Staff Team

Mary-Ann Stephenson

Mary-Ann Stephenson


Mary-Ann has worked for women’s equality and human rights for over twenty years as a campaigner, researcher and trainer. She was previously Director of the Fawcett Society and a Commissioner on the Women’s National Commission. She is a founder member of Coventry Women’s Voices and a board member at Coventry Rape and Sexual Abuse Centre. She has a PhD in Law from the University of Warwick.

Marion Sharples

Marion Sharples

Project Manager/Researcher

Marion joined WBG to work on the Commission for a Gender-Equal Economy. She is a Trustee of Women Working Worldwide and sits on the gender and trade working group of Women in Development Europe (WIDE+). Previously, Marion worked in policy and advocacy at the Gender & Development Network and the European Women’s Lobby. She holds an MSc in Gender, Development and Globalisation from the LSE.

Sara Reis

Sara Reis

Research & Policy Officer

Sara has a PhD in Politics from the University of Sheffield. Her professional experience includes working on the rights of victims of crime, gender equality and women’s rights in the EU, and the impact of migration on local areas in England. She is currently working on the Coventry Women’s Partnership project, researching the issues that vulnerable women face, including discrimination, UC roll out, and access to good-quality housing.

Thaira Mhearban

Thaira Mhearban

Communications Officer

Thaira has worked for front line services supporting victims & survivors of Honour Based Violence, Forced Marriage & Domestic Abuse. She is an accredited Independent Domestic Violence Advocate. She has previously worked for a global academic publishing company Taylor & Francis, promoting their research amongst academics. She has also worked in communication roles for Suzy Lamplugh Trust, a personal safety and stalking advocacy charity and Jewish Women’s Aid.  She has a Bachelor of Honours degree in Marketing.

Emma Williams

Emma Williams

Administrative Officer/Research Assistant

Emma has a background working in arts administration and events for community arts festivals, the third sector and social enterprises. Her career path has been guided by a strong sense of social justice and a desire to work for organisations trying to improve the social, political and economic landscape in the UK. She has a Masters in Arts Management: Policy & Practice from the University of Manchester.

Jenna Norman

Jenna Norman

Public Affairs Officer

Jenna is a feminist activist who holds a MSc Gender, Development and Globalisation from the LSE. She joins the Women’s Budget Group with experience in communications and campaigning for global and national feminist causes. Her background includes advocacy to end child and early forced marriage and gender inequality at the local European level as well as campaigning to raise awareness about the impact of Brexit on women. As our Public Affairs Officer she seeks to increase the WBG’s profile and influence in Westminster. 

Management Committee

Pam Cole


WBG Chair since 2016, Pam has been an active member for 15 years, contributing to the management committee and the policy sub-group, providing analysis on public sector and employment issues. After a career in public libraries, Pam held various officer roles in a public sector trade union. She has worked closely with organisations including the TUC and EHRC developing policy and guidance on equality issues including equal pay, flexible working, family rights, health and well-being.

Professor Ruth Pearson

Co-Chair for Strategy and Fundraising

Ruth is Emeritus Professor of International Development at the University of Leeds, development economist and founder scholar and activist in the field of Gender and Development and Associate Editor for Gender and Development. Ruth’s research interests are mainly concerned with women and work in the global economy. She has extensive experience of development policy and practice with governments, international organisations and NGOs in the Global South and North.

Susan Himmelweit

Chair of the Policy Advisory Group

Susan is Emeritus Professor of Economics at the Open University, a feminist economist working on intra-household inequalities, the economics of caring, and the gender implications of economic policy. She is a member of the Commission on Mission-Oriented Innovation and Industrial Strategy, and of various advisory groups, including for the Equality and Human Rights Commission on “Making Fair Financial Decisions”. In 2009, she was the President of the International Association for Feminist Economics and is on the Editorial Board of its journal Feminist Economics.

Angela O'Hagan

Angela is a Lecturer at Glasgow Caledonian University and Convenor of the Scottish Women’s Budget Group. She has been engaged in the process of securing equality analysis in the Scottish Budget process since its inception in 1999/2000. Angela was recently appointed as Chair of the Scottish Government’s Equality and Budgets Advisory Group (EBAG) and regularly gives evidence to committees of the Scottish Parliament – and elsewhere – on improvements in gender analysis of budget processes.

Pat Simons


Pat became treasurer of the WBG in 2018, having held voluntary positions in a number of educational and professional organisations. She is a qualified librarian and has worked in information and management roles in universities and local authorities.

Polly Trenow

Co-Chair for Communication

Polly is a campaigner and policy expert in gender equality and economics with a special interest in communicating feminist economics to non-academic audiences. She has over ten years experience in the women’s sector including as Senior Policy Officer for the Fawcett Society and has been part of the Women’s Budget Group since 2009. Polly is a member of the New Economy Organisers Network and former Clore Fellow.

Annalise Johns

Annalise is a London based Urban Designer with a specialism in the ideation of multifaceted spaces that improve environmental resilience while maximising social determinants of health with the aim of creating more productive economies. Through the WBG, Annalise has been able to combine her interest in feminist economics and her experience in housing policy. As a member of the Management Committee she provides housing and heath related input.

Scarlet Harris

Scarlet Harris is Head of Policy and Campaigns at Maternity Action, a charity campaigning for stronger maternity rights, for better access to maternity services, especially for migrant women, and providing legal advice to pregnant women and new mothers on issues ranging from NHS access, to asylum support, to discrimination, to health and safety at work, to maternity pay and benefits. Before working at Maternity Action, Scarlet worked as the women’s officer at the TUC for nine years. Scarlet is also a trustee of Equally Ours, previously the Equality and Diversity Forum.

Sue Cohen

Sue is Chief Executive of the Single Parent Action Network (SPAN). Sue has responsibility for SPAN’s overall strategic development at a national and European level including policy development and managing major partnerships, working on anti-poverty and anti-discrimination strategies. She is also a Research Associate of the School of Law, University of Bristol.

Dr Jerome De Henau

Co-Chair for Policy

Jerome is Senior Lecturer in Economics at the Open University. He joined the Women’s Budget Group in 2010 and its management committee in 2013. His areas of expertise include quantitative analysis of between and within-household gender inequalities in income and employment and the gender impact of work-family and tax-benefit policies across European countries, including in particular investing in social care and childcare services.

Rebecca Omonira-Oyekanmi

Co-Chair for Communication

Rebecca is an independent reporter, editor & writer. Co-edits Shine A Light, an investigative journalism and storytelling project that exposes injustice, challenges official lying, and provides intelligence and ammunition to people working for policy change. Writer in residence for Lacuna magazine, a human rights publication. Twice shortlisted for Orwell Prize. Winner of Scottish Refuge Council media award and Write to End Violence Against Women award.

Sarah Marie Hall

Sarah is a Senior Lecturer in Human Geography at the University of Manchester. Her research sits in the broad field of feminist political economy: understanding how socio-economic processes are shaped by gender relations, lived experience and social difference. Sarah has been a member of the WBG Management Committee since 2014, and is particularly involved in conducting and advising on qualitative research strategy and public engagement activities.

Janet Veitch

Janet Veitch works as consultant in the UK and internationally on women’s rights, having worked for ten years for the UK Ministers for Women, and as Director of the UK Women’s National Commission. She is a founder member of the End Violence Against Women Coalition, a Vice-Chair of Equally Ours (previously the Equality and Diversity Forum), and an associate adviser on gender for the British Council. She was awarded the OBE for services to women’s rights in 2011.

Iman Achara

Iman is a consultant with several years experience working on women and gender policies.