Meet the founding members of Gaia

Meet the members of Gaia

A unique female-led initiative pioneered by Project One.

Gaia Bios

Gaia Bios

Angelene Woodland - British Business Bank Chief Customer Officer Angelene is dedicated to delivering and evidencing positive impact and outcomes for the Bank and its customers. Her passion is driving change to instigate transformative shifts in behaviour and culture that will benefit colleagues and customers and help deliver the Bank’s sustainability goals. During an extensive career spanning over 25 years in marketing, encompassing stints on both agency and client side, Angelene has contributed to the success of notable organisations such as Bupa UK, Littlewoods Shop Direct Group, and the British School of Paris.

Estelle Eades - Project One Consulting Director, Climate Change Lead

With over 20 years’ experience helping customers across diverse sectors deliver their most complex transformation programmes, Estelle is an expert in change management, fostering positive change through a human-centred approach and shaping strong organisational cultures that deliver sustained success. Estelle leads Project One’s climate change and sustainability agenda, and believes that industry can unlock and lead the change that’s needed to address the global climate crisis we face. By working together, we can influence government to drive change at a societal level.

Annie Shepperd OBE - CIWEM Chair

Hayley Saich - Project One Head of Marketing and Communications

Annie is a business leader with over 25-years of experience leading and transforming businesses across both private, public and non-for-profit sectors. Annie is committed to supporting how the UK transforms businesses to meet the challenges of climate change. Annie has held multiple leadership roles, including three Chief Executive roles leading organisations to serve their communities, and was awarded an Officer of the British Empire award (OBE) for her significant contribution to energy efficiency and child protection over her career.

Hayley leads the Marketing and Communications for Project One. A champion for the organisation’s own climate change and sustainability efforts, Hayley plays a key role in building awareness on how Project One can help other organisation’s tackle their climate change and sustainability agendas as well as being a responsible supplier to their customers. Hayley is passionate about making a real difference for customers and colleagues alike and is excited to see how as a coalition we can develop and evolve the Gaia network as a force for good.

Claire Shepherd Chief Operating Officer

Jean Smith - VWFS Managing Director/Chief Finance Officer

The theme that’s defined the difference Claire has made in her career is transformation, and applying this to the challenge of climate change is an clear opportunity. In creating sustainable growth and building the infrastructure of companies globally, Claire has personal insight into the impact climate change has had on the world. We have a unique ability to consider environmental and social factors in how we operate and having the ability to learn and share within Gaia provides a true opportunity.

Working in the Finance industry for over 30 years, Jean puts her success down to taking advantage of opportunities throughout her career that would challenge her personally and professionally. Jean focuses on two key foundations: being curious and being prepared to learn new things. Industry change only happens every 50 or so years, and the move to battery electric vehicles coupled with new funding models means we’re currently in one of those periods. Jean is sure this is an exciting time to be working in the motor finance industry, and contributing to delivering that change, while ensuring good customer outcomes.

Gaia Bios

Gaia Bios

Jenna Mander - Project One Business Support Manager

Maeve O’Callaghan - Elgin Energy Head of Operations

As the driving force behind our organisation’s internal climate change and sustainability agenda, Jenna is committed to steering us toward a greener, more resilient future. Jenna’s passion lies in creating positive impact, not just for today, but for generations to come. Believing that diversity drives innovation and a passionate advocate for women’s leadership. Jenna champions equal opportunities and amplifying the voices of trailblazing women within our organisation. Jenna envisions a world where our carbon footprint is minimised and where clean energy powers our progress.

Working in the solar industry for the past 9 years, Maeve has a passion for all work that is leading the charge to provide a cleaner world for future generations. Maeve is currently co-ordinating the ESG working group internally at Elgin Energy and is very interested in hearing of any new ways to enhance the sustainable workstreams across the whole business.

Muriel Barre - Nexgen Innovation Consulting Founder and Transformation Director Muriel has 25+ years experience in top-tier consultancy and global organisations. She has led her boutique transformation consultancy since 2011, helping leaders in Financial Services and Insurance to accelerate delivery and drive remarkable performance. Muriel sees a clear connection between up- skilling executive sponsors to drive projects and change in your organisation, and meeting CSR requirements and the social aspects of ESG. Her current focus is on up-skilling executive sponsors for project management and change to enhance capabilities and directly contribute to ESG requirements.

Louise Quy - Chemonics Group UK Managing Director

Louise brings a wealth of expertise to her role as a strategic leader, with more than 20 years of progressive commercial and international development experience, working in international trade and development, banking, and professional services. As Managing Director, Louise provides strategic vision, leadership, commercial acumen, and management to Chemonics’ UK and its portfolio of international programmes. Passionate about combating climate change and violence against women, Louise currently serves as a trustee of WeForest and Chair of Luminary Bakery.

Lydia Randall - Infrastructure and Projects Authority Strategic Advisor, Defence Major Programmes Lydia is interested in being part of thought-provoking conversations within a supportive environment, connecting and contributing ideas over how we can address climate change at the individual level, workplace and community level. Lydia looks to learn from other members and their interests and experiences working in climate change and the realities we are facing in light of an exacerbating climate crisis, as well as the concrete steps we can take together to ensure a sustainable, equitable and stable future for our earth.

Nicci Mander - Ecosystemiq Climate Change, Natural Resources & Environment Professional Nicci is a seasoned international climate change and environmental governance professional. Long and proven track record in leading successful programme design and delivery. A skilled advocate and organisational leader, Nicci is able to direct operations, steer large technical teams and manage complex processes. Solutions-driven and adaptable to changing needs and circumstances, Nicci works across a diverse range of cultures and situational contexts. We look forward to welcoming Nicci as our guest speaker at the Gaia launch event.

Gaia Bios

Pooja Bhatnagar - Aptia Group Global Lead, People- Strategy, Culture & Engagement Pooja is a business-focused HR professional with over 16 years of international experience across Consulting, Financial services, Fintech, and running her own business. Passionate about making a positive difference, she has enabled organisations to transform while navigating culture and change, developed leadership and talent strategies, coached senior leaders, as well as partnered with the business to deliver the wider HR agenda.

Stephanie Howe - Project One Marketing Manager

Stephanie has always made conscious decisions to be more sustainable, so being surrounded by like-minded individuals who want to, and are making a real difference to the environment is very important to her. Stephanie’s role in the Project One Climate Collective is to support the overall marketing of this fantastic network and really drive what we do, how we will do it and drive our Race to Zero pledge. Stephanie has also supported the set-up of strategic ESG processes to streamline the way organisations commit to their social value within construction and hospitality.

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