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Gary Wootten

Managing Director

Gary is an experienced strategic marketer, planner, social researcher, business coach and entrepreneur.

His 20-year career has been a blend of marketing agent, public health commissioner, charity worker and social activist. He’s created an award-winning portfolio of behavior change projects over the years, from localising national campaigns in community settings, to co-designing services to inform and transform international transport and humanitarian brands.

Gary oversees Hitch’s key project and client portfolio, supporting the team to create and deliver services that produce success.

Sarah Evans

Finance and Operations Director

Sarah is a Co-Director overseeing finance and operations.

As a community development expert and social marketing practitioner, Sarah specialisied in youth work with marginalised groups. She established a regional office for a national charity working with NEET young people, and led collaborative community projects in Merseyside and Bristol. She has written published work in the field of detached youth work.

Sarah keeps Hitch happily bouncing along by completing VAT returns and keeping suppliers, staff and the bank happy. She supports with community engagement and campaign project design, and manages the Hitch Fund – a fund dedicated to social innovation and local causes.

Nick Godbehere

Director of Behaviour Insights

Nick is a qualified Market research and Behaviour Insight lead with a 24-year career. With a background in psychology and human behaviour, Nick is an experienced research-practitioner, using qualitative and quantitative data collection and psychology to inform behaviour change strategies, communications and policy design.

Nick is responsible for managing all insight and evaluation projects at Hitch. Recent work has focused on vaccine hesitancy for Salford Council, Surrey County Council and Liverpool of Tropical Medicine. Obesity, healthier choices and mental health have been central to recent insight projects for a range of clients including Southampton City and Bradford Councils. In addition Nick oversees innovative work using approaches such as Emotional Analytics and Digital Tactical Analysis.

Dave Cutter

Head of Digital Innovation

Dave ensures digital projects run smoothly, liaising between clients and our technical team to produce winning digital outputs.

Whilst studying Digital & New Media, Dave also became a youth mentor on the National Citizenship Service scheme, helping teenagers to develop their interpersonal skills.

As Digital Manager, Dave delivered websites and applications for Northern Railway, the Education and Training Foundation and the Dry January campaign. He also delivered social media seminars on the impact of digital tools in social marketing and the effects these platforms can have.

Now as Head of Digital Innovation, Dave leads our digital team to assist our clients in all things Digital.

Holly Dixon

Head of Client Services

Holly has a proven marketing communications record spanning three decades.

Having worked at major, blue-chip retailers (Safeway, Littlewoods Index) and hotel chains (Best Western Hotel, Holiday Inn), Holly has planned and delivered a number of award-winning marketing communications campaigns. She has experience across the whole mix including design, print, digital and advertising.

At Hitch, Holly has used her expertise to deliver a range of projects including smoking cessation, alcohol reduction, sexual health and HIV awareness, and suicide prevention.

Saoirce Codling

Senior Consultant

Saoirce is a Senior Consultant in the Strategy and Planning team with over 10 years’ experience of working on complex behaviour change projects with hard-to-reach groups.

At Hitch, Saoirce manages some of our biggest accounts including violence reduction projects with Greater Manchester Combined Authority and Leicestershire Police and healthy weight projects with Medway Council. Saoirce is experienced in digital targeting methods, developing strategies and on-going monitoring and evaluation of projects.

Sophie Knapman

Digital Manager

With a Master of Science in Digital Marketing and a First Class honors degree in Events Management, Sophie is an experienced Digital Specialist who has led on a number of successful campaigns. Having worked with a wide range of public and private sector clients - MHRA (Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency), Police Federation, Visit England, FCDO (Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office) - she has delivered on a variety of owned and paid social media projects and website campaigns.

Sophie supports all things digital, from managing social and Google advertising, to compiling digital evaluations on campaign performance.

Divya Bagaria

Senior Strategy and Planning Executive

As part of the Strategy and Planning team, Divya acts as a bridge between behaviour change and digital implementation. She holds two masters, one in Psychology and the other in Marketing. She has worked as a psychologist, content specialist and marketing strategist and will be responsible for converting behavioural insights into concrete effective strategies that will be delivered through digital channels. Divya has experience in formulating plans specifically for young adults and adolescents from diverse backgrounds.

Julie Ngalle

Account Executive

Julie is a politics and economics graduate with a background in written and audio journalism. She also has experience specialising in social media marketing and copywriting.

Her academic background allowed her to open her mind and gain in-depth knowledge on a range of social issues, some of which she continues to shine light on through activism, journalism and podcasting.

Julie is part of the Strategy and Planning team and supports a range of behaviour change campaigns in Cardiff, Bradford, Barnet and Southampton to state a few, with focuses on mental health and physical wellbeing.

Charlotte Derrig

Research Manager

Charlotte is Hitch’s qualitative specialist who has recently been promoted to the role of Research Manager. She is passionate about using social research and behavioural science for social good and generates the insights that inform Hitch’s reports, campaigns, and strategies.

Charlotte has put her capacity for unique insights and keen eye for detail to good use in many projects at Hitch, including recent work in vaccine hesitancy for Salford Council, weight management insight from the Public Health Wales workforce, and healthy lifestyle insight for Cardiff Metropolitan University and Bradford Council.

Kate Parsons

Research Manager

Kate recently took on the role of Research Manager for Hitch’s behavioural insights team.

Kate graduated with a Sport and Exercise Science BSc and is currently undertaking a Psychology PhD focusing on physical activity behaviours in hard-to-reach populations. She has a passion for health psychology and brings a wealth of knowledge and experience in behaviour change and implementation science.

Steve Gillespie

Studio Manager

As a graduate in Design for Communication Media (Graphic Design) Steve brings with him a vast amount of experience gained from working in the creative and financial service sectors. Having worked with a wide range of high-profile sports, retail and travel brands, Steve is now putting his experience into practice creating eye-catching, engaging and award winning concepts for the clients and campaigns that Hitch specialise in.

Steve is passionate about design and the power that a simple headline and image can do to provoke behavioural change.

Mick Flaherty

Junior Content Creator Apprentice

Mick is a multi-disciplined artist who graduated from Liverpool Hope University with a BA in Fine Art. He specialised in abstract painting, and the relation of art and psychology. Particularly the link between Surrealism and the unconscious as viewed through both the lens of Fruedian and Jungian psychoanalytic theories.

Mick is also a multi instrumental musician and composer who has worked with young people in facilitating music workshops and art groups through community projects, as well as bringing those skills into a care setting in a previous role in support work for adults with learning disabilities.

Myrto Myrianthopoulos

Research Executive

With a background in psychology, Myrto has specialised in economic and consumer psychology.

She has agency and client-side experience in market research across industries in the UK and the Netherlands, and has worked on advertising, business strategy, change management and employer branding initiatives.

She’s been nominated for the Significant Insights Global 30 Under 30 award for market research and insights, and has also been volunteering at a hospice.

Charlotte Hayes

Consultant

Charlotte is our Consultant with over 6 years’ experience of campaign development and delivery at Hitch.

Charlotte has extensive experience of working with different cultures across a wide spectrum of social contexts. She brings this understanding with her in her approach to holding focus group sessions and audience segmentation. Charlotte has delivered Greater Manchester’s ‘You Can’ stop smoking campaign, Liverpool City Region Combined Authority’s active travel campaign and the ‘I am greater’ serious violence reduction project with Greater Manchester Combined Authority. She also delivered the social media campaign for the award-winning Just Talk mental health campaign.

James Jones

Research Executive

James is a research executive with a master’s degree in consumer psychology and two years’ experience working in Public Health.

Whilst studying his master’s degree in consumer psychology James developed a passion for all things behaviour change, specifically how a person’s unconscious mind is responsible for a lot of their behaviour.

James takes part in all things research and is responsible for planning, collecting and analysing insight.

During his time at Hitch James has worked on a wide range of projects including healthy weight, vaccine hesitancy, suicide prevention, alcohol licencing and tackling violence against women & girls.

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