Our Chair

Julietta Dexter

Julietta Dexter was announced as the Chair of Smart Works in April 2021.

She was Founder & CEO of The Communications Store, one of the world’s leading strategic brand development and communications partners to the world’s best brands in fashion, wellness, beauty and lifestyle. Further to that she was co-Founder and Chief Growth & Purpose Officer at ScienceMagic.

“The nationwide work that Smart Works does in dressing and coaching unemployed women for job success is extraordinary and extremely successful. The vital need for Smart Works’ work is hugely increased as so many women have suffered job losses during the pandemic. Clients referred to Smart Works are looked after, given the confidence they so urgently need and are given a wonderful moment to make sure they feel their very best to get out into the world, go for that interview and go back into the workplace.”

Natalie Abou-Alwan

With over 20 years’ experience in the project finance, energy and commodities industries, Natalie started her career as a private practice lawyer in both U.K. and Wall Street law firms. In 2012, Natalie moved to BP plc where she held various leadership positions in the global oil trading and low carbon businesses. Natalie has volunteered for several charities including as a make-up artist for Look Good Feel Better and as an event organiser for The Circle NGO.

“The message Smart Works delivers is both simple and impactful: we are here to help those women who need it the most, by building their confidence, self-belief, self-worth and ultimately their happiness. It is an absolute privilege to work alongside such a diverse and talented Board, to further develop Smart Works’ reach.”

Philippa Charles OBE

With a career spanning both commercial and charitable sectors, Philippa is Director of national grant-maker the Garfield Weston Foundation. In a voluntary capacity she has significant previous Board experience including youth employment charity ThinkForward and Social & Sustainable Capital which makes loans to not-for-profit organisations. She is currently a Trustee of the Barratt Foundation.  In 2020 she was made a Companion of the Chartered Institute of Management, in 2021 she was made a Fellow of the RSA and in 2022 she was honoured with an OBE for services to the charitable sector.

“I’m passionate about supporting women to succeed. Smart Works is full of amazing people – the clients, patrons, volunteers and staff – and I’m keen to do my best for them.”

Ewa Kerin

Ewa Kerin is the Honorary Treasurer of Smart Works. She is also a Non-Executive Director and Chair of the Audit Committee at Daiwa Capital Markets Europe. Ewa is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Certified Accountants and has held a number of senior positions within the Financial Services industry for over 25 years at JP Morgan, Credit Suisse, Willis Towers Watson and HSBC.

“I wanted to work with a team that all shared the same passion for helping women be successful and feel good about themselves, so am incredibly fortunate to have joined the committed and talented team that is Smart Works.”

Rachel Atkins

Partner at Schillings and a leading lawyer in her field, Rachel advises on all issues relating to reputation and privacy protection. For the last 30 years, she has worked with successful entrepreneurs and families, helping them build their business empires and reputations while protecting their right to privacy – and passionately believes reputation is the bedrock of a healthy business.

“The concept behind Smart Works is simple and brilliant.  I feel privileged to work with the experts on the Smart Works team and am excited to help more women find the confidence they need to maximise their potential.”

Sim Scavazza

Sim is Acting Chair for the Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire & Berkshire West NHS Integrated Care Board, and also a Non-Executive Director for two NHS Acute Trusts, where she chairs the People Committee and the North West London EDI steering group. Sim sits on the Board of the National Saturday Club, and Chairs the Board of the student complaints Ombudsman.

Sim has worked for leading high street brands for over 30 years. She started advocating for sustainability in fashion in 2006 when appointed to the Board of Adili, and contributed to the establishment of the Centre for Sustainability, London College of Fashion. Sim is a Fellow of the RSA, and member of the Seacole Group.

“I am thrilled to become a Trustee for Smart Works where I can’t wait to contribute to the growth and continued success of this life-changing charity.”

Jane Shepherdson CBE

Jane Shepherdson is a leading figure in fashion retail, having been CEO of Whistles and before that Brand Director at Topshop. Jane is also Creative Advisor to Oxfam and a patron of the Almeida Theatre in North London.

Jane is involved in the promotion and support of young designers through the London College of Fashion’s Centre of Fashion Enterprise, and she helped to promote Fair Trade fashion to a wider audience as a Board member of Peopletree until 2013. Jane was awarded an CBE in 2006 for services to fashion retail. Jane is proud to be a regular dressing volunteer in North London and is passionate about Smart Works.

“There are many things I love about Smart Works but the main one is the moment that I dress someone and help them to get the confidence and nail that job.”