The Fair Tax Mark has a staff team, a Board of Directors and a Technical Advisory Group that guides the Mark’s methodology and criteria. In addition to our core staff, we utilise much valued contractors to deliver PR, marketing and communications, accounts analysis, web design and other areas.
Paul Monaghan – Chief Executive
Paul was a co-founder of the Fair Tax Mark in 2014, and became Chief Executive in September 2017. Previously, he was architect of much of the UK co-operative movement’s ethical and environmental excellence for nearly two decades. Before that he combined biological sciences research with campaigning on Third World debt and ethical lending. He led sustainability programmes across the Co-operative Group in areas as diverse as Food, Banking, Insurance, Pharmacy, Funerals and Travel. Contributions included the creation of world-class programmes of environmental management, ethical finance, sustainability reporting and a unique commitment to campaigning and progressive public policy intervention. In 2014, was voted first in Global CEO’s “Top 100 CSR Leaders” poll. He has previously served as a member of WWF-UK’s Programme Committee, BRE’s Sustainability Board and Accountability’s Council, where he co-chaired their Technical Committee for a number of years. He regularly lectures at various Business Schools and recently co-authored the well-received Lobbying for Good. The rise and fall of Wigan Athletic keeps him awake at night.
Gill Owen – Public Relations
Gill is a communications and campaigns professional with more than 15 years’ experience in the social and third sector, most recently advocating for girls views to be heard on the issues that matter to them, including equal access to STEM careers, education and period poverty with Girlguiding UK. She is now a freelance communicator specialising in securing media coverage for organisations and causes committed to working for the common good.
Formerly head of media at Citizens UK and the Living Wage Foundation, she is passionate about getting the voices and opinions of those who are most impacted by policy and business decisions heard by influencers in the media and beyond. Primarily through her experience working with the Living Wage Foundation she firmly believes that businesses with the right structures in place can make a positive change for communities, workers and shareholders.
Tim Dearden – Accreditation Manager
Tim is the most recent member of the Fair Tax Mark team. He has over a decade of working in the tax industry, mainly in the private sector and dealing with business owners direct.
Tim is now bringing his knowledge of the tax system and client relations to Fair Tax Mark.
Previously, Tim has managed tax departments in multiple accounting firms, with a strong belief that every business should be transparent with their reports and taxes.
In addition to our core team, we have a contracted network of trained assessors available to undertake assessments.
Richard Livings – Head of Operations
Richard was appointed as Project Manager in July 2014, when he became the Fair Tax Mark’s first full-time member of staff. Since then he has played a central role in co-ordinating the development of the core functions of the organisation as it has grown and developed.
Based in the Manchester office, he is now responsible for overseeing the assessment process of our licensed organisations and responding to new enquiries. As Project Manager he also finds himself involved with all manner of Fair Tax Mark activities, including media and communications, conferences, AGMs, finances, sales and issues relating to our shareholder members.
Previously, Richard has worked as Company Secretary for Find A Better Way (Sir Bobby Charlton’s landmine charity) and as both a Contracts Manager and Business Development Manager for The University of Manchester.
Sam Al-Hamdani – Marketing and Communications
Sam Al-Hamdani is a journalist, editor and designer with over 20 years of experience working in the environmental sector and in the United Nations system, most recently at the World Health Organization. He is now bringing his extensive experience of marketing to the Fair Tax Mark, having worked with a wide range of organizations from FTSE-100 companies to small businesses to develop bespoke advertising and marketing solutions.
A former editor of the Department of the Environment’s Environment Matters magazine, working to promote green UK companies to overseas markets, he is passionate about the ability of businesses to contribute to a wider social framework. Having worked for the International Labour Organization over the past seven years – which is uniquely structured to give an equal voice to governments, employers and workers – he is now practicing what he preaches, and promoting UK businesses which are fair and transparent about paying tax.
Mary Patel – Fair Tax Networks Manager
Mary is a project manager and researcher with over 15 years of experience in the charity and business sector.
Mary is a firm believer that businesses work best when they focus on the triple bottom line. She started out as a researcher and writer for Ethical Consumer before moving into the business sector where she worked for several years on policy issues and development. Previous work has included sustainability accounting and reporting, the advancement of policy on renewable energy and progressive policy engagement on behalf of small business.
She is currently working on a number of projects including work around public procurement, fair tax localities and the networking of fair tax businesses.
Outside of work Mary is involved with a local community group, helping to revitalise neglected bits of urban green space, and runs a mental health support group.
The Board of Directors oversees and steers the Fair Tax Mark’s development. Board members may sometimes work on the scheme on a part-time basis when staff workloads are excessive or a particular expertise is needed.
Rob Harrison – Chair
Rob Harrison is the consultancy manager and a director of Ethical Consumer Research Association (ECRA). Rob was one of three founder directors of ECRA in 1987.
Since that date he has worked as a consultant to NGOs (including Oxfam, Friends of the Earth and Greenpeace) on engaging consumers in their campaigns, as an advisor to government departments (including those in the Belgium, Austria and Brazil) on encouraging the use of ethical consumption and procurement for social and environmental goals, as a consultant to consumer organisations (including groups in Spain and Hungary) on researching the CSR performance of companies, and to companies (including the Co-operative Bank and Lush Cosmetics) on developing world-leading ethical policies and implementing them in practice.
He has also been an editor of Ethical Consumer magazine since its inception in 1989. In addition Rob has spoken widely in the press, on radio and on TV, and also to universities and campaign groups around the world on the importance of facilitating ethical consumption.
Chris Harrop OBE
Chris Harrop is Sustainability Director at Marshalls plc. An accomplished marketer with a proven global track record, Chris’ persistent contribution has ensured that Marshalls not only leads the hard landscaping sector but is also a world-class sustainable business. Under Chris’ guidance, the business has won numerous awards for commitment to the environment and supply chain ethics, including Business in the Community Awards for Excellence and the PLC Awards on three occasions.
Chris was Chairman of the United Nations Global Compact UK Network for four years from January 2013, and he has remained a Non-Executive Director of the Ethical Trade Initiative since his appointment in January 2011. In June 2017 Chris became Chairman of Made in Britain. Chris was rated fifth in Ethical Corporation’s Heroes of Sustainability in 2007 and was named a Business Game Changer’ by BITC in 2012. In 2018, he was ranked as one of the Top 100 Modern Slavery Business Influencers and was named BtB Marketer of the Year by BtB International.
One of Chris’s proudest moments came in the 2019 New Year Honours List, when Her Majesty the Queen appointed Chris as an Officer of the British Empire (OBE) for services to the Prevention of Modern Slavery and Exploitation.
Joanna is a researcher and director of Ethical Consumer Research Association. She manages and delivers consultancy projects as well as researching product guides for the bi-monthly Ethical Consumer magazine and producing the regular tax justice page. She is involved in various aspects of the organisation’s operations, including finance, personnel and business development, and as part of the board she also helps to shape the strategic direction of the business.
Joanna was the founding project manager of the Fair Tax Mark. She joined the board in November 2015, bringing in particular her experience of human resources and operations.
Previously a lecturer in human geography, Joanna specialises in socially engaged research and technical writing. She continues to use her academic skills in her role on the Journal of Ethical Consumption editorial board and at public speaking engagements on behalf of Ethical Consumer.
Tim Hunt is a researcher, communications chief and director of Ethical Consumer Research Association.
Tim has worked in alternative media for eight years. He was a founder of radical publication Manchester Mule and is now a worker director of Ethical Consumer magazine and a board member at Red Pepper magazine.
He left university in 2002 and embarked on a “career” in activism working on a number of social and environmental justice projects including the Camp for Climate Action, Action for Sustainable Living and the Basement Social Center, while also conducting freelance research focused on the local economy and democracy. He returned to university in 2007 and gained a masters degree in sustainability before joining Ethical Consumer in 2008.
Recently Tim has been leading on Ethical Consumer’s Boycott Amazon campaign, which provides consumers with tax-paying alternatives to online retailer and arch tax avoider Amazon. He also broke the story of the London 2012 Olympics as a tax haven and worked with 38 Degrees on the successful campaign to get the corporate sponsors to waive their right to the Olympic-sized tax break offered to them for the duration of the games.
Rachel joined SSE in 2007 and, as Director of Sustainability, is responsible for its sustainability strategy, partnership funding and corporate heritage. She is a non-executive director of Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks.
External to SSE, Rachel is Chair of the Business Leadership Group of Living Wage Scotland and is on the board of the Fair Tax Mark. Formerly Rachel was the Senior Special Adviser and speechwriter to Scotland’s First Minister between 2001 and 2007.
She graduated in 2009 from St Andrews University with a Master of Literature in International Political Thought, with a first degree in 1993 in Applied Economics from the University of Abertay, Dundee.