Our Leadership Team

Partners& brings together highly talented and experienced professionals to create a dynamic and passionate management team. We’re thrilled to be working together, with our clients and with our broader ecosystem, to provide specialist advice and support for our clients.

Stuart Reid

Chair

I’ve always been motivated to do things differently, better than the competition, and to be successful in doing so. Equally, I believe it’s important to have fun. That’s what we’re doing with Partners&.

Stuart has been the driving force behind some of the UK’s leading insurance businesses including Stuart Alexander, AJ Gallagher and Bluefin. He has served as Vice President of the Chartered Insurance Institute (CII); Chair of the CII Broking Faculty; Deputy Chair of the British Insurance Brokers Association (BIBA), and Chair of BIBA’s Large Brokers Committee, demonstrating his commitment to quality standards.

Phil Barton

Group CEO

I believe there is a short-termism in the market that is getting in the way of advisers serving clients. We’re intent on changing that and creating a better way, building long term partnerships with clients, insurers and other key stakeholders. Our business is determined to put clients, our team and relationships at the centre of our decision making.

During almost 40 years in the insurance and financial services sector, Phil has developed a track record for building highly successful teams and businesses. His extensive experience in building successful advisory businesses gained through many leadership roles with Jelf and Marsh, has given him the insight and vision to create a new form of advisory business that will challenge current market practice.

Chris Jelf

Group Commercial Director

Focusing on client service excellence is what brings the most reward and satisfaction on a professional and personal level, and I believe that’s when we win with, and for, our clients.

Chris has built a market leading reputation for outstanding client service, a skill he learned early in his career at Royal Insurance and Midland Bank Insurance Services, and which he embodies today. With his renowned professionalism, energy and drive, he founded Jelf Group in 1989, growing it to be the British Insurance Awards, Broker of the Year in 2015, prior to its sale to Marsh & McLennan. Chris combines an unswerving commitment to the principle of seamless advice with always seeking to exceed expectations.

Lee Davey

CEO, South

It’s all about the people – whether it’s our team in the office or the clients that we serve. The value of relationship has never been more important. It’s our key differentiator and it’s instilled in our DNA.

Lee started his career at Hill House Hammond, where he held various sales and leadership roles, before joining Towergate and Jelf, where he led the South West region. With his exceptional people skills and inspirational leadership style, Lee has always been an advocate of client service and people development.

Ewan MacDonald

CEO, North

The cultures of MacDonald Group and Partners& are a perfect fit. We have always had our people and clients at the centre of our business, and I feel this ethos is very much at the heart of Partners&. I am very excited by the opportunities that lie ahead and to be working with such a talented team as we grow our business in Scotland.

Ewan started his career with the family business in 1992, initially looking after the personal motor and household clients. He progressed into handling all lines of commercial related business across the organisation and ultimately, led the business to develop a very strong reputation in the Scottish market for service and delivery. In addition to his insurance career, Ewan is a professional men’s curling champion, having played for his country over 250 occasions in the World Junior Curling Championships, World Men’s Curling Championships, European Championships, European Mixed Championships and Olympic games.

Phillipa Sherman

CFO

The notion of partnership is woven across our business. My aim is to continue to build on that and develop strong working relationships between the finance function and the business so that we can work together to optimise opportunities as the business grows.

As a highly experienced CFO, Phillipa brings skills and capability gained from her involvement with a wide range of businesses and sectors including financial services, high street retail to high-growth, fast paced SME environments, all of which reflect the profile of our client base. She is an innovative problem-solver who considers the impact of issues from multiple perspectives: commercial considerations, accounting implications and regulatory impact.

Natalie McClean

Chief People Officer

We have a sense of being in this together, with a very clear purpose, and that’s what will make Partners& special for our clients and our people.

Natalie has developed and led successful and innovative HR teams at RBS, Jelf, Hero, Motocorp and most recently, Oxfam. Her distinctive capability is grounded in an amazing track record of developing and implementing approaches that promote progressive and collaborative workplace cultures.

Neil O’Sullivan

Managing Partner - Midlands

We know that in many sectors today, the focus on the client has waned. Our aim is to challenge that. We want to act as an example to the industry that when we get on our clients’ agenda, it’s a win-win – we understand them better and are able to provide better advice and we gain their loyalty, which is great for us as a business.

Neil is a client advocate through and through. He started his career as an underwriter before moving into sales management and business development roles with major insurance brokers including Gallagher and Bluefin, before founding Lewis Oliver Insurance Brokers Ltd, an independent firm of insurance brokers in 2016. He joined Partners& in May 2020 as a client partner, before moving into a sales leadership role in the Midlands region.

Darren Humphray

Managing Partner - Private Client

We are creating a culture that the most talented advisers in the UK want to be a part of. Everything Partners& is doing is centred around people - believing the best client experience is only possible, when the people serving them are genuinely engaged and doing something they passionately believe in.

Over the last 20 years Darren has enjoyed success in a variety of senior roles for both regional and global insurance brokers, focussed on strategic leadership, client experience, employee engagement and organic growth. Most recently, Darren was a shareholder and Board Director at Stackhouse Poland. Darren is on the Executive Committee of Partners& and leading Partners&’s high calibre and vastly experienced Private Client team.

Ross Dingwall

Managing Partner - Markets and Schemes

Over my 30 years in the insurance industry, I have had the pleasure of working with many brokers across the UK and building long lasting partnerships that benefited the client, the broker and the insurer. This team’s values and their ambitions are very similar to my own and I am excited about the contribution I can make to build the number one insurance advisory business in the UK.

Ross joins Partners& from Hiscox where he held a number of roles since 2000, including UK Sales Director, UK Broker Channel Managing Director and most recently, Distribution Director, overseeing Broker, Direct, Schemes, Partnerships and Marketing. He was also a member of the UK leadership team for the last 12 years and partner since 2014.

Isha Patel

Managing Partner - South East

I’m delighted to be part of this values led business. For me, the big draw to Partners& was the quality of the team and the firm’s commitment to challenging the status quo in the UK insurance market. I am excited by our shared ambition to create the best advisory business in the UK.

Isha joined Partners& following 10 years at Hiscox culminating in a role as Head of Direct Commercial. Prior to that, she held various positions over the last 10 years spanning her core disciplines include operations, sales and people leadership with a track record of working closely with finance and marketing.

James Porter

Managing Partner - Wellbeing Health & Protection

Many of us have come from large corporate backgrounds, we have seen the silos that exist and result in a lack of care in the way clients are served. The bond between all of us in Partners& is to challenge that status quo and make sure our clients are the absolute focus of our attention.

James is a financial risk specialist with experience working with a wide range of clients during his time at Aon, Barclays Wealth Management and Mercer. He joined Partners& in 2020 to design and lead our wellbeing, health and protection proposition which has gone from strength to strength due to the combination of his people skills and his technical expertise.

Malia Brown

Marketing and Communications Director

Our culture is what will differentiate us. It’s based on our values and reflects the energy, dynamism and optimism across our business.

Malia brings experience in creating compelling brand, marketing and communications strategies that inform and engage, honed over the years from PR agencies in Washington, DC and London to in-house marketing and communications roles in Jelf, Hyder Consulting and Arcadis.

Jonathan Miller

UK Sales Director

What struck me about Partners& is its purpose and its values, both of which run right through the organisation. I also wanted to work with the best professionals in our industry and be part of an organisation that is challenging the status quo, bringing the client back to the centre and promoting the partnership between brokers, clients and insurers.

Since starting his career with Alexander Forbes as a graduate trainee, Jonathan has built a leading reputation and specialist knowledge in the food and drink and M&A sectors, most recently at JLT and Marsh. Jonathan is also very active in a number of charities and is a committee member of Kids Out, a Director of Birmingham Food Council and has recently co-founded BFPS Black Leaders Network.

Alex Rowe

Non-Exec Director

The values we hold as a company represent a genuinely new way of doing business. The focus on partnership, true collaboration, being approachable and an enabler is refreshing and vital in today’s competitive landscape.

Early in his career, Alex developed and led the family Commercial Laundry business to its acquisition by a national player. Since then, he has developed a non-executive career spanning insurance, financial services, life sciences and the not for profit sectors. Alex is also a trustee of the Wild Planet Trust.

Jonathan Kelly

Partner, Capital Z

Our 30 year successful track record, investing over $3billion in the US and UK insurance market is predicated on our skill at selecting outstanding management teams. We at Capital Z believe wholly in the strength of this management team.

Jonathan is responsible for sourcing, evaluating and structuring investments within the financial services and insurance industry for Capital Z, a specialist investor in the UK and US insurance distribution and underwriting market. Prior to Capital Z, Jonathan was a Senior Vice President of Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette, specialising in corporate finance and merger and acquisition transactions in the insurance and reinsurance sectors.

Charles Bettinson

Group COO and Regulatory Director

In leading both our Operations and Regulatory departments, I am to ensure that our clients’ are always at the centre of our service.

Charles has over 25 years’ experience in the industry working for insurers and brokers and most recently he advised a number of FTSE companies. He is FCII and FIRM qualified and also holds a Master’s degree in Insurance & Risk Management.

Ellie Smith

Head of Risk

At Partner& we’re building something special and I’m excited to be part of this team. We are focused on putting our clients first and making this a great place to work.

Ellie is responsible for developing and implementing the group risk management framework and strategy, ensuring we maintain our professional standards and continue to develop an organisational risk culture. Ellie is a qualified chartered accountant and previously held roles at RBS and Deloitte.

Tracey McCreath

Director of Operational Performance

I believe what makes Partners& different is our focus on putting the client back at the centre of our world, which is where I started my career, but now I have access to the technology to really help our clients in ways I never dreamt of back then.

Tracey’s client service experience includes working with a range of businesses, from start-ups to multinational FTSE 100s requiring complex global placements. In the last 15 years, she has turned her attention to specialising in media, arts and entertainment before moving into the operational side of the business.

Ramzan Ghafoor

COO – Client Service

We are on a mission to create the next generation insurance advisory business. A key requirement for us to reach that goal is to push the boundaries of how we partner with our clients. The ability and desire to drive this change in our industry, for the benefit of clients, is what I love about our business.

Ramzan is ACII qualified with over 15 years’ experience in the insurance sector in leading organisations including Direct Line and Allianz. He brings his experience in underwriting management, client servicing, operations and leadership to his current role.

Rebecca Merry

Client Service Partner (Specialty)

The Partners& values really speak to me and my passion for being the difference that agitates for transformation. Progressive, Approachable, Collaborative and Enablers are words that not only incited great energy but ensure that I know I am part of a business that has values, focus and ambition aligned to my own aspirations.

Becci joined Partners& as Client Service Partner (Specialty). In this role, she will lead the client service delivery for our Private Client, Wellbeing, Health & Protection, and Schemes teams, and will be part of the Operations Executive.

Rowanne Dicker

Markets & Placement Director

At Partners& we focus on getting things right. We look to really understand our client’s business and what we can do to make them more resilient in an uncertain world. We are passionate about making sure our client’s benefit from the best of the insurance market; ensuring that the solutions fit our clients rather than fit our clients into the insurer’s products.

Rowanne started as a client facing broker in 2003, holding client director and market director roles at Oval, Willis Towers Watson and Marsh. Building her technical knowledge and market relationships over the years, she joined Partners& in March 2021. Rowanne looks to make sure that we understand what the best in the market looks like and ensure that our client can benefit from it.

Simon Haynes

Commercial Director

It is so motivating to be part of a business with such dedication to nurturing and promoting talent. Our industry is all about people and we recognise that in a way that no one else does.

A commercially focussed chartered accountant, Simon trained at big four firm Ernst & Young, before moving into the broking world with Jelf. He has been part of the Partners& story since its foundation in April 2020, and is responsible for all M&A, commercial and legal issues, including real estate and procurement.

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