Diversity & Inclusion Archives - WeQual

Topic: Diversity & Inclusion


Jon Sparkes

Jon Sparkes has been Chief Executive of Crisis since 2014. 


Previously he was Chief Operating Officer of UNICEF UK and Chief Executive of SCOPE, the national disability charity. Jon also had a successful commercial career as Human Resources Director of the international technology firm The Generics Group.


He is a Non-Executive Director of South Yorkshire Housing Association, and currently Chair of the Homelessness and Rough Sleeping Action Group, created by the Scottish Government to find short and long term solutions to homelessness.

Amanda Mackenzie

Amanda Mackenzie OBE is the Chief Executive of Business in the Community – The Prince’s Responsible Business Network – which aims to create healthy communities with successful business at their heart.


Previously, Amanda was a member of Aviva’s Group Executive for over 8 years as CMO and joined Aviva to change its name from Norwich Union. Amanda has over 25 years of commercial experience, including director roles at British Airways Airmiles, BT and British Gas. She is a Non-Executive Director of Lloyds Banking Group, sitting on the risk, remuneration, and responsible business committees. Formerly, she was a Non-Executive Director of Mothercare plc and sat on the audit committee for 6 years.


She was on the board of the National Youth Orchestra for 10 years and was a member of Lord Davies’ review to increase the number of women on boards. Amanda is a Life Fellow of the RSA and Fellow and former President of the Marketing Society. Prior to her current role, Amanda, on loan from Aviva, helped launch the UN’s Global Goals as Executive Advisor to Project Everyone – a Richard Curtis co-founded campaign for the UN.

Ron Kalifa OBE

Ron is Chairman of Network International, a fast growing payments company previously owned by private equity. He joined just ahead of its initial public offering (IPO) in 2019.


He serves as a Non-Executive Director for the Court of Directors at the Bank of England, and Non-Executive Director for Transport for London, where he chairs the Finance Committee. He is also a Non-Executive Director for the Hundred England and Wales Cricket Board.


Ron was Vice Chairman of Worldpay (2013-19) and its global CEO (2001-2013). He developed the business from a small start up to an IPO in London and then took it through its merger with US based companies, Vantiv and FIS. Ron has worked at NatWest (1978-2000), RBS (2000-2010) and across the UK, Europe and the USA. He has covered many aspects of business including strategy, marketing and operations.

Dame Inga Beale

Dame Inga Beale is an experienced business leader having spent over 38 years in global financial services. Her final pinnacle executive role was as Chief Executive of Lloyd’s of London from 2014 to 2018. She now has a portfolio of non-executive roles, being on the boards of Clyde & Co, Crawford, London First and Mediclinic.


During her 5 year tenure at the 330-year-old financial institution of Lloyd’s, Dame Inga was responsible for accelerating the modernisation of the insurance market, embedding an innovation culture, and expanding the market’s global access across new, high-growth markets including China, Dubai, and India. As the first female Chief Executive of Lloyd’s, she also played a critical role in advancing diversity and inclusion initiatives across the global insurance sector.


Before joining Lloyd’s, Inga was Group CEO of Canopius, an insurance company with its principal operations at Lloyd’s. Prior to that she was on the Global Management Board of Zurich Insurance Group in Switzerland. Earlier roles include Group CEO of Swiss reinsurer Converium, and a variety of international leadership positions for GE Insurance Solutions where she was based in the UK, USA, France and Germany. She started her career as a reinsurance underwriter with Prudential in London and qualified as an Associate of the Chartered Insurance Institute in 1987. She is a Chartered Insurer and was awarded her Damehood in 2017 for services to the UK economy.


Her philanthropic interests include being a member of the Pitt Rivers Museum Advisory Board at Oxford University, and Patron of Insuring Women’s Futures, a not-for-profit aimed at improving women’s lifelong financial resilience.

Ann Cairns

In her role as Vice Chairman, Ann represents Mastercard around the world, focusing on inclusion, diversity and innovation. She plays the important role of senior ambassador and executive leader with a global remit and sits as part of the company’s global management committee. 


She is passionate about the role Mastercard can play in delivering inclusion through innovation and continues to build new global partnerships with governments, businesses and NGOs. 


Prior to this appointment, Ann was President of International Markets responsible for the management of all customer-related activities in over 200 countries around the world. In this role she focused on building sustainable, strong growth rates across both mature and emerging markets. She has led the company’s expansion into new and diverse geographies and opened up new customer segments; embracing the continued evolution to digital while driving an increased focus on safety, security and convenience. 


Ann brings more than 20 years’ experience working in senior management positions across Europe and the US, where she ran global retail, commercial, and investment banking operations. Prior to joining Mastercard in August 2011, Ann was head of the Financial Services Group with Alvarez & Marsal in London, where she led the European team managing Lehman Brothers Holdings International through the Chapter 11 process. In addition she helped restructure banks across Europe including Ireland and Iceland. 


She has held senior positions within many global organisations, including a tenure as CEO of Transaction Banking at ABN-AMRO, and 15 years in senior operational positions at Citigroup. 


Ann is currently chair of ICE Clear Europe, one of the world’s leading clearing houses owned by the Fortune 500 company Intercontinental Exchange (ICE). She is also global co-chair of the 30% Club, the chair of the Financial Alliance for Women, and serves as a member of the UK government’s AI Council and the IBDE advisory board. She has previously held board positions with ICE, AstraZeneca and Charity Bank as well as chairing the ABN foundation.


She has a Pure Mathematics degree and honorary doctorate from Sheffield University, and an MSc with research into medical statistics and an honorary doctorate from Newcastle University. An early career as an award-winning research engineer culminated in the role as the Head of Offshore Engineer-Planning for British Gas, where Ann was the first woman qualified to go offshore in Britain.

Maria Da Cuhna

Maria da Cunha is currently on the board of Royal Mail plc and De La Rue plc, a Panel Member at the Competition and Markets Authority, and a trustee of Community Integrated Care – a not-for-profit organisation in the social care sector.


Prior to that she spent 18 years in the aviation industry, where her last role was General Counsel and Director of HR at British Airways plc between 2011 and 2018.

Kevin Fielder

Kevin Fielder is a well-known information security professional, currently dividing his time between roles as a Chief Information Security Officer, start-up advisor, CrossFit/fitness coach and doting dad.


He has a strong technical background, but his passion lies with building high performing, diverse and resilient teams and of course resilient individuals!


Kevin has created and delivered highly successful, agile security strategies meeting the demands of global businesses. He excels in building and leading high performing teams and effectively engaging boards around cyber-risk and resilience. An experienced and dynamic information security professional, Kevin is also a board advisor to several organisations, an experienced speaker and an active member of the cyber security community promoting awareness, diversity and innovation.


His goal is to break out of the security ‘echo chamber’ and speak more broadly on critical topics around cyber and resilience.

Bruce Daisley

Bruce Daisley is one of the world’s most influential voices on fixing work.


His book was the UK’s top selling business hardback of 2019 and is an international bestseller – translated into 14 languages. Previously he spent over a decade running Twitter and YouTube (the latter at Google) for Europe, leaving Twitter as its most senior leader outside of the US.


Bruce runs the Apple #1 Business Chart topping podcast Eat Sleep Work Repeat on work culture. He now spends his time championing reforms to workplace culture and working to find solutions to climate change.

Katie Litchfield

Katie Litchfield is the founder of WeQual. Driven by a determination to tackle the lack of diversity and equality in the leadership of the world’s biggest businesses and beyond, Katie has created a dynamic and well-respected company that is rapidly disrupting the status quo and changing the way multinationals think about organising their leadership.

In a little over a year since its inception, Katie developed WeQual into a multi-faceted vehicle to identify, encourage, engage, educate, mentor, showcase and champion the many talented women yet to reach C-suite level.

Beginning with a depth of knowledge gained from 20 years at the Financial Times (working closely with FTSE 100 and Fortune 500 senior leaders) Katie successfully launched the WeQual Awards, in London in 2019 and New York in 2020. Rising to the challenges created by the global pandemic and using them to her advantage, Katie switched the Americas Awards and London Awards 2020 online – orchestrating a global broadcast. Europe, Middle East, and Africa soon followed together with the Asia-Pacific WeQual Awards 2021. To date, WeQual Awards’ research operation and subsequent unique blind assessment process has unearthed a significant number of exceptionally talented businesswomen for WeQual’s executive judges to assess. Katie has continued to keep up the rapid expansion with the launch of WeQual Consulting, a groundbreaking portal that offers bespoke training, expert executive coaching, online development tools, expert tutorials, and lectures – everything a business leader needs to make the step up to executive level.

As an inspirational speaker herself, Katie followed WeQual Awards with the WeQual Speaker Bureau, an impressive roster of executive speakers chosen for their ability to inspire better, smarter, and more profitable ways of working, with a particular focus on diversity and equality. The Bureau, simultaneously, is a vehicle to promote and encourage WeQual Awards finalists: giving these future captains of industry a rare opportunity to develop vital leadership skills.

With WeQual’s core mission in mind – to bring equality and diversity to businesses worldwide – Katie is continuing the intense pace with the development of WeQual’s campaign to discover and develop the next BAME executives.

Mark Bateman

Mark Bateman has a unique way of engaging with audiences in a way that challenges, inspires and motivates.


The son of a preacher, Mark followed in his father’s footsteps until a career in technology unlocked his entrepreneurial nature. The result was a fast growth company running 24/7 with a global corporate client base. He sold the business in 2011 and has since devoted his time to working with senior leaders to unlock potential.


Mark has worked with hundreds of SME owners/directors to help them scale their businesses, improve work/life balance and ultimately, successfully exit.


His work with large corporations resulted in Mark joining WeQual Consulting as CEO. WeQual was founded to increase equality and diversity within the Executive Committees of the world’s largest companies. Deeply intuitive, and often called “Dr Truth” by those with whom he works, he has a knack of identifying the real barriers to achieving success at individual and organisational levels. He coaches senior executives, helps move senior leadership teams into high performance and is an excellent facilitator.


He has a Masters in Leadership Coaching & Mentoring, a Post Grad Diploma in Business Coaching & Mentoring, and post grad qualifications in human psychology. Mark has been fascinated by leadership his whole life and has written a book on the topic of disruptive leadership due to be printed later this year.


Mark has been married and divorced, has grown up children, has burnt out and recovered, grown a business, sold a business, succeeded and failed many times, and is passionately committed to helping others unlock their potential and achieve their ambitions. He is adept speaking in front of both small and large groups.

Mira Magecha

Mira Magecha is well known for being the Alternative Chief People Officer (CPO).


She is a huge advocate for enabling organisations through its People. She actively promotes People / HR teams as enablers rather than a ‘cost centre’. Mira is also a Non-Executive Director and Advisor for start-ups – whilst balancing life and staying sane as a want-to-be writer.


She is known for developing pragmatic, effective solutions for business problems. She is both highly commercial and technical – she is not your typical CPO.


Mira’s experience extends to leading, implementing, and supporting People functions in start-up, turnaround and transformation phases. She focuses on the importance of diversity, building highly effective teams across the business. Most recently leading the business through change and defining new organisational design, while negotiating a complex merger alongside the impact of COVID-19 on a global workforce.

Sharon Doherty

Sharon is the Chief People Officer at Finastra, #3 global fintech. She is a mother, an author, interested in the future of work, and a champion of inclusion for all. 


She has spent nine years at Vodafone helping shape their customer, digital and purpose-led Vodafone work. Sharon is best known for championing the award-winning diversity and inclusion agenda there, as the first company in the world to introduce a global maternity policy in 2015, launching the largest global programme to ReConnect women back to work in 2017, and, in 2019, the first global company to introduce paid leave for victims of domestic abuse. 


Her earlier track record includes Kingfisher, General Electric, PwC, BAA and Laing O’Rourke as CHRO. She has also been a Trustee at Regents College and NED for Laing O’Rourke. Sharon currently sits on The Vodafone Foundation Board, and the Talent Advisory Board for CEB. Outstanding 2018 Ally. She authored ‘Heathrow’s Terminal 5, History in the Making’ and is just about to publish Belong@Vodafone.

Rob Guyler

Rob Guyler has been with British Energy and subsequently EDF Energy for 21 years.


A chartered accountant, having qualified with Coca Cola Schweppes and Mars Confectionery, Rob spent several years in Management Consultancy with Price Waterhouse before joining EDF Energy. Rob has undertaken a number of finance management roles, both operational and corporate, including that of Group Financial Controller for British Energy Group plc, and Finance, Commercial and IT Director of EDF Energy Generation. His current role is Chief Financial Officer of EDF Energy.


Rob is a strong supporter of diversity and inclusion and takes an active role in promoting this both in EDF Energy and the Energy Industry as a whole. Married to Judi for 21 years with two children (Katia 20 and Sophia 17) Rob lives in Scotland but spends most of his working life in London. He has a BSc (Hons) Degree in Business Studies and ACMA accounting qualification. His pastimes include music, cricket and cycling

Amanda Cusdin

Amanda became Chief People Officer in September 2018, a role she started on an interim basis in October 2017. She joined Sage in March 2015 to lead first the people transformation across Sage Functions and then latterly as Executive Vice President People Business Partners – leading the regional and functional generalist people teams across all of Sage locations.


Amanda has eighteen years of HR experience across a number of global FTSE organisations, including manufacturing, engineering, and projects businesses where she focused on supporting executive leaders to drive change and transformation. During her career to date, Amanda has built extensive experience across North America, Latin America, Asia and Europe. She has led in all aspects of Human Resources but specifically in M&A, growth in new geographies and working across cultures and matrix organisations. Amanda has also specialised in talent development to executive level.


Passionate about developing talent and leadership and creating truly inclusive organisations which promote diversity, Amanda has a Bachelor’s degree in History from the University of Warwick and postgraduate qualifications in Human Resources Management.

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