Meet the Team
Liz Hosken - Director
Liz Hosken, from South Africa, was active from a young age in both environmental issues and the anti-apartheid movement. She was exiled to the UK and co-founded the Gaia Foundation in 1984. The first decade of her work with Gaia in the Amazon, was more a profound training in ecological thinking than any of the University degrees she had received earlier. The experience reinforced her commitment to evolving processes to revive holistic ways of thinking and reverence for our beautiful planet home. It inspired her to return to her continent, to share these lessons and search for ways to restore Africa's rich cultural, spiritual and ecological heritage. In 1991, Liz received the Jameson Award and, on behalf of Gaia, has received the Schumacher Award and a One World Award for media work on biodiversity related issues. She is a fellow of the Findhorn Foundation, Advisor to the Goldman Environmental Prize, and on the Board of International Funders for Indigenous People (IFIP).
Cecilia Crossley - Head of Finance & Operations
After studying economics at university Cecilia became a Chartered Accountant and until 2007 was auditing in the City. Having enjoyed doing pro-bono charity work whilst an auditor, she decided to move to the international development sector and became VSO's internal auditor. Her interest in environmental issues and international development led her to Gaia in 2009, where she is Head of Finance & Operations. Cecilia has the ICAEW diploma in Charity Accounting and an MSc in International NGO Management. Cecilia is half Brazilian; she grew up valuing diverse ways of life and with an interest in different cultures.
Teresa Anderson - International Advocacy
Teresa has always had an interest in food and agriculture as an entry point to environmental, economic, political, health and community issues. She joined Gaia in 2001, where she is international advocacy officer for the African Biodiversity Network. Happily, this enables her to stay linked to Kenya, where she lived as a child. Teresa also helped to pioneer the very first "Transition Town" in Totnes, Devon and set up the food group, working with the community to build resilience in local food production, and reduce dependency on oil. Over the years, she has studied organic husbandry, worked on organic farms in Canada and South Africa, and has settled down in Devon.
Fiona Wilton - Projects Coordination
Fiona joined Gaia in 1992. She holds a first degree in Latin American studies, an MSc in Protected Landscape Management, and pioneered the concept of ''distance-working'' for Gaia - living in Colombia since 1998, and Uruguay since 2012. She has worked directly with indigenous and community groups, does occasional international consultancy work, and is a member of the IUCN group on Cultural and Spiritual Values of Protected Areas. Fiona grew up in Cornwall with a passion for the sea, coastal walks and sailing.
Priscilla Hon - Head of Partnerships
Priscilla has been fundraising for NGOs since 2002. Before Gaia, she worked for Conciliation Resources, The Media Trust and the YWCA (now Platform51). She also has a background in broadcast journalism having worked for eight years in Asia as a TV producer and reporter. Priscilla is from Singapore, has lived and worked in Indonesia and Hong Kong and holds an MSc in International Politics from SOAS.
Rowan Phillimore - Head of Communications
Rowan joined Gaia as Events & Communications Officer in June 2009, having worked in the public sector in marketing and events roles for six years. Having studied Social Anthropology at The University of Manchester, working for Gaia finally brought together personal, academic and vocational interests. Rowan is now Head of Communications, helping to raise awareness of both Gaia and the work of our international partners through a range of media and events.
Carine Nadal - Earth Law Support Officer
Carine joined Gaia in March 2008 as legal researcher and coordinator of its Earth Jurisprudence Learning Centre. She is committed to the revival and practice of Earth Jurisprudence principles in law and education. Carine completed a degree and Masters in environmental law with a thesis on community participation and environmental justice. Previous research experience was with the Environmental Law Foundation, United Nations Institute for Training and Research and IUCN, and she co-organised the first public interest environmental law (PIEL) conference in the UK. With ancestral roots in Mauritius, Carine values the importance of biological and cultural diversity and has a good understanding of French.
Helen Strong - Administration & Public Engagement Assistant
Helen joined the Gaia team in February 2012 having worked at the Hampstead School of English and spent a period teaching English in Hong Kong. Helen studied International Development at the University of Leeds having always been interested in social, economic and environmental justice issues. As part of her degree she studied for 6 months in Accra, Ghana. Providing administrative support for the team and cultivating ways for Gaia to reach a wider audience enables Helen to combine her practical work experience with a long-standing interest in education and the alternative options to current 'development' models.
Dijana Malidza - Finance Assistant
Dijana is from Croatia and came to England with her family in 1999. She since finalized her AAT studies and gained the AAT Diploma, and prefers to put her accountancy skills to use in the non-profit sector. Dijana previously worked as a volunteer at the Woman's Trust, before joining the Gaia Foundation. When possible she escapes the bustle of London and returns to her small village in Croatia.
Amy Woodrow Arai - Mining Campaign Assistant
Amy joined Gaia in 2012 having recently completed a degree in International Development and International Politics. Her final thesis focused on the Ecuadorian Amazon and the possibilities for integrating indigenous rights, biodiversity protection, post-oil development and action on global climate change. Concerning the challenges that face humanity today, she believes that there is much to learn (and re-learn) from indigenous cultures and traditional knowledge. She co-organised the 2011 Native Spirit Festival in London and also teaches pottery.
Tamara Wiffen - EC Project Assistant
Tamara joined Gaia as European Commission Project Assistant in 2013 to support African civil society organisations in responding to the growth in extractive industries. Tamara has a Masters degree in Development Management from the London School of Economics, with a specialisation in environmental governance and community livelihoods. She brings previous project support experience having worked with the Global Canopy Programme and the Centre for International Development and Training, in addition to acting as Technical Adviser for the Dalit Alliance for Natural Resources in Nepal. Tamara is of both Venezuelan and British nationality and has grown up in South East Asia, which provides her with a great appreciation for cultural diversity.