Urban Synergy Corporate Advisory Board

David Craig


Co-Chair TNFD

Ben Goss


Dynamic Planner

Darren Allaway


Goldman Sachs

Stuart Whyte

Studio Head

Sony PlayStation

Sharon Blackman



Catherine Johnson

Group General Counsel

London Stock Exchange Group

Grant Woodthorpe

Executive Director


Patrick Clarke


UK Power Networks

Sarah Webb



Garret Gaughan

Head of Direct & Facultative, WTW

On October 13th 2020, we formally launched our Corporate Advisory Board with the aim of creating a more ethnically diverse City, as well as supporting our mission to build a diverse work-ready talent pipeline of Black Minority Ethnic and disadvantaged young people.

The Corporate Advisory Board members include: Goldman Sachs, London Stock Exchange Group, UK Power Networks, Dynamic Planner, Citi, WTW, DMGT and Sony Interactive Entertainment.

This diverse Corporate Advisory Board will enable us to grow successfully by bringing new expertise and experience, as well as supporting sustainable fundraising, idea generation and corporate participation.

This will be achieved through a four pronged approach of:

  • Sustainable Funding
  • Expertise & Networks
  • Talent Opportunities
  • Strategic Support

Each Company and Board Member will support us with expertise, mentors and funding, along with our Corporate Donors, which include: Allen & Overy, Blackrock, FE fundinfo, The International business of Federated Hermes, Lloyds, M&G Plc, Moody’s, Morgan Stanley, Newable, PwC, RWS, Salesforce and Stryker.

The move will extend mentoring and career opportunities to help thousands of Black Minority Ethnic and disadvantaged young people reach their full potential.

The Corporate Advisory Board has no formal responsibility in terms of performance, finance or operation of the charity but will serve as advisors to the Board and Management of Urban Synergy, based on their extensive operational experience and key networks. They will be material supporters to Urban Synergy both financially and through mentorship and career openings for mentees.

Urban Synergy CEO, Leila Thomas, said: “I am really excited that these business leaders have chosen to commit their energy and resources, to creating a better future for thousands of Black Minority Ethnic and disadvantaged young people in London and beyond. Talent is everywhere, but opportunities are not. This support from business

will help us to change that.  Organisations have been trying to resolve the imbalance of opportunity for decades and we believe we have a blueprint that will drive change.” 

The Corporate Advisory Board will develop career learning and pathways for the children served by Urban Synergy into employment through corporate insight days, job shadowing, internships, apprenticeships and other work experience.

Chair of the Urban Synergy Corporate Advisory Board, David Craig, said: “We owe it to all children, to level the playing field and create opportunities for everyone to thrive according to their abilities. The financial community will benefit enormously from more diversity; and I’m delighted at the range and depth of individuals joining this Board. I know we will make a difference.”

Through the creation of this Corporate Advisory Board we will help thousands of young people to write their own futures.