Our Staff

Jireh Akandwanaho, Grants Officer

Shabana Aslam, Grants Director


Bhavini Bhatt, Development Director

Sirintiya Booth-Roberts, Grants Manager

Lawrence Brisc-Roots, Grants Manager

Jireh supports operational delivery of grants as well as communication with our grantees.

Shabana is responsible for our grant giving operations. She previously worked in local government facilitating community partnerships and managing grant programmes to the voluntary and community sector.

Bhavini is responsible for growing and diversifying donations in support of our work. She has previously raised funds from trusts and foundations, companies, and individuals for local, national, and international charities.

Sirintiya supports operational delivery of our grants and is particularly interested in equitable access to justice for minoritised communities. She previously worked in administration and compliance while volunteering for legal advice charities.

Lawrence supports the operational delivery of our grants. He has previously worked in the charity sector in London, with experience of safeguarding, governance and the management of grant programmes.

Clare Carter, Chief Executive

Martha de la Roche, Partnerships Director

Charlotte Duthie, Development Officer

Peter Fruin, Finance & Operations Manager

Ruby Luter, Development & Operations Officer

Clare oversees all of our work, with a particular focus on long term sustainable funding. She has experience in legal aid work and in legal charity management. 

Martha focuses on building relationships with our partners and other key stakeholders. She previously worked in partnerships and business development across a number of access to justice organisations.

Charlotte supports our development work by building donor pipelines and managing engagement campaigns to raise funds and awareness for equitable access to justice.

Peter is responsible for our financial records and supports operations and legal and governance matters. He is a CIMA-qualified accountant with extensive experience in financial compliance.

Ruby provides operational support across the organisation and works with the foundation’s Development Team. She has previously worked as a Paralegal.

Colin Miller, Finance and Operations Director

Ildephonse Nzabahimana, Data and Learning Manager

Davina Patel, Senior Development Officer

Alex Weibel, Grants Officer

Colin provides oversight for our finance and operations functions and supports on organisational governance issues. He previously worked for the Open Society Foundations and in the civil service in the United States.

Ildephonse is responsible for the our data systems and insights. He previously worked in design, monitoring and evaluation in the charity sector. 

Davina is responsible for our fundraising and engagement campaigns and focuses on working with the legal community to support our work. Davina was previously a Legal Analyst at a law firm which specialised in providing civil legal services.

Alex supports operational delivery of grants as well as our communication with grantees. They have  previously worked in the private sector on projects such as Erasmus+ and Tier 5.

Foundation President

Lord Goldsmith KC, PC (former HM Attorney General)

Lord (Peter) Goldsmith KC, PC, is the London Co-Managing Partner and Chair of European and Asian Litigation at Debevoise & Plimpton LLP. He served as the UK’s Attorney General from 2001–2007, prior to which he was in private practice as one of the leading barristers in London.

Lord Goldsmith acts for a variety of clients in arbitration and litigation around the world. As the UK Attorney General, he represented the government in numerous cases in UK and international courts. He also argued as counsel in the House of Lords two of the 15 cases regarded as the most important British cases of the last 150 years.

Lord Goldsmith has a strong history and life-long support for pro bono assistance to bring legal advice to the disadvantaged. As a young lawyer, he started a legal advice center in the East End of London and, later in his career, founded the Bar of England & Wales’ Pro Bono Unit (of which he remains President) and the Attorney General’s pro bono coordinating committees. Amongst other recognitions, he was awarded the Lifetime Award for Extraordinary Contribution to the Development of Pro Bono Culture in Europe at the 2014 PILnet European Pro Bono Forum.

He was one of the founders behind the Foundation and became the first Chair of its Trustee Board, a post he held until September 2020 when he became the Foundation’s President.

Our Trustees

Gavin Mansfield KC, Chair

Gavin Mansfield KC is a barrister and is Head of Littleton Chambers. He specialises in employment and partnership disputes and related areas of commercial law. 

He is a former Chair of the Employment Law Bar Association and is a Master of the Bench of the Honourable Society of Middle Temple.

Maxcine Akinsowon

Maxcine has worked at senior level for over 15 years managing departments, including heading an advice and advocacy department for a local Age UK.

Maxcine has over 20 years experience in property law, residential conveyancing, and commercial law. She also has some experience in wills and probate and social law (such as welfare benefits and community care law).

Simon Davis

Simon was Head of Commercial Litigation in Clifford Chance’s London office and a member of the firm’s Partnership Council.

He is a former President of the London Solicitors Litigation Association and President of the Law Society of England and Wales, still a member of the Council of the Law Society, Committee member of the City of London Law Society, member of the Court of Appeal Mediation Panel and an accredited CEDR mediator.

Audrey Haaxman

Audrey is currently Director Internal Audit and Risk for British Council, the UK’s international organisation for education and cultural relations.

She is a chartered accountant and a qualified internal auditor and holds a Masters degree in Economics. She has 20 years of experience in governance, risk and assurance in the commercial, public and third sector including education, technology and financial services.

Anne Molyneux

Her Honour Anne Molyneux is a retired judge – having served as a Circuit Judge, a Diversity & Community Relations Judge, a Judicial Member of the Parole Board, a Deputy High Court Judge, an Additional Judge of the Court of Appeals (Criminal Division), and a Senior Circuit Judge.

Anne was first admitted as a Solicitor in 1983, and has also served as the Director for Serious Sexual Offenses at the Judicial College.

Lindsey Poole

Lindsey Poole has been the Director of the Advice Services Alliance for the past 10 years and is currently undertaking a part time sabbatical at the Centre for Socio-Legal Studies at the University of Oxford.

Des Pullen

Des Pullen is a former senior HR director, spending 15 years as Group HR Director of Associated British Foods plc, a FTSE 30 international food and retail group.

Having stepped down from full time executive life at the beginning of 2020, he is now a Trustee of 2 other charities – Concordia, which focuses on providing international volunteering opportunities and development courses for young people and Charityworks, which recruits and develops graduates for the UK charity sector.

Sacha Rose-Smith

Sacha spent over 10 years at the National Lottery Community Fund and was responsible for end-to-end grant making for London and Southeast England.

Sacha previously served a five-year term as Chair of the London and Southeast Grant Making Committee for Children in Need. Sacha is a trustee and chair of the quality and impact committee for GFS and a Clore Social Leadership Fellow.

Rebecca Samaras

A former litigation solicitor, Rebecca specialised in family law and the additional support needs (SEN) of underrepresented vulnerable individuals, and charities throughout her career.

She sits on the Law Society of Scotland’s Access to Justice Committee and the Scotland Committee for the Access to Justice Foundation. She is also Chair of the Scottish University Law Clinic Network (SULCN) and a Trustee of the Clinical Legal Education Organisation (CLEO).

Andrew Seager

With a background in social welfare advice of over 20 years, beginning as a volunteer adviser, Andrew has worked within the advice sector on a range of projects, programmes and initiatives.

Andrew has worked with statutory, corporate and voluntary partners and funding to develop and fund new services to individuals and communities that address the ever increasing information, education, advice and advocacy.

Joe Snape

Joe Snape is a human rights and environmental solicitor at Leigh Day. He has previously worked in corporate law and in several NGOs, and also has experience of climate change litigation in the UK and Latin America.

Joe has significant experience of working to increase access to justice to vulnerable individuals across a number of different sectors both internationally and domestically.


Sarah Stephens

Sarah currently works for the United Nations as a civil society and social justice advisor, specialising in grant management, project evaluation and capacity building. 

Previously a litigation solicitor, Sarah specialised in human rights law and access to justice in low income countries. She is passionate about justice sector reform working as a founder, and advisor on access to justice projects around the world.

James Willan KC

James Willan KC is a barrister practising from Essex Court Chambers in London, specialising in commercial law.  He has supported legal advice and rights charities throughout his career, and he is also a trustee of a national charity which supports children experiencing difficulties with speech and language.