Meet the matches

2021 PARTICIPANTS

Alice Offley, External Affairs Manager at Cadent Gas, has been paired with Mark MacGregor, Director at Stonehaven. Callum Murphy, Third Year Politics Student at Queen Mary University of London, was matched with Max Sugarman, Public Affairs & PR Director at the Railway Industry Association.

Emily Carter, Head of Political Campaigns & Business Manager at DevoConnect, has been paired with Mario Creatura, Head of the Digital Unit at Interel. Harvey McCabe, MA Political Student at Cardiff University, was matched with Robert Gill, Lead Policy Advisor (Work & Welfare) at Scope.

Jessica Webb, Public Affairs Manager at Rail Delivery Group, has been paired with Katie Perrior, Chair of iNHouse Communications. Lukas Degutis, Marketing & Digital Content Creator at Going Live TV, was matched with Peter Botting, Strategy, Storytelling & Speaker Coach.

Maria Murphy, Associate at Nudge Factory, has been paired with Jessica Goodrum, Head of Public Affairs at Hanover. Mark Edwards, Parliamentary Staff Member at House of Commons, was matched with Anita Boateng, Partner at Portland.

Mica Gray, Caseworker at House of Commons, has been paired with Georgie Callé, Account Director (Corporate Affairs) at Weber Shandwick. Olivia Lever, Final Year Marketing Student at the University of Liverpool, was matched with Sarah Wardle, Associate Director at Built Environment Communications Group.

Pierre Andrews, Senior Parliamentary Assistant to a Conservative MP, has been paired with Poppy Trowbridge, Corporate Affairs, Communications & Strategy. Salman Anwar, Parliamentary Assistant at House of Commons, was matched with Daniel Gilbert, Managing Director, Advocacy at Hanover.

Tim Wainwright, Senior Relationships & Strategic Projects Manager at the Office of the Rt Hon The Lord Mayor, has been paired with Laura Round, Associate Director at freuds and Director of Communications at The Sustainable Markets Initiative. Verity Freeman, Final Year Student at the University of Leeds, was matched with Kirsty Buchanan OBE, Campaign Director at Mainstream UK.

We were unable to secure permissions from some other pairings, due to work sensitivities, but we can highlight these individuals: Alice Humphreys, Account Manager at WA Communications; Cameron Wake, Public Affairs Consultant at FTI Consulting; Dan Hooper, Head of Campaigns (Sustainable Operations & Consumption) at Tesco; Lucy Philippson, Head of Government Relations & Stakeholder Engagement at the British Council; Naomi Harris, Director at WA Communications; and Rob Smith, Junior Account Executive at Thorncliffe.

2020-21 PARTICIPANTS

Aaron Kent, PR Team Assistant at TopCashback, has been paired with Michael Jefferson, Principal, Capital Markets and Wholesale Policy at UK Finance. Alex Cassells, Account Manager at 3 Monkeys Zeno, was matched with Lionel Zetter, Patron of Conservatives in Communications.

Callum Attew, Senior Account Executive at MHP Communications, has been paired with Alex Greer, Political Consultant and Director. Chantelle de Villiers, External Affairs Adviser at the British Retail Consortium, was matched with Samantha Magnus-Stoll, Consultant.

Emmanuel Hanley-Lloyd, Senior Account Executive at Connect, has been paired with Daniel Gilbert, Senior Director, Advocacy at Hanover Communications. Finley Morris, Account Executive at WA Communications, has been paired with Iain Anderson, Executive Chairman at Cicero/AMO.

Jeanmiguel Uva, Senior Account Executive at Hanover Communications, was matched with Lisa Townsend, Director at WA Communications. Joe Carton, Account Manager at Red Consultancy, has been paired with Peter Botting, Strategy, Storytelling & Speaker Coach.

Kayleigh Hadjimina, Parliamentary Campaigns and Engagement Manager at the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, was matched with Samuel Coates, Strategy Consultant. Michaela Regan, Clinical Affairs and Commissioning Adviser at Cystic Fibrosis Trust, has been paired with Robert Gill, Lead Policy Advisor at Scope.

Nicholas Dunn-McAfee, Public Policy Manager at the British Fur Trade Association, was matched with Kevin Bell, Patron of Conservatives in Communications. Oliver Hazell, Senior Account Manager at Cavendish Advocacy, was paired with Tom Martin, Director at Quatro.

Ollie Simmonds, Account Executive at Headland Consultancy, was matched with Robert Lingard, Managing Director at White Stork Consultancy. Patrick Adams, Public Affairs Consultant, has been paired with Adam Honeysett-Watts, Founder & Director at do Different. and Principal Director at Conservatives in Communications.

Phoebe Sullivan, Account Manager at Built Environment Communications Group, was matched with Aisha Vance-Cuthbert, Head of Communications at One Housing. Philip Campbell, Head of Policy and Communications at The National Federation of Roofing Contractors, has been paired with Sophie Fitton, former Group Head of Corporate Communications & International Engagement at Centrica.

Samir Dwesar, Senior Account Manager at Cavendish Advocacy, has been paired with Matt Silver, Campaign Director at Babel PR. Sam Gold, Public Affairs Officer at Which?, was matched with Naomi Harris, Director at WA Communications.

We were unable to secure permissions from two additional pairings.

Joe Biden is good for the UK

GUEST POST: Patrick Adams is a political consultant. Follow on Twitter. Connect on LinkedIn 

Last Saturday, Boris Johnson was the first European leader to receive a call from the 46th US President Joseph R. Biden Jr (Joe Biden for short). According to the transcripts and tweets – driving “a green and sustainable recovery from Covid-19” are top of the agenda for these two gentlemen.

What I have set out below – regardless of who you thought would or wanted to win the election – is that – despite the choreographed blonde hair and populist tendencies – New York-born Mr Johnson has more in common with Mr Biden than his predecessor and fellow New Yorker Donald J. Trump. That is because, at heart, he’s a liberal conservative.

This year, the UK will host both the G7 Summit in Cornwall and the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26) in Glasgow and that presents No10 and the White House with a golden opportunity to ‘build back better’, together, and thus strengthen the longstanding alliance between these nations.

As highlighted, Mr Biden and Mr Johnson are keen on driving the ‘green agenda’. With COP26 taking place in November, now is the time for bold initiatives and nothing screams bold than Mr Biden signing an executive order to re-join the Paris Climate Accord the day after his inauguration. The British Government has already made several commitments related to greener energy (and is bound by the accord in the EU-UK trade agreement) and is making steady progress across several areas.  

For example, the UK has prioritised investment in wind energy in its attempt to become the ‘Saudi Arabia of wind power’. Further to this, the UK is committed to banning the sale of petrol and diesel vehicles by 2035 – actions the new US administration will likely support.

It appears the President’s first foreign trip will be to the UK rather than an EU27 member state. Whether that’s due to the pandemic or a deliberate move, reports suggest Mr Biden wants to move past any disagreements and start afresh with Mr Johnson and Mr Johnson is no doubt only too happy to hear that.

On China, the US and UK seek to curtail its growing influence and to highlight human rights abuses. Specifically, the UK has imposed harsh sanctions on China as opposed to the mixed response from the EU. The recent China-EU investment agreement, approved by the Council, may be an issue for EU-US relations. Similarly, the Nord Stream Gas pipeline between Russia and Germany will increase divisions for the alliance. As such, the EU risks alienating the US by the company that it keeps.

Defence is another area where the Biden administration will have differences of opinion with some Europeans. President Trump insisted that all NATO member states meet their two per cent defence spending requirements. This issue will not disappear with another president and Mr Biden will likely lobby for an increase in spending, albeit in a much more diplomatic way.

The UK, on the other hand, has already taken the lead on this issue and will be an ally to the US. Firstly, it is one of the few NATO members that meet its spending requirements. Secondly, the UK has increased defence spending by a further £16.5 billion.

There is rarely such a thing as friendly nations, but generally only nations with mutual interests. The UK and US have many mutual interests other than the above topics, and it will be for the President and the Prime Minister to build on them. I’m optimistic.

If you have ideas for the group or would like to get involved, please email us.

This piece was written for our website.