Meet the PurpleSpace Team

Gavin Bounds

Gavin Bounds, Chair of PurpleSpace

Gavin is an International business leader whose career spans 30 years working across over 50 countries in a number of roles including COO and CEO.

He has worked in Public, Commercial and Defence sectors across EMEIA, the Americas, Africa and Asia leading organisations through significant periods of development, growth and change.  Latterly working for Fujitsu as COO of it's multi £bn EMEIA and Americas regions, he led countries, businesses and complex transformations ultimately ensuring great outcomes for clients, colleagues and Fujitsu.  Prior to Fujitsu he worked a further 9 years in the Tech sector and 13 years in Aviation and Defence.

He is Chair of The Prince of Wales' responsible business network Business in the Community (BITC) Global Goals Committee.  Gavin pioneered 'Responsible Business' inside Fujitsu EMEIA and Americas, creating and embedding its strategy, framework and practices have since been replicated throughout Fujitsu globally.  He established employee networks including Gender, Disability, BAME, LBGT+ and Chaired Fujitsu's D&I Council, RB Committee and was Executive Sponsor to it's Disability Network since it began.  He was also Awarded London Ambassador to HRH Prince of Wales in 2015 and was named in the prestigious 2019 HERoes list as a gender champion.

Gavin is bringing his commercial expertise to help grow the #PurpleLightUp movement, driving forward its influence worldwide to ensure the economic empowerment of disabled people through the celebration of 3rd December (United Nations International Day of Persons with Disabilities). 

Kay Allen OBE

Kay Allen OBE, Strategic Advisor to PurpleSpace

Kay is a business coach with over 25 years experience operating at board level in an executive and non-executive capacity within large complex organisations. 

A commercially focused leader, with excellent communication, influencing and change management skills; she has significant experience in leading transformational change that has delivered improved performance and results. Kay was awarded an OBE in 2010 for services to Equality.

Kay will be using her expertise to help the #PurpleLightUp movement to lead transformational change on inclusion for disabled people across the world.

Kate Nash OBE

Kate Nash OBE, CEO and Creator of PurpleSpace

Kate is the world's leading authority in 'Networkology' - the science behind the growth of workplace networks and resource groups. Most known for her work with disability networks, she set up an independent hub of best practice in the establishment of Disabled Employee Networks publishing the first best practice guide in 2009, with a Ministerial launch.

In April 2014 her book 'Secrets & Big News' was published tackling the issue of 'disclosure' of disability and what employers can do to help people be themselves at work. 2,511 disabled employees from 55 employers took part in the research, sponsored by BT, Fujitsu, Metropolitan Police Service, Post Office and PWC.

Kate launched PurpleSpace in October 2015 as the world's first professional development hub for disabled employee networks bringing together the 850,000 disabled employees from across employee networks.

In 2007 she was awarded an OBE for services to disabled people. In 2013 she was appointed Ambassador to Disability Rights UK.

At PurpleSpace you are most likely to find Kate inspiring Disability Employee Networks and Resource Groups and connecting and firing up a growing community of purple change agents across all sectors and industries.

  Email Kate at kate@purplespace.org        Connect with Kate on LinkedIn

Brendan Roach, Director of Strategy and Networkology

Brendan Roach, Director of Strategy and Networkology

Brendan is a globally respected leader in the field of disability inclusion in business.

On a mission to create impact at scale, Brendan ensures that PurpleSpace enables disability Employee Resource Groups/Networks to drive cultural change by developing our Networkology life-cycle approach to ERG development and cascading that know-how to every corner of the globe. He leads PurpleSpace’s strategy to grow the world’s only global network of disability ERGs/Networks through the delivery of high-quality Learning & Development.

With 15 years’ experience supporting organisations and government to improve disability confidence, Brendan is passionate about disability inclusion in business. Prior to joining PurpleSpace, Brendan developed and led Business Disability Forum’s global strategy where he supported governments, global businesses and national business and disability networks around the globe to build a better working world for employees with disabilities.

A Dyslexic thinker with a gift for connecting people and ideas, Brendan is a born collaborator who loves working with others to make things happen.

  Email Brendan at brendan@purplespace.org        Connect with Brendan on LinkedIn

Angie Elrick, Membership Engagement Manager

Angie Elrick, Membership Engagement Manager

Angie is your go to person - she's all about bringing our PurpleSpace magic to your organisation.

For the past twelve years, Angie has worked in the Not For Profit sector where she implemented global membership campaigns and cultivated and managed relationships with leading institutions. Connecting people, refining processes and tailoring solutions is what she does best and she does it with enthusiasm and experience.

Predominantly focused on membership, Angie has also headed up Policy & Regulation, Communications and Training departments for organisations which include a trade association representing alternative investments and a charity championing parental participation in education. This has given her a unique understanding of the synergies involved in the membership journey and how best to meet and anticipate the needs of various stakeholders. Angie combines her expertise with a sense of humour, efficiency and high-delivery standards and PurpleSpace's members are well-served by her dedication to ensure that they are receiving all that their membership has to offer.

Angie is very passionate about inspiring people to be the best versions of themselves and is committed to helping your organisation provide the best possible working experience for your employees. She is looking forward to supporting you every step of the way from joining to becoming a leader in the PurpleSpace community.

  Email Angie at angie@purplespace.org        Connect with Angie on LinkedIn

Lauren Pemberton-Nelson, Marketing and Communications Officer

Lauren Pemberton-Nelson, Marketing and Communications Officer

Lauren is all about shedding light on important work and journeys. 

With a background in politics, Lauren's focus is all about driving change and making a difference to underrepresented groups through the creative power of words. She has previously worked in membership based organisations to communicate the inspiring work of members, and enjoys working with people to make a real difference to inclusivity. 

Lauren joined PurpleSpace in February 2020 to promote the exciting and inspiring work of PurpleSpace and its members in a captivating manner. Lauren is increasing PurpleSpace's video content and continuing to deliver strong social media and blog pieces to tell the brilliant story of PurpleSpace and its community. Working with members to convey their exciting stories and journeys, and sharing and engaging others with the PurpleSpace story outside the organisation is a large part of Lauren's role. 

Lauren loves hearing the dedicated work of PurpleSpace members - if you are a PurpleSpace member interested in being featured in our communications, do get in touch with Lauren.

  Email Lauren at lauren@purplespace.org        Connect with Lauren on LinkedIn

Alex Taylor, #PurpleLightUp 2021 Campaign Coordinator (HSBC Secondee)

Alex Taylor, #PurpleLightUp 2021 Campaign Coordinator (HSBC Secondee)

Alex brings his strategic thinking and communication skills to PurpleSpace as a coordinator for this year’s #PurpleLightUp. As a secondee, Alex holds HSBC’s shared ambition to raise awareness and celebrate the contribution that people with disabilities make to businesses around the world.

Having worked in finance for 8 years, Alex specialises in helping vulnerable people. He was also a prominent member of the Engagement Team, working to build a united, inclusive culture in his local office and making reach to cover other teams within HSBC UK.

Alex graduated from Leeds Beckett University in 2013, securing a BSc Sports Events Management. He also has experience working within events, with a proud moment being a Game marker for the London 2012 Olympic Games, to hosting local community and charity events. 

With a true passion for helping others, Alex has had phenomenal success in fundraising. He’s made a real difference for others through securing funding of £12,000 for his local hospice, St Gemma’s. Alex also scaled the heights of Mount Toubkal in Morocco to help raise over £20,000 for MacMillian.

At the age of 26, Alex’s line manager recognised some signs of neurodiversity and helped Alex get a diagnosis of Dyslexia, Dyscalculia and ADHD. This gives him lived experience of the barriers that people with disabilities may face in life.

  Email Alex at alex.hsbc@purplespace.org        Connect with Alex on LinkedIn

Graeme Moffat, #PurpleLightUp 2021 Campaign Director (HSBC Secondee)

Graeme Moffat, #PurpleLightUp 2021 Campaign Director (HSBC Secondee)

Graeme is the person who will be turning #PurpleLightUp into a global phenomenon in 2021.

Having excelled as a people leader with HSBC, Graeme has focussed his attention on encouraging his staff to start their own journey to become their best self. He is an HSBC Mental Health Ambassador and his willingness to share his story has helped many of his colleagues to become more comfortable in sharing their own.. 

Graeme’s eye for detail and planning will amplify the voice of PurpleSpace and assist our members in getting the most out of this year’s #PurpleLightUp Campaign. 

If you would like to know how he can help you with your Leader to Leader video or any other aspect of PurpleLightUp please get in touch.
.

  Email Graeme at graeme.hsbc@purplespace.org        Connect with Graeme on LinkedIn

Kirstie Wilson, Working Group Development Manager (HSBC Secondee)

Kirstie Wilson, Working Group Development Manager (HSBC Secondee)

Kirstie is our creative minded and logical thinker, with big ideas and a love of writing.

As a long standing ally for people with disabilities, Kirstie has spent the last few years of her career making positive changes for disabled and vulnerable customers within banking. Her project to introduce the Sunflower Lanyard Scheme into all HSBC UK branches will be her legacy.
Aside from her background in Financial Services, Kirstie is also a successful Event Manager fulfilling her passion for music by planning, building and executing quirky family music events at nightclubs and festivals across Scotland. She’s also a talented DJ, already prepped for our next in-person get together! 

Kirstie’s role with PurpleSpace is to support the development of our working groups. She is heavily involved in the creation of our storyboard templates; researching and writing case studies. Her rare spirit and out of the box thinking bring a creative angle to her role within PurpleSpace.

Kirstie is focussed on bringing some colourful life and authentic soul to her engaging outputs at PurpleSpace.

  Email Kirstie at kirstie.hsbc@purplespace.org        Connect with Kirstie on LinkedIn

Sally-Anne Owens, Interim Operations Director (HSBC Secondee)

Sally-Anne Owens, Interim Operations Director (HSBC Secondee)

Sally is a strategic thinker, always aiming to be one step ahead of the curve and planning for every eventuality. She loves a list and a flowchart! 

Having worked in a variety of leadership roles across HSBC UK, Sally brings her warm and personable approach to PurpleSpace to help organise and lead our team. 

She has a true passion for Diversity and Inclusion, having worked within HSBC’s Ethnicity ERG, Embrace and hosting successful engagement and awareness events such as Black History Month, South Asian Heritage Month and Windrush Day.

Sally was diagnosed with MS over 10 years ago; a diagnosis that has taken her some time to open up about because of her belief that a leader admitting illness equalled weakness. She now realises it shows that she is human – MS stands for Mighty Strong, not Multiple Sclerosis.

  Email Sally at sally.hsbc@purplespace.org        Connect with Sally on LinkedIn

Louise Somerville, 52 Ways To Get On At Work; Project Co-ordinator Lead & Research Assistant

Louise Somerville, 52 Ways To Get On At Work; Project Co-ordinator Lead & Research Assistant

With 19 years of banking service under her belt, Louise has flourished in leadership positions, where she is recognised for her listening and wonderful support skills - her peers endearingly call her ‘Mother Theresa’. 

Louise has extensive experience as a Mental Health First Aider (MHFA), supporting both vulnerable colleagues and acting as peer mentor for other MHFAs. She has also completed Enhanced Suicide Prevention First Aid Training, using this experience to guide and support people in the most challenging of situations.

Also passionate about community work, Louise is actively involved in running social classes and groups for adults with a wide range of learning and physical disabilities. She works closely with a local charity to support young adults with learning disabilities and mental health issues, guiding them on the uncertain journey from leaving high school into starting college and contemplating their career path.

Louise is a proud Ally for people with disabilities and an active member within Diversity and Inclusion chapters, including the PRIDE working group as an LGBT+ Ally, supporter and trainer. Her role within PurpleSpace will be in supporting founder Kate Nash, with her new publication, ’52 Ways To Get On At Work’.

  Email Louise at louise.hsbc@purplespace.org        Connect with Louise on LinkedIn

Our Ambassadors

David Caldwell

David Caldwell

David is a Digital Accessibility Manager at Barclays and previously the COO for the Reach Network, Barclays diversity network for the disability and mental health agendas. Whilst in this role David led on the delivery of the 'This is me' campaign - an award winning campaign focused on breaking the culture silence and stigma of mental health in the workplace which has now been rolled out across other organisations through the Lord Mayor of London's 'This is me in the City' campaign.

David is a Founding Ambassador appointed in 2015.

  Connect with David on LinkedIn

Andy Garrett

Andy Garrett

Andy is currently working at GSK leading a global project developing a one stop shop service helping employees to secure the workplace adjustments they need to be successful in their roles/careers.

In 2015 Andy retired from a career spanning 30 years in the Met Police, latterly specialising in training & development, diversity & inclusion, disability networks (founder/leader) and workplace adjustments. Andy is an ambassador for PurpleSpace and is leading a working group on vision impairment confidence at work. Andy is a passionate advocate of disability networks and building the disability confidence of individuals, networks and leaders.

Andy is a Founding Ambassador appointed in 2015.

  Connect with Andy on LinkedIn

Andy Kneen

Andy Kneen

Andy is an HR Manager Shell`s Trading and Supply business and in 2005 he joined Shell's UK enABLE Network where he lead the ground breaking Be Yourself campaign. Andy sees himself an agent for change and an influencer and used his own experience of disability plus the fact he work for HR to lobby and influence and to get support and leader commitment on the disability agenda.

Andy was appointed a PurpleSpace Ambassador in 2018.

Greg Swaysland

Greg Swaysland

Following 16 years of service with the Royal Navy, Greg joined Bouygues Energies and Services in 2015 as a Project Manager. Additionally Greg took on the role of Co-Chair of Bouygues Disability Network where he worked to promote disability confidence both within and external to the company. From September 2019, Greg will be moving on from Bouygues to focus on his academic studies and his PhD.

Greg advocates the sharing of personal experiences and stories where self-reflection and learning lessons reveal themes that others can relate and resonate with. Greg sees himself promoting academic research in the areas of disability, employment and careers, drawing upon real-life experiences and providing support for the UK government's pledge of having 1 million more disabled people in employment by 2027.

Greg was appointed a PurpleSpace Ambassador in 2018.

  Connect with Greg on LinkedIn

Jamie Mills

Jamie Mills

Jamie joined the police from college in 2004 and has worked in a variety of policing areas including; front-line policing, delivery of improvement programs for stop and search and work on national digital policing policy on secondment to the Home Office.

Since 2013, following bowel surgery, Jamie has performed voluntary roles as Essex Police Federation branch board Equality lead and now leads the Essex police Disability network.

Through his positions within staff support networks, Jamie has consulted and advised at Chief Officer and Executive level and has acted in an advisory capacity at the Police Advisory Board for England and Wales,consulting on Police Regulations affecting disabled officers and staff.

Alongside his policing role, Jamie now also performs the role of the Chairperson of the Essex police Disability and Carers network, a staff support network of over 200 members.

As well as being appointed a PurpleSpace Ambassador in 2018, Jamie is particularly proud of reaching the rank off Inspector in Essex police in the same year, overcoming a number of disability related workplace and personal challenges.

Jamie was appointed a PurpleSpace Ambassador in 2018.

  Connect with Jamie on LinkedIn

Tulsi Patel

Tulsi Patel

Tulsi joined Nationwide Building Society in 2014 after graduating from University College London. She spent 3 years delivering technical change programmes – working her way up to project manager before moving into the company’s Culture and Inclusion team in September 2018. Alongside focusing on her career progression, Tulsi has also led Nationwide's disability network (Enable) since 2016. Her passion comes from caring for relatives with disabilities and long-term illnesses, as well as her own experience of mental health challenges.

A network reborn, she's grown the network from 50 members to over 450 by changing how we talk about, and approach, disability and mental health in the workplace. She’s gained the support of the Executive Board and hundreds across her organisation who support her vision in creating an inclusive, engaging and powerful disability network.

Tulsi was appointed a PurpleSpace Ambassador in 2018.

  Connect with Tulsi on LinkedIn

Paul Willgoss MBE

Paul Willgoss MBE

Paul has helped lead, develop and support Disabled Staff Networks for the last 20 years. His belief in people's innate willingness to want to do the right thing, combined with an analytical approach to identifying which of the right things to do first has led his networks, and himself, to be nominated for and win national awards.

Understanding the business imperative; be that in the private, public or third sector and how removing barriers to disabled employees can support organisations to deliver these is critical to Paul's thinking on how networks should engage with their organisations.

He is a career civil servant, working in both scientific and corporate roles, and has enjoyed the active support of the Health and Safety Executive in his disability roles. These have included setting up and being the first Chair of the Civil Service Disability Network, sitting on a number of working groups trying to tackle specific issues and closer to home the continual development of Equal HSE's network.

Outside of work, Paul and his partner are committed Cosplayers, AFOLs (adult fans of Lego) and recreational endurance athletes. Paul also support the development of NHS services for himself and others with his impairment.

Paul was appointed a PurpleSpace Ambassador in 2019.

  Connect with Paul on LinkedIn

Ally

Ally joined GCHQ over 10 years ago and has been involved with the Disabled Employee Network (DEN) for over 5 years, first of all as a Hearing Impaired rep delivering awareness events to help educate the workforce on adjustments and changes to help hearing impaired colleagues. Ally has also worked as an innovation lead on a variety of technical/cultural workplace adjustments and change programmes to make GCHQ a more Disability Confident department. Ally’s latest project within the DEN is helping pull together a Purple Alliance uniting disability networks from within the intelligence community.

Work that Ally has led on has included: leading GCHQ’s purple light up in December 2017 and using this to spur on the establishment of an internal Purple Allies network. Ally was instrumental in establishing an internal disability awareness offering for managers which uses storytelling and personal experiences to drive home the importance of inclusion and representation of the disabled community. Ally also took a leading role in driving to fruition a disability development programme for staff across the intelligence agencies.

Ally was appointed a PurpleSpace Ambassador in 2019.

Our technical team

Robert Wemyss

Robert Wemyss

Is a leading expert on accessibility and consultant and developer for the PurpleSpace platform.

  Connect with Rob on LinkedIn

David Hallett

David Hallett

Is a business process expert, CEO of UmbrellaDev, and chief architect of the PurpleSpace platform.


  Connect with David on LinkedIn