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Recent Movers & Shakers

Kendra Ross

Moved within/to: Duolingo
On: September 2021

Duolingo, Global. Kendra Ross has been appointed Duolingo’s newest head of social impact. A Pittsburgh native, she will be located in the company’s local headquarters – it is the first time the company has created a full-time role dedicated to social impact. Prior to joining Duolingo, Kendra served as an assistant professor of sports, arts, and entertainment management at Point Park University, where she recently completed a doctoral degree in community engagement. She also spent more than 15 years managing systems and label operations for Universal Music Group, the world’s leading music company. Kendra said of her new role: “One thing I’ve learned in my time at Duolingo so far is that this is a very mission-driven company that attracts a lot of employees who are socially aware and want to engage with the local community. I see my role as the connector between the business, our employees and the community around us.”

Hope Frank

Moved within/to: Labster
On: November 2021

Labster, Denmark/Global. Hope Frank has been appointed chief marketing officer, at Labster, as a key part of its continued mission to bring accessible and transformative STEM education to the world. With more than 20 years of experience, Hope has marketed some of the fastest-growing Silicon Valley technology companies, and most recently served as CMO and consulting producer for Brave Blue World, a documentary streaming on Netflix. As CMO at Labster, Hope will lead and oversee all strategic marketing initiatives for the company. This includes creating a revolutionary, engaging and accessible STEM learning experience at a global scale, for grades K-12 and higher education. She will focus on further evolving the Labster brand as one of the premier providers of virtual learning resources for science courses. On her new role, she said: “This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. I’m thrilled to be part of the movement, to help bring new students into STEM.”


Aisling Conboy

Moved within/to: Coventry University
On: November 2021

Coventry University, UK. Aisling Conboy has been appointed Pro-Vice-Chancellor, International at Coventry University. In her new role as Pro-Vice-Chancellor, International, Aisling’s work will include the development and operation of key international activities in support of Coventry University’s 2030 Strategy. These include the continued development of overseas hubs, the academic partnerships unit and a range of other high level international engagements. Aisling joins Coventry from UK Department for International Trade (DIT), where she was a higher education specialist. Aisling’s current work at the DIT focuses on transnational education, teacher training and chartered professional bodies. Speaking about her new role: “Given the huge changes we’ve seen in how education is delivered since the pandemic, and the changes to the labour market globally, innovation and agility are more important than ever. I am eager to join the team at Coventry University Group, and excited to represent a very ambitious university group on the international stage.”

Gareth Topp

Moved within/to: EduCo Accelerate
On: December 2021

EduCo Accelerate, Global.  Gareth Topp has joined EduCo Accelerate as director of business development for UK and Europe.  Gareth has spent the past 15 years in roles for the British Council, the University of York, the University of Sussex and most recently as head of internationalisation at the University of Brighton where he rapidly built up a globally distributed recruitment team that has delivered exponential growth and diversity of intake for the University.  With EduCo Accelerate, he will bring this breadth and depth of UK international education experience to supporting UK and European institutions in their recruitment, conversion and retention ambitions. On his move, Gareth said:  “EduCo are a truly impressive organisation dedicated not just to driving recruitment for their partners but to improving student outcomes – it’s this factor in particular that attracted me to work with them and I look forward to exploring with UK and European colleagues what EduCo can do for them.”

Liz Halford

Moved within/to: Wells Advisory
On: November 2021

Wells Advisory, Australia. Liz Halford has joined Wells Advisory UK as a director, joining UK director and chair Roger King and the company’s founder Michael Wells on the board. Liz has extensive experience as a UK-based academic and quality assurance specialist, having worked across the public and private HE sector in areas of governance, quality assurance and OfS requirements. Previously, Liz was a freelance consultant, and was head of research and intelligence at the Quality Assurance Agency. She also has experience of contributing to government policy development and funded research projects in higher education. Michael Wells said of Liz’s appointment: “Dr Halford brings significant practice-based experience in quality assurance and higher education advisory. She has held significant roles in universities, the QAA and in governance of Colleges. She has a contemporary working knowledge of this area, combined with a career span that means she is equipped to advise our clients on the complex questions that arise.”

Haike Manning

Moved within/to: Sannam S4
On: November 2021

Sannam S4, India. Haike Manning has been appointed as executive director, South East Asia of Sannam S4, and will be based in Vietnam following the company’s acquisition of the education business of LightPath Consulting Group. Haike, in his newly-created role, will bring years of experience in diplomacy and trade negotiations to the job and will lead Sannam S4’s expansion in the high-potential, fast-growing Southeast Asia region. He has been based in Vietnam since 2012. On his appointment, Haike said: “I am tremendously excited to be joining Sannam S4, especially during its current period of rapid and ambitious global expansion. Their unrivaled expertise in key markets have set an industry standard, as does the energy and dynamism of the company.” Previously, he has served as the New Zealand ambassador to Vietnam, as well as senior trade negotiator for New Zealand at the World Trade Organization and in the Trans-Pacific Partnership negotiations. He established LightPath Consulting Group in 2017.


Audrey DuHaime

Moved within/to: Cialfo
On: October 2021

Cialfo, Global. Audrey DuHaime is joining Cialfo, the student-first network connecting high schools and universities worldwide. As their newest Higher Education Partnerships Manager, she will be charged with growing the Cialfo community of universities in North America and helping them creatively engage with prospective international students to achieve their enrolment goals. She brings eight years of international education experience with her into the role, having previously held positions at leading organisations. These include Cambridge Education Group, education consultancies, and a top-ranked online school. An advocate of international students and a believer in the impact of technology, she is eager to further Cialfo’s goal of simplifying the complex international college application journey from start to finish.

Farhan Quraishi

Moved within/to: English UK
On: November 2021

English UK, UK. Farhan Quraishi, CEO and co-owner of Speak Up School of English in London, has joined the board of  English UK until the next annual elections in May 2022, when he will be able to put himself forward for re-election. He replaces Chris Moonie of the Mackenzie School of English, who has stepped down. Following a degree in accounting and finance, Farhan began his career in a small FE college as a part-time lecturer, working his way up to become principal and becoming interested in the organisation’s English language department. Almost ten years ago he co- founded Speak Up London, a school in the heart of the city. Farhan’s current role is to drive growth for the company through marketing, sales, quality assurance, and innovation, overseeing day-to-day operations and keeping it on track and in line with its strategy.


Sue Riley

Moved within/to: The English-Speaking Union
On: November 2021

English Speaking Union, UK. Sue Riley is taking on the role of Director of Education at the English Speaking Union, after an initial period as ESU oracy consultant. Sue brings over 20 years’ experience in senior charity roles (including 15 as a CEO within education) and of working in membership organisations, and also as an independent consultant. Speaking of her appointment Sue said: “Our focus in the coming months will be to strengthen our school offer, ensuring that it “meets schools where they are now” all the while building on the strength of our existing debating and public speaking programmes and extending their reach to more communities.” Jane Easton, director-general, said: “The ESU is delighted to welcome Sue Riley as its Director of Education. The access to oracy education that the ESU can offer will be strengthened further by Sue’s deep understanding of the needs of schools and teachers, and her commitment to partnership working.’

Ana Medina Martínez

Moved within/to: EdCo LATAM Consulting
On: November 2021

EdCo LATAM Consulting, Americas/Ontario Tech University, Canada. Ana Medina Martínez is taking on roles as a regional account manager at EdCoLATAM Consulting and as Latin America country manager at Ontario Tech University. Ana is a dynamic professional with a wide range of experience in the international education industry, growing B2B and B2C business throughout Latin America, as well as being a proactive member of global companies. She recently completed a Master’s Degree in Neuromarketing, is fluent in English and Spanish, and is currently studying Portuguese and French. Ana was an international student in Canada and Chile during her university years, and she later worked as an education agent for 3 years, counselling students and helping them arrange their studies abroad. Her previous roles include being regional manager for private and semi-public UK and Canadian institutions, where she’s been in charge of overseeing a workforce of 80+ agencies across LATAM.


Matt Durnin

Moved within/to: Nous Group
On: November 2021

Nous Group, Australia. Matt Durnin is joining Nous Group at their Toronto office as a principal, in order to support clients on international education strategy. Matt is a higher education and market intelligence expert with global experience. Most recently, he was the global head of insights & consultancy for the British Council, where he led the global consulting and market intelligence services for UK education institutions. He has delivered more than 40 consultancy projects for UK universities to support international recruitment, partnerships and strategy in more than 20 countries. Matt said of joinging Nous Group: “I’m excited to join Nous because of the team’s reputation for excellence and track record of delivering transformation change. We are in the middle of a challenging and fascinating era in education because so many forces are pushing us to rethink how the industry operates. I’m looking forward to helping clients reimagine their strategic approaches to succeed in this rapidly changing environment.”

Julie Mercer

Moved within/to: Nous Group
On: November 2021

Nous Group, Australia. Julie Mercer is joining Nous Group’s London office as a principal to support clients on higher education strategy and transformation. Julie has worked in education systems across the world, and worked at all levels in the UK education system, from policy development and implementation through to working with universities, further education colleges and vocational training providers, academy chains and international schools groups. Most recently, Julie was a higher education and transformation lead partner at Cairneagle. Prior to Cairneagle, she was the global industry lead partner for education at Deloitte for a decade. Julie said of her new role: “I have been very struck by the Nous team’s energy and commitment and their desire to support clients to make positive, lasting change. I am delighted to be joining such a talented and purpose-driven firm and look forward to making my contribution to the collective success of our teams and our clients.”

Simon Rollenbeck

Moved within/to: Mozaik Play
On: October 2021

Mozaik Play, Global. Simon Rollenbeck has joined education marketplace Mozaik Play as Chief Marketing Officer. In his role, Simon will oversee Mozaik Play’s global marketing efforts with a strong focus on digital channels. He brings with him over seven years of experience in leadership positions across start-ups and Fortune 500 companies. Prior to joining Mozaik Play, Simon led diverse teams at Expedia Group and Australian tech start-up Willow. “Its an exciting time to join this fast growing organisation and the education industry in general. There’s amazing potential for technology to simplify the way that students search, compare and apply for courses online and I look forward to being part of the journey to make this a reality.” 

James Pallister

Moved within/to: Leverage Edu
On: November 2021

Leverage Edu, Global. James Pallister has joined global university admissions platform Leverage Edu as Senior Manager, University Relations. In this capacity, James will aid Leverage Edu’s rapid growth trajectory by developing, maintaining and enhancing UK partnership agreements with University and University Study Centres. James joins Leverage Edu with seven years of experience in working in the educational publishing sector with Cengage Learning, where he helped the English Language Teaching Business Unit (National Geographic Learning) dramatically increase market share by executing and maintaining partnerships with institutes within higher education, further education as well as private language schools. James said about this new role: “I am absolutely delighted to join the rocket ship that is Leverage Edu, in order to help students reach their full potential by studying internationally at UK universities.”

Beth Button

Moved within/to: Association of Commonwealth Universities
On: October 2021

The Association of Commonwealth Universities, UK. The Association of Commonwealth Universities has appointed Beth Button as their new Director of Strategic Communications, where she will lead their external affairs work to make the case for higher education globally and maximise the value and impact of the work of the ACU and its members. Her appointment is one of two new appointments to their senior leadership team. Prior to joining ACU, Beth was Head of Communications and Public Affairs at University Alliance (UA).  Beth was also previously Campaign Manager at Universities UK, and also led on political and public affairs at Universities Wales. Beth said: “I am delighted to be joining the ACU… universities across the Commonwealth have a vital role to play in addressing the many global challenges we face, and I believe passionately in the importance of international collaboration and cooperation in tackling them.”



Barbara Kasumu

Moved within/to: Association of Commonwealth Universities
On: September 2021

The Association of Commonwealth Universities, UK. The Association of Commonwealth Universities has appointed Barbara Kasumu as their new Director of Membership, Programmes and Development, as one of two new appointments in their senior leadership team. Barbara will work with teams to create a dynamic, responsive and relevant offer that meets the needs of the organisation’s diverse member base, and the design and funding of best-in-sector programmes that will have a meaningful impact on ACU member universities. Barbara said about the role: “With a strong focus on collaboration and innovation, this is an exciting time to be joining the ACU to scale our impact and reach in building a better world through higher education.” With over 15 years of senior leadership and board experience working across a range of sectors and organisations, she previously worked as Director of Membership, Talent and Inclusion at the National Union of Students.


Siân Matos

Moved within/to: Global Education Group
On: September 2021

Global Education Group, Global. Siân Matos has joined Global Education Group, which includes GBS and English Path, as Business Development Manager, Europe. Siân brings over 20 years of knowledge and diverse experience in the UK ELT industry, including school management, student recruitment and partner relations management. Siân will help our European partners find the best destinations and courses for their students whether that be an English language course, a pathway programme or a Higher Education programme.  Prior to joining Global Education Group, Siân held various roles for over 10 years at the Tti School of English, also known as TopUp Learning, in London, including as principal of the school. She also held the role of principal at the Central School of English London.

Romina Borderas

Moved within/to: English Path
On: October 2021

English Path, UK. Romina Borderas has recently joined English Path as Head of Young Learners. She has been working in the ELT industry since 2009 and is passionate about travelling the world and learning about other cultures. Over the last 12 years, she has worked in many different roles; starting as a residence assistant and moving up the ladder to School Director, supporting students’ journeys while on their studies abroad. Her consideration for the welfare of students is her main priority which is why she is just the right fit for GBS and English Path’s core values, and the perfect person to lead the Young Learners programme. Romina is an advocate for education. One of her favourite quotes, by Nelson Mandela, is: ‘Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world’.

Julie Barker

Moved within/to: AUCSO
On: October 2021

AUCSO, Global. Inspirational leader, Julie Barker, has been appointed to the role Chief Operating Officer of The Association of University Chief Security Officers. AUCSO is the leading organisation for security professionals working in higher and further education around the world. As the former Director of Hospitality and Accommodation Services at University of Brighton for over 25 years, Lead Sustainability Non-Exec Director for CUBO, and Chair of TUCO for six years, Julie is two-time’ winner of the highly coveted Catey Awards. She featured prominently within the Public Sector Top 20 Most Influential from 2011 to 2016 and is a respected consultant to the sector. “I am delighted to be joining AUCSO at a pivotal time in its evolution and development when security and safeguarding has never been so important in ensuring the safety and well-being of campus communities, supporting students during their time with universities whether on site or through resi-life,” she said.


Natalie Kourtidis

Moved within/to: Global University Systems
On: September 2021

Global University Systems, Global. Natalie Kourtidis has joined GUS Education Australia and New Zealand. Natalie is joining the group as CEO, Partnerships – Australia & New Zealand (ANZ), bringing with her an impressive 25 years of leadership experience in the education industry. This marks GUS’s first foray into the region, with Natalie being part of a team of innovators, creators of new ways of thinking and providers of quality education solutions. “Building strong relationships and partnerships and offering students around the world the highest quality education and experience is what GUS is all about,” she said on her new role. Previously Natalie was executive director of Kaplan Australia and has also held a range of positions at the University of Adelaide.

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