Dawn was elected member of parliament for Brent South in May 2005, becoming the first elected African-Caribbean woman to become a government minister. She has served as MP for Brent Central since May 2015. Dawn started her career as a computer programmer and systems analyst. Her decision to enter politics arose from a deep-rooted commitment to address inequality. She continues to commit her time in parliament representing groups and people in society that are often underrepresented. In 2017, for example, Dawn became the first MP to sign a question in the House of Commons using British sign language, highlighting the need to give sign language full legal status. Dawn is also a passionate campaigner for young people, previously acting as minister for young citizens and youth engagement under Gordon Brown. She is currently serving as shadow minister for women and equalities.
Ravi is the chief people officer at the Department for International Development (DFID), holding responsibility for people, operations, IT and systems, estates and change. He was previously the HR director at HM Revenue and Customs with responsibility for workforce management of its 69,000 staff. He led the work on reforming the workforce to deliver the department’s blueprint ambitions for the future. Passionate about diversity, Ravi has previously worked as the director responsible for capability, talent and diversity at the Home Office. He was awarded a CBE in 2011 for his dedicated work on inclusion and diversity which led to the Home Office reaching the gold standard against a number of external diversity benchmarks. Ravi is a fellow of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development. He was awarded the Queen’s Police Medal in 2002 for distinguished service.
Leendert is the vice president and general manager at Coca-Cola European Partners in Great Britain, a post he has held since 2014. A native of the Netherlands, Leendert was educated at Erasmus University in Rotterdam. He joined Coca-Cola from Young’s Seafood Ltd, where he was chief executive officer. Prior to that, Leendert was the UK managing director and chief marketing officer of its parent company, Findus Group. Earlier in his career, Leendert spent 15 years at Procter & Gamble in senior (marketing) positions, including leading their Global Household Cleaners business. Leendert was President of the Institute of Grocery Distribution (IGD) until January 2019. He is president of the British Soft Drinks Association (BSDA). In addition, Leendert was elected a member of the newly-established Food & Drinks Sector Council by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs. The council is a formal industry partnership with Government to create a more productive and sustainable food and drink sector.
Poppy is a mental health advocate, national policy advisor and social entrepreneur. She is the CEO and co-founder of Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) England which has grown from a small government project into a commercially successful community interest company recognised last year as one of the fastest growing SMEs in Europe. After briefing the prime minister on MHFA, the secretary of state named Poppy one of England’s mental health experts. She was awarded an OBE in 2018 in recognition of her services to people with mental health issues. Poppy is also the CEO of the City Mental Health Alliance (CMHA), a coalition of city businesses working to increase the understanding of mental health issues and to create a culture of good mental health in the city. She is a non-executive director on the board of Public Health England.
Clive is one of the BBC’s most experienced foreign affairs correspondents, and is now an anchor and presenter based in London. He has served as the BBC’s Africa, Asia, Washington and Europe Correspondent, covering several major stories, including the wars in the former Yugoslavia, East Timor and Liberia, and the Palestine/Israeli conflict. He was also a prominent member of the BBC’s reporting and presenting team for the conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq. He has covered the administrations of three US Presidents, and reported on six US Presidential elections, including, most recently, anchoring coverage of the victory of Donald Trump. He also co-anchored the funeral of Nelson Mandela from Johannesburg. As well as Clive’s several awards and nominations from the television and broadcasting industry, he has an Honorary Doctorate from Staffordshire University.
Shailesh is executive editor of Asian Media Group (AMG). He has 30 years' experience in journalism, overseeing a raft of leading titles, including Eastern Eye, Garavi Gujarat, Asian Trader, Pharmacy Business, Asian Hospitality as well as the Asian Rich List and GG2 Power List. An economics graduate, Shailesh has chronicled the Asian community in the UK and US for nearly three decades. He has a strong interest in diversity, inclusion and integration sitting on the board of the think tank British Future and is an advisor to the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) on their south Asian strategy.