Our Team BW


Andy McLean, Director

Andy has over 25 years’ experience of working on conflict, security and governance issues for the UK Government, the UN, partner governments and NGOs. Recent projects include leading a team designing the new UK-funded security and justice programme in Nepal, leading the CSSF monitoring evaluation and learning team in West Africa, and leading research into citizen’s security and justice priorities in Somalia to shape the design of the UK/UN assistance programme. Andy was formerly Deputy Director of the international NGO Saferworld.


Mark White, Director

Mark is a security and justice, governance and peacebuilding specialist with 20 years’ experience of designing, managing and evaluating donor-funded programmes. Recent experience includes leading research and analysis projects across West Africa for the UK Government, evaluating justice programmes for donors in Bhutan and Myanmar, and leading a peacebuilding programme working with civil society in Georgia. Mark was formerly Principal for Governance, Security & Justice at Coffey International Development, Deputy Head of the UK Government’s Conflict, Stability and Security Fund, and Deputy Head of the UK Stabilisation Unit.  


Duncan Hiscock, Associate Director

Duncan has been working on conflict and security issues for governments and NGOs for 18 years. Recent experience includes leading a team providing monitoring evaluation and learning support to UK Government programmes in Central and Eastern Europe, conducting conflict analysis for governments and international organisations in Central Asia, North Africa and the Lake Chad Basin, and developing the UK Government’s Approach to Stabilisation Handbook. Duncan speaks French, Russian and Ukrainian. He was formerly Security and Justice Adviser in the UK Government Stabilisation Unit and Head of Policy at Saferworld. 


Hope Kilmurry, Conflict, Security and Justice Adviser

Hope is an analyst with extensive experience of providing conflict and political economy analysis, research and project management on a range of projects for international donors including the UK, Danish, and German governments, as well as UNDP and UNOPS. She has strong knowledge of preventing and countering violent extremism, stabilisation and responding to non-state armed groups. Hope has recently led research projects on the role of sexual violence in conflict and non-state armed groups in West Africa, and a global project looking at approaches to stabilisation. Hope has an MA in International Studies and Diplomacy from SOAS and previously worked on the Department for International Trade at Ernst and Young. 


Beatriz de León Cobo, Conflict, Security and Justice Adviser

Beatriz is a conflict analyst, specialised in violent radicalisation and stabilisation in West Africa and Europe. She is a PhD candidate in sociology, studying jihadist radicalisation at the University of Paris. She has worked as an independent consultant for governments, regional organisations and academic institutions providing research, context analysis and programme reviews. Beatriz’s recent experience includes leading context analysis for the UK Government on political and security developments in the Sahel. She is an analyst at the Centre for International Security at the University Francisco de Vitoria where she coordinates the Group of Experts Sahel-Europe Dialogue Forum. Beatriz speaks French and Spanish and has an MA in Defence, Security and Crisis Management at the Institut de Relations Internationales Strátegiques (IRIS). 


Ukoha Ukiwo, Nigeria Representative

Ukoha is a conflict and peacebuilding expert with significant experience of working in Nigeria and across West Africa. He is Technical Lead and Conflict Adviser of the EU-funded Managing Conflict in Nigeria programme and was formerly Programme Manager of the UK-funded Nigeria Stability and Reconciliation Programme. He has served as conflict analyst on project design and evaluation teams on justice, security, conflict, democracy, and governance programmes in Nigeria. Ukiwo holds a Doctor of Philosophy in International Development from St Cross College, University of Oxford, United Kingdom.



Peter Albrecht

Peter has 15 years’ experience working as an academic and practitioner in the field of security and justice. He has been a long-term security sector reform adviser to donor-funded programmes in Sierra Leone and Somalia, and worked for the UK Government’s Stabilisation Unit, International Alert, World Bank and the UN Mission in Kosovo. His main areas of expertise are national security coordination, police reform and non-state security provision. Peter is a Senior Researcher at the Danish Institute for International Studies.

Patience Arnot

Patience is a monitoring, evaluation and learning (MEL) specialist with more than 12 years’ experience of designing and implementing evaluations and MEL systems for a range of conflict, security and justice, governance and gender programmes. Her expertise includes integrating gender equity and social inclusion into programme strategies and MEL systems. Patience has worked for First Call Partners, Triple Line consulting, the British Council, the Ford Foundation and the CLEEN Foundation in Nigeria.  

Lisa Denny

Lisa is a governance, justice and security specialist with over 15 years’ experience providing research, training, technical assistance and monitoring and evaluation to governments, contractors, NGOs and aid programmes. Lisa has significant experience worked on embedding political economy analysis and adaptive approaches in programming. She has worked in sub-Saharan Africa, Southeast Asia and the Pacific. Lisa is also a Research Associate at the Overseas Development Institute and a Senior Research Fellow at the Institute for Human Security and Social Change at La Trobe University in Melbourne, Australia.

John Deverell

John is a former senior military officer and Director of Defence Diplomacy in the UK Ministry of Defence. He has a wealth of experience advising governments and the private sector on leadership, governance, risk and crisis preparedness. John’s focus is currently on Africa, where he has been working with various governments – most recently in Ghana, Nigeria, Somalia and Sudan. John spent two years on the Executive Leadership Team of the FTSE 100 international company Invensys plc where he was responsible for global security and crisis management. John spent three decades in the British Army, including many operational tours of duty around the world, and was deputy director of the US-led Iraq Survey Group, instrumental in disproving the pre-war intelligence on WMD. John speaks French and Portuguese and is a senior Deployable Civilian Expert for the UK Government’s Office for Conflict Stabilisation and Mediation.

Debi Duncan

Debi has over 25 years’ experience working on peacebuilding, post-conflict reconstruction, rule of law, security, justice and governance. Debi was a senior conflict adviser for the UK Department for International Development responsible for conflict and peacebuilding policy development, programmes in Asia and the development of the UK’s security sector reform programme in Palestine. As an independent consultant Debi focuses on programme design, monitoring, evaluation and learning.

Rebecca Emerson-Keeler

Rebecca has almost 20 years’ experience working in fragile and conflict-affected states as a manager, evaluator and technical adviser. Her expertise includes working on CVE, GBV, human rights, peacebuilding, security and strategic communications. Rebecca is a board member for Urban Refugees Paris, a member of the UNESCO-Canada Practitioners Network for the Prevention of Radicalisation and Extremist Violence and a Senior Adviser on Gender and Conflict for the UK Office of Conflict Stabilisation and Mediation. Rebecca is based in France and speaks Arabic and French.

Catherine Flew

Catherine specialises in monitoring and evaluation, programme design, theories of change and conflict analysis. She has 15 years’ experience working on conflict, peace and security issues. Catherine has held senior roles at the UK Government’s Global Monitoring Evaluation and Learning Partnership for the CSSF, the DFID-funded Rule of Law Expertise Programme, and as a Deployable Civilian Expert for the UK Office of Conflict Stabilisation and Mediation. Prior to this she spent two years living in Uganda, co-ordinating Saferworld’s work on arms control and conflict-sensitivity.

Ghassan Khadim

Ghassan is a political adviser, analyst and strategic specialist. He has extensive experience and knowledge of Iraq and the wider Middle East region, having served in several roles within the Government of Iraq. Most recently, Ghassan worked as Special Adviser to the Minister of Interior and to the General Inspector of the Ministry in Iraq. Ghassan has also supported a range of international programmes in Iraq such as providing strategic advice to the UK Embassy and UNDP on the Iraq Security Programme. He has worked with numerous organisations in Iraq, including Oxfam and the John Smith Trust. Ghassan speaks Arabic and is based in Iraq.

Chris Kwaja

Chris is an expert researcher on security sector reform, conflict and governance issues in Nigeria and sub-Saharan Africa. He is Senior Lecturer and Researcher at the Centre for Peace and Security at Modibbo Adama University in Nigeria and an international fellow at the Centre for Human Rights and Humanitarian Studies at Brown University in the United States. Chris also serves as the Chairperson-Rapporteur of the United Nations Working Group on Mercenaries. He was formerly Director General, Research and Planning, as well as Honourable Commissioner for Local Governments and Chieftaincy Affairs in Plateau State, Nigeria.

Kathryn Lockett

Kathryn is an independent consultant with 25 years’ experience of working on Women, Peace and Security and promoting gender equality in fragile and conflict affected states across Eastern Europe, Western Balkans, Central Asia, South Asia and West Africa. She formerly worked for DFID and continues to provide thematic expertise, research, training, programming and MEL support to the UK government, including as a Senior Gender and Conflict Adviser with the UK FCDO Office of Conflict, Stabilisation and Mediation. She has also worked extensively with civil society organisations. Kathryn is an expert on tackling gender-based violence, serious and organised crime, violent extremism and cyber/online harms.

Ben Lovelock

Ben is a former Royal Marines officer with wide experience of conflict, security and stabilisation policy and programmes. His country experience includes working in Afghanistan, Bosnia, Iraq, Kosovo, Macedonia, Occupied Palestinian Territories, Saudi Arabia and Yemen. Ben is a Senior Deployable Civilian Expert for the UK Office of Conflict Stabilisation and Mediation and his doctoral research produced a model for achieving politico-security effect in peace and stability operations.

Kevin Lyne

Kevin is a former British diplomat with over 25 years’ experience working on and in fragile and conflict affected states in Latin America, North Africa, the Sahel, South Asia and the Western Balkans. Kevin is a Deployable Civilian Expert with the UK Office of Conflict Stabilisation and Mediation and works regularly with NATO and the UN Democracy Fund. Kevin speaks French and is based in France.

Natasha Leite de Moura

Natasha has 17 years’ experience working on peace and security issues. She was the regional technical and programmatic lead for peace and security at the Danish Refugee Council in East Africa and the Great Lakes. She has also worked as a Public Security Adviser for UNODA in Latin America and the Caribbean, Citizen Security Researcher for UNDP and as a coordinator on GBV and youth issues for UNICEF and UNFPA in Belize, Brazil, the Maldives and Somalia. Natasha has worked in Somalia and Somaliland for the last five years on community security and community policing issues, she is currently working for FCP leading the community policing component of the UK-funded Somaliland security and justice programme. Natasha speaks French and Portuguese.

Robin Mydlak

Robin is a conflict analyst and political economist with over 6 years’ experience advising donor governments, international and local organisations in Somalia. Robin has accompanied the Somalia Stability Fund Phase II as Senior Analyst and has overseen more than 40 research projects in the areas of peacebuilding, stabilisation, and P/CVE. Recently, Robin has led research to inform the design of the new UK/UN security and justice programme and provided country-level political economy analyses to Oxfam and the Nordic International Support Foundation.

Romy Nasr

Romy has significant experience designing and managing security programmes in the Middle East and North Africa, specifically in Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, Syria and Tunisia. She has designed and managed programmes focused on civil-military cooperation, community engagement, CVE and security sector reform. Romy speaks Arabic and is based in Iraq.

Simon O’Brien

Simon is a former Chief Officer of Police, having worked for over 30 years in the Metropolitan Police Force. Following this, he worked as Chief Inspector of Policing for Ireland, as well as being appointed as Police Ombudsman for the Republic. Since 2016, Simon has provided strategic policing advice across the world, including training Iraqi police, working in Lebanon to develop the security sector and supporting police development in Nepal and Northern Nigeria. Simon is currently working with the Jordanian Police in Amman.

Kemi Okenyodo

Kemi has 20 years’ experience working on police accountability, security sector reform, gender and conflict issues in Nigeria and West Africa. She is the Executive Director of the Rule of Law and Empowerment Initiative, also known as Partners West Africa Nigeria (PWAN), a non-governmental organisation dedicated to enhancing citizens’ participation and improving security governance in Nigeria and West Africa broadly. Kemi was recently appointed as a member of the Governing Council of the National Human Rights Commission in Nigeria and is a member of the board/advisory committee of the Africa Polling Institute, Africa Policing Civilian Oversight Forum and the Africa Centre for Strategic Studies.

Deepti Sastry

Deepti has 15 years’ experience working on monitoring, evaluation and learning. She has worked with local and international NGOs, the private sector, multilateral organisations, and the UK, US and European governments. Her focus is on MEL for conflict, security and governance programmes. Deepti is a Deployable Civilian Expert for the UK Office of Conflict Stabilisation and Mediation.

Henry Smith

Henry Smith has over 20 years’ conflict prevention and peacebuilding experience in Africa, Asia, Europe and the Middle East and North Africa. Recent projects include leading the design of stabilisation programmes for donors in Iraq, Syria and Yemen, working with the German Government to counter violent extremism in the Middle East, and developing a stabilisation platform to support governments and international organisations in the Lake Chad Basin. Henry was previously a Director of First Call Partners and held posts as Senior Conflict Adviser for DFID, Head of the Security and Justice Group in the UK Stabilisation Unit and Director of the international NGO Saferworld. 

Charlie Stagg

Charlie is a former senior UK army officer with significant experience in stabilisation, security sector reform, military operations, transformation and change management. He has led stabilisation programme development, implementation and review, most recently in the Sahel and Lake Chad Basin, Eastern DRC, East Africa and the Horn. Charlie’s roles have included Deputy Head of the EUCAP mission in Niger and ceasefire monitoring for IGAD in South Sudan. Charlie speaks French and is a Senior Deployable Civilian Expert for the UK Office of Conflict Stabilisation and Mediation. He was a lead author for Defence and Army concept development to support UK stabilisation programming within the framework of the 2021 Integrated Review and is a lead consultant for future Army participation in Hybrid Warfare.

Mike Thomson

Mike is a governance, democracy, conflict prevention and parliament expert with over 30 years of experience in the design, delivery, monitoring and evaluation of development programmes across the world. He has an extensive background as a former DFID Economist, was Head of Governance Consulting for WYG International, a co-founder of Delta Partnership and as a consultant with KPMG. Mike has lived and worked in Barbados, Brazil, Guyana, Jamaica, Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda.

Become a member of our team

FCP are always interested in making contact with experienced consultants who could strengthen our network of Associates. If you are interested in working with us, please contact info@firstcallpartners.org