, Nubian Life

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Jazz Browne, is the Chief Executive of Nubian Life Resource Centre Ltd. Nubian Life is a culturally specific activity based care provider for African, Caribbean and Asian older people with complex health and social care needs, living in the London Borough of Hammersmith & Fulham. Jazz has over 25 years’ experience of developing services and community organisations working at grassroots level and understands first-hand the challenges of leadership and fundraising facing small organisations. Jazz has particular expertise in enhancing BAME organisations working at grassroots level in a climate of diminishing funding and where commissioning strategies disadvantage small organisations delivering on their statutory obligations.