Our Venture Board

Ashoka UK's Venture Board brings together some of the leading experts in the field of social entrepreneurship.  

Venture, Ashoka’s search and selection process for new Fellows, relies on nominations from the public as well as our trusted partners.  The aim of the Venture Board is to discuss leading innovations and share best practice for building the field of social entrepreneurship in the UK.   Members include:


Derek Bardowell

Head of Programmes - Laureus Sport for Good Foundation

Since January 2015, Derek has served as Head of Programmes at the Laureus Sport for Good Foundation, which harnesses the power of sport to promote social change. Before joining Laureus, Derek worked as Grants Manager (Education Lead) of the Esmee Fairbairn Foundation, one of the largest independent grant-making foundations in the UK, and prior to that he was Director of Education (2006-2009) at the Stephen Lawrence Trust. Originally a broadcast journalist and writer, Derek still regularly contributes to The Weeklings as an essayist.

Nick Temple

Director of Business - Social Enterprise UK

Nick has served, since 2011, as Director of Business at Social Enterprise UK. Previously, Nick was the Director of Policy and Communications at the School for Social Entrepreneurs, and he used to work as an independent consultant with a variety of organisations, including UnLtd, the Guardian, Venture Partnership Foundation, British Council and the London School of Economics.


Simon Evill

Social Business Manager - ClearlySo

Since 2008, Simon has served as Social Business Manager at ClearlySo, which works with promising social entrepreneurs to help them structure their investment proposition and translate their opportunity to impact investors. Prior to this, Simon worked as Business Development Manager at the International Knowledge Measurement. 


Vik Anderson

Director – Mix-Fits

Vik is the Director of Mix-Fits a non profit backing social intrapreneurs at ideas stage and the organisations around them to see these ideas flourish. She is also a board member of VSOUK, Social Venture Committee Member of Venture Partnership Foundation and a mentor for CharityWorks and an Angel for Make a Wave. Previously, she has worked at UnLtd, Charities Aid Foundation and Big Lottery.


Yasmin Waljee

Yasmin Waljee

International Pro Bono Director – Hogan Lovells

In 1997, Yasmin was appointed at Hogan Lovells as the first legally qualified, full time pro bono manager in Europe. She has been key to establishing and embedding a pro bono culture within the legacy firm. Yasmin co-founded the firm's international social enterprise and social finance practice.  She advises on a number of international human rights issues and international development projects.  She was one of the Founders of the Princes of Wales' Mosaic Programme to raise the aspirations of young people from disadvantaged Muslim communities.   She was awarded an OBE in the Queen’s New Year Honours list in 2010. 

Stuart ThomasonStuart Thomason

Head of Ventures – The Young Foundation

Director of two social businesses – the architecture practice Studio Polpo and social innovation consultancy Inside Innovation - Stuart joined the Young Foundation to lead the £1m Youth of Today Youth Leadership fund. He is now leading the design and delivery of the Accelerator programme and the European incubator initiative “EU Transition”. Prior to that, Stuart was based at UnLtd where he spent 4 years coaching and mentoring hundreds of individuals who have set up a range of innovative social enterprises and charities.


Ruth Pryce

Senior Grants Manager - Paul Hamlyn Foundation

Ruth is leading PHF’s programme investing in organisations supporting young people. Ruth has over 15 years’ experience in the not-for-profit sector, including six years working for BBC Children in Need (the UK’s largest independent grant-maker for disadvantaged children and young people). Previously she was CEO of STAR (Student Action for Refugees) where she grew the network from seven to over forty groups with international affiliates.


David Bartram

Head of Ventures - UnLtd

David is the Head of Ventures at UnLtd, The Foundation for Social Entrepreneurs. His team supports ambitious social ventures grow their business and raise investment. Previously he worked at both Lloyds Banking Group and prior to that at McKinsey & Company. He was also an Associate for OnPurpose, a one year leadership programme that helps young professionals kick-start a career in social enterprise.





>>Supporting Social Entrepreneurs