Our team

Alasdair Douglas Chairman

Prior to joining DRD, Alasdair chaired Aviate Global LLP, an international stockbroking business headquartered in London, was a Senior Vice President and Legal Advisor at Northern Trust Securities, chaired the representative body for the leading law firms in the City of London, chaired The Tree Council and was a corporate tax lawyer, managing partner and, latterly, senior partner with Travers Smith.

He currently chairs the solicitors' pro bono charity, LawWorks, and a privately-owned, privacy law business, Data Guidance.

Alasdair has extensive experience in dealing with regulators, government departments, legal and professional services businesses, private equity businesses, fund managers and both private and public commercial organisations, particularly in the regulated sectors.

Claire Davidson Partner

A co-founder of DRD Partnership, Claire has worked across a wide spectrum of sectors including FMCG corporate brand-building, inward investment, human and animal health, charities, trusts and membership organisations. She has delivered strategic communications programmes in over 100 countries. At a board and trustee level, she presently works with clients on value protection, risk mitigation, litigation communications, issues management and crisis management. Previously, she worked on a WHO-sponsored smoking cessation project and was retained by the Department of Health in the UK to develop the Five-a-Day strategy, Fruit in Schools campaign and to offer guidance on the implementation of WHO guidelines on smoking cessation and alcohol use.

Claire provides guidance on communications strategies addressing regulation, market access and product positioning for companies, as well as counsel to international corporate leadership teams, the management of higher education providers, international NGOs and leaders of campaigns for human rights. Claire is trained in mediation and is frequently engaged in facilitating meetings addressing complex issues, working closely alongside advocacy groups in the EU, the US and internationally.

Locksley Ryan Partner

A scientist by training, Locksley started his career as a Research Scientist at 3M before moving to the Mars Group. After fourteen years spent in research, marketing and personnel, Locksley left as Head of European Communication. Other high-profile positions include Director of Communications at Lloyds TSB and British Aerospace; the latter working across North America, the Middle and Far East, Africa and Australia. Subsequently, he joined the financial PR agency, Brunswick. as a Partner before leaving to set up his own consultancy focusing on advisory work before co-founding DRD Partnership in February 2012.

Locksley's client work includes campaigning against political repression, international anti-corruption campaigns and advising high-net-worth individuals on asylum applications.

Lawrence Dore Partner

Prior to co-founding DRD Partnership in 2012, Lawrence began his career in the City as an investment analyst at British Steel Pension Fund before moving first into investor relations and then financial communications at firms including CitigateDeweRogerson and Brunswick.

Lawrence co-founded Mantra PR in 2000 which was sold to Loewy in 2007 and then joined M&S plc as Interim Head of Financial and Corporate PR.
Lawrence advises a range of clients with a particular focus on litigation, risk preparedness, crisis management and reputation management.

Robert Court Partner

Robert joined DRD Partnership in October 2016. He leads on the Partnership’s Risk+ Value approach, with a specific focus on major corporate clients. Robert’s recent work includes supporting a global learned institution in its reform of governance and strategy.

Robert has global experience with the UK Diplomatic Service and with two major UK-headquartered companies, Rio Tinto (mining) and GlaxoSmithKline (pharmaceuticals). His diplomatic career included postings in London, Bangkok, Brussels (NATO and the European Union) and in Canberra as Deputy High Commissioner. At Rio Tinto he was Group Coordinator for Sustainable Development, and from 2009 to 2015 Global Head of External Affairs.

Robert applies his global public-private background to help organisations understand and address the political, social and stakeholder context in which they operate. This includes proactive work on policy issues such as geo-politics, sustainable development and human rights; delivering stakeholder engagement and communications strategies to help organisations manage risk in order to enhance and protect value; and providing mentoring support. He is a Senior Advisor with a range of advisory, social enterprise and business intelligence firms.

Pete Bowyer Partner

Pete joined DRD Partnership in January 2018, and leads the company’s public affairs activities.

He is one of the UK's leading political consultants with over 25 years in public policy and strategic communications. He is an expert at creating and running integrated government and media relations campaigns to influence public policy.

Over his time as a consultant, he has advised multinational corporations, international NGOs and high-net-worth individuals on a wide range of issues across many different sectors.

He was Senior Director, Public Affairs at Weber Shandwick (2000-2005); Founding Partner, EURO RSCG Apex Communications (2005-2011); Managing Partner, Maitland Political (2011-2017) and Founding Partner, Maitland Green (2015-17).

Pete started his career as a Parliamentary Advisor to a Shadow Minister in the mid-1990s. After 34 years’ membership, he remains active in the Labour Party with cross-party contacts throughout Westminster and Whitehall. He served three terms as an elected councillor in the London Borough of Lambeth.

He is currently chair of UK100, the network of local leaders committed to 100% clean energy in their areas by 2050.

Jeremy Oppenheim Partner

Jeremy has wide-ranging experience within central and local government as well as the charity sector. His career includes recently being the Director for Safeguarding and Counter Extremism at the Home Office, responsible for UK Government policy on safeguarding, including modern slavery, domestic abuse, countering extremism and child sexual abuse.

He was the Head of In-Country Immigration for the UK Border Agency at the Home Office where he introduced the "points-based system" and was responsible for all casework and enforcement across the UK. He has been a director of social services in London and was Chief Executive at Jewish Care, a national charity offering social care to British Jewry.

He worked as international ambassador for the Home Office dealing with immigration policy and practice, and undertook reviews of human trafficking support and the passport service for the Home Secretary.

Kate Miller Partner

A lawyer by training, Kate is a senior reputation management specialist who has advised corporates, institutions and individuals on a broad range of critical communications issues. Her areas of focus include media and stakeholder relations, reputation and crisis management, litigation communications, campaigns, profile building and cyber.

Kate started her career as a litigator at law firm Allen & Overy in London, qualifying in 1997. In 2000 she moved into the world of communications, spending the first 12 years at Brunswick specialising in financial communication for corporates including mergers and acquisitions, financial calendar, corporate positioning, stakeholder engagement, crisis and litigation. Since 2012 she has focused on reputation management for companies, institutions and private clients, with many of her clients having an international footprint across diverse geographies.

Paul Barnes Partner

Paul has 30 years experience advising clients at board level on public affairs and strategic reputation management. He is an expert in helping to influence government thinking and in creating coalitions to campaign for policy change. His clients range from FTSE 100 companies to smaller businesses, trade associations and charities.

Paul’s recent work includes a national campaign to change UK business taxation, a programme to reform visitor visa procedures and the securing of commitment and funding for a major infrastructure programme in central London.

He was a partner at GJW Government Relations, which founded the modern, professional public affairs industry in the early 1980s. More recently, he was joint managing-director at Weber Shandwick Public Affairs.

Paul was a councillor for ten years and, at 23, became Britain’s youngest mayor. He is currently Campaigns Director of Conservatives Abroad, working with the Conservative Party to engage British expats worldwide. He was Chairman of the Board of a major London further education college and a member of the Government’s London East Learning and Skills Council.

Tamlin Vickers Partner - Brussels

Tamlin Vickers is based in Brussels where he advises on EU regulatory affairs and market entry.

He was previously director of Atlas Capital Group, a boutique investment advisory firm providing high-level advice to western banks, corporations and family offices on entering China; as well as assisting Chinese conglomerates on expansion into Europe. Prior to that, Tamlin worked at Amec plc, a leading engineering consultancy specialising in the oil and gas market, where he advised senior management on the European economic and political landscape, and on business opportunities in the Far East.

Tamlin has also worked in the European Corporate Affairs Division of Tesco plc and as Senior Advisor to a member of the UK Parliament’s European Scrutiny Committee.

Tamlin read Law and French Law in London and Paris before completing a Master’s in European Governance at the London School of Economics.

Duncan Fulton Partner

Duncan has a wealth of experience in international government relations and strategic communications, with a background in both Government and private sectors.

Initially focused on domestic and security policy as Principal Speechwriter at the Home Office and Ministry of Justice, Duncan then joined the Foreign and Commonwealth Office as Head of Counter Terrorism Strategy. Duncan’s final diplomatic posting was Washington DC which included leading the diplomatic response to the Edward Snowden leaks.

Experienced at operating in the most sensitive security and political environments, Duncan moved into Financial Services joining HSBC as Head of Government Liaison for the EMEA region before becoming Global Head of Government Relations at De La Rue, the world’s largest banknote manufacturer.

Duncan holds an MA in English Language and Literature from Oxford University.

Jelena Kudelko Senior Associate

Jelena works across a range of sectors, with particular expertise in government and diplomatic relations, crisis management and cross-border legal disputes. Her recent work includes campaigning on behalf of UK and international organisations, as well as litigation support for high-net-worth individuals.

Jelena started her career at Gardant Communications, where she provided research and analytical support, primarily for clients from Russia and the CIS region.

Prior to that she worked in Moscow as a legal analyst.

Jelena holds a Bachelor of Laws (LLB) degree from the School of Oriental and African Studies, as well as a Master of Laws (LLM) degree with specialisation in Commercial Law from University College London.

A native Russian speaker, Jelena is also fluent in Lithuanian and is currently studying Italian.

Fflur Sheppard Senior Associate

Fflur is an experienced corporate and crisis communications manager, responsible for training and coaching at DRD alongside her client work.

Fflur started her career as a Corporate Affairs graduate at Tesco, where she worked on the horse meat scandal, brand relaunches and exiting of both proposed store sites and less profitable markets. She also advised on supplier relations, prepared successive chairmen for shareholder questions at Annual General Meetings, media trained store staff, and led local community engagement in Wales, the Midlands and the South East of England.

After leading Corporate Communications at B&Q she left the sphere of in-house retail to join an integrated agency, where she specialised in crisis communications and reputation management for a wide range of organisations, from charities and schools to membership organisations and pharmaceutical companies.

Fflur is a Welsh speaker and has a first class degree in English literature from the University of Warwick.

Samantha Beggs Associate

Samantha has a deep understanding of the mechanisms of government, having worked in the House of Commons for nearly five years. Before joining DRD, she was Senior Parliamentary Assistant to Edward Argar MP, who during that time was Private Parliamentary Secretary (PPS) to the Home Secretary and a Justice Minister.

In this position, among other things, she was responsible for researching and preparing speeches and briefings, responding to policy letters and preparing articles and press releases for local media.

She also worked as Parliamentary Assistant to Chris Heaton-Harris MP and as a Press and Research Officer in the DUP Whips Office. As well as this, she has previous agency experience having worked in the Energy Team at Brevia Consulting.

Samantha holds a degree in History from Queens University Belfast and is a keen kayaker and canoe polo player.

James Browne Senior Analyst

James supports a wide range of clients, focusing particularly on litigation and public affairs.

He previously worked at Newgate Communications, where he held a roving role in the Financial team, also working across Geopolitical, Public Affairs and Corporate. There, he worked as a speechwriter and analyst for a G20 Cabinet Minister and MENA Central Bank, helping to increase transparency and accountability in these institutions. He also worked to advise listed clients of all sizes on effective communication with the capital markets.

His Public Affairs experience includes organising a major public health stakeholder campaign to highlight the threat around Anti-Microbial Resistance (AMR). The campaign culminated in a policy roundtable which brought executive-level academics, scientists and politicians together to discuss next steps in combatting the global crisis.

James was previously a Commissioned Officer in the Royal Navy, and has also worked as a cricket journalist and professional jazz pianist. He speaks Italian.

Bianka Weber Analyst

Prior to joining DRD, Bianka gained thorough understanding of international affairs and institutions as she carried out internships for the Hungarian Embassy in Paris, Rolls Royce plc and the Permanent Mission of Hungary to the UN. She has also interned at Red Cross during the Refugee Crisis of 2015/6.

She previously worked at Dartmouth Partners, a finance recruitment consultancy, supporting clients across financial services, including private equity, asset management, corporate banking and hedge fund markets.

Bianka holds a First-Class BA History and Politics degree from the University of Exeter and an MSc Global Politics degree from The London School of Economics and Political Science.

Geordie Hazeel Analyst

Geordie works across a variety of client portfolios, with a particular focus on litigation, crisis and international affairs.

Prior to joining DRD, he worked at a communications consultancy in London, where he primarily acted as a consultant to a Gulf state. In this position, he gained a deep understanding of the MENA region and worked across both media and parliamentary channels. Geordie also delivered brand development and reputation management for a range of clients, including an Overseas Territory and large financial institutions.

Before entering into the strategic communications sector, Geordie held a training contract at Linklaters, having previously completed a number of corporate law internships.

Geordie holds a B.A. in Theology from the University of Cambridge, from which he graduated with a Double First.

Isabella Soames Analyst

Isabella gained experience working in the public affairs team of a major agency as well as working for a cross-bench Peer in the House of Lords. After graduating, Isabella worked in an agri-tech start-up business where she was responsible for producing social media posts and assisting with business development.

Since joining DRD, her work has included providing media relations, stakeholder engagement and public affairs support to a wide range of clients.

Isabella holds a history degree from the University of Oxford.

Sergio Cortes Allsopp Analyst

Sergio previously worked within the Department of Field Support at the United Nations Headquarters in New York. His primary role was to provide support to the various peacekeeping and political field missions of the UN across the globe in the areas of security, finance and human resources.

On his return to the UK, he ran for council during the 2018 local elections in London where he achieved the highest vote count for any Labour candidate in the borough of Richmond since 1978.

Sergio is fluent in Spanish and has written for The Huffington Post. He holds a BSc in History and International Relations from The London School of Economics and Political Science.