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The Team

We all are or have been expats that have moved abroad from different places around the world.  Being in a new country is a challenge no matter how many times you have relocated but it is also very exciting.  The FOCUS team is here to answer questions, listen to concerns and make your time in the UK enjoyable and fun!

For our career coaches, visit ourcareer page.

Executive Director,  Gael Panhelleux

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.

Director of Finance,  Irene Kuan

I am a qualified Certified Accountant with more than 30 years experience in the accounting profession. I am a member of The Women's Council. I also volunteer at Crisis and weekend breakfast duties for Shelter for the Storm (a non-governmental organisation) and I find the time to help with annual fund-raising for Macmillan Cancer. I am delighted to be part of the FOCUS Team as the Director of Finance and Administration.

Irene Kuan

Director of Seminars & Events,  Maria Renzi

I was born in Italy where I studied Italian Language and Literature in Milan, but have lived overseas for the last 25 years, including Barbados and Spain. During this time I had the chance to get to know and appreciate many different cultures and loved the experience. While abroad I have worked as an Italian teacher and in London also as a consultant for a large multinational organisation to help international professionals and their spouses settle in this beautiful city that has now become home for me. After collaborating with FOCUS for a few years in my previous role, I was delighted to join the organisation as Director of Seminars & Events.

Maria Renzi

Director of Marketing,  Marta Ribeiro

I am originally from Lisbon, Portugal and have been living in London for 22 years. Prior to this I lived in Grenoble, France and in Sevenoaks, UK. My previous job, in international marketing research, took me all over the world to countries ranging from Japan to Argentina to Canada, allowing me to get an insight into a multitude of cultures. I have also been involved in much charity work during my time here, especially in the education sector. I am delighted to be a part of this vibrant, cosmopolitan city and look forward to helping international people love it here as much as I do.  

Director of Membership & Resources,  Paola Longobardi

I moved to London in 1997 with my husband and three children from Milan, Italy. Twenty years later, we are still living in this incredible city that I love. I volunteered at FOCUS in the past, enjoyed it a lot so I was really pleased when I was appointed Director of Resources. I'm a Trustee for the London International Gallery of Children's Art, a small charity that promotes international understanding through children's art, and I run 'Discover London', a club for a group of 'curious' school parents. All in the true spirit of diverse and international London!

Paola Longobardi

FOCUS Magazine

Magazine Editor,  Francine Bosco 

I’m never really sure how to answer the question “where are you from?” As an American who happened to be born in London and raised between here and Texas, I definitely identify with the feeling that you can belong to two places. I’ve spent most of my life living between the two countries with an exciting stint in Prague in the early 1990s working for the country’s first English language newspaper. I enjoyed an extended career break while raising my son and was delighted to join the FOCUS team in 2017. I love the services FOCUS provides to its members and especially love seeing and learning about Britain, and London through the contributors to our magazine. After half a life-time here I find there is still plenty to discover.

Art Director,  Rebecca Hunt-Davis

Having lived as an expat abroad, it has been a privilege to design FOCUSMagazine since 2009. I have lived in India, Pakistan and Kenya with my husband, and have enjoyed all the cultural experiences I had in these amazing countries. Although I am British, Iwell understand the life and the needs of expatriates and FOCUS is an incredibly invaluable service.

Rebecca Hunt-Davis

Assistant Editor,  Naeemah Miah

I’m a Fashion Journalism graduate who really enjoys editing and reading various different writings, born and bred in the UK with Bangladeshi origins. I’ve lived in Luton my whole life, which fortunately is about 30 minutes away from the capital. Ever since I was a child I’ve always loved London, there is always something new to do and areas to explore. I think the service FOCUS offers to expats is amazing and I’m grateful for the opportunity to be Assistant Editor.