Meet our Team
A qualified headteacher with an MA in English Literature, Debbie has worked in both the private and state education sectors for three decades. She has experience in strategic planning, project management and leading large teams of people. Debbie leads, manages, and develops the overall strategy and delivery of Work Avenue services.
As CEO what do you do at Work Avenue? I lead and manage the amazing Work Avenue team to ensure that we continue to help people to earn a living with dignity, whether through finding employment or assisting businesses.
An interesting fact about you? I am an Ofsted inspector
Favourite hobbies? Watching documentaries about historical events
Where’s your favourite place in the world? It has to be Israel, where my grandchildren live!
Jeremy is the Director of WAGE, our Social Enterprise. He started his commercial career in the recruitment industry working for his way from junior consultant through to Director of several agencies before branching out to form his own specialist headhunting business. More recently he took on the challenge of running and managing the community’s leading golf and country club, completing a change management programme to modernise and transform the member and visitor experience.
What will you bring to Work Avenue? Apart from doubling the male presence in the office I shall be bringing a combination of commercial and people skills that will enable WAGE to achieve its goals. These are to support people getting into and returning to the workplace via training them in key disciplines as well as offering an inexpensive service to start ups and entrepreneurs by utilising those recently trained cohorts coming through the Social Enterprise.
Favourite hobbies? All sports really but especially golf which I play off a scratch handicap and represent Maccabi GB.
Interesting fact about you? The part played by Robert de Niro in the film Casino was based on my real life cousin – so be careful if you get on my wrong side!!
A law graduate from UCL and qualified HR Professional, Yael manages Work Avenue’s job placement service, supporting Work Avenue’s network of employers with their recruitment needs. Yael also runs regular workshops and individual mock interview practice sessions for the employment division.
What problem are you solving at Work Avenue? Bringing together job seekers and job vacancies, providing my colleagues with snacks
If you could write your own job title that best describes what you do here, what would it be? Job Matchmaker
Who would you most like to swap places with for a day? A surgeon – I’ve always been fascinated by medicine despite having the completely wrong skillset
Interesting fact about you? I am distantly related to our Director of Operations & Employment, Emma, by marriage
Hannah is a qualified Careers Adviser with extensive experience in providing careers advice in education settings and advice centres. She has a background in helping clients achieving their goals, including getting into university, apprenticeships, employment and work experience.
What makes you a great employment adviser? I have a level 7 Postgraduate Qualification in Careers Guidance as well as 10 years of experience in Careers Education, Advice and Guidance. I have previously worked in youth services and further education colleges. This has meant that I have advised on not only careers and job hunting, but also have a strong knowledge of the education system and how to apply for university and apprenticeships.
Favourite hobbies? I enjoy Pilates, going abroad (pre Covid) and spending time with my toddler
Where’s your favourite place in the world? That’s a tough one as I travelled a lot pre Covid, but I really loved Bali
Interesting fact about you? I stayed with a tribe in the Colombian Jungle for 5 days
With a number of years’ prior experience working for a welfare to work provider, Richard has a real passion for supporting people from all walks of life into employment. He is committed and enthusiastic about helping people overcome challenges and realise their potential. Richard is also a children’s entertainer, a keen snooker player and a lifelong Spurs fan.
What makes you a great employment adviser? The key to being great at your job is to love what you do – I enjoy helping, inspiring and motivating people, I always have. I see the positive in people and believe in their potential. My biggest reward is clients working hard and achieving their desired career goals.
Where’s your favourite place in the world? Standing at the top of Ben Nevis mountain in Scotland on a clear day will take some beating
Who would you most like to swap places with for a day? Probably Harry Kane, playing for Spurs against Arsenal and scoring the winning goal
An interesting fact about you? I once gave careers/employment advice to a former cast member of EastEnders
Melanie has extensive experience in coaching and supporting individuals to achieve their career potential. A MCIPD qualified HR professional and Career Coach, she works at senior level within the private, public and not-for-profit sectors combining her up-to-date industry knowledge with expertise in helping clients to find work and career opportunities.
As Employment Programmes Manager what do you do at Work Avenue? I review and develop our programme provision to ensure we are providing something for everyone as well as meeting clients on a one-to-one basis to help them to make realistic career choices, equipping them with the skills and confidence to secure a job that will further their career.
If you could write your own job title that best describes what you do here, what would it be? Listener, empathiser and facilitator
Who would you most like to swap places with for a day? I absolutely cannot sing so I’d love to be able to entertain a huge audience with my voice like Adele or Katherine Jenkins – but it’s so far from who I am so I’ll happily stick with the job I love doing where I get to meet new people everyday.
Interesting fact about you? My very first student job was waiting on tables in a fish and chips shop in Southend where I earned 60p an hour before moving on to something that couldn’t be more different, teaching kids at a local Cheder.
Melissa is Work Avenue’s Job Placements Coordinator, supporting the activities of the employment team and providing a friendly and efficient service to our clients. Melissa’s background in Fashion Design means she brings creative solutions, drives collaboration and enhances client relationships. An advocate for community, social and environmental topics. Melissa has also studied Sustainability at UAL, volunteers for charities and most recently made scrubs for the NHS during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Favourite hobbies? Illustration, travel (pre Covid) and massive film buff.
Interesting fact about you? I sang in Joseph and his Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, West End productions!
Favourite place in the world? Italian Countryside – and anywhere I can experience new cultures and languages.
Joanna is a Business Adviser for Work Avenue. Following a successful career in Sales working for high profile media owners Joanna established her own Sales Training and Consultancy business. She has extensive experience helping founders and directors of SMEs and Start-Ups devise business plans, develop sales and marketing strategies and working with them on leadership, personnel and commercial issues. Joanna is also a qualified corporate coach and is passionate about helping clients to set and achieve their business goals.
What makes you a great business adviser? I love my role as Head of Business – the diverse range of businesses that I am helping makes each day interesting and inspiring, so I bring great enthusiasm to the role. My background in sales and marketing means that I am able to provide very practical help and support so that a client is able to see progress as we work together.
Who would you most like to swap places with for a day? A Metropolitan Police homicide detective
Favourite hobbies? Eating out with friends or family, running on Hampstead Heath and before Corona – travelling!
Interesting fact about you? I am the daughter of a farmer so grew up on a farm outside Nottingham!
Kim is a Business Adviser for Work Avenue. After starting out in PR, with clients including Pampers, Maltesers and Lands’ End clothing, she then set up her own business providing exercise classes to pre-school children which she has run for the last 14 years. More recently she has also been helping run and grow a communications training company. Kim loves working with people and helping them to achieve their ambitions.
What makes you a great business adviser? I like people and I like to help them achieve their goals, and at the same time I have run my own business and know the difficulties and pitfalls.
Favourite hobbies? My favourite hobbies are exercise and musical theatre – watching it professionally and performing in it amateurishly!
Who would you most like to swap places with for a day? I’d quite like to swap places with a member of the Royal Family for a day – but just for the one day.
Sara grew up in Newcastle and moved down to London for university, graduating with a Management Science degree. In Sara’s previous life before Work Avenue, she was a buyer in the Harrods pantry department and senior buyer at Tesco Plc, responsible for buying babygros, baby vests and baby bibs.
As Employment & Business Events Manager, what do you do at Work Avenue? I analyse, review and develop the programmes we provide to ensure that we meet the needs of our client base so they can start and grow their own businesses to support them in earning a living.
Our client base is hugely interesting and diverse and so I am enjoying meeting clients on a one-to-one basis to help them with their individual business growth and development.
Where’s your favourite place in the world? Probably being on safari in Africa, the morning game drives are just so peaceful, you go out before light when the animals are still asleep…and are there when they wake up and start their day….
Favourite hobbies? Eating out with friends and family and travelling – I absolutely love going to new places –meeting new people and seeing interesting things – the more off the beaten track the better.
Interesting fact about you? I went to China and then Japan in 1991 to climb Mount Fuji….most people had never seen curly hair before and so didn’t think mine was real! People came out of their houses to look at me!
Jo graduated from Leeds University with a BA Honours in Politics and has over 15 years experience in marketing and fundraising. Jo has worked at Europe’s largest broadcasting network and one of the UK’s biggest Jewish charities. Her experience and diverse skills from both the charity and commercial sectors brings a fresh approach as she heads up the Marketing division at Work Avenue.
As Head of Marketing, what do you do at Work Avenue? I ensure all Work Avenue’s comms are as clear as possible, so the community know exactly how we can help them earn a living. I am lucky that I get to work closely with the entire team, ensuring that all events and services are communicated to the correct audience.
What do you enjoy doing when you are not working? I love playing tennis and spending time with my family & friends
Where’s your favourite place in the world? It would have to be either Cape Town or Israel…both in very different ways!
Interesting fact about you? When I was 12 I had surgery for scoliosis and as a result have 2 metal rods and a few screws in my back
Ariella is responsible for all our social media. You will often find her around WE Hub shooting engaging content and coming up with innovative ways of engaging with our followers. She graduated in 2021 from the University of Westminster with a BA in Public Relations & Advertising.
As Marketing Executive, what do you do at Work Avenue? I create new and exciting content for social media. I work with all of the team to see which events, workshops or services need a bit of a boost and come up with innovative ways to spread the word!
What do you enjoy doing when you are not working? I am a qualified nail technician and it is my favourite hobby.
Where’s your favourite place in the world? Herzliyah for a beach holiday and New York for a city break.
Interesting fact about you? I still can’t ride a bike.
Talia is Work Avenue’s receptionist and is responsible for meeting and greeting all Work Avenue clients. With her friendly personality and positive attitude, she makes sure all clients and other visitors feel welcome and have everything they need when they are in the office. Talia’s previous experience in a reception role in a professional services firm ensures that she has all the skills and attributes necessary for a busy front office here.
What makes you a great Receptionist? I love meeting new people and welcoming them to Work Avenue. It is great to get to talk to everyone who walks through our doors.
Favourite hobbies? I love a good holiday, any opportunity and I am on a plane. I also love to follow my beloved team, Tottenham Hotspur
Who would you most like to swap places with for a day? Shoshana Cohen, we sit next to each other and I’d want to know what I’m like
Interesting fact about you? I probably know more about Spurs than most men!
Shoshana is WE Hub’s Building Manager and the first point of contact for members and visitors. As an effective communicator and problem solver she provides solutions for WE Hub business users. Having worked within the charity sector in similar roles, Shoshana brings with her a wealth of knowledge and creativity.
Favourite hobbies? Building IKEA furniture and anything sports related really
Where’s your favourite place in the world? WE Hub of course!
Who would you most like to swap places with for a day? Talia Herman who sits next to me so I can see what I’m really like
Interesting fact about you? I ran in the Jerusalem Marathon twice
Shopping, going out to eat and finishing the day with a good exercise class!
Where’s your favourite place in the world?
Dubai or Israel. They both bring back such good memories from holidays with Family and Friends.
Interesting fact about you?
I love a holiday and have been to over 20 countries!