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

01206 713610

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 

01206 713612

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.

Innovation and 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 to support the development of funding bids and the delivery of commissioned projects.

Janice brings extensive experience of the Higher Education and private sectors. 

She was the Director of the Research & Enterprise Office at the University of Essex with responsibility for research funding, research commercialisation and partnerships with business. 

Janice also has over 10 years experience of research and development in the private sector in the field of Crop Production and Protection where she worked on a number of international 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.

TALE Marketing and Communications Officer

Ian Grutchfield

07739 971657

Ian joined the TALE team in July 2018, specifically to manage marketing campaigns.  This includes issuing press releases and creating promotional materials, staging events and exhibitions, and producing digital content such as online and social media activities.

Ian's background is in brand management, including work in the UK and abroad for the BBC, leading commercial activity on Doctor Who and Teletubbies. He also has experience of book and magazine publishing, together with the licensed merchandise industry.  He has forged alliances of both public bodies and private companies, coming together for high profile communications.  He is a keen proponent of using video and impactful imagery to reach customers.

Ian enjoys exploring the Haven Gateway area by walking with a rescue lurcher.

TALE Business Support Facilitator

Sian Dowell

07739 971659

Sian joined the TALE team in July 2018 after working in local authority organisations since her graduation from Kingston University in 2015 with a Commendation for Social Entrepreneurism.

Sian's work revolves around design thinking and business analysis, using problem solving in industries where perhaps creative solutions would not be considered before, this is what drew her to working for social enterprises.  Following university, Sian worked for Surrey Choices, a Social Care Local Authority Trading Company that delivered services to adults with disabilities.  As part of the Business Development, Marketing and Communications Team, Sian delivered a redesign of the day activity centres, ran campaigns to raise awareness and drive sales, and worked with senior management to enact changes within the organisation.

Sian then moved to Essex County Council in the role of Junior Business Analyst, gaining accreditation as a Green Belt in Lean Six Sigma, a key business analytics system. She has worked on projects across Adult Social Care, focusing on continuous service improvement to the benefit of both staff members and the residents of Essex. 

Sian is an avid reader and a film buff. When she is not inside, she enjoys dog walks across the fields and beaches of Essex.

TALE Business Support Facilitator

Patrick Maynard

07739 971658

Patrick joined the TALE team in July 2018.  Previously Patrick spent over 3 years at the Essex Chambers of Commerce as the client relationship manager working with all sectors of business across the County, which has made him very skilled at exhibitions and networking events.  Once met, you will not forget Patrick, which has enabled him to help business by giving them the support they need to move forward.

The Transport and Logistical Efficiencies project is ideal for Patrick, to build relationships and ask the Question: "How can I help you?"

TALE Business Support Facilitator

Fred Thomas

01206 713610

Fred has recently joined the Haven Gateway Partnership.

Further details coming soon.