Adam Grant is an organisational psychologist at Wharton, the bestselling author of Give and Take, Originals, and Option B, and host of the TED podcast WorkLife. As a speaker at STRIVE Challenge, he is passionate about helping people find motivation and meaning, and lead more generous and creative lives.
Ed is the co-founder School 21, Voice 21, and the forthcoming London Interdisciplinary School. Big Change funded Voice 21 right at the start of their journey, when taking their oracy ‘idea’ beyond School 21 as still just an ‘idea’, and helped make it possible for them to grow. The Voice 21 oracy curriculum is now in 450 schools, and they have trained thousands of teachers to help young people find their voice. Ed is now starting a new university (LIS) and the Big Change network has helped him build a team and raise money to make this a reality. Ed’s underlying belief is that Education has increasingly become a giant sorting mechanism, ranking students by grade for universities and employers. He believes we need to think about what society really needs from it’s education system. This is going to take a Big Change.
Ed Walsh and Family are passionate about communication and oracy, and so signed up last year to support Big Change projects with an amazing 5-year commitment. They are part of the big change that has seen oracy well and truly be put on the national agenda.
Felix Stellmaszek is a senior partner and managing director at the Boston Consulting Group and passionate about reimagining education. As a result, he and BCG have provided Big Change with invaluable strategic advice and connections. Felix also participated in STRIVE Challenges in 2016 and 2018 to raise funds for Big Change.
James Burton and his created Wolfpack have been inspiring friends and family to get involved with them in multiple fundraising challenges for Big Change. These include completing a 100,000 burpee challenge in November, running the height of Mount Everest and a 24-hour danceathon.
Karl Lokko is a former gang leader who has now turned his life around. Further than this, he has managed to harness his life experiences which has propelled and uniquely situated him as an activist/influencer within the U.K. Karl is a gifted orator with a rare ability to connect with people on a human level, granting him undoubtedly the role of a bridge, bridging worlds and uniting community. Karl Lokko’s oratory capacity came to light through the unfortunate and unsettling 2011 riots, where he was called upon to speak and express the hard-to-articulate feelings of the community in which he lives. Karl Lokko is a ‘Big Changer’ and consultant for Big Change, a tireless community worker and campaigner working to reform gang culture in the U.K., currently doing the ground work to establish this country’s first therapeutic community gang rehabilitation centre whilst at the same time affecting policy around the issue. Karl is undeniably one of the most potent young voices in the country and demonstrates this through various mediums.
Lara Milward is a fitness entrepreneur, author, speaker and #womanswarrior. She is the Official Strive Challenge fitness partner and has been fundraising for Big Change since 2014. It has become a family commitment with her husband running London marathon and her daughter appearing in Big Change’s promos. She is passionate about Big Change’s philosophy on prevention rather than cure. One of her favourite quotes is “It is easier to build a strong child than fix a broken adult’.
Paul Williams is a superstar supporter – always going above and beyond to get the message out about Big Change and a two-time Strive Challenge participant. Paul has been thrilled to have his employer, Bloomberg, support his fundraising. He has also created a photography book, with all proceeds donated to Big Change.
Richard Reed is the co-founder of Innocent. The business was started from a market stall in 1999 by Richard and two friends with a mission to “taste good and do good”, and gives 10% of profits each year to charity. As well as co-founding innocent, Richard is the co-founder of Jam Jar Investments, a company that backs young entrepreneurs; the co-founder of Art Everywhere, the world’s largest art show; and the co-founder of The Reed Page Foundation, a personal charity that funds peace-brokering and environmental protection initiatives across the world. Richard is also Chairman of the innocent Foundation, a Patron of Peace One Day and is a government advisor on entrepreneurship.
Stephen Shanly is an extreme striver. In 2018 he literally pushed the boat out and rowed across the Atlantic single-handed. He achieved the 4th fastest solo time ever (without a seat, which he lost half way) – completing it on Valentine’s Day, so we have big love for him. As a result, he raised almost £30K for Big Change!
Nowadays Andy is a mentor and advisor to entrepreneurs and change-makers after startup and growth-company experiences culminated in co-founding international digital agency Essence. He believes in fairness of opportunity, regardless of background, and that backing powerful ideas early can have disproportionate leverage in helping every young person get an equal chance in life.
Antonin de Fougerolles
Antonin (Tony) de Fougerolles is CEO of Evox Therapeutics, an Oxford-based company working on a transformational way to make and deliver drugs. Tony has 20+ years biotech Research & Development experience having previously advanced 3 new drug platforms towards the market and helped build several multi-billion dollar companies from start-up stage. He is passionate about education and in ensuring opportunities for all.
Gareth is CEO of Around Noon – an award-winning manufacturer and distributor of sandwiches, wraps, salads, bakery and juices in UK & Ireland. Since Gareth took over as CEO almost 10 years ago, the company has featured two years running on the Sunday Times Fast Track 100 list of fastest growing privately-held companies. He’s passionate about food and travel, and believes that every child has the right to education and should be encouraged to thrive.
Luke is an Adventure Philanthropist and Managing Director of a multinational PPE business based out of Sydney, Australia. His adventuring has seen him become one of fewer than 400 people in the World to have completed the World Marathon Challenge, a whopping 7 marathons in 7 days on 7 continents. He is one of only 500 people to have skied the last degree to the South Pole. Oh, and while he was there, he went on to summit Mount Vinson! It’s thought that fewer than 100 people have completed these two epic challenges back to back. Luke is passionate about Big Change because of the value he sees in our mission. He believes that the education system – in particular the way children are educated – needs to change. Children need to be prepared for tomorrow’s world, not yesterday’s – or even today’s.
Matt Isaacs has made a massive contribution to Big Change through personal financial contributions, advice and connections. He also created and manages the Strive Catalyst Circle; a group of former participants from our STRIVE Challenge events who continue to support Big Change in one of the most powerful ways possible – by contributing to our core costs. This ensures that every penny we fundraise goes to creating real impact.
Matt is the Founder of naughtone, a global furniture brand based in North Yorkshire. In 2012 Matt launched naughtone in North America which equates to 65% of the company’s revenue today. Through this success, naughtone has been awarded accolades such as the Queens Award for Enterprise, The Sunday Times Export Track and The Telegraph Export award. Matt was introduced to BIg Change through the Virgin STRIVE Challenge in 2018 and has been a passionate supporter of Big Change ever since. He believes Big Change’s approach to supporting education entrepreneurs is a game changer!
Susie Ma is a Forbes 30 Under 30 entrepreneur and founder of Tropic Skincare. Tropic’s infinite purpose is to create a healthier, greener, more empowered world, and they recently partnered with United World Schools to open their first school in Cambodia. Susie has completed 3 STRIVE Challenges and remains passionate about helping Big Change make a real difference to children’s lives.