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Meet the team

Find out more about the people behind the forum and get in touch.

Lisa Reilly

Executive Director

Lisa Reilly, Executive Director, has worked with GISF since 2011. She has over 16 years’ experience in the development and humanitarian response sector, working overseas in a variety of programme management roles in both Africa and Asia. Returning to the UK in 2009 Lisa took up a position with RedR as Security Trainer developing and implementing personal security and security management courses, as well as undertaking a number of short-term consultancy projects backstopping and evaluating humanitarian response programmes.

Starting as an engineer, Lisa’s security knowledge comes from implementing programmes in various conflict and post-conflict countries, subsequently enhanced through working with a variety of sector experts and on a number of research projects since her return to the UK.

In her current role, Lisa exercises overall responsibility for the GISF Secretariat, supporting the collaboration and exchange of information and best practice between GISF members and GISF’s wider network of humanitarian security risk specialists, as well as liaising with and acting as a resource for UN agencies, academic institutions, donors, etc., to develop appropriate policies and best practice in humanitarian security risk management.

Contact Lisa Reilly

Heather Hughes

Deputy Director

Heather Hughes joined the GISF secretariat in November 2019.

Heather was Oxfam GB’s first Global Security Adviser, where she worked for over 20 years, focusing on strategic and operational security risk management including policy and practice, learning and development, supporting and managing serious incidents and crises, lessons learned and networking. Her career in Oxfam began in humanitarian and development programme support and management roles, including the Balkans conflict.

After leaving Oxfam GB, Heather was Director of Risk Advisory Services at International Location Safety, where she worked with a wide range of NGOs to support improvements in their security risk management approach and practice.

Heather has been involved with GISF since its inception in 2006, and was a member of the Steering Group for many years. As Deputy Director she will support the strategic work of GISF.

Contact Heather Hughes

Justina Amenu


Justina Amenu joined GISF in September 2014. She has over 10 years’ experience in working with non-profit organisations – managing membership, event organisation, and general administration.

Having completed her first degree, a BA in Economics with Sociology in Ghana, Justina moved to the UK. Her experience with NfPs begun as an administrator with the Petroleum Exploration Society of Great Britain, PESGB. She steadily increased her knowledge and experience by working with The InDus Entrepreneurs UK and Society for Editors and Proofreaders Ltd. In between moving jobs, Justina obtained a Masters in Business Administration.

Justina is currently responsible for the administrative function of GISF – providing essential support to the team and introducing new ways of working to help the organisation run smoothly.

Contact Justina Amenu

Léa Moutard

Research Advisor

Léa Moutard joined GISF in August 2019.

Throughout her education, she focused on analysing conflicts, humanitarian operations and associated security issues. She realised various research projects including internal reports for UNHCR’s Beirut field office as well as for a community resolution centre in Berkeley. Trained in mediation, she organised and facilitated talks as the co-founder of two human rights related collectives. In her last role, she sought to bring practitioners, students and civil society actors together to reflect on ways to address the threats and opportunities associated with digital innovations. Léa holds two Masters degrees, in International Relations from Sciences Po Lyon (France) and Human Rights from LSE (UK).

As GISF Research Advisor, she works on initiating and developing practical and original research, along with best practice guides to help humanitarian organisations face security issues. She promotes partnerships across sectors to facilitate information-sharing and foster dialogue on security risk management. She assists the GISF Director in coordination and capacity-building missions.

Contact Léa Moutard

Aisling Sweeney

Communications Officer

Aisling Sweeney joined GISF in January 2019.

After graduating in 2017 with a degree in Sociology from the London School of Economics, Aisling volunteered with a small NGO providing basic needs and education for refugees on the Greek island of Leros. In this position, Aisling conducted monitoring and evaluation of the organisation’s services and coordinated their arts programme. In 2018, Aisling moved to Morocco where she taught English. Her most recent role before joining GISF was with UNDP in Tbilisi, Georgia. As Project Intern, Aisling supported MEAL and communications for the Governance Reform Fund project. Through this role, she worked with the National Government of Georgia to improve accountability and transparency in the context of the country's ongoing democratisation.

Aisling supports the GISF Secretariat by managing digital communications and the GISF website.

Contact Aisling Sweeney

Laura Van de Vloet

Projects and Membership Officer (Europe)

Laura Van de Vloet joined the GISF Secretariat in August 2019.

After having obtained a Bachelor’s Degree in Public Administration and Management and a Master’s Degree in Counter Terrorism and Homeland Security, Laura worked as an intern at the UN and Belgian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and as a consultant at NATO and a physical security start-up. Her work focused on both security and development policy as well as the organisation and coordination of international high-level events. Most recently Laura worked as a Conference Planner at NATO.

In her role, Laura is responsible for tracking, maintaining and enhancing GISF member engagement. The primary function is to develop the member services component of GISF, including bi-annual forums, workshops, podcasts, etc.

Contact Laura Van de Vloet

Tara Arthur

Projects and Membership Officer (North America)

Tara Arthur joined the GISF Secretariat in 2019.

Based in the US, Tara has a passion for working on cross-cutting solutions aimed at improving the lives of underserved populations, both domestically and internationally. With over 10 years' experience in the development and humanitarian space, she has served in various capacities including programmes, safety and security and advocacy, both in the field and at the headquarters level.

She holds a B.A. in Political Science from Virginia Wesleyan University and an M.A. in International Development & Social Change from Clark University. As well as this, she has over 25 years of experience in martial arts. Her most recent work before joining GISF was leading the Faces of Martial Arts Project, which included advancing social change concepts and initiatives within and around the martial arts community; including designing and conducting workshops, programmes, training and interviews.

In her role, she is responsible for fostering GISF member engagement in the Americas by developing member services including US-based Members' Forums, workshops, webinars and more.

Contact Tara Arthur

Charlotte Sissons

Admin and Project Assistant

Charlotte Sissons joined GISF in September 2020.

Charlotte has recently obtained a Bachelor’s Degree in Geography with International Studies from the University of Manchester. As a part of her four year undergraduate Charlotte completed a year of overseas study at the University of Queensland, Australia. Charlotte is extremely passionate about social justice and international development and her university modules reflected this. She has previous experience in administration and working for an NGO.

At GISF, Charlotte is responsible for providing efficient administrative support to enable the smooth functioning of the GISF Secretariat.

Contact Charlotte Sissons

Megan Hooson

Admin and Projects Assistant

Megan Hooson joined the GISF Secretariat in September 2020.

Megan graduated from Manchester Metropolitan University with a degree in English in 2017. Since graduating, Megan has found her career path drifting more and more towards administration. After gaining most of her experience in the retail sector, she now wishes to branch out into a more challenging but rewarding role. Incorporating both her degree and experience, Megan works as an Admin and Project Assistant at GISF.

In her role, Megan works alongside Charlotte to provide support for the whole GISF team.

Contact Megan Hooson