AMAR EMPLOYS A SMALL TEAM IN LONDON TO HELP COORDINATE, RAISE FUNDS, PUBLICISE, AND SUPPORT THE OVERSEAS OPERATIONS.
AMAR employs more than 1000 local doctors, nurses, medical professionals, engineers, teachers, educators and administrators in Iraq. Three field offices in Erbil, Baghdad and Basra support work across the country. AMAR’s staff work within their own communities, ensuring that local skills and capacity are developed and maintained, and allowing work in challenging security environments. The unique local knowledge of AMAR’s field team means that the services provided are always culturally appropriate and tailored to individual communities’ needs.
Andrew Methven, Chief of Staff
Andrew is the AMAR Chief of Staff, based in the London office. His responsibilities, as AMAR grows, are to lead the Staff Management Team, provide the link to the Board, and coordinate across the AMAR family, most importantly with the Field Team in Iraq. Andrew previously worked as Strategy & Commercial Director and Bid Team Leader for various International security firms, specialising in Iraq (including the Kurdistan Region), Afghanistan and Nigeria, and maritime security in the Indian Ocean and West Africa.
Prior to this he served in the British Army (The Life Guards) for 20 years. His tours included running a Reserve officer training unit in London, and various staff roles in the Ministry of Defence. He spent a very enjoyable 16 months on exchange with the Canadian Army, most of which was spent in the Balkans. His operational service includes the UN and NATO in Bosnia, and several tours of Iraq, which was his first exposure to reconstruction, development and the people of Basra.
Andrew’s first degree was in sciences from Cambridge. He holds Masters degrees from Cranfield, KCL and Imperial College Business School. He lives in London with his young family. His hobbies include ancient Greek history and playing the piano badly.
Chris Frost, Treasurer
Chris Frost is AMAR’s Treasurer. He recently stepped down from the Board of Trustees and his role as Chairman of the Finance and Operations Committee to take on this new position within the Senior Management Team.
Specialising in organisational change and operation’s management, Chris has extensive international experience and became a founder board member of AMAR’s sister organisation, the Iraq Britain Business Council (IBBC) in 2010. Chris formerly worked as a partner with the international financial services company, PwC, based in London. He has worked in the Middle East and on projects in several fragile states, including Kosovo, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Burundi and Pakistan.
Robert Cole, Global Head of Communications
Robert started as a reporter on regional evening newspapers, and rose through local radio, into national and international television news. He was a news editor, field producer and bureau chief for news agencies, Reuters Television and Worldwide Television News for much of the 1990s. He has covered wars around the world. He spent many months in Bosnia, Croatia and Serbia during the Balkan’s conflict, as well as reporting from Chechnya, Haiti, Rwanda, Somalia and Burundi.
Following his work with the news agencies, he moved to the BBC as a World Duty Editor, later working as a producer for both Panorama and the Six O’Clock News. He was also a field editor for the BBC and covered the Kosovo conflict, as well as managing events such as the World Cup in Japan in 2002. He left the BBC to join Sky News as a Senior Foreign Editor, later becoming Head of Foreign Planning. More recently, Robert has moved away from television, and was Head of News at Save the Children before coming to AMAR.
Tony Howell, Head of Programmes
As the Head of Programmes Tony leads AMARs London project department. He is responsible for the strategic design and implementation of AMAR’s corporate social responsibility, and its institutional and emergency aid programmes, ensuring the organisation meets its aims.
Working closely with corporate, institutional, emergency aid donors and international organisations, the department coordinates with the field offices and in-country project teams to oversee and co-ordinate effective project delivery in support of AMAR’s development and aid programmes.
Tony is also responsible for the development, delivery and sustainability of bespoke international development and emergency aid programmes. He coordinates partners and donors including UNDP, the US State Department, Shell and BP Iraq. He manages a team of programme coordinators and project officers who work closely with the field teams to identify and deliver aid and development projects throughout the MENA region.
Tony joined AMAR in 2015 as a Programme Coordinator and has applied the skills and experience gained throughout his varied and unique project management and engineering career. Initially with the British Army (Royal Engineers), he then moved into international companies and organisations in challenging environments, remote areas, and disaster and conflict zones, before joining AMAR.
Steve Gibson, Senior Account Manager
Steve joined AMAR in early July 2018 and is responsible for donor relations, supporting the Field project teams, monitoring and evaluation, and project reporting.
In May 2018, Steve completed a 12-month posting to Damascus, Syria as the Deputy Director for a United Nations Agency. He was responsible for operational support; overseeing Finance, Supply Chain, Human Resources, Security and Administration and internal investigations. He spent five years in the Middle East working for the UN in the Occupied Palestinian Territories as the Procurement and Logistics Officer, Jordan in the Headquarters, and in Beirut as the Acting Deputy Director. In Jordan, he managed a range of internal projects including the setup of a Project Management Office.
Prior to moving to the Middle East, Steve had a 23-year career in the Royal New Zealand Navy (RNZN) as a Supply Officer (Procurement and Logistics). He has been involved in strategic planning, has had policy development experience in New Zealand Defence Force Headquarters, project management experience in large ship-building projects, involvement in organisational change management and ended his career as the Supply Chain Commander for the RNZN. He has operational experiences including peacekeeping in former Yugoslavia and the Solomon Islands.
Steve has an MBA from the Australian Institute of Business and is married to Karen, who is a project manager in London. They have no children, but two adorable cats (Nessie and Neddie) who have accompanied them all over the world.
Isabella Librando, Digital Communications Officer
Isabella joined AMAR in 2015, working as an intern with the communications and fundraising departments before joining the AMAR family permanently in the summer of 2016 as AMAR’s Digital Communications Officer. Working closely with AMAR’s Communications Officer, Isabella is responsible for AMAR’s brand and visual identity, and regularly designs and creates artwork, digital content and video edits for online use, helping to raise awareness about AMAR’s work in the Middle East.
With a Fine Arts degree in Graphic Design from Southbank University, as well as training in video editing, Isabella previously worked as a freelance designer for various fashion, advertising and marketing clients. Isabella is based in London, but lives and breathes the digital world. She spends her spare time attempting to stick to her Italian roots by whipping up her family’s secret recipe for Tiramisù.