Our team

The Impetus-PEF team comprises individuals drawn from financial, consulting and professional services as well as the not-for-profit sector. We believe that this makes for a team that combines experience, discipline and insight.


Andy Ratcliffe, Chief Executive Officer

Andy joined Impetus-PEF as Chief Executive in 2016. His career has focused on two issues: tackling poverty and educational disadvantage; and making government work better. As Deputy Chief Executive of the Africa Governance Initiative he helped build a global charity working with African governments to strengthen their capacity to tackle deep-rooted poverty. Before that as Senior Policy Adviser for Education in the Prime Minister’s Strategy Unit he developed government policy on social mobility, secondary schools and skills for 14 to 19 year olds. And before that he worked for the Social Policy Department at Oxford University developing measures of neighbourhood poverty and educational disadvantage in the UK and South Africa. Andy has an MA in Philosophy, Politics and Economics and an MSc in Comparative Social Policy both from Oxford University.

Read more about Andy in his Schools Week profile

Follow Andy on Twitter: @andyratcliffe9

Investment team


Magdalene Bayim-Adomako, Investment Director

Magdalene joined Impetus-PEF in 2017 as an Investment Director. She is a solicitor with over 25 years’ experience. Prior to joining Impetus-PEF, Magdalene was a Senior Partner at White & Case LLP and had been Head of Banking in London. She has led practices through strategic change and has directed corporate initiatives to address diversity and accessibility, including consulting with Rare Recruitment who target greater recruitment of those from socially disadvantaged backgrounds into commercial law. Magdalene is a Trustee of Beanstalk, a charity that improves literacy among children and is also an external Trustee of UCLU student union. Magdalene gained her LLB (Hons) from Leeds University and her LPC from the College of Law, Chester.


Chiku Bernardi, Investment Director

Chiku has spent more than ten years in management consulting in Europe and North America. She began her career at the Boston Consulting Group, were she worked for seven years on strategy and operational improvement projects for FTSE 100 companies. Since then she has worked for boutique consulting firms and carried out a number of projects in the not-for-profit sector in the UK and India, on a pro-bono basis. In 2011 Chiku was appointed as a trustee of NPL, a sexual health charity. Chiku holds an MBA from Kellogg Business School and a BA in Politics, Philosophy and Economics from Oxford University.


Sebastien Ergas, Investment Director

Sebastien joined Impetus-PEF from management consultancy Monitor Group, where he served as Associate Partner. He brings over 12 years of experience in leading strategy programmes in private and government sectors in North & South America, Europe, and North Africa. Sebastien also worked with New Leaders, a US-based not-for-profit organisation supported by New Profit Inc. He holds a degree in Political Economy from Williams College.

Harriette Forster - to be edited

Harriette Foster, Investment Manager - Pro Bono

Harriette joined Impetus-PEF in 2016 having started her career at Bain and Company. During her formative years as a management consultant, Harriette had the opportunity to work with multiple youth and education charities through pro bono projects, which led her to follow her heart and move into social investment. Prior to this, Harriette taught English at a university in China and is keen to practise her Mandarin whenever she can. Harriette holds an M.Sci in Natural Sciences from Durham University.

James Gubb headshot (edited)

James Gubb, Investment Manager

James joined Impetus-PEF in January 2017. Prior to joining the team, James co-founded and led the charity and social enterprise, Streetscape, which enables long-term unemployed young people to move into and stay in work through providing year-long apprenticeships. Previous to this, he was Director of the think tank Civitas’s Health Policy Research Unit for four years. James holds an MA (Oxon) in Philosophy, Politics and Economics from Oxford University and is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts. He remains on Streetscape’s Board of Trustees and loves a game of tennis.

Gabrielle Hamill - edited

Gabrielle Hamill, Investment Officer

Gabrielle joined Impetus-PEF in February 2016 as Investment Team Assistant, before being promoted to Investment Officer in July 2017. Her role provides support to the Investment team – developing their KPIs and ensuring that their projects run smoothly. Prior to joining Impetus-PEF, Gabrielle studied Politics and International Relations at the University of Bath, where she focused on contemporary security challenges in Asian and European politics. As part of her degree, Gabrielle spent a year working as a Junior Consultant and PA to the Director at Seneca Consultants in Brussels. There, she took part in the writing of reports aiming to influence European and national politics, as well as market intelligence reports. Gabrielle’s passion to work in the third sector was inspired by her studies in international development.


Neha Mahendru, Investment Director

Neha Mahendru has been working as an Investment Manager with Impetus-PEF since September 2012, before being promoted to Investment Director. Prior to this, she was with McKinsey & Co., where she focused on designing and delivering performance improvement in health care systems globally. Neha began her consulting career with the Advisory Board Company, where she spent six years in supporting health care providers in the US, UK and Australia. Neha has an MBA from Indian Institute of Management Bangalore and a Bachelors from University of Michigan Ann Arbor.


Sherine Mahmoud, Investment Director

Sherine joined Impetus-PEF in February 2013, bringing with her an extensive background in impact-driven investing working with leading microfinance institutions globally. She began her career with Grameen Foundation, replicating the Nobel Prize winning Grameen Bank model across the Middle East and Latin America and later worked with Agora Microfinance Partners, making equity investments in other high impact microfinance models in Africa and Asia. Prior to joining Impetus-PEF, Sherine consulted to leading UK charities on strategies for effective management. She holds an MBA from the London Business School and a BA in Economic Development from George Washington University.

DSC_0469 edited

Luke McCarthy, Investment Director

Luke joined Impetus-PEF as Investment Director in 2017 from partner charity ThinkForward, where he was Programme Development Manager. He has extensive experience at the impact-focused charities – including The Change Foundation, UK Youth and UKSA – including programme design, performance management, fundraising (statutory, social investment and grant-making trusts), monitoring/evaluation and expanding to new geographies. Luke is Founder/Chair of Trustees of Maidenhead Cycle Hub, a Trustee of Project Oracle and has an MSc in Youth Participation.

Follow Luke on Twitter: @mccarthyluke

Elisabeths chosen photo (edited)

Elisabeth Paulson, Portfolio Director

Elisabeth joined Impetus-PEF in 2014, after spending several years as a consultant to innovative, international funders and philanthropists seeking to develop performance and impact-oriented investments and initiatives. Prior to this, Elisabeth worked for nearly 10 years with The Economist Intelligence Unit, where she was deputy director of the country forecasting division, lead South Asia analyst and a senior economist for the Asia team. She holds a BA in Politics and Chinese from Wellesley College and an MSc from the London School of Economics. After leaving college, she was a primary school teacher in New York and a member of the inaugural class of Teach for America. She is currently the chair of the Orchid Project and a member of The Funding Network.


Marina Svistak, Investment Manager & Performance and Analytics Lead

Marina joined Impetus-PEF in January 2015, originally as Investment Manager, before being promoted to Investment Manager & Performance and Analytics Lead in July 2017. She has 10 years of experience in data analytics and research. At Impetus-PEF, Marina leads on performance management with some of our portfolio charities. This is a critical part of our work that helps charities identify what drives and inhibits their performance. Why does she love it? ‘It’s never boring – there is always something to get better at.’

Prior to this, Marina was a consultant at New Philanthropy Capital, working on return-on-investment analysis for a wide range of charities. She was also an investment banker for four years with UBS and RBS. Marina holds a BA in Economics from Cambridge University and in her spare time loves running and swimming outdoors.

square logo (transparent)

Sarah Young, Investment Director

Sarah joined Impetus-PEF in 2009. Prior to this, she worked for SV Life Sciences, a leading international life sciences venture capital firm, where she made investments and supported management teams in the biotech sector. Prior to this, Sarah managed a trust that invested in small, fast growing companies in continental Europe at Framlington Investment Management. She has an MA in Natural Sciences from Cambridge.

Public Affairs team

DSC_0027 ediyted 2

Ben Gadsby, Research and Policy Manager

Bio coming soon.

DSC_0039 edited

Patrick Edwards, Head of Communications (maternity cover)

Patrick is interim Head of Communications and joined Impetus-PEF from a career as a freelance journalist and writer specialising in politics, education and economic development. Patrick has over 15 years senior communications experience in a range of large public sector bodies leading on strategic and integrated communications campaigns, media and stakeholder relations and public affairs and marketing communications. He has a BA in Philosophy and  Sociology from the University of Warwick and an MA in Investigative Journalism from City University

Follow Patrick on Twitter: @kommunikativen

Rianna King headshot - edited

Rianna King, Policy and Communications Apprentice

Rianna joined us October 2016 and is our first-ever apprentice. She is completing a Level 3 Business and Administration apprenticeship. Rianna’s role is to provide support across the Public Affairs team, become a skilled team administrator and gain a thorough grounding in policy and communications. Prior to this, Rianna studied: a Level 3 Extended Diploma in Business; and AS Levels at a sixth form college. Rianna has orchestrated many fundraising events for charities in the past, including: Parkinson’s Disease Foundation, Tanzania Trust and the British Heart Foundation – for which Rianna received a prestigious Jack Petchey Award in 2013.

Read Rianna’s blog on her apprenticeship.

Maria Neophytou - to be edited

Maria Neophytou, Director of Public Affairs

Maria joined Impetus-PEF in 2016, after running gender equality charity The GREAT Initiative. She previously headed up international policy at ARK and the Equality and Human Rights Commission and has also worked in communications consultancy and the European Parliament. She studied Government at LSE and gained a PhD in International Relations from Cambridge University.

Follow Maria on Twitter: @marianeo77


Jenny North, Director of Policy and Strategy

In her role as Director of Policy and Strategy at Impetus-PEF, Jenny leads on taking what we’re learning to a wider audience – to other charities, funders, commissioners, and national government. Prior to this, Jenny served as Director of Policy at Relate for six years and has held policy positions with Maternity Alliance and New Policy Institute. Her experience also includes working at the Home Office as Crime and Policing Analyst. Jenny holds a degree in Philosophy and Theology from Oxford University.

Follow Jenny on Twitter: @JayEeeEnn

Zoe Headshot 1 - taken by Suzi (edited)

Zoë Northridge, Communications Associate

Zoë joined Impetus-PEF in 2015, originally as Communications Officer. Zoë manages the organisation’s digital communications (website and social media) and line manages an apprentice for the Public Affairs team. She also supports brand, design, print and film. Zoë has held communications and policy positions with various NGOs including Street Child Africa, Advocates for International Development and Chance for Childhood. Zoë holds a Master’s degree in Global Politics and Law, as well as an LLB in Law (European and International) – both from the University of Sheffield. She also studied abroad in Australia at Griffith University. Zoë loves learning languages and travelling.

Follow Zoë on Twitter: @zoenorthridge


Lizzie Pring, Head of Communications (maternity leave)

Lizzie joined Impetus-PEF from Genetic Disorders UK where she drove public engagement in high-profile campaigns for the charity’s fundraising day, Jeans for Genes Day, and its schools programme. She is passionate about advancing opportunities for young people and enjoyed previous marketing roles at national youth charity, The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award. She has over eight years’ experience working in marketing and communications for the charity sector and holds a BA in Media from the University of Brighton.

Follow Lizzie on Twitter: @lizzie_pring

Philanthropy team

Olivia Antoniu - edited

Olivia Antoniou, Events Coordinator

Olivia joined Impetus – PEF in May 2016, in her new role as Events Coordinator. Olivia assists with organising events such as the Transforming Lives Dinner and the Triathlon Event. Her previous employment started in Event Management at Google London and became a Fundraising coordinator for a charity named Coeliac UK. Olivia’s particular interests consist of Fundraising and event management and has previously organized her own fundraisers such as a live music event for charities she feels close to home. She thoroughly enjoys travelling, especially around Asia, and has very recently come back from a women’s empowerment volunteer project in Nepal. Olivia has a degree in Communications media and culture which she obtained at Oxford Brookes University, where she likes to go back to visit regularly.

Follow Olivia on Twitter: @livantoniou


Daniel Barker, Philanthropy Manager

Daniel joined Impetus PEF in September 2015 as Philanthropy Manager and is responsible for a portfolio of relationships with grant-making trusts, corporate partners and individuals. Daniel joined from the children’s charity Barnardo’s where he was a Relationship Manager on the Philanthropy team for two years, raising funds for a wide range of Barnardo’s services. Prior to that, Daniel managed the Patrons membership programme at Kew Foundation, having previously worked for the Electoral Commission, the Department of Health and Egon Zehnder. He volunteers for youth theatre charity Angel Shed and sits on their management committee. He holds a degree in English Literature from the University of Cambridge.

Kirsten Baumback - edited

Kirsten Baumback, Events Manager

Kirsten joined the Events team at Impetus-PEF at the beginning of 2016, with a focus on project managing a range of Impetus-PEF’s internal and external events. Initially the Events Coordinator, she was promoted to Events Manager in May 2016. Having recently relocated from Brisbane, Australia, Kirsten has spent five years working in the Events and Community Fundraising sector for charities in Australia, including the Leukaemia Foundation of Queensland and Youngcare. Kirsten holds a Diploma in Events Management.

DSC_0304 - Copy

Harriet Gugenheim, Director of Philanthropy and Partnerships

As now Acting Director of Philanthropy (previously Senior Philanthropy Manager) Harriet focuses on maintaining and establishing new relationships with grant-making trusts, corporate partners and individuals. Born in Chicago, Harriet moved to London when she was 21 and began her career in some of London’s leading literary agencies, before becoming an agent. She then worked as a head of development in television. Harriet has worked with schools in north London, encouraging community support and developing a charitable arm of Highbury Grove School and serving as a Governor for Canonbury Primary School. She holds a BA from Oberlin College and a Graduate Diploma in Economics from Birkbeck College.

Charlie Higson - edited

Charlie Higson, Philanthropy Assistant

Prior to joining Impetus-PEF in February 2016, Charlie studied Evolutionary Anthropology at Kent and Durham University. His studies culminated in a collaborative research project with the Smithsonian, exploring the hunting behaviours of our distant evolutionary ancestors. Charlie has also worked previously as a live illustrator in London, before discovering an interest in the charity sector through volunteering.

Claudia Knights headshot (edited) 2

Claudia Knights, Development Director

Claudia joined Impetus-PEF in February 2017 as our Development Director. Claudia brings with her expertise in fundraising and philanthropy, having worked with organisations including King’s College London and Save the Children. She previously worked for The Prince’s Trust, where she was Senior Advisor, Campaign and had previously been Campaign Director and Senior Head of the National Philanthropy Team. Prior to working as a fundraiser, Claudia began her career in the oil and gas sector specialising in supply and distribution. This included working as a strategy consultant for Accenture, primarily with major energy and natural resources clients. She holds a Master of Engineering in Aeronautics and Astronautics from the University of Southampton.


Alicia Tompsett, Philanthropy Assistant

Alicia graduated with a geography degree from Durham University in June 2015. She interned for six months at the charity Spark Inside, which gave her experience in the charity sector and an interest in helping young people from disadvantaged backgrounds. She started at Impetus-PEF in August 2016 and assists the Philanthropy team (in both fundraising and events) in securing and maintaining income.

Operations team

Feruza 1

Feruza Afewerki-Abraha, Operations Officer

Feruza joined Impetus-PEF in April 2017 as the Operations Officer. Feruza is an economics graduate from the University of Kent and previously co-founded a social enterprise called Dream Nation. She worked there as the creative director for two years and gained experience in project management, events direction and photography. Her experience also grew her interest and passion for creating a social impact. In her spare time, she loves photography and live music experiences.


Herjinder Cleaver, MCIPD Human Resources Business Partner

Herjinder joined Impetus-PEF on a part-time basis in October 2014, following an extended career break from maternity. She carries over 13 years of experience working for the a mix of industries  across both public and private sector, which include Idea Carbon Strategic, Deloitte, Network Rail and NHS amongst others. Herjinder holds a Masters in Occupational Psychology and Business, Bachelors of Science Psychology, and Post graduate Diploma in HR.


Eleanor Cornish, Database Business Partner

Ellie joined Impetus-PEF in April 2016. As Database Business Partner, Ellie manages the relationship between our database (Salesforce) and ETO and is project managing an ‘enhancement programme’ across these systems to better suit the needs of Impetus-PEF. Prior to this, Ellie worked as a project manager of multiple CRM implementations across both the private and public sector. Ellie holds a degree in advertising and marketing and has an ADM:201 and Advanced Excel Expert certification.


Aoife Gibson-Ebsworth, Executive Assistant to CEO

Aoife joined Impetus-PEF in May 2016 as our CEO’s Executive Assistant. Aoife brings with her over eight years’ experience as a PA at Executive Level in both the public and private sectors. Before joining Impetus-PEF, Aoife worked for a government-owned property and investment organisation where she supported the CEO, Chairman and Executive Director of Property. In her spare time, Aoife is an avid baker.


Richard Lackmann, Chief Financial Officer

Richard has over 20 years of international financial and leadership experience as a director and consultant. He is a US-certified public accountant with international private sector experience working for GlaxoSmithKline and Deloitte Consulting. Over the past decade Richard worked for a variety of not-for-profit organisations including as Director of Finance at Beanstalk, Chief Operating Officer of Youth Music and Regional Finance Director based in Botswana for Letloa Trust. He served as trustee and Chair of the Finance Committee for Farm Africa for a number of years.

DSC_0190 7

Will Simpson, Finance Manager

Will joined Impetus-PEF in March 2017 as our Finance Manager. Will brings with him over eight years’ experience as an accountant working in private practice, having qualified as a Chartered Accountant in 2012. Before joining Impetus-PEF, Will worked for a mid-tier accountancy firm specialising in the charity sector as a Senior Auditor. In his spare time, Will is a keen skier and has recently returned from travelling, including time spent in Japan and India.


Barbara Storch, Director of Strategy, Impact and Learning

Barbara joined Impetus-PEF in 2011 as Portfolio Director, leading the Investment team and designing the organisation’s impact and performance management strategy, before being promoted to Director of Strategy, Impact and Learning in 2016. She has over 20 years of experience in consultancy and corporate finance. Prior to Impetus-PEF, she worked as a consultant for the CEO and Board of CARE International UK, advising on strategic and organisational topics. Before, she was a partner at Monitor Group, advising international corporates on strategy and Mergers and Acquisitions (M&A), and serving as Operating Officer of the M&A advisory subsidiary. Barbara holds a law degree from Freiburg University, Germany, and a MPA from Harvard Kennedy School. Barbara is a trustee of ThinkForward and DHL Foundation.

© 2017 Impetus – Private Equity Foundation. Registered charity number: 1152262. Company number: 8460519.    
Design by Fabrik.