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Our Board

We work with a group of committed professionals who volunteer their time to support FOCUS.

Board members come from a number of different professions and provide guidance to make sure that FOCUS meets the needs of its members. They meet on a quarterly basis and serve as advisors to the Executive Director.

Gael Panhelleux

Executive Director

Originally from Paris with over 25 years experience in Education, Marketing and Sales in 6 different countries, I had the opportunity to live the expat life with my husband and my 3 children in countries such as USA, China, Indonesia and Brazil. We all moved from Paris to London 8 years ago.We fell in love with the city and I feel really fortunate to be able to help new comers to settle in the UK and enjoy the British life.

Alberto Pravettoni

Vice Chairman of the Board, Financial Services Executive

Alberto is an Italian national, who has lived in Milan, New York and London - where he resides with his family since 2005. He has a 25 year career experience in Finance, having worked at Citi, Goldman Sachs and more recently LCH.Clearnet. Alberto is a graduate from Bocconi University in Milan, and has a strong interest in international education. He is a trustee and one of the co-founders of the Italian School in London, and has completed a 'Nonprofit leadership Program' at Harvard University, specifically designed for Trustees.

Simon Fitch

Board member

Simon hails from London and has spent most of his career in international education, helping students and families from around the world access British university, school and pathway courses. A graduate of Newcastle and De Montfort Universities, Simon is passionate about supporting the transition for those new to the UK, and sharing his extensive local knowledge and experiences with families relocating here.

Vincent Pizzoni

Board member, Consultant in Executive Search for Preng & Associates

Vince is British and has lived abroad for 17 years. He has over 30 years business experience in international markets primarily in oil, gas and chemicals. He has a particular interest in education and works voluntarily with schools, universities, business schools and many individuals helping them to explore career options. Vince is a Fellow of the Institute of Chemical Engineers and Chartered Management Institute. He is also a member of the Institute of Career Guidance and the Society of Petroleum Engineers.

Stephanie Vogel

Board member

Stephanie has been appointed as non-executive director at FOCUS in December 2020. Prior to that she worked at FOCUS as Director of Business Development before relocating to Germany at the beginning of 2020. Stephanie, a mother of four children, is originally from Germany but lived in London for almost 15 years. She has been involved with FOCUS for many years- she initially joined as a member before she held various positions between 2016 and 2019. Stephanie has her background in the insurance industry, initially starting as trainee at a Munich based insurance company before working for Munich Re as Life Underwriter both in Munich and London and then working for AIG.Stephanie holds a BA Hons Degree in Business Studies from the University of Westminster.