EACD Mentoring Programme

EACD mentoring offers talented communicators a mentoring relationship with senior EACD members

Arzu Deniz Aksoy

Head of Communications & Government Relations

Arzu Deniz Aksoy is a Senior Executive with 25+ years of B2B and B2C Business Management background in international and multi-cultural environments. She has proven achievements in all phases of marketing, communication and business development.

Ms. Aksoy has worked with multinational companies such as Coca-Cola, Etap, 3M and joined BASF in 2006 as Marketing & Operational Manager for Turkey, Middle East & North Africa. In 2008 she became European Marketing Manager for BASF Textile Chemicals. In 2010, she became Head of Communications & Government Relations for Region Europe, Middle East & Africa (EMEA) around 29 legal group entities in 34 different countries. Additionally she held responsibility as European Online Media Expert for Europe at BASF. 

She holds a M.B.A. from Dokuz Eylül University, Business Administration and a bachelor’s degree in Agricultural Engineering from Ege University. She holds a certificate from Communication and Media Studies at Quadriga University of Applied Science, Berlin.

Peter Allen

Executive Director of Corporate Affairs and Communications
Highways England

Peter is the Executive Director of Corporate Affairs and Communications at Highways England. The new government owned company investing £15B into England’s Motorways and A Roads. He has pioneered new forms of communications to influence driver behaviour, winning awards for some innovative campaigns. With the largest investment in a generation going into road infrastructure Peter is passionate about explaining the social impact of the work and the benefits it brings to people’s lives.

Prior to this he spent many years in Central Banking. He worked with the European Central Bank in Germany during a period of high volatility, and advised on communications to reach new audiences. Whilst at the Bank of England Peter was involved in some of the biggest challenges following the financial crisis. His methods and styles have been shared and taken on by other government organisations including other Central Banks, the European Parliament and EU Commission.

Phil Askham

Global Head of Employee Communications


Phil Askham leads a team of over 50 people responsible for employee communications across HSBC's Global Functions. 

Phil has been with HSBC since 2007.  Previously, he worked for O2 UK as Head of Internal Communications.  He learned his craft during a 3-year stint at Smythe Dorward Lambert, one of the UK's first internal communications consultancies. He started his career as a fast stream civil servant in the UK Government, including 2 years as Private Secretary to successive Secretaries of State for Education.

Phil has an MBA from London Business School and a theology & philosophy degree from Oxford University.  Away from work, he enjoys park runs and family time.

Skills and areas of expertise for mentoring: career planning, operating at a strategic level, leading team performance and development (people skills), worked across different industries, NGOs, agencies, associations, and institutions, internal communications specialist.


Edna Ayme-Yahil

Corporate Head of Marketing and Communications

Dr. Edna Ayme-Yahil is the appointed Corporate Head of Marketing and Communications at Panalpina as of July 1, 2018 and is currently a board member for the European Association of Communications Directors. Previously, she was the Head of Communications at the International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP) and Head of Communications for EIT Digital, the leading European digital innovation and entrepreneurial education organisation driving Europe’s digital transformation.

She has developed and delivered top-quality integrated communications strategies in large global companies and public organizations. She has held various global communications roles at Nissan, STMicroelectronics, Philip Morris International and UNESCO and was a consultant for the OECD. She has also taught communications and history at the University of California Los Angeles, University of Arkansas, University of Paris, and Washington State University. She graduated from Stanford University, studied at the École normale supérieure, and holds a doctorate from the University of California, Los Angeles.

Yvan Deurbroeck

Global Vice President Communications, Digital and Congresses
Galderma/Nestlé Skin Health

Yvan joined Galderma/Nestlé Skin Health as Global Vice President Communications, Digital and Congresses in September 2015. Yvan is based in Lausanne, Switzerland and heads the Global Communication, Congress and Digital team.  His main responsibility is to develop Galderma’s communications and digital and congress strategy to build a robust corporate reputation for the company as the world's leading dermatology company.

Yvan has extensive experience in all areas of communication, having worked for more than 20 years in international and global communications roles for companies such as Dow Corning, Novartis Consumer Health, and Medtronic, where he was VP International Communication. His career has taken him all over the world and he has lived and worked in Belgium, Switzerland, Japan and the U.S. He has won several communications and leadership awards, including the Communique awards for the best in-house communications team in Europe. 

Yvan has a Master’s Degree in Translation from Erasmushogeschool Brussels, Belgium, a Bachelor’s degree in Marketing, Advertising and Public relations from Willemsfonds, Belgium, a Postgraduate degree in Leadership Capability from Glasgow Caledonian University and has also attended the IMD business school. Yvan is Belgian and speaks 4 languages fluently.  He lives in Féchy, near Lausanne, Switzerland.

Luis Gonzalez Canomanuel

President & CEO
International Public Relations Network (IPRN)

Luis became a Professional motor racing driver in 1972. After winning many races including the Spanish Formula National Championship in 1975, he became one of the two drivers of the Spanish National F3 Team in 77. He moved on to the Communications sector in the 80’s working as the Press and PR manager of BMW Spain, Porsche and Kawasaki and later Alfa Romeo. He Moved to BMW Ibérica in 1983 to become the Corporate Communication Director and three years later joined also the International Public Relations Committee of BMW AG, in Munich. He has gained university degrees in Journalism and Communication.

In the 90’s he founded his own company, LUCA Comunicación Corporativa that was successfully in business for more than 25 years working for top national and international clients. It recently merged with Alana Consultores, a PR Spanish new concept agency for the future.

He is the founder of Dircom (Spanish Association of Communication Directors - www.dircom.org) and actual President & CEO of the International Public Relations Network, www.iprn.com. Also a member of the EACD and the Global Alliance for PR.

Luis has more than 30 years experience in communication, PR, project leadership and management areas. He has led several high profile projects throughout his career including “Premio BMW de Pintura” the Spanish Challenge to the America’s Cup in 92 and 95 and “Barcelona 1.000 Days to the Future” with Discovery Channel. Also, he has been involved with several campaigns for Banco Santander leading bank in Spain.

Jonathan Graham

Senior Manager Global Communications
TE Connectivity

Jonathan Graham is Senior Manager Global Communications for TE Connectivity Industrial in Darmstadt, Germany.

In his role, he manages external and internal communications as well as product communications for TE Connectivity, the global leader in sensor and connectivity solutions. Graham volunteers as chair of the SGP Foundation, a non-profit dedicated to educating the print media industry on sustainability. Residing in Germany, Graham has more than two decades experience in B2B marketing communications in industry leading companies including HP and Heidelberger Druckmaschinen.

Markku Herrala

Director, Public and Media Relations

Markku Herrala works as Director, Public and Media Relations at UPM, the leading bio and forest industry company in Europe. In addition to his day-job, Markku works as a board professional and as a communications advisor to CEI-Bois, the European Confederation of Woodworking Industries in Brussels. As a senior communications professional, Markku has a board experience on all aspects of communications as well as corporate responsibility and public affairs topics.

He has 20 years of practical experience on various leadership positions in international communications and business area management. As a mentor, Markku can provide the mentee with insight to working with the C-suite and other senior business management as well as on how to translate strategic business topics into practical communication agenda. As a seasoned team manager, he can also support the mentee in developing his/her people leadership skills. Markku is based in Helsinki, Finland.

Angela Howarth

Director of Marketing and Communications
World Green Building Council

Angela Howarth is World Green Building Council's Director of Marketing and Communications. In this role, she is responsible for leading all WorldGBC's external marketing and communications, including the annual World Green Building Week and WorldGBC Congress. Working with our global network, Angela co-ordinates all marketing and communications activities with our member Green Building Councils and partners.

Angela is a strategic marketing and communications professional, with almost 20 years’ experience.  Previously, she was Head of Communications for Climate-KIC, the EU’s public private partnership working on climate action, and Future Cities Catapult, the global innovation centre.  As a consultant, Angela has worked with UNICEF, the British Council, UK Sport and Mind, the mental health charity on international and national campaigns. Angela’s campaigns have received numerous awards, such as the Climathon, a global hackathon for Climate-KIC, a climate change strategy consultation for the Greater London Authority and a travel safety campaign for the Foreign & Commonwealth Office. 

Angela is based in London, UK.  

Viviane Huybrecht

General Manager Corporate Communication, Official Group Spokesperson
KBC Group

Viviane is a seasoned corporate communication, crisis communication and reputation expert, excelling at advising and implementing strategic decisions/actions at C-suite level in an international multicultural environment.

Since 2006 she has been General Manager Corporate Communication (she set up the function) and official spokesperson for KBC Group.  She is responsible for group-wide internal communication (content), reputation management, press relations and crisis communication. She handled crisis communication during the financial crisis: bail out 2008-2009, restructuring plan European Commission, divestment 25 assets, planned/cancelled  IPO, repayment state aid.

Via an annual group-wide Reputation & NPS survey and action plan (since 2013 in Belgium, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Bulgaria, Ireland) trust with stakeholders is actively managed. Viviane is a guest lecturer on crisis communication at the University of Leuven (Belgium), Master Business Communication (since 2013), at Howest (Kortrijk) and at  Thomas Moore (Mechelen).

She was a founding member of the EACD and participates in European Circle of Communicators events .

Shweta Kulkarni

Head Internal Communications

Shweta Kulkarni Van Biesen is the Head of Internal Communications at Bridgestone overseeing communications to a diverse group of 18.000 employees across EMEA. Shweta has over 14 years’ of experience in leadership communications, employee engagement, media relations and public affairs. She is a board member of the European Association of Communication Directors. Prior to joining Bridgestone, Shweta worked at MedTech Europe trade association representing the medical technology companies in Europe and Johnson & Johnson.

She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science and Master’s degree in Communication & Information Studies from Rutgers University, New Brunswick.

Rui Martins

Corporate Communication and Public Affairs Director
Dianova Portugal

Rui Martins is the Corporate Communication and Public Affairs Director at Dianova Portugal since 2003. He is also the regional coordinator for Portugal at the EACD since 2008 and Member of the Jury of ECA Awards since 2016. He is the campaigns National Coordinator for Portugal at the European Commission and European Parliament since 2009. Prior, he has been an Advisory member at IntellCorp, a member of the International Committee at World Communication Forum in Davos and Kuala Lumpur, an Executive Director at Tinkle Lisboa PR Firm, Associate Director at Hill & Knowlton Strategies Portugal and Senior Associate at Burson-Marsteller Lisbon as Corporate Technology Practice Leader.

With more than 21 years of experience and significant responsibilities in the areas of Reputation & Change Management, Public Affairs, Digital Communications & Social Media, he has the ability to meet expected goals and over-achieve desired goals. With strong communication skills, strategic development, leadership and team engagement, persuasion, influence, networking and entrepreneurial thinking in the private & public sectors, both in worldwide consultancy and in-house, at European and International levels.

Rui Martins

Rui Martins

Corporate Communication and Public Affairs Director
Dianova Portugal

With more than 20 years of experience in Reputation Management and Integrated Communication, both at the consultancy and in-house areas, Rui Martins has a in depth knowledge and expertise to be shared to younger professionals by working with multinational and international leading clients and organizations. His experience includes Corporate Communication to Public Affairs, from Technology to Health sectors, from Companies and International NGOs to European Commission and United Nations, from Europe to Asia and North & Latin America… a rich and diverse array of best practices that can be developed by the future Communication professionals around Europe in this interdependent and global world. Its mentoring include tips on digital and face-to-face networking and multicultural communication, from which meaningful relationships are crafted towards desired business results’ achievement, showcasing how to boost walk the talk stories to build sterling reputations in the bottom line. Based in Lisbon, he actively collaborates with since 2008 European Association of Communication Directors and World Forum Communication Davos.

Skills and areas of expertise for mentoring: broad skills base in relation to different communication areas, operating at a strategic level, leading team performance and development (people skills), building effective networks and relationships (incl. at C-suite level), worked across different industries, NGOs, agencies, associations, institutions, change manager, digital / social media specialist, CSR, multicultural communication

Viktoria Mykhno

Head of Markets
KPMG Ukraine

Viktoria is a communication professional with more than 13 years of experience in corporate and marketing communications. Currently she is a board member at EACD and Head of Markets at KPMG Ukraine being responsible for communications, marketing and business development. Finished her MBA at Edinburgh Business School, Heriot-Watt University.

She has a wide experience in cross-cultural and multicultural environment at banking and real estate markets. Has a highly successful background in development and execution of corporate communications and sustainability strategies. Experienced in corporate communications, marketing communications, internal communications & organizational behavior, crisis/issue management, digital communications, corporate responsibility (CR), as well as change/M&A communications. Delivers strong results and takes the opportunity to bring her knowledge and dedication to work through collaboration, innovation and creativity.

Skills and areas of expertise for mentoring: Broad skills base in relation to different communication areas, operating at a strategic level, internal communications, change manager, digital/social media.

Terry O´Connor

Head of Communications
Science and Technology Facilities Council

Terry O'Connor is a corporate affairs professional with an unusually broad range of international experience across government, industry, the media and academia. He has a particular focus on successfully enhancing reputation through staff and stakeholder engagement, and on organisational change. His journalism career included appointment as Chief Political Correspondent for the Australian national wire service, before senior media and policy roles on the personal staff of a Cabinet Minister. He then moved into corporate affairs with the national trade promotion agency Austrade, the British High Commission in Australia, and the for-profit air navigation service provider Airservices Australia, before his current UK role in 2008 as the Director of Communications for one of Europe's largest multi-disciplinary science organisations. Terry mentors for the UK Government Communications Service, is a Board member of the Association of Science and Discovery Centres, and represents the UK on international science communications partnerships.

Skills and areas of expertise for mentoring: Career planning, broad skills base in relation to different communication areas, operating at a strategic level, leading team performance and development (people skills), building a personal brand (influencing skills), building effective networks and relationships (incl. at c-suite level), personal effectiveness, impact (result skills), worked across different industries, NGOs, agencies, associations, and institutions, media specialist, internal communications specialist, change manager

Blanca Palao

Head of Customer Experience
International Air Transport Association

Blanca is seasoned change management professional with experience in global multinational companies, managing complex change management and engagement programmes; implementing new operating models; driving global integrated relational marketing activities and leading global teams. Most of her professional career has taken place in Amadeus, a global travel technology company where she held different global roles related to employee communication, integrated relational marketing activities, and strategic communication support to the Global Executive Leadership team.

She is currently working at the International Air Transport Association (IATA), as Head of Operations Change Management managing global transformation projects and will soon take over as Head of Customer Experience.

Prior to IATA, Blanca was Global Head Internal Communication in Sandoz, the leading generics pharmaceutical company from the Novartis Group. She led the team responsible for Sandoz global internal communication initiatives, managing the internal information flow between the global Sandoz Executive Committee and Sandoz associates worldwide.

Atte Palomäki

Executive Vice President, Communications & Branding
Wärtsilä Corporation

As EVP Communications, Branding & Marketing, Atte Palomäki is responsible for integrated corporate communications, brand management, and marketing in Wärtsilä, the global leader in smart technologies and complete lifecycle solutions for the marine and energy markets. Before taking his current position in March 2008, Palomäki was Group Chief Press Officer of Nordea Bank AB (publ). Prior to that he had an extensive career as a journalist, both in television and print media in Finland. Palomäki is a graduate in political sciences from the Helsinki University.

Ger Peerboom

Independent Consultant
in Corporate Communications Leadership

A strategist building strong brands, based on insights; coming to life in the full-scale integrated corporate communications campaigns. Developing and strengthening the company’s reputation while anticipating on risks and upcoming issues and prepared to act in times of crisis. An advisor, strengthening presence in international media, an influencer on social media and an initiator of strong content, based on excellence. Addressing a differentiated value proposition to the diversity of stakeholders from a wide variety of cultural backgrounds.

From 2002 - 2015 Ger worked for Sabic in several communications roles in the Netherlands and Saudi Arabia. He has orchestrated development and the launch of communication plans for the organizations global strategic business units, as well as working closely with leading global agencies such as Hill+Knowlton, IPG and Lippincott.

A result driven communications leader using experience, academic background and personality to positively influence leadership to drive change and transformation. Being a flexible, innovative, multitasking and stress resistant character steering his teams with passion.

Andy Pharoah

Vice President, Corporate Affairs, Sustainability & Strategic Initiatives
Mars, Incorporated

Andy Pharoah joined the Mars Leadership Team as Vice President, Corporate Affairs and Strategic Initiatives in September 2016. In his role, Pharoah stewards the company’s communications, government relations and stakeholder engagement. He leads management team effectiveness and the delivery of transformative strategic initiatives. Pharoah also stewards Mars, Incorporated’s ambitious sustainability objectives and the programs in place to make the company’s operations Sustainable in a Generation.

Prior to his current role, Pharoah served as Senior Vice President of Corporate Affairs, Sustainability & Strategy for Wrigley, a segment of Mars, Incorporated. His responsibilities encompassed all aspects of Corporate Affairs, leadership of Global Sustainability, and leadership of the development and deployment of Wrigley business strategy. A native Londoner, Pharoah began his career in U.K. politics. He then spent 13 years with international communications consultancy, Hill & Knowlton, where he worked with a wide range of companies, governments and NGOs, as Head of the Corporate Practice for Europe, Middle East and Africa.

Pharoah holds a bachelor’s degree in politics from the University of Leicester. An avid cyclist, Pharoah is happy to now live in a Virginia, a state with a longer cycling season and more hills that his previous home state of Illinois. He is Executive Committee Member of the Washington National Opera. He also serves on the Council of the Asia Society Policy Institute.

Christoph Sieder

Head of Corporate Communications and Public Affairs

Lavinia Toma

Communication Strategist
CommUnity by LT

Lavinia Toma is an experienced communication strategist with a strong business background (MBA graduate), she spent the last 18 years working as an in-house communication expert for a large multinational company - Henkel Group (Germany based).

Lavinia started her corporate career in the B2C marketing team and after a few years had the chance to start the Corporate Communication function in Henkel Romania/Balkans. After many impactful and awarded local campaigns, Lavinia took over regional (CEE) and international (for Europe IMEA) responsibilities, including steering an international and very diverse team from the global headquarter located in Düsseldorf, Germany.

Today, Lavinia is an expert in integrated and international communication, her expertise ranging from External and Internal Coms to Brand PR, Crisis Communication & Issues Management, CSR & Sustainability Communication, Stakeholder Strategic Comms, Change Management, International coordination of diverse & multicultural teams and further training and development of international teams through mentoring & coaching.

Irene van Luijken

Director Communications

Irene van Luijken is a seasoned communications professional with more than 20 years experience in communication and public affairs. Having worked at a PR agency, industry side (Shell) and almost 10 years in associations, Irene has a variety of communication experience, ranging from corporate, internal and external communications, stakeholder engagement, media relations and reputation management to public affairs. She enjoys leading and working with teams and coaching people to help them advance in their career. She is an active member of the EACD and looks forward to taking up her role as a mentor.

Henriette Viebig

Head of Group Corporate Communications
Körber AG

Henriette has more than 20 years of experience in the design and implementation of integrated communication campaigns and measures as well as in counselling top executives. She brings in experience from various industrial sectors: energy, pharmacy, construction, fast moving consumer products and B2B (machine building, software etc.) etc.

As Head of Group Corporate Communications at the internationally leading technology Group Körber, her current focus is on the strategic communication and modernization / digitization of the communications portfolio for the Körber Group. This includes branding and brand architecture development, change as wells as M&A and PMI communications. In addition, Henriette is an experienced ghost writer for top executives. Since 2010 Henriette once a year serves as “practitioner lecturer” for “Change Communications” at the University of Applied Sciences in Osnabruck / Lingen in Germany.

Before joining the Körber Group in 2014, she led the team for Online and Internal Communications at RWE, one of the leading energy suppliers in Germany and Europe. Previously to the corporate communications practitioners’ life, Henriette worked for PR agencies. She holds a diploma in Social & Cultural Studies and Communications and studied at Hildesheim University in Germany and Bath Spa University College in the UK.

Skills and areas of expertise for mentoring: operating at a strategic level / strategic counsel, internal and change / transformation communications, positioning plans, writing and editing as well as impact (result orientated skills), personal and team effectiveness, leadership styles

Nicole Wesch

Head Technology Communications

Nicole has 18 years of international experience in global communications roles with various financial services companies in Frankfurt, Singapore, London and is now based in Zurich. She is a a senior communications advisor working with senior leaders for more than a decade, a seasoned media spokesperson and corporate reputation manager and creative storyteller. She successfully developed and drove global integrated communication campaigns and international media relations and built powerful thought leadership programmes and digital presences. As a co-active coach (CTI) she enjoys helping others to explore and tap into their full potential. 

Nicole holds MA in Media Management from Hanover University of Music, Drama and Media, Germany and a BSc­ equivalent in Banking and Finance from Cooperative State University Mosbach, Germany. She is also an avid world traveller 47 countries and counting, a passionate ocean explorer and conservationist.