Working with us
AAW are strategic problem solvers who work with leadership teams within non-profits and charities to co-create organisational, operational solutions, whether that is in the context of income generation, internal and external engagement, people or digital transformation.
Our goal is to help leaders identify and solve problems and then together, implement the right solution to take them to tomorrow. We provide consulting support across organisational, fundraising, digital and communications strategy, including people and organisational development, as well as offer executive search and recruitment.
AAW work globally and have a strong track record in working with a range of clients from large, complex often international not-for-profits to smaller national or regional organisations.
When AAW was established by three individuals – Mark Astarita, Imogen Ward and Tobin Aldrich - we wanted to be sure that we were filling a gap, that we were not just replicating the services provided by other consultancy and search agencies.
As three people who have all been trustees, CEOs and Fundraising and Communications Directors with over seven decades of experience between us, we wanted to provide the sort of service we had yearned for over our combined decades working charity side. We wanted to work with a partner that had demonstrable experience of running and leading a charity, that could support the development of organisational strategy and structures, and that could ultimately help advise with and secure talented leadership.
Thus we created a practice that sought to provide both organisational consultancy plus a search service. AAW prides itself on taking a consultancy approach to search and a people driven approach to consultancy.
Immersed in the sector, AAW brings a combination of insight, expertise and connections that is unique in the market, as well as a bespoke, personalised service for our clients.
Tobin Aldrich leads our Global Strategy Practice. Tobin is a highly experienced international fundraising and non-profit marketing strategist at a regional, national and global level. Tobin has worked with over 70 non-profits in over 30 countries across the globe to deliver a wide range of strategic projects.
A graduate of Cambridge with an MBA from Cass Business School, Tobin is a highly experienced senior fundraiser who has been an exceptionally successful Fundraising and Communications Director at WWF, Concern Worldwide, Sightsavers, National Deaf Children's Society and Centrepoint in a career spanning over 25 years. Teams led by Tobin have raised over £500 million and recruited over one million new regular donors for charities.
Tobin and his teams have raised significant numbers of seven figure gifts from major foundations and private donors for both revenue and capital appeals. Major multi-million pound partnerships secured include HSBC, Sky and Coca Cola. He has been responsible for devising and leading major integrated fundraising appeals including Sightsavers' £30m Million Miracles campaign and WWF’s multi-million Year of the Tiger campaign.
Imogen Ward leads AAW’s People and Organisational Development Practice and has directed all of our search campaigns. Imogen has worked in top leadership roles in the conservation, health and education sector for over 20 years and is adept at understanding the challenges of growing organisations within a complex setting.
Imogen's previous posts include the Chief Executive of Lessons for Life - a charity that helps children in Africa attend and receive an education that equips them for life, the Executive Director at the Environmental Investigation Agency and the Director of Marketing and Communications at the emergency medical charity MERLIN (now part of Save the Children), where she took income from £7m to £70m over ten years.
Imogen has been a trustee of the emerging markets charity EMpower, Chair of the Environmental Investigation Agency Charitable Trust and the founding Chair of the Misfit Foundation.
She has also served on the board of the BBC’s Charity Appeals Advisory Committee since March 2017, having been appointed in recognition of her deep understanding of international aid and development.
Mark Astarita is one of the inspirers and pioneers of the Red Cross Red Crescent Virtual Fundraising Hub project and leads on AAW’s interim work. Mark is widely considered one of the most influential fundraisers of his generation. He has led teams raising over £1.5 billion for humanitarian causes and was awarded an OBE in 2015 in recognition of his services to fundraising.
Mark is widely known in both the UK and internationally, often utilising his experience through his involvement in a variety of charities and public bodies. Over 14 years as Director of Fundraising he trebled the income of the British Red Cross. A former Chair of the Institute of Fundraising and Director of Fundraising and Communications at the National Deaf Children’s Society (NDCS), Mark is a truly inspiring non-profit leader.
Mark also held the positions of Deputy CEO and acting Chief Executive at NDCS. He has been a trustee at VSO, served on the board of St Joseph’s Hospice in Hackney and is currently a trustee at St Clare’s Hospice in Essex.
Steven Ramsay is AAW’s Creative Director and is also founder and CEO of digital agency Big Mallet, experts in digital for the third sector delivering high-impact custom-designed websites and compelling digital fundraising campaigns for both global and UK charities. Steve has over 20 years experience in digital leadership, in both building effective global brands and some of the biggest web services in Europe, from concept to delivery. His work at Big Mallet covers design strategy, stakeholder workshops, information architecture, digital brand development, mobile and service design.
Steven began his career designing toys for Hasbro. In 2003 he moved over to digital design, working in China with clients such as Ford, Gap, Phillips, BMW Asia, Hilton, and HSBC. After enjoying design challenges in the financial sector with clients such as Payzone and Travelex, Steven brought his creativity into the charity sector heading up design & innovation at Baigent, Convio and Blackbaud.
Steven has been lead creative on numerous website builds including Cancer Research UK, Action for Children, UNICEF, and The Salvation Army. Steven leads on AAW’s digital transformation work.
George is a highly dedicated fundraising and marketing professional with over 20 years’ experience working with over 100 clients in her time as MD at direct marketing agency TW CAT before establishing Audience, the well-respected South-Coast fundraising and communications agency. Audience brings together a group of innovative senior fundraisers who are passionate change-makers and works with organisations to build bespoke strategies and powerful and compelling products and engagement. Audience is now part of the AAW Partnership Group.
Working to develop strategies, products, budget and forecast income, plan acquisition, analyse and analyse again and develop inspiring creative propositions, in her roles George has time and time again exceeded her clients’ targets.
George is also the Fundraising Chair and a Trustee for Concern Worldwide. She loves the great outdoors and her latest passion is trying her hand at mountain biking.
Breige has been working in fundraising since 2001 specialising in Individual Giving and is an Account Director at Audience, now part of the AAW Partnership Group. Audience has a strong presence in both Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland and Breige has worked in organisations in Ireland and the UK, including Concern Worldwide and GOAL and has a particular understanding of the nuances of the Irish market.
Breige has a proven record in project management, the development of fundraising infrastructure and systems, analysis and strategy. Working closely with the account team, Breige ensures that projects and campaigns are managed smoothly and delivered on time and within budget.
A data-loving fundraiser at heart, she enjoys nothing more than analysing client campaigns and using learnings to improve going forward.
Richard has over 22 years’ experience in the charity sector and is a former Director of Fundraising at Mencap, Head of Individual Giving at Marie Curie and Head of Individual Giving at Age Concern. Richard has worked as a consultant with organisations such as Barnardos, British Heart Foundation, Blood Cancer UK, NSPCC, The Home Office, Terrence Higgins Trust, Refuge and ABF The Soldiers’ Charity. He founded and ran Pathfinder Fundraising, a creative fundraising agency for four years and is the founder of Aspect FS, a face to face fundraising agency operating across Scotland and the North of England.
Richard is now Managing Consultant at AAW.