Biographies

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Chair's Biography


Ant Mitchell (Chair)

Ant has more than 25 years’ experience as a leadership coach, facilitator and mediator, working with business leaders and their senior teams in the UK, Europe, Asia and the US. This work traverses many sectors including Banking, Insurance, Professional Service Firms, Retail, Technology, Healthcare and Hospitality, as well as ongoing pro bono work with charities.

Following an early career in the theatre, advertising and leadership consultancy, his work is now primarily focused on executive coaching, team development and supervision.

Known in his coaching work for connecting deep listening and creativity, Ant works with experienced individuals to help find new questions that link their existing perceptions to a renewed understanding of themselves and the challenges they face.

Ant holds an MA in Psychological Coaching, is a CEDR accredited mediator, an APECS accredited executive coach and a CSA qualified supervisor.


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Directors' Biographies


Andy Jones

Andy Jones

Finance Director

 

 

Andy qualified as a Chartered Accountant with PWC and has over 30 years’ experience of leading global teams in organisations such as Credit Suisse and Fidelity International where he was European Finance Director. Andy experienced the benefits of coaching first hand in 2007, leading to a change in career direction and the delivery of transformational change programmes as both a consultant and leader. He now runs his own executive coaching and change consultancy practice which specialises in working with CFO’s, Finance Directors and their teams.

Change Consultant and Coach
Gwella Consulting Ltd

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Andy Matheson

Events Director

 

Andy has been working as an Executive Coach and Team coach for over 20 years. He divides his time between coaching, facilitation and research and development. He also runs the ILM 7 in Executive Coaching and Mentoring as well as develops in-house leaders to advance their coaching skills.

Andy has an impressive and diverse client list and works mostly at Executive/Senior level supporting individuals and teams to unleash their potential to build the business.
He has also become a coach/mentor to organisations aiming to build and develop a coaching culture and in bringing organisation values to life in the workplace.

Andy is author of the book “Leading With Executive Presence’ and he has created many practical tools and models for leaders, coaches and senior teams

He is a Fellow of The CIPD and joined APECS as an Certified Professional Team Coach.

Andy has also written a novel and as an active musician has written and recorded several albums.

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Carolyn Didsbury

Carolyn Didsbury

Governance, Risk and Compliance Director

 

 

Carolyn is an executive coach and thinking partner with a passion for challenging and supporting people to be the best they can be.

Her corporate background includes 15 years’ experience of human resources and leadership development at VP level in GlaxoSmithKline, a complex multinational organisation, partnering with General Managers and other senior commercial leaders. She led and managed HR teams in the UK and across Europe and has coached executives in a variety of roles and functions throughout her career, in Europe, Asia and Africa.

Carolyn’s understanding of business, leadership and enabling individual development combine with her experience, awareness and presence as an executive coach. She now works with leaders and future leaders, coaching them to increase self-awareness, to create positive change, to be and perform at their best and to fulfil their potential and achieve business and personal goals.

Carolyn joined APECS in 2016 and was accredited in 2018. She holds an MSc in Coaching and Behavioural Change and a post-graduate certificate in Psychosynthesis Leadership Coaching. She is a qualified NLP practitioner and has trained with Nancy Kline and Andrew Machon.

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Andy Jones

Christopher Smith

Accreditation Director

 

 

Chris has over 20 years experience as a consultant, coach and business leader, working with a range of industries, including FMCG, technology, professional and financial services. His work encompasses executive leadership and team coaching as well as organisation change consultancy and he most enjoys challenges which connect these, enabling real shifts in performance for individuals, teams and businesses.

His individual coaching work focuses on senior and executive leaders, as well as partners in professional service firms, helping them as they lead change in their business or at times of transition in their own careers. He also coaches senior leadership teams, helping them to shift their patterns of interaction to better drive systemic change in their business.

Chris is an experienced coaching supervisor and has taught coaching, supervision and team coaching to fellow practitioners and to line managers in major businesses. He is an accredited coach with APECS and joined the Board in 2019.

Earlier in his career he was active in and on the Board of Bath Consultancy Group and has been Director of L&D at a FTSE 100 company, a consultant with Price Waterhouse and an Associate Programme Director with London Business School.

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Frances White  

Communications Director

 

Frances has been a consultant for 30 years. For the past 26 years she has built a successful practice providing Organisational, Team and Executive coaching with Board and senior teams and individuals, in scores of organisations globally. Her training in Psychology and Masters in Executive Coaching gives her insight into people and behaviours - crucially, she applies this whilst focusing on the key business issues; orchestrating organisational change, organisational wellbeing, agile leveraging of markets and commercial drivers, talent development strategies, leadership depth, processes that support delivery, financial  imperatives, operational factors and governance. A good understanding and experience of these principles in action in organisations is as important as the psychology of how and why people do what they do. She is also a skilled and qualified Mediator, Coaching Supervisor, Narrative Coach, Accredited Ashridge Coach, Accredited APECS Coach and MBTI Step II qualified.

 

Frances is energetic, forward-thinking and highly practical, partnering to co-create new possibilities with clients. She is known for her honesty, directness and non-judgemental empathy. She listens, she supports, she focuses on the pivot points, she moves the narrative to new places. She listens, she works hard with her clients to find - what will really make the difference here. Frances’ criteria are authenticity, creativity and a willingness to take on new thinking. She believes that people do their best work when not on guard, not being judged and in a trusting conversation with no taboos.


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Ian Ross

Marketing Director

 

 

Ian came to coaching late in his professional life having worked for a range of private sector companies in a 35 year career that spanned over 80 countries. He has been on Operating Boards of 2 FTSE100 companies. Experience of being coached crystalized a belief that it has the potential to unlock the core talent of any organisation - its people. On leaving his last full time role he enrolled in the Henley Business School MSc programme for Coaching and Behavioural Change from which he graduated with distinction in 2016.

    He joined APECS in the same year as a practising member because of its emphasis on quality rather than quantity, and the opportunities it provided to improve personal practice. He was elected to the Board in November 2019 and has particular interest in providing guided pathways to full accreditation for newly qualified coaches.

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Nicola Murray

IT and Infrastructure Director

 

Nicola is an Expert Associate Partner at McKinsey bringing specialist expertise to complex organisational change efforts. A significant part of Nicola’s portfolio is focused on creating impact by working with C-Suite leaders and top teams to rapidly align culture with strategy to accelerate execution and deliver measurable value. Within that, identifying and then influencing critical change levers most particularly leadership effectiveness through team and executive coaching, and wholescale mindset and behaviour change.

Nicola is a qualified organisational psychologist and registered with the British Psychology Society and its Special Group in Coaching Psychology. She became certified as a Master Coach in 2008 by the Behavioural Coaching institute and has been a member of the ICC and Association for Coaching since 2008 and 2014 respectively. Nicola joined APECS as an accredited executive and team coach in 2019. Prior to McKinsey Nicola consulted with Accenture and Monitor, held leadership roles in industry within BMW, and Dimension Data and was a senior internal consultant within Investec. She has many years of experience founding and running her own consultancy, Tonic Ltd. She has spoken at events such as the NIODA Conference in Melbourne, and the American Hellenic Chamber of Commerce in Greece on organisational culture. She is currently undertaking her MRes/Doctorate in Organisational Psychology (Birkbeck) and holds a MA in Consulting and Coaching for Change (INSEAD), a MSc in Occupational and Business Psychology (Kingston University), A Post Graduate Diploma in Business Administration (Wits Business School) and a BA (Hons) in Economics and English (University of Cape Town). She is also an accredited workplace mediator and Gestalt facilitator.

Growing up in South Africa and experiencing the upheaval and opportunities that liberation from apartheid brought about helped spark Nicola’s interest in changes that are often complex, go against the tide and hence require great courage and stamina to carry through. Subsequently, her experiences working in Germany during its reunification and the fall of the Berlin Wall further cemented her belief in the power of transformational events in igniting change.
Nicola is no stranger herself to having to be brave in conquering personal and professional challenges.
When not working, Nicola is raising a family, spending time with friends or engaged in a wide variety of outdoor pursuits.


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Rajwant K. Bains

Membership Engagement Director

 

 

 

Rajwant set up her consultancy practice in 2001 following a successful career in academia and as a senior leader in local government. Over the past 20 years she has designed and delivered a wide range of development interventions for senior academics/researchers in Russel group universities, public sector organisations and global philanthropy.


As alumni of Henley’s MBA Programme Rajwant decided to enrol on the very first cohort of the School’s MSc in Executive Coaching and Behaviour Change programme. The focus of her award-winning research as part of the course was the development of coaching programmes to support progression of women to Partner level in one of the top 4 leading Professional Services firms. This enabled her to bring together her interests in coaching and representation of different groups at senior levels in organisations.


Her current areas of interest are in building the capability of senior leaders to have conversations across difference to move beyond the symbolism of diversity and inclusion to actual substance.


Rajwant has been a member of APECS for many years and secured accreditation in 2017.


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Uche Ezichi

External Relations Director

 

Uche Ezichi is an executive coach, speaker and facilitator with 15+ years of experience working in and with FTSE 100 companies and leading business schools. He is an internationally certified coach by both ICF and Marshal Goldsmith Stakeholder Centered Coaching. He is an executive coach with the prestigious INSEAD Executive Coaching Centre. The clients he has worked with delivering both individual and group coaching include IFC (International Finance Corporation, World Bank Group), Generali, KONE, LFR (Leading for Results Open programme).


He delivers leadership development programme, workshops and talks for companies such as Jefferies, Accenture, Columbia Threadneedle Investments, Citi and coaches’ leaders from diverse companies including Pfizer, Whirlpool, PA Consulting, ABInbev and executive MBAs from leading business schools. His specialty is in career development, behavioural change, building resilience (mental health and wellbeing) and managing career/leadership transitions. He was part of a team led by Professor Peter Hawkins conducting global research on leadership transitions and how to equip future leaders for future leadership challenges. During his banking career he worked closely with senior management teams to spearhead the development and execution of various leadership and diversity development initiatives. This included programmes to develop emerging VP leaders, high performing associates and enhancing the promotion potential of female executive directors. He was on the coaching faculty of the ABInbev (the worlds largest brewer) female leadership programme, coaching high potential female leaders to maximise their career potential and raise their leadership profile.


Uche has an Executive MSc in Coaching and Behavioural Change from Henley Business School and he is currently a doctoral candidate on their doctorate in business administration programme (DBA) where he is researching leadership effectiveness and how successful leaders build resilience. He is a qualified practitioner on diverse instruments including; GELM 360 and other 360 tools, Hogan, NEO Personality Inventory, Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, 16 Personality Factors Test, Personality and Preference Inventory Test, Point Positive, Neuro-linguistic Programming etc.


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APECS Ambassadors


Krishna Ramamurthy

Krish has worked in the area of people development and in particular Executive coaching for the last 35 years. Krishna is an Accredited Executive Master coach with APECS since 2015, as well as a Professional Certified Coach with the ICF, and a Certified Master Coach with the Behavioral Coaching Institute.

He has extensive experience in coaching leaders and managers in diverse multi-industry and multi-cultural and technical environments. Krishna uses lateral thinking in his coaching practice thus making it possible for his clients to achieve their goals.


In addition, he manages an ICF accredited coaching school and has successfully trained and mentored 100+ coaches. His approach to training, coaching, and facilitation is multi-disciplinary, drawing on Social Cognitive Neuroscience, Eastern thinking, and Mindful awareness.

Krishna is currently an application support partner with the APECS Accreditation Team and he is looking forward to serve as APECS Ambassador to India.

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Lilian Abrams

Lilian Abrams PhD, MBA, MCC, ESIA is an organizational psychologist and senior executive leadership coach, with over 25 years’ experience consulting with global and US organizations.


She holds a PhD in Organizational Behavior (Psychology) as well as an MBA. Dr. Abrams is accredited, since 2015, as an executive coach by APECS, as well as the ICF as a Master Certified Coach (MCC) and the European Mentoring and Coaching Council (EMCC) as a Master Practitioner. As a Coach Supervisor, she is trained, certified, and accredited by the EMCC as well (ESIA). Her executive coaching works builds on her decades of applied OD and research work, and includes special focus on leaders who are multicultural, technical and/or women.


Dr. Abrams is passionate about advancing both senior executive leadership coaching and coach supervision, through her own practice as well as through her research, publishing, webinars and presentations. For APECS, in addition to active remote participation, she has served on the Accreditation team, the Accreditation Review working party, and is happy to now serve as APECS Ambassador to the Americas.

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Stephen Duns

Prof. Stephen Duns is an experienced executive, consultant and coach. His experience includes several Chief Executive Officer and general management roles in primary health care, community and mental health and large teaching hospitals. Stephen has managed large and complex consulting assignments in the UK, Europe, USA and Australasia.


Stephen has significant experience volunteering with HIV/AIDS and the LGBTIQ communities. Stephen was a face-to-face counsellor with Terrence Higgins Trust in the UK, President of Ki Rin: West London HIV Centre. Stephen’s voluntary experience includes President/Director roles of Indigenous Education Foundation, ChillOut Festival, annecto, Parkinson’s Victoria, Merri Community Health Services, Cobaw Community Health Services and JOY 94.9 community radio station and Chair of Austin Health’s Human Research Ethics Committee.


Stephen is an Adjunct Professor of Business Leadership at the Australian Graduate School of Leadership (Torrens University), Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and Fellow of the Australasian College of Health Service Management. He holds a Doctorate in Business Leadership, a Bachelor of Arts (Philosophy), Bachelor of Letters (Psychology) and Master of Business Administration.


Stephen currently has a portfolio of work as Managing Director of The Leadership Centre, Director of Harthill Australasia and Professor of Business Leadership at the Australian Graduate School of Leadership.

 

Stephen believes in the unlimited potential of human development and strives to bring more love and joy into the world every day.


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About APECS

The Association for Professional Executive Coaching and Supervision (APECS) is the top level professional membership body for executive coaching, supervision, and advisory services to corporate organisations.

Contact Us

  • To find out more about the benefits of joining APECS, please contact:
  • The Membership Secretary
  • membership@apecs.org
  •   +44 (0)333 567 1404
  • Further details on our programme of London events can be obtained from The Real Sessions website.