Our 50+ strong team has extensive hands-on delivery track records in both traditional and digital programmes, and has worked on many of the UK’s most complex business transformation projects and programmes. We only recruit the best and most experienced individuals from the top tier consulting firms, who are highly qualified in relevant methodologies and accreditations. More importantly, we make sure all our people share a passion for making our clients’ organisations better and share our values.  Please see below a selection of our team.

Alex McEvoy


A founding Director of Gate One, Alex has approaching fifteen years of advisory and delivery experience, gained at Deloitte, Lloyd’s of London and Moorhouse Consulting. He enjoys working with clients to develop innovative solutions to their transformation challenges and likes nothing more than toasting the shared hard yards of a job well done. He firmly believes in consulting with integrity and honesty and delivering value at all times. Working principally in the financial services and public sector industries, he has extensive experience of the hands-on delivery of high profile, complex transformation programmes, the management and governance of £multi-bn change portfolios, and building organisations’ capability to deliver change themselves. Now with a young family, Alex does what he can to indulge his passions for travel and sport, and is longing for a return to previous exploits including hiking the length of Yellowstone National Park and a self-guided 4×4 safari through Botswana.

Claire Laing


Claire thrives on experiencing different cultures and the challenge of adapting to new environments, whether this is travelling the world or getting stuck into a new market sector through her consulting work. After six years’ spent at boutique consultancies and strategy houses working predominantly in Organisational Change, she joined Gate One seeking a firm whose values align with her own: working side by side with clients and focusing tirelessly on delivering lasting business results. Claire is a specialist in the Energy sector but has worked across a range of industries to develop innovative and engaging approaches to business transformation, her keenest interest being the people change aspects of any complex programme. Away from work, Claire can be found enjoying weekends out of London and polishing up on her rusty tennis skills from ‘back in the day’.

David Holliday


As a Director of Gate One, David firmly believes great things can happen with the right group of people. He relishes the fact that no day in consulting is the same and enjoys the continual challenge of finding new solutions for clients. It’s a far cry from his post-uni days working winter seasons in the Alps, however appealing the lifestyle choice at the time. David has had the fortune to work with many great colleagues and clients in a consulting career that has also included spells at Accenture and Moorhouse. He has led complex multi-£m transformation programmes in a broad range of FTSE100 organisations from across TMT, Financial Services, Security & Defence, Leisure & Retail and UK Government. David specialises in outsourcing, operating model and PPM-based capability programmes as well as major programme assurance. In what little time is left, David is often to be found outdoors grilling meats, while pining for his next snowboarding trip.

Gemma Sarjeant


Gemma started her career in consulting following an internship in corporate tax. An entire summer spent staring at accounts and balance sheets made her realise that numbers alone were not enough – she craved the opportunity to learn the real story behind how businesses work. Gemma spent the following nine years at KPMG delivering complex business change programmes, primarily focused on the Consumer Goods, Retail and Oil & Gas sectors. Most recently she has specialised in Supply Chain Operations and Post Merger Integration. Gemma truly believes the best way to ensure excellent project delivery is to work collaboratively within client teams to build confidence that results can really ‘stick’ – owned and sustained by clients themselves. Outside of work she enjoys exploring the world on two wheels, two skis or a surfboard, and will try to cram in a European mini-break at any given opportunity.

Helen Walker

HR & Recruitment Manager

Helen is an experienced HR Professional with nearly 8 years’ experience in both the public and private sectors. She has held a series of diverse HR-related roles in professional services firms over the last few years, notably at two leading international law firms in the UK and in the Middle East. She is passionate about creating a business culture and environment where people can push boundaries, achieve their full potential and enjoy their work. Outside of work you can usually find Helen making the most of London’s culinary delights or planning her next travel adventure.

James Cooper


Recently returned to London after a 5-year stint in Melbourne, James had over a decade of “Big Four” consulting and advisory experience in the UK and Australia prior to joining Gate One. He has helped a range of public and private sector multinationals to transform their businesses, specialising in Portfolio Management; Business Case and Operating Model definition; Customer Strategy and Experience; and Performance Improvement. James is passionate about quality client delivery and building high performing teams – thus making Gate One a perfect fit for his ambitions. A seasoned explorer, James’s recent trip to South America took his ‘countries visited’ tally to 39 and counting. He also keeps fit through just about any sport where he can find a willing opponent or team-mate, most notably the (now IOC-recognised) Ultimate Frisbee.

James Swaffield


Fighting the pull of the Westminster bubble, James moved into consultancy when he realised that policy development only gets you so far. Since then he has been focussed on hard-nosed delivery to deliver real change, learning and latterly leading large scale transformation programmes in the public sector.

He is motivated by embedding change so that service users, citizens, customers and ultimately businesses actually get real benefits. This has been his focus over the last decade having worked on transformation and IT enabled change programmes in health, local government, the third sector and beyond. More recently during his time at EY this has seen him developing international projects for public sector organisations to make sure the impact expands outside of just the UK.

Kirsty Baldwin

Finance & Operations Manager

Born and raised in sunny South Africa, Kirsty came to London nearly a decade ago seeking pastures new. She has had experience in a wide spectrum of financial functions since then, from general book-keeping to financial and management accounting. Kirsty spent 6 years in an operations and finance role in a previous management consultancy before being lured to the sporting cathedral of Twickenham stadium as a Financial Accountant for the English Rugby Football Union (RFU). With rugby out of her system (and World Cup tickets secured), Kirsty is now being kept on her toes by the consulting team at Gate One, where the vibrant, fun and hard-working ethos makes each day a different but pleasurable challenge. A true polymath, Kirsty is also a qualified Cosmetologist, Natural & Holistic Therapist and Swarovski Crystal jewellery maker in her ‘spare’ time.

Laura Fenton

Senior Consultant

Laura spent the first four years of her career earning her consulting stripes at BAE Systems Applied Intelligence, developing expertise in business analysis and project and programme management. She has implemented successful business change programmes in a number of government departments as well as in transport and telecoms. Laura’s experience has enabled her to build knowledge in establishing effective processes, as well as understanding the importance of adaptability. She enjoys change management, and has a deep understanding of the behavioural and social sciences so important to implementation of successful business transformation. Though Laura is a proud Londoner, a recent visit to Honduras has ignited an infatuation with Hispanic language and culture. When not planning her next trip to the Americas, chances are she will out cycling, searching out London’s great theatres and hidden gems.

Mark Davis

Head of Business Development

Mark focuses on creating mutual value through carefully conceived introductions in the world of business and IT transformation. ‘Relationship brokering’ rather than ‘sales’ sits easier in his outlook. It’s a philosophy that’s steered him well over two decades, delivering mutual-value introductions across a multitude of consultancies and clients. Having started his career as a consultant with PA Consulting Group, within Strategy & Marketing, Mark has helped build successful brands and drive revenue for small start-ups and Global 50 companies alike. In recent years, he has continued to focus on helping consultancies and consultancy buyers find each other, having held business development lead roles at PIPC, Cognizant and more recently at P2 Consulting where he was also a Board Director, before joining the journey at Gate One in November 2016.

Mark Warren

Finance and Operations Director

Mark’s approach can be traced back to watching his father’s work, designing some of the world’s fastest and most innovative vessels. This instilled a view that ‘world class’ is perfectly possible and starts with great design, pragmatic creativity and challenging the status quo.

For the last five years Mark was Head of Performance on Crossrail, supporting the CFO on special projects and performance analysis. As a consultant, he has supported many organisations to develop strategy, deliver projects and communicate results, in the process developing an expertise in reporting and performance data visualisation (winning ‘Consultant of the Year’ for the Crossrail Board report). The goal always being to make the complex clear.

As Finance Director in two leading UK businesses, he has enjoyed responsibility for all aspects of finance, strategy, pricing, IT and operational delivery. Mark is a governor at his local school and when not working can often be found, camera in hand, seeking to get the elusive perfect landscape shot.

Nick Kennell

Client Director

An Account Director at Gate One and leader of our health practice, Nick has over thirteen years of experience gained at PA Consulting Group, Moorhouse and in a previous life as an Economics teacher. He enjoys working with clients to understand their strategic goals and help make them a reality. He believes in focusing on the things that matter to deliver results, and working with senior decision makers to help them make the few, major changes that are needed. In particular Nick focuses on applying these skills to the health sector, where he has a wealth of experience working across healthcare providers, commissioners and regulators to understand and drive meaningful change. He is a keen sportsman who has competed in ultra-marathons, enjoys weightlifting and until recently played competitive rugby. He also enjoys literature and is currently working on a novel.

Paul de Bono


Paul started his career in the field of structural engineering, working on some of the largest construction projects in London. Exchanging his hard hat for a wheelie case, he then became a ‘Big 4’ consultant for five years – initially with EY and then PWC. Paul has led and supported successful delivery of a range of board-sponsored transformation initiatives in the energy, telecoms, retail and financial services sectors. He thrives on the challenge that each new project brings: every assignment is a chance to learn different skills and meet interesting new colleagues. Outside of work, Paul has four main passions – cycling, running, travelling and fine wine. A recent tour of the Italian lakes and Tuscany satisfied two of the four, so the bike and trainers will have to wait for the next planned trip to California.

Sarah Farquhar


Sarah is an experienced programme director with over 10 years ‘Big 4’ experience prior to joining Gate One. She has led major transformation and IT programmes in the UK and internationally, including the global deployment of business change at major life sciences and consumer goods companies. She thrives on resolving the issues which are blocking success while bringing a practical, down-to-earth approach to programme delivery – taking pride in building trusted client relationships and in leading high performing teams. A keen coach and mentor, Sarah enjoys using her own experience to support others achieve professional success. She still loves London’s shops and galleries despite having moved there many years ago from Northern Ireland, and also travels widely: she has just one continent left to visit – hopefully very soon.

Simon Dennis


A childhood spent climbing the Lake District fells and a consulting career honed on some of the UK’s most complex programmes have infused Simon with the firm belief that the more painful the ascent, the better the views. Since moving to the big city, Simon has spent c.14 years delivering major transformational change for a host of leading public and private sector organisations. He has recently led successful mission-critical initiatives for the BBC and TUI Travel and has worked extensively in the Healthcare and Pharmaceuticals sector, designing and executing key aspects of the Board-level change agenda at AstraZeneca, Bupa and the Department of Health (among others). Along the way, Simon has acquired deep expertise in many facets of project and programme leadership including portfolio management, benefits realisation, capability enhancement and programme assurance. He has also developed some pretty clear perspectives on how management consultancy should be delivered: with honesty, integrity, sleeves firmly rolled up and constantly seeking excellence.

Tim Phillips

Managing Partner

A seasoned business leader, chartered director and consultant with the grey-hairs to prove it, Tim firmly believes that the key to being an effective advisor is to help leaders make better and faster decisions, presenting the right strategic options in simple, insightful ways. He does this by combining enthusiasm, creativity, candour and an enviable kit-bag of tools from his previous experience leading large-scale programmes in a major retailer and as a management consultant with Deloitte. Tim’s memorable moment was completing the London marathon in under six hours as part of the team who were the first to carry another person around the course. His favourite quote, from American Scientist Margaret Mead, captures in a single sentence his and Gate One’s philosophy of supporting clients to achieve their transformational goals: “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.”

Umbar Shakir

Principal and Digital Lead

Umbar joined Gate One because she relishes a good challenge: the thrill of the journey to solve a good puzzle; the buzz you get when helping a client have a ‘light-bulb’ moment; or the excitement of turning ideas into reality. Umbar manages to combine many of her passions with her professional specialisms: digital / omni-channel strategy and implementation, business modelling and international development strategies. She has worked most extensively in the Public Sector and TMT. For its part Gate One is also proud to have its very own ‘Annie Liebowitz’ in Umbar. She is a freelance digital artist/photographer and has been published in major international fashion magazines including Elle and Asiana. She also designs ‘skins’ for 3D virtual reality gaming via Second Life…which makes her a bit of a geek, but a pretty cool one, we think.