These are the key members of the team at Haven Gateway.


George Kieffer


The Chairman, George Kieffer, also chairs Estuary Housing Association, a housing provider in the Haven Gateway area. He is a member of the Enterprise and Industrial Advisory Boards of the University of Essex and a Trustee of Stow Maries Great War Aerodrome Trust (Maldon District) as well as a Board Member of Visit Essex. Until 2015 he served for 9 years on the Board of the Harwich Haven Authority as Deputy Chairman.

He set up the South East Local Enterprise Partnership in 2010 and serves as Vice Chair for businesses in Essex, Southend & Thurrock.

After a career in the City he went into commerce and is now an independent company director.

George is a Freeman of the City of London and holds an Honorary Doctorate from the University of Essex.

Executive Director

Anita Thornberry

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A history graduate with experience of the City of London, Anita has worked in the field of economic regeneration for 20 years.  She started her career at English Heritage, arguing the economic benefits of heritage assets to secure funding.  From there, Anita joined Regional Development Agencies working on projects such as the Olympics bid and writing the Tourism Legacy Plans for the bid.  In 2007 Anita joined Southend Borough Council as the Head of Enterprise, Tourism and Regeneration where she delivered a £25m regeneration programme for the town centre, increased tourism revenue to £350m per annum whilst reducing visitor numbers and helped create a thriving business community.  Before joining HGP, Anita was MedTech Campus Director for Anglia Ruskin University.

Anita lives in the Haven Gateway with her family where she indulges her interests in culture and the countryside.

Programme Director

Lisa Brazier 

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Lisa joined the Haven Gateway Partnership in July 2008 to manage the office and provide executive support to the team.  Lisa is now the Programme Director for the Partnership, leading on delivery of our projects and activity.

Previously Lisa has worked in both the private and public sector in several roles including PA, administrator and practice co-ordinator.

Her many roles at the Haven Gateway have included event organisation, supporting the cruise initiative including co-ordinating and attending exhibitions, website administration and supporting our advocacy and business intelligence work.

Lisa was the Project Manager for the Low Carbon Freight Dividend Project.  Lisa is currently supporting the A120 campaign as well as working on business cases to develop new projects.

Project Support Administrator

Rita Smith

01206 713618

Rita joined the Haven Gateway Partnership in August 2012, to specifically support the LCFD project. Rita's background is with local government and she has a strong working knowledge of complex administrative services. Rita now supports the Haven Gateway team and is available to help and support our partners and stakeholders.

Funding Manager

Jemma Little

01206 713611

Jemma joined the Haven Gateway Partnership in May 2017 as Funding Manager and is leading on the development of new partnerships and projects to attract funding for economic development to the area. Jemma joined us from Higher Education having most recently worked for Anglia Ruskin University, where she was Assistant Director responsible for research commercialisation, partnerships with business and secured over £20m EU funding for strategic projects providing innovation support to SMEs, in collaboration with other universities and delivery partners. She also has significant experience in local government where she previously managed the development of Cambridgeshire Horizons, a strategic local delivery vehicle partnership to support sustainable housing and jobs growth in Cambridgeshire and secured over £40m government funding to support the delivery of infrastructure to accelerate the delivery of major new housing and employment sites. 

Economic Development Researcher

Janice Pittis

01206 713611

Janice joined the Haven Gateway Partnership in September 2016 on an interim basis to provide economic research and support the work of the Partnership.