Common Purpose / 23 June 2023

Non-profit leaders from across the UK, Europe, Middle East and Africa to participate in 2023 American Express Leadership Academy

59 non-profit leaders will accelerate their development and build new skills to meet the unique challenges that the world is facing today.

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Common Purpose, in partnership with American Express, today is excited to announce a new group of 59 high-potential non-profit leaders from across the UK, Europe, Middle East and Africa who have been selected for the 2023 American Express Leadership Academy in London. The global programme relaunched this year with a new curriculum to help non-profit leaders build specific skills to meet the evolving needs of communities around the world.

"There is a real continued need to provide skills and development opportunities to non-profit organizations and their leaders, particularly when these challenging economic conditions can mean that training budgets are often one of the first areas to be cut,” said Adirupa Sengupta, Global Chief Executive, Common Purpose. “The American Express Leadership Academy is invaluable in helping delegates from across the UK, Europe, Middle East and Africa to come together with both local and global business leaders to develop and hone core skills and provide crucial support networks and inspiration to the sector’s high potential leaders."

"We’re thrilled to bring the relaunched American Express Leadership Academy to non-profit leaders across UK and EMEA,” said Madge Thomas, President of American Express Foundation and Head of Corporate Sustainability, American Express. “Since its launch 16 years ago, the Academy has helped more than 165,000 social purpose leaders enhance their skills, and we are proud to welcome this next group of leaders. Our new vision for the Academy supports their growth and helps increase their ability to innovate, influence and impact their local communities.”

The six-month Academy will be conducted by Common Purpose in partnership with American Express, with support from global partners, Dell Technologies and Delta Air Lines, and programming support from local nonprofit partners. The theme of this year’s programme is “Resilient Changemakers” and will kick off online in late June 2023 with the group convening in London between 10-13 July 2023. The global relaunch of the Leadership Academy earlier this year supported a group of 77 nonprofit leader from across the Americas, even bringing them together in New York City for three and half days of curriculum focused on personal resilience and insights from leaders across the social, public, and private sectors.  An additional Leadership Academy programme is being planned in Asia-Pacific.

The programme is designed to give non-profit leaders from diverse specialities and organizations a unique opportunity to learn from each other’s experiences, address current and future challenges within the sector and gain insight from key leaders in social, public, and private sectors.

The current group of non-profit leaders is geographically diverse with 62% of participants coming from the UK, 17% from Africa, 8% from Europe and 7% from the Middle East and North Africa. They represent 59 organizations working in areas such as food poverty, education, arts, mental health, climate change, refugee support, equity, and youth homelessness. 

The participants are:

  1. Ahmed Addo, Logistics Coordinator, Power to Girls Foundation
  2. Sewuese Bertha Agbendeh, Monitoring Evaluation Accountability and Learning Manager, Aid for Rural Education Access Initiative
  3. Nimo Ali, Operations Manager, Center for Victims of Torture
  4. Ellie Back, Marketing Manager, Imperial War Museums
  5. Jihad Bnimoussa, Founder and CEO, InspireCorp
  6. Simon Butler, Director/Founder, Migrate Art
  7. Richard Chivaka, Chief Executive Officer, Spark Health Africa
  8. Pauline Clarke, Senior Business & Communities Fundraiser, St Basil's
  9. Claudia Conway, Head of Press & PR, Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre
  10. Sara Cook, Head of Operations, Volunteering Matters
  11. Bizzy Day, CEO, Encounters Film Festival
  12. Marie-Rose Delauzun, Head of Alumni Engagement, The Sutton Trust
  13. Mduduzi Dube, Managing Director, Autism Western Cape
  14. Rowena Estwick, Director of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, Guys & St Thomas’ Foundation
  15. Natalia Franklin Pierce, Executive Director, Nonclassical
  16. Ellen Gamble, Programmes Director, Walkabout Foundation
  17. Enrique Hermanus, Programme Manager: 2nd Phase Program, MES
  18. Busisiwe Kamolane, Attorney & Research Co-ordinator, Centre for Applied Legal Studies
  19. Lynn Kelly, Head of Operations, POPS
  20. Lamjed Khiareddine, Senior Project Co-ordinator, Notre Grand Bleu
  21. Helen Killingley, Assistant Director – Operations, National Emergencies Trust
  22. Jastine Klink, Director of Financial Planning and Analysis, Generation You Employed Inc.
  23. Thesia Gervelie Kouloungou-Nkoula, Head of Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and Belonging, Turn2us
  24. Nicola Kurt, Senior Business Development and Training Manager, The Media Trust
  25. Ka Yan Leung, Strategic Litigation Programme Manager/Grant Liaison, Lawyers for Human Rights
  26. Andrew MacKay, CoDirector: Operations & Legal, Well Grounded
  27. Christine Mantu, CEO (deutsch: Geschäftsführung), Lokale Agenda 21 für Dresden e.V.
  28. Alexander Migale, Head of Learning and Talent, Kick It Out
  29. Naveeda Morgan, Head of Finance, Cardiff Community Housing Association Limited
  30. Andrew Morrow, Project Manager, Northern Ireland Alternatives
  31. Sunnyboy Mandla Motau, Artistic Associate Director, Moving into Dance
  32. Esther Muchena, Service Manager, The Scottish Refugee Council
  33. Esther Neave, Head of Individual Giving, Age International
  34. Madeleine O'Bryen, Senior Insight and Performance Analyst, Action for Children
  35. Oluwatosin Odukoya, Founder/Team lead, ShoeAChild Foundation
  36. Blessing Ojo, Lead Media and Communications, Earthplus Africa
  37. Oreoluwa Olowe, Executive Director, Learning for the African Child foundation
  38. Princess Onyeanusi, Customer Service Specialist (Team Leader), Dwr Cymru Welsh Water
  39. Stephen Caleb Opuni, Country Director, IDP Foundation
  40. Grace Owen, Manager/Executive Director, Rowland Hill Fund
  41. Marsha Powell, CEO, BelEve
  42. Apsara Prabhakar, Leadership Fellow, Atlas Corps
  43. Natalie Reeves, Billing Director, Split Perspectivz
  44. Leah Roberts, Head of Operations, The Key
  45. Maria Ruiz Poveda, Communication Director, Fundación Prodis
  46. Nick Sankey, Executive Director, Pratham UK
  47. Joe Scargill, Senior Youth Engagement Manager, Huddersfield Town Football Club
  48. Christiane Schubert, Managing Director Rhein-Main, Joblinge gemeinnützige AG Frankfurt
  49. Stephen Smith, Senior Certification Manager, Soil Association
  50. Jen Stobart, UK Director, Tent Partnership for Refugees
  51. Leote Taylor, Incubation Project Manager (Current Acting CEO), The South African Creative Industries Incubator
  52. Roseann Thompson, Community Engagement Manager, Katharine House Hospice
  53. Jane Tully, Director of External Affairs and Partnerships, Money Advice Trust
  54. Janete Ungara, Advocacy & Empowerment Manager, Caribbean & African Health Network
  55. Daniel Valentine, Executive Chair, Lovey Foundation
  56. Birgit Weber, Digital Fundraising Manager / Deputy Head of Digital, Save the Children Deutschland
  57. Joshua Wheeler, Innovation & Development Manager, FareShare
  58. Russell Winnard, Chief Operating Officer Young Enterprise
  59. Noor Zada, Global Programme Manager, New Tactics in Human Rights

Since its launch 16 years ago, the American Express Leadership Academy has helped more than 165,000 social purpose leaders around the world reach their potential. Learn more about the Academy and its upcoming class here.


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Common Purpose

Common Purpose is a global non-profit devoted to good leadership. Its mission is to develop people who can cross cultural, social, and institutional boundaries, both at work and in wider society. It does this by delivering compelling, surprising, and powerful leadership programs & workshops. Routed in the real-world. Both in-person and online. Programs where people are having the real, purpose-driven conversations, the types of conversations we need to be having to bring about real change.

Founded in 1989 as a non-profit social enterprise, Common Purpose now runs local programs for leaders in cities across the world and global programmes for leaders from over 100 countries across six continents. Each year, 5,000 leaders become Common Purpose alumni.

Twitter: @CommonPurpose

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