Meet the Team

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Our staff and trustees are passionate about providing that crucial early stage support essential in enabling start-ups to become financially sustainable. We live and breathe entrepreneurship, having launched and managed our own businesses and social enterprises, we understand the path to success… and it’s a journey best taken together.

So, without further ado…

Select a person to find out more about them.

Chief Executive

Dirk Bischof

Dirk is the founder of One Planet Ventures and HATCH. Since 2004 he’s worked on over 50 projects across the UK and Europe, focusing on sustainability, vocational training and entrepreneurship. Dirk helped set-up a number of social enterprises and a commercial Solar PV company. He’s passionate about enterprise and helping people get their ventures off the ground.

He managed to get through a BSc in Social Anthropology with Business Studies and completed his Masters in Social Anthropology (Goldsmiths). He’s interested in understanding the gift vs contract culture and organisational anthropology. A cyclist commuter by heart, he loves it so much that he’s done a few 1000 miles charity rides around England and Japan.

Project Coordinator

Laura-Louise Mahler

Laura has a passion for environmental projects and sustainability. She has had positions of fundraising for sports clubs and universities and is currently training for the 2016 London Marathon. Since graduating from university, she has pursued a Masters’ degree in Environmental History (King’s College London). For Hatch, she fundraises and campaigns, always looking to make new connections and build her skills. She has a pet tortoise named Herby.

Media Coordinator

Adam Koroma

Adam specialises in multimedia design, from websites to booklets, from films to photography. He has a penchant for combining multiple types of media to achieve his end goals and he’s always looking for new challenges to aid him in expanding his skill-set.

Administration/ Programme Support Officer

Chiara Carlini

Chiara graduated in Political Philosophy and has a Master’s in Public Policy (Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore – Milan). She is keen on social innovation, philosophy and cinema. Despite being Italian, she looks up to English social entrepreneurialism and thoroughly enjoys exploring London.

Digital Marketing & PR Officer

Emma Lange

Emma has a passion for social development- from the community level to globally. Since graduating in 2015 with a double major in international relations and political science, she has worked for various charitable organisations in both marketing and outreach. Her interests include traveling, music and outdoor activities.
She is an import from Vancouver, Canada!
Programme Manager

Karen Stenning

Karen has been working in the third sector since 2003, after a career with a large global advertising and marketing firm.  Since turning her focus from the corporate world to the world of not-for-profit, she has accomplished many different roles within the third sector, from fundraising, event management, volunteer management, communication   strategy   and   front-line   experience with young people with complex and multiple disadvantage.

In 2015, Karen started her own consultancy agency, Absolute Alchemy, which hosts events within existing communities, to enable dialogue and create a call to action on issues around human rights and inclusivity and diversity.  Karen is a Wellbeing Practitioner, a creative and relational practitioner, and this training has informed the way that she works on a daily basis both at Hatch and at Absolute Alchemy.

Karen joined Hatch in 2017, to manage the Female Founders Accelerator Programme and to host events such as the Beyond Good Business and Hatch’s Roundtable Discussions.  She is also Hatch Alumni, from the Launchpad programme.

Programme & Community Manager

Lisa Wilson

I have over 10 years experience in programme delivery and management of community orientated projects both locally and globally. With a creative flair and a background in development and engagement, I thrive on generating innovative ideas and projects between charity, social enterprise and businesses.

From running a food festival in Italy, education projects in India to setting up a community bakery in Lambeth – I love working on a variety of ventures – especially anything to do with food! I have an active interest in start-ups, and set up my own social enterprise to teach individuals and groups how to set up micro-bakeries.

I love the vibrancy & spirit of South London, before joining Hatch I previously ran the National Citizen Service programme in Southwark & Lambeth supporting young people to deliver social action projects. I now and am happy to look after the Young Enterprise Programme and the 55 East Hub.


Jessica Brown

Jessica Brown is the Social Investment Infrastructure Fund Manager at the Barrow Cadbury Trust. Jessica has responsibility to develop and deliver the infrastructure fund to strengthen and diversify the social investment market, which the Barrow Cadbury Trust manages in partnership with the Access Foundation. With a fund of £1.8m over three years, the investments and grants made by the fund will enhance existing infrastructure, bring new entrants into the sector and develop new tools and methods of data sharing to facilitate market-building. Jessica has experience in social investment, community finance and grant-making, having worked in leadership roles across social enterprises and charitable trusts in the UK and abroad for the past 15 years. Previous roles include Director of the Tellus Mater Foundation and Head of Access to Finance at the new economics foundation. Early in her career, Jessica worked in investment banking at Merrill Lynch in New York and London. Jessica has served as a trustee for several small charities and early stage social enterprises, and is currently Chair of Hatch Enterprise, a social enterprise incubator in South London.

Stephen Miller

As Research and Evaluation Manager at Design Council, I manage the organisation’s research and evaluation activities, champion our evidence base, and help the organisation to identify new evidence needs for the benefit of design.

Prior to Design Council I managed research and evaluation for UnLtd – the Foundation for Social Entrepreneurs. For the past decade I have helped numerous organisations improve their practice based on evidence and learning. I hold a Masters in Social Research from the University of Leicester.

Edmund Papworth

Edmund is a Partner with Jenson Solutions. He qualified as a Chartered Accountant with Grant Thornton UK LLP in London where he worked in audit, Corporate Finance, Project Finance and latterly the Government, Infrastructure and Advisory team. His career at Grant Thornton saw him work for both the private and public sectors as well as working internationally. He has worked across a range of sectors including transport, waste and renewable energy, urban regeneration, leisure and manufacturing, helping to bid large contracts, complete financial models and provide wider strategic and commercial advice. He is passionate about working with SME’s to drive growth in their business, explore new routes to market and maximise their sustainability. He is also a mentor for ICAS and Virgin Start Ups.

Ben Warren

Before joining Big Society Capital, Ben was a Policy Adviser in the Social Investment and Finance Team at the Cabinet Office where he worked on retail investment, impact measurement and the G8 Forum. He founded a microfinance charity and holds an MSc in Development and Security from Bristol University.



Iqbal Wahhab

Iqbal Wahhab has lived in Britain for almost his whole life and in a career spanning 30 years he has built a reputation for delivering world-class excellence through his highly successful restaurant businesses, Roast and The Cinnamon Club. It was Iqbal’s early experience in the media which saw him run his own hospitality PR business and Indian food publication, Tandoori Magazine that launched his career in the restaurant industry.
In 2003 he co-authored The Cinnamon Club Cookbook and in 2005 opened the highly renowned Roast, the British restaurant and bar in Borough Market.

Iqbal has won a number of major awards and accolades during his career. He was voted one of the Top 10 Restaurateurs in Britain in an Independent on Sunday survey and listed in the Caterer Power 100, GQ 100 Most Connected and The Sunday Times Maserati Top 100 business start-up mentors. He has also received an Honorary Doctorate in Business Administration from the University of East London and an Honorary Doctorate in Science from the University of West London.

He chairs two social enterprises – Mum’s The Chef and Bounce Back and is actively engaged in the prison reform agenda, social entrepreneurship and in the social investment sector.
What Iqbal sais about joining Hatch as a Patron: “I’ve long watched how Brixton’s entrepreneurial talent has been growing in the past. There is a sense of people in Brixton and South London generally that they are building themselves into the centre. Hatch is empowering them to be part of this and being a patron with Hatch is a great way of getting involved in this movement.”


Entrepreneurship & Business Development

Thomas Strasser-Neuhofer

Tom literally lives entrepreneurship – from developing and running social entrepreneurship & leadership programmes in Austria to setting up his own company – he’s done it all. With a BSc in Economics and a BA in International Development he’s developed a great understanding of business development, leadership & sustainability. Tom specialises in business coaching for start-ups and has worked with various organisations of different sizes on an international level. Always keen to broaden his knowledge & skills, he currently does a Msc in Organisational & People Development at Roffey Park Institute (University of Sussex).

At Hatch, Tom is bringing in all his experience to make our incubation programmes as valuable as possible. In addition to creating and facilitating our programmes, he provides hands-on support to all the start-ups that approach Hatch. His mission is simple: helping organisations to become successful and (financially) sustainable in the longer term.

Entrepreneur in Residence

Kate Bruce

Kate Jane Bruce initially trained as a teacher delivering classes teaching English and Life Skills. She is now the creative and business force behind Katiico Jewellery (, a culturally rich and colourful jewellery line. As Designer/ Maker and Artist, Kate found her true calling to create jewellery and combining this with her entrepreneurial mindset.

Her completed BA (Hons) in Fashion Promotion equipped her with Marketing, Public Relations and Brand Management skills. Her MA in Enterprise and Management for the Creative Arts (London College of Communication) furthered Kate’s knowledge and expertise in running and supporting creative businesses.

Kate has a passion for enterprise innovation and in 2014 she developed and delivered ‘Start Here’, an Ideas Incubator in South London for young people between the ages of 14 to 22 who wanted to start a project or business. After taking part in the Hatch Incubator (2015), Kate has been able to fine tune her business, and push her business to new exciting heights. As Entrepreneur in Residence I provide hands-on support around business planning and I continue to deliver training for creative entrepreneurs.