Who are The Corporate Alliance?

Our team works with the country’s largest employers and their staff to make the workplace the safest environment it can be. We also work with SMEs, assisting these vital companies to leverage services and support ensuring employee safety.

Founded in 2005, we are the only charitable organisation working on a business-to-business platform to advise companies in addressing and mitigating the risk domestic violence poses to their company and employees. Statistically speaking, 1 in 4 women and 1 in 6 men are affected by domestic violence. 75% of people enduring violence are targeted at work, through social media, site visits, phone calls and a myriad of other ways.

We reach 5,000,000 employees in the private, public and third sector per year, and successfully assist in the reduction of the calculated cost domestic violence has to the UK economy, which was an estimated £1.9bn per year of taxpayers money.

How we do it?

The Alliance commissioned the first of its kind research into employer understanding of domestic violence and the impact in the workplace. Our research indicated that 87% of employers wanted to address domestic violence. To meet that need, we trained over 10,000 employees. Not knowing how to get help, we are here, to educate you in how to save lives in your workplace.

To mitigate the corporate risk, we work directly with employers to make a scalable difference to the health, work and wellbeing of their employees. We do not serve as counselors, instead we provide accredited training to employees where they can learn how to identify warning signs, know what the best practice is and take action internally.

In one year we assisted companies to act on 128 disclosures made by employees about incidents of domestic violence who required immediate support for their safety, including people who witness and perpetrate.  All of the employees are safe, their families safe, and remain in work.

Our History




The Corporate Alliance

The Corporate Alliance was founded in 2005 to bring business to the conversation on addressing domestic violence and the impact in the workplace.

Baroness Scotland, Founder and Patron of the Corporate Alliance sought to establish an effective holistic framework for businesses to engage in eliminating domestic violence.  As the Minister of State for the Criminal Justice System, she commissioned Sylvia Walby to research the cost of domestic violence to the UK economy.  Based on this research the Alliance was founded and continues to be linked to this holistic methodology.

The Corporate Alliance transformed from a groundbreaking well intentioned social network of like minded businesses into a registered charity in England and Wales in 2010; a company limited by guarantee, with a fully functioning board and governance structure and a sustainable business model offering clients tools and accredited training to address domestic violence and the impact in the workplace.

Executive Director, Melissa Morbeck, began her post at The Corporate Alliance, formerly The Corporate Alliance Against Domestic Violence once the charity was formally founded.

Since our creation, we have worked tirelessly to address the unique needs of business in response to this often-silent epidemic.

Meet the Team

Melissa Morbeck

Executive Director

As a leading authority on the subject of domestic abuse and with 18 years of Human Resources expertise, Melissa has launched key charities and programmes of work in the U.S. working with The President’s Commission on Domestic Violence. In her role with the Alliance, Melissa has built a robust organisation that is recognised in the UK and worldwide as a leader in employer response to domestic violence and coercive control.

Katrina Hill


Katrina volunteers with the Alliance helping with client relations and support for the Ambassador Roundtable.  Katrina has volunteered for the Alliance for over 2 years and brings a wealth of marketing and retail expertise to her volunteering.  Katrina worked at the National Theatre as Merchandise Buyer and Deputy Bookshops Manager for nearly 10 years.

Margaret Gleason

Finance, Sales and Operations Intern

Margaret works with the Alliance as a finance, sales, and operations intern. Margaret studies at Villanova University, near Philadelphia, in business. She is working towards a certificate in finance, international business, and French. Margaret is currently studying abroad in London this summer and is working with the Alliance.

The honorary patron & Founder

The Rt Hon Patricia Scotland, QC, Secretary General of the Commonwealth

The Rt Hon Patricia Scotland, QC, Secretary General of the Commonwealth is the founder and Patron of The Corporate Alliance. She was the former Attorney General and was responsible for Criminal Justice reform whilst Minister of State in the Home Office. She was Chair of the Inter-Ministerial Group on Domestic Violence & helped to drive major change to address domestic violence including the introduction of Business Alliance addressing domestic abuse in the workplace, MARACs, IDVAs and Specialist Domestic Violence Courts. By working across all sectors these programmes have helped to dramatically reduce the number of reported incidents of DV and domestic homicides over the last 10 years.

Follow Patricia Scotland on Twitter

Sandi Toksvig, OBE


Sandi Toksvig is the current Patron of the Corporate Alliance. Sandi is well known to UK audiences as a broadcaster, television host and gender equality benefactor. Sandi was the host of The News Quiz on BBC Radio 4 from 2006 until June 2015. She also presented the quiz show 1001 Things You Should Know on Channel 4 television in 2012–13 and began hosting a revived series of the same channel’s classic game show Fifteen to One on 5 April 2014. In 2016 she will take over from Stephen Fry as host of the popular BBC television quiz show QI.

She is joint founder of the Women’s Equality Party (established in March 2015), was installed as Chancellor of the University of Portsmouth in October 2012, and is the current president of the Women of the Year Lunch.

You can follow Sandi on Twitter

Board of Trustees

The strength of the Corporate Alliance lies in its members and our Board of Trustees. Their unique passion and commitment to bringing the conversation of the true impact of domestic violence in the workplace to businesses throughout the UK has created change on this issue.

Our trustees share their expertise and knowledge, volunteer their time and corporate offices to strengthen the Corporate Alliance.

Emma Pearmaine

Corporate Alliance – Chair & Family & Legal Services Lead

Emma is the Director of Family Services at Simpson Millar LLP. Being assigned as a Partner and a Head of the Family Law Team in 2010, she was appointed as a Director of Family Legal Services by 2015.Qualified as a mediator in 2011, Emma became a member of the Family Court’s Unions Group, and a Trustee for CAADV. In 2014, Emma was awarded “Lawyer of the Year” in the Modern Law Magazine Awards.

Cathy Marsh

Vice Chair & Governance Lead of the Corporate Alliance

After more than 20 years of practice, Cathy retired as a Partner from Milbank Tweed Hadley & McCloy at the end of 2013 and now offers her expertise on a consultancy basis. Cathy focuses mainly on advising parties in the development and financing of mining, independent power, water, oil and gas, satellite and other infrastructure assets.

Mark Hill


Mark has been a Chartered Accountant and Chartered Tax Adviser for over 30 years. He has spent the last 20 years working in house for UK Magic Circle law firms and is currently Partners’ Tax Manager for Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP. He previously worked for the Big 4 Accountancy firms in London, Paris and Brussels. He is also Treasurer and Trustee of the City of London Choir with whom he has been singing since the mid 1980s.

Sara Hamilton

Private Sector Trustee

Sara Hamilton rejoined Morgan Stanley in 2011 as an Operations Officer  for the EMEA Legal and Compliance Division. Sara previously worked for Morgan Stanley in Tokyo as a Company Lawyer. Sara previously practised as a Corporate and Company Lawyer in both London and Tokyo.

Martyn Anwyl

Trustee, Business Development Lead for the Corporate Alliance

Martyn is the Head of Total Reward & Mobility at IHS Towers.  He is the former Head of Operations in Corporate Solutions at Buck Consultants at Xerox. As former Head of the Health and Productivity practice, he directed a team of highly experienced industry specialists managing over 800 clients.Martyn brings a valuable blend of operational and client experience to the Alliance.

Matt Hay

Corporate Alliance Trustee Digital Media & Branding Lead

Matt is Managing Director and co-founder of Latimer an award winning, London based social enterprise. Working with global brands and NGO’s to grow through audience collaboration. Matt is currently a Trustee for the Corporate Alliance.

Pamela Zaballa

Trustee, Fundraising and Grants Lead

Currently Pamela is working on the launch of UK SAYS NO MORE.

Pamela is Head of Women and Children’s Services at Hestia and became passionate about working for women right’s while working in Tegucigalpa, Honduras. Then she moved to New York and  started working with domestic abuse victims in Manhattan Family Court. In the UK, she held several roles as services manager and senior manager for a national provider of domestic abuse services.

Claire Bethel

Public Sector Advisor

Claire Bethel recently left the Department of Health after many years. In recent years, she had responsibility for policy on the health response to victims of violence including domestic violence, sexual violence, knife crime, harmful traditional practices including FGM, gang-related behaviour and child sexual abuse and exploitation. Having policy responsibility highlighted the importance of domestic abuse in the workplace – as a result, Claire set up and chaired the Department’s Domestic Abuse Support Group which raised awareness and provided support for people in the Department who were affected by domestic abuse. She was an ambassador for the Alliance and worked closely with them to promote their work across the public sector.

Business leaders championing excellence

Maria da Cunha

British Airways, Head of People and Legal

Maria da Cunha joined British Airways in January 2000 as the airline’s first competition law specialist. British Airways Plc has been working with CAADV for a number of years to raise awareness of the devastating effect of domestic violence. In 2014 Maria took on her current role of Director for People & Legal when Government Affairs moved to the International Airlines Group (IAG).

Dean Royles

Leeds Teaching Hospital NHS Trust

In 2011 Dean became the first male business champion against domestic violence and is a national ambassador for the Apprenticeship Ambassadors Network and from 2012 to 2014 he was voted the UK’s Most Influential HR Practitioner. He was previously Chief Executive of NHS Employers, Director of Workforce and Education at NHS North West and Deputy Director of Workforce for the NHS at the Department of Health.

Our ambassadors

Lorna Gavin

Head of Diversity, Inclusion & Corporate Responsibility

Lorna Gavin is Head of Corporate Responsibility at Gowling WLG. Since 2006, she has been responsible for the firm’s community investment programme, environmental agenda as well as working with the firm’s HR team. Lorna is a current director of the Corporate Responsibility Group, an ambassador for the Alliance and is a contributor to the Heart of the City programme.

Rachel Windle

Simpson Millar, Head of Human Resources

Rachel joined Simpson Millar LLP in 1998 as the Office Manager for the Leeds Office working alongside Peter Watson the Managing Partner. She has worked as the Head of HR for the past 15 years and is now HR Business Partner with the Fairpoint Group.

Robert Girvan

Milbank Tweed, Manager of Associate & Graduate Recruitment

Robert Girvan is responsible for legal talent recruitment in Milbank’s London office. Robert also runs the firms trainee solicitor development program and sits on the firms Diversity & Inclusion Committee. Robert studied Law and Politics at Cardiff University and has worked in HR and recruitment in the legal industry for the past 8 years. Robert has recently taken up a role as a Progression Mentor with The Princes Trust.

Nicola Sharp-Jeffs

CEO of Surviving Economic Abuse

Dr. Nicola Sharp-Jeffs has been working in the violence against women and girls sector since 2006. She is Director of the charity Surviving Economic Abuse (SEA) and a Research Fellow within the Child and Woman Abuse Studies Unit (CWASU) at London Metropolitan University. Nicola is an expert in economic abuse (which encompasses financial abuse) as it occurs within the context of domestic violence.

Andie Michael

Department of Health, Head of Voluntary and Community Sector Engagement Team

Andie leads on voluntary sector and social investment policy for the Department of Health. She also leads the Department’s Domestic Abuse Support Group for staff. Andie has been a civil servant for over 20 years, working in a number of different Government Departments. She joined the Department of Health five years ago and during that time has worked on choice policy, violence against women and children, troubled families, social investment, social enterprises, the voluntary sector and volunteering.

Mark Eades

John Liversidge

UK TesSOS Manager

John leads the work of Thames Valley Partnership, TecSOS Project. In 2010, supported by the Vodafone Foundation, John commenced the TecSOS project in the UK. Provided on a not-for-profit basis, the project seeks to provide victims of domestic abuse with a specifically adapted mobile phone to summon help in an emergency. John’s role has recently been expanded to cover international markets. John was awarded a Chief Constable’s commendation for his work in the field.

Judith Smith

National Director, The Charity for Civil Servants

Our Director of Help and Advisory Services, Judith has been with the Charity since 1999. Starting as our Area Services Manager in the Midlands, and then in the South East, in 2005 she was appointed Regional Development Manager for the South. She is now responsible for our Help and Advisory Services, and oversees the provision of our support and advice to thousands of people every year.

Deborah Jamieson, OBE

Head of External Relations-Stakeholder, User Insights and Culture Change Lead (DWP/DH Joint Unit)

Deborah Jamieson, OBE, is the Head of External Relations-Stakeholder, User Insights and Culture Change Lead for DWP and DH. Deborah is the former CEO of Eliminate Domestic Violence The Global Foundation and former Trustee for the Alliance. Deborah brings to her role many years of experience developing and managing domestic violence prevention and intervention programmes in both the public and private sector making her well positioned to lead her joint work. Previously, Deborah was Cross Government Head of Health, Work and Wellbeing Strategy Unit.

Heidi Riedel

Director of Woman’s Trust

Heidi is the Director of Woman’s Trust. She leads the provision of specialist, high quality, accessible services aimed at enabling women to overcome the debilitating mental health effects of domestic violence. Heidi’ interests include social exclusion, health inequalities, and effective collaborative working and is committed to the fight to prevent domestic violence and to do whatever is possible to remedy the harm it causes.

Felicity Smith

Faith Action

Felicity Smith, National Co-ordinator for FaithAction, is ‘Chief of Staff’ to Daniel Singleton the National Executive Director. Felicity has a strong input into strategic development, and oversees all programmes and contracts delivered by the FaithAction network. Felicity has worked on the Health and Social Care Voluntary Sector Strategic Partnership programme since its inception in 2009.

Lyndsey Dearglove

Violence Against Women and Girls Partnership Manager

Lyndsey has extensive experience in delivering domestic violence training and multi-agency working. Lyndsey is a trained Domestic Abuse Prevention Advocate (DAPA) and holds a qualification in the Prevention of Domestic Violence and Sexual Assult (Women’s Aid) and in the Management of Independent Domestic Violence Advocacy Services (SafeLives). During her time as the manager of the Hillingdon domestic abuse outreach service, she set up a peer support group for survivors of domestic abuse and their family members, with support from Oxford University’s peer mentoring programme coordinator. The Butterfly Project now runs groups in five local authorities and in 2014 its volunteers won volunteer of the year awards for their hard work and dedication to the Butterfly Project.

Ryan Bruce

House of Commons, Diversity and Inclusion Programme Manager

Ryan is currently leading work on a national initiative aimed at raising awareness of domestic abuse and securing the involvement of major employers to tackle this “silent epidemic”. Ryan is passionate about equality and is committed combatting the stigma surrounding domestic violence and preventing the lifelong harm it does to all those affected by it.

Torie Robinson

Media Evolution Ltd, Social Media Manager

Tori runs social media accounts and successful marketing campaigns for target markets on multiple platforms. With overseas as well as local clients in wealth management, telecoms & IT, Torie has a passion for effective global communications and long term business relationship development. Having experience in finance, banking, HR, FMCG, travel and charity, Torie mixes energy, communication, intelligence, and a passion for success into each client project. Torie also has a personal passion for improving awareness of mental health and epilepsy; using her social media presence and public communications opportunities to also speak for Mind & Epilepsy Action.