Team

Familiar with the term ‘people buy people’? We know that, to do business with Personally Virtual, you need to be able to trust the people we provide you with.

So, here’s some info and mugshots of all our ninjas (to avoid confusion, here they are dressed as normal, everyday people).

Kathy Soulsby headshot

Kathy Soulsby

Founder & Chief Organiser

After a varied career (Restaurant Manager, Customer Relations, Sales and Export Sales (of shellfish to various places!) and PA and EA roles in Management Consultancies, Recruitment and Executive Coaching Businesses) I set up Personally Virtual in 2014.

I love small businesses and working in them. Being able to turn your hand to anything, being flexible and continually learning to finding better and more efficient ways to work can make such a huge difference. There is nothing like the sense of camaraderie you get in a small team, even a team of 2, getting a job done.

To me, getting a great job done is all about relationships, whether that is with my clients, with my client’s clients or with anyone else.

I really hope that you decide to have one of the team work with you. If you are in any doubt about how much difference a smart, experienced VA could make to your team then please do ask to speak to one of our existing clients and let them tell you from personal experience what impact it has made for them.

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Vicki Doudelle

“Vicki is awesome”

Vicki has been a Virtual Assistant for 6 years and prior to that she spent 10 years as an EA  at Towers Watson and then McKinsey & Co. During her time at McKinsey, Vicki worked within the EU-Retail Practice, supporting two Senior Partners and the Practice Manager. She was heavily involved with organising the Practice events, workshops & training, as well as attending team meetings. Within the London office she was on the EA interviewing team and was also EA Floor Coordinator. Her favourite moment during her 5 years there was covering the maternity leave of the Practice Manager and having the opportunity to organise the Annual Client Event in Paris with the biggest CEOs in EU-Retail attending.

She took a sabbatical during her full-time working years, living in China for 7 months teaching English to children and the travelling throughout China, Tibet, Mongolia & Russia by train & bus. Nowadays she lives in Bordeaux with her husband and 2 children. She is also the co-founder of two networking local groups, one for English speaking business owners and the other for English speaking mums. To keep herself sane, she runs regularly and enjoys rustling up a storm in the kitchen. And her favourite week of the year is spent in the mountains skiing.

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Samantha Collett

“Sam is a fantastic VA. She has transformed my working life!”

Samantha has been a successful PA for over 6 years. Her current portfolio of work includes diary and inbox management, travel management, document preparation (PowerPoint Presentations) and general PA duties. She has previously worked with Founders and Directors of management consultancies, and within financial services.

Samantha is known for having a “CAN DO” attitude with a great team spirit, and always approaches things with a smile on her face. She is extremely proactive and super organised and is always looking at better ways to be more efficient to the people she supports.

Outside of taking care and looking after the diary madness, Samantha is a keen singer and you will often find her making tunes in the studio. Equally she loves to travel the world and has a huge passion for food and experiencing new cultures.

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Lucy Messaritis

“I have had excellent feedback from all my contacts that she is a joy to deal with”

Lucy has been a successful VA for over 3 years.  Her current portfolio of work includes diary management and general PA duties for the Editor of a current affairs publication and for two directors of an employment law specialist. She has previously worked with software developer start-ups and CEOs of management consultancies.

Prior to becoming a VA, Lucy spent 7.5 years learning the art of complex diary management and general right-hand-womanship at McKinsey & Co London as EA to various senior Partners in the Healthcare, Pharmaceutical and Private Equity sectors.

Teamwork, a keen eye for detail, the ability to put herself in her charges’ shoes and a good sense of humour were key to ensuring that Lucy’s support for those under her care was always to the highest level.

Outside of making diaries look neat and getting people from A-B as gracefully as possible, which she genuinely gets a kick out of, Lucy loves a good long walk in her local South Gloucestershire countryside, baking cakes she really shouldn’t eat and pretending she knows what she’s doing in the garden.

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Fran Taylor

“To say that Fran is a delight to work with is an understatement of some magnitude”

Fran is currently working successfully as a VA, including providing PA & accounts support to a variety of clients. Prior to setting up her own VA business, Fran spent 20+ years working as Support Services Manager for a Management Consultancy practice (The Consultancy Company), managing a small team and providing/supervising all the back office, administrative & finance/bookkeeping activities.

She is a highly organised administrator with a full range of proven office management/PA skills and lots of initiative as well as being honest & trustworthy, friendly & professional and comfortable dealing with people at all levels – a real team player. She prides herself on a meticulous eye for detail and strong desire to get things right first time.

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Claire Ennion

“A pleasure to work with – a very warm bubbly personality”

Claire is a Virtual Assistant supporting individuals and businesses with administrative tasks.

Her portfolio of work includes diary management, general PA duties and lifestyle management.

Prior to becoming a VA, she spent 20 years working as an Executive Assistant mainly within the IT industry.  Working in the executive teams office for the Operations Director and then the Services Director, Claire managed complex travel itineraries and fast moving diaries.

When she isn’t booking travel or sorting someone’s calendar you will find her either walking the dog, running, mucking out the horse or baking cakes for her two daughters.

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Lisa Payne

Lisa has been working for several years as a Virtual EA/Office Manager/HR Assistant and a Virtual EA. Her roles include ensuring the smooth running of the office and team, delivering high-level administrative support, extensive diary management, coordinating complex business travel, and assisting with the onboarding of new joiners.

Alongside this, Lisa has her own photography business, capturing weddings and more recently helping creative businesses visually bring their brand to life.

Lisa has run the two businesses alongside each other for over 10 years. Previously working as a PA in Private Equity, at Candover which later became Arle. Starting her career in Banking, at JP Morgan, as a trader’s assistant in Futures & Options. Former colleagues and clients have remarked on her professionalism, that she is a great asset to the team, who can be counted on to get things done, is very trustworthy and enjoyable to work with.

When she’s not working, Lisa is a mum to 7-year-old boy/girl twins which certainly keeps her on her toes! In her downtime, Lisa has a keen interest in Genealogy and previously was an advocate for Ancestry.com, helping people trace their family tree on TV series such as ‘Who do you think you are’.

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Claire Hassan

“Claire has been super!”

Claire has been a successful VA for many years and currently looks after the CEO and Founder of The Empathy Business. Her current portfolio of work includes proactive diary management and scheduling, coordinating complex business travel, and streamlining chaotic inboxes.

Prior to becoming a VA, Claire worked across various companies in the UK including Wolff Olins, part of the Omnicom Group, Bloom Procurement Services and Shell.  Claire has also worked overseas in Dubai as Executive Assistant to the Managing Director at GCC Board of Directors. Former colleagues and clients have remarked on her efficiency, calm nature and positivity, which are key attributes in assisting her Executives as effectively as possible.

Outside of orchestrating calm for hectic schedules, Claire is a keen horse rider. She also loves travelling and enjoying adventures with her family.

Samantha Barber greyscale

Samantha Barber

“I honestly don’t know how we would have managed this without Sam!”

Samantha has over 10 years of experience as an Executive Assistant and Private PA. She has been a Virtual Assistant for 4 of those years and really loves what she does. She has experience working for well-known individuals and HNWIs, as well as small companies and private individuals.

Samantha’s specialist skills include lifestyle management, complex travel & schedule coordination, event management, inbox organisation, board-paper collating, minute-taking, proof-reading and research tasks.

Samantha works in both a business and private assistant capacity.  Clients like working with Samantha because of her diligent work ethic, her loyalty, her tenacity to deliver the best she can, and her friendly and warm disposition which makes her a great asset to any team.

Samantha enjoys travelling and working remotely from wherever she is in the world; right now, she is based in Ecuador and is enjoying the Latin American culture. She ensures that wherever she is in the world, she always provide a first-class service to her clients as her number 1 priority. When she isn’t working hard on VA tasks, Samantha provides alternative holistic therapies, under her brand name The Nomadic Empath.

Sophie Kazandjian headshot

Sophie Kazandjian

“Reliable, deeply conscientious, very patient and also strategic.”

Sophie has been a virtual assistant for 8 years. She works with organisational and leadership development consultancies in the UK, USA, Germany and Cairo.

Her current portfolio of work includes proactive diary management and scheduling, email management, website design and maintenance, bid administration, psychometric tools administration, presentation design and general PA/project management support.

Prior to becoming a VA, Sophie worked as an executive assistant for 10 years in London, working for an Ofsted contractor, an investment management firm, a construction consultancy and finally a leadership development consultancy; the latter of which has gone on to become one of her VA clients. Through her roles, Sophie has become experienced in high-level client liaison, which has included organisations such as Deloitte, McKinsey, Slaughter & May, Clifford Chance, Goldman Sachs, and GSK as well as the offices of architect Sir Terry Farrell, and members of Government. Former colleagues and clients have remarked on Sophie’s efficiency, responsiveness, and conscientiousness.

Outside of providing virtual assistant services, Sophie composes piano music, is a keen cyclist and loves exploring the French countryside with her Saluki, Malik.

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Holly Partridge

“Holly is brilliant”

Holly has been a successful VA for the last year and has 15 years of administrative experience within the Higher Education and Logistics sectors. She is also CIPD qualified and has worked with a range of clients including HR consultants, photographers and dog walkers and thoroughly enjoys working with small business owners. 

Holly’s current portfolio of work includes social media management, policy and procedure review and minuting a range of meetings as well as providing general administrative support to small business owners. Holly also offers business caretaking services, allowing business owners to properly switch off when they are out of the office. 

Prior to becoming a VA, Holly was an Account Manager for a Logistics company working with key accounts to manage every aspect of their transport bookings from quoting all the way through to invoicing. 

Outside of organising chaotic inboxes and creating social media posts, Holly enjoys running and is currently training for a marathon which comes in handy when running around after her toddler! She also enjoys devouring as many books as she can get her hands on and crocheting a variety of blankets!

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Cerian Scriven

“An absolute pleasure to work with”

Cerian specialises in working with business coaches, psychologists, and consultants.

Her current portfolio of work includes proactive diary management and scheduling, social media planning and scheduling, inbox management and general business organisation – anything to make her clients’ lives easier!

Prior to becoming a VA, Cerian worked at various large companies in London, including four years as PA to the Corporate Affairs Director at Bupa UK, managing a very chaotic diary and inbox, and 18 months at Goldman Sachs supporting a team of 10 Asset Management lawyers. Former colleagues and clients have remarked on her efficiency, calm energy and can-do attitude which are instrumental to her ability to support her Executives as effectively as possible.

Outside of orchestrating calm for busy business owners, Cerian is a keen reader. She is based in the Basque Country in northern Spain where she can be found swimming in the sea all year round, walking in the mountains, or spending time at home with her cat, reading a good book or entertaining friends over lunch.

Kath Irwin

“first-class and totally reliable”

Kath is a Virtual PA supporting organisations great and small ensuring their day to day is done whilst keeping a keen eye on what’s coming up.

Her current client work work includes proactive diary management and scheduling, coordinating complex business travel, and streamlining chaotic inboxes.  In addition, she provides a wide range of administration tasks and supports smaller organisations streamline, plan and focus. 

Before embarking on her journey as a Virtual PA, Kath worked as a PA with consultants and at Board level supporting Directors and Non-Exec Directors. For a number of years, she was PA to a Chairman in the IT sector supporting him through an intense period of growth, with mergers, acquisitions (across Europe) and preparation for flotation.

With a wide range of sectors under her belt, Kath is very adaptable and revels in the diversity of experience and learning this has given her.  She also has many years experience in marketing, fundraising (a role she moved into having been involved in charities all her adult life) and as a business owner and employer giving her a great empathy with her clients.  She has both a detailed and bigger picture approach.

She worked for NSPCC, YWCA and managed a national campaign for the National Blood Service and has a passion for helping her clients become more involved with their community and charities.

After over a decade on the Isle of Man, Kath now lives in France with her family and, being somewhat of a solutions person in her work life, loves nothing more than a trip to an Escape Room!  Relaxation comes in the form of walks, bread making and baking, and when time allows, escaping into a good book.

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Shannon Sowden

“Shannon has been a game-changer for us”

Shannon has been a PA and Executive Assistant across various public and private sector organisations for more years than she cares to share! As part of that extensive career history, much of that time was spent working within a big four, global professional services firm in London where she honed her experience of supporting senior Partners and financial services professionals, leading a team of PAs herself, and providing EA support on bids within a fast-paced and dynamic sales and marketing environment. Shannon also trained and worked as a professional actress prior to her career as an EA. Shannon transferred this experience and training into a coaching offering for financial services and sales professionals to present and pitch more successfully. Some of Shannon’s former and current clients and colleagues describe Shannon as “timely, accurate and professional”, “a great can-do attitude, is extremely personable” and “a genuine pleasure to work with”.

Her current portfolio of work includes proactive diary management and scheduling, coordinating complex business travel, creating, formatting, and editing documents in multiple formats. Shannon gets great pleasure from a clean and tidy inbox.

Shannon enjoys a good box set binge, singing (in the car and choral), cooking up a storm in the kitchen, and walks in the beautiful Essex countryside with her husband and their spoilt and needy miniature dachshund Florence.

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Sarah Clark

“Sarah is a pleasure to work with”

Sarah has over 15 years experience as a Personal Assistant, working in a wide range of sectors including Property, Finance, Insurance, Operations & Business Management as well as PR & Marketing. Having been responsible for running the lives of a CEO, COO, Entrepreneur, MD etc Sarah is used to managing ever-changing diaries, busy inboxes, tight deadlines, confidential materials and effectively being a conduit between the individual and the business itself.

A fast learner with a tech savvy mind, Sarah set up her VA business in April 2018 and hasn’t looked back. Clients include a Digital Marketing Agency, Celebrity Fitness Guru, Photographer, Senior Police Leadership Teams as well as individuals requiring lifestyle management.

Sarah has experience working with Microsoft Office, Google Suite & Applications, Mailchimp, Canva, Trello, Slack, CRM Systems including Salesforce and Capsule as well as social media platforms including Instagram, LinkedIn, Pinterest and Facebook.

Outside of the glamorous life of a VA, Sarah is responsible for the feeding and nurturing (mostly feeding) of her 2 year old son and enjoys days out with her family which are usually followed by a gin and tonic or a glass of Gavi.

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Claire Gabbey

“Accommodating, committed and always delivers”

Claire has been a successful VA for over three years.  She has worked with a variety of clients, including consultants, leadership coaches, life coaches and within Charitable Trusts.

Her current portfolio of work includes proactive diary management and scheduling, coordinating complex business travel, and streamlining chaotic inboxes, in addition to providing virtual operations management for smaller professional services firms.  Having also trained as an Editor, she is often asked to draft, proofread and edit documents, and enjoys carrying out relevant industry research. She also minutes meetings at Board level, and facilitates online Zoom meetings. 

Prior to becoming a VA, Claire worked at various management consultancy firms, including PA Consulting Group. She also previously worked as an Editor within illustrated non-fiction publications. Former colleagues and clients have remarked on her efficiency, attention to detail, and calm, thoughtful and proactive approach, which are instrumental to her ability to support her Executives as effectively as possible.  

Outside of orchestrating calm for hectic schedules, Claire is a keen dancer. She particularly likes Argentinian Tango and Ceroc. She enjoys going to the theatre, having previously trained in professional acting (she now applies her acting skills when trying to galvanise her teenage kids out of bed in the mornings!). She also loves to meet up with her friends.

Ola Hotson

“Organised, discreet, smart, loyal and fun too”

Ola is a highly organised VA with 15+ years PA and lifestyle management experience. Her current portfolio of work includes diary and task management, invoice generation and CV screening, shortlisting and interviewing. She also provides property management services for two flats and a commercial premises. 

Prior to becoming a VA, Ola worked as a PA at a communications agency as well as for a fashion designer and the vice-chair of a top-flight football club. Most of these roles had very broad remits spanning “traditional” PA functions, HR administration, recruitment and office management, as well as being a sounding board. Former colleagues and clients have commented on Ola’s efficiency, professionalism, positive attitude, and loyalty, which enable her to work successfully with her clients.

When she isn’t working, Ola is a recent convert to the joys of gardening and is looking forward to her first full year tending her allotment. She also loves travel and has clocked up visits to 47 countries. She is looking forward to increasing this number further. 

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Gilly Mulford

“Always one step ahead”

With a wealth of experience, spanning over three decades, Gilly has supported Directors and Executives across multiple business sectors. Her work has helped them to find more time in each day, relieving some of the stress that comes from overwhelming workloads, and saving them time and money by improving efficiency.

On deciding that she, herself, would like a better lifestyle balance, Gilly launched as a VA during the summer of 2020. Her organisational and time management skills were put to the ultimate test juggling a full-time job alongside her new venture.  Once established Gilly concentrated full time on her own business and has not looked back since. Her clients are varied; Land Management Consultancy, Keynote Speaker and Life Coach, Recruitment Consultants, and a CEO whom she is helping relocate to the UK.

Prior to becoming a VA Gilly worked at Middleton Advisors where she supported three busy executives in their roles of advising HNWI on property purchases. She managed their busy diaries and inboxes alongside producing reports and contracts, managing the CRM system, and delivering organisational development and leadership through training and mentoring other team members.

Outside of work Gilly can be found reading, relaxing with friends or out and about on her motorbike. She enjoys experiencing different cultures through travel and has visited over 40 different countries.

Rose Lyons

“Working with Rose is a joy”

Rose began working as a Virtual Assistant after a successful EA career.  

As a VA, she has worked with Business and Life Coaches.

Her current portfolio of work includes preparing documentation for courses, onboarding new clients, invoicing, research and following up enquiries, incorporating  business management tools, streamlining, and updating business systems.

Before becoming a VA, Rose worked in the City for over 20 years as an Executive Assistant working in the corporate world supporting business leaders and Global Heads, working in head offices including Barclays and UBS. Former colleagues and clients have remarked 

 “I was privileged to have Rose act as my PA at Barclays and wouldn’t hesitate to recommend her; she is a fantastic PA, was a wonderful support and also a great colleague.”

“Gone are the days of delegating to a VA and crossing my fingers…Rose is organised, clearly communicates what she can do to support and delivers when she says she will. She’s everything I need to support my business admin and clear me the time I need to keep my business growing.”

Outside work Rose enjoys running and after completing the couch to 5k, goes for leisurely runs, and attends the weekly Parkrun. She also does walking netball. 

Emma McCleary

For over 15  years Emma has provided Executive Assistant and admin support to C-suite and HNWIs and has worked in London, Spain and the Middle East

She has gained valuable experience across a range of sectors including Legal, Banking and Insurance. She is also fluent in Spanish which came in very handy when she worked for a Spanish bank and the Latin American division of a large Insurance Broker!

She has been responsible for both business and personal work and enjoys the variety that the role brings, be it diary management, researching travel destinations, arranging conferences, personal shopping, interviewing staff or drafting correspondence.

Emma understands the needs of busy individuals and prides herself in always trying to be one step ahead and expecting the unexpected. She is unfazed by hectic schedules and rapidly changing plans and is known for her sense of humour and friendly, approachable personality.   

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Rachel Locke

“Highly professional and incredibly efficient”

After graduating from UWE Bristol, Rachel lived and worked in Stuttgart for three years as PA to the Head of Audit at PricewaterhouseCoopers. On her return to London she worked as PA to the Global Managing Partner of PricewaterhouseCoopers until his retirement.

After some temporary contracts she joined Deutsche Bank, ultimately working as EA to the COO of Global Banking and Chairman of Global Banking Europe. Her next role was then as a PA to two partners and their teams at Cinven LLP (a private equity firm).  

After a career break to raise her family, Rachel set up my VA business in September 2015 following her relocation to the northeast of England and in 2018 she won North East VA of the Year.   

She is originally from London but now has her feet firmly planted in the North East.  She is married to Simon and they have two boys, Sam and George and a cockapoo called Annie.

Daniela Armstrong-Gormley

“Epic!”

Daniela has 20 year of PA and organising experience. With a background in media, she provides tailored and specialist support to companies worldwide.

She has extensive experience of Director level support, including complex diary management, international scheduling across multiple time zones, in-person and online meeting arrangements.

Extremely capable and confident at understanding fast-paced and complex business environments, Daniela is a great addition to the team.

When she’s not working, she loves spending time with her family and their slightly crazy collie.

 

Angela Sheahan

“A pleasure to work with”

Angela has been a successful VA since July 2021.  She has worked with small to medium business CEO’s as their Virtual EA.

Her current portfolio of work includes proactive diary management and scheduling, coordinating complex business travel, and streamlining chaotic inboxes, in addition to providing virtual EA support for the management of smaller professional services firms including Board admin and minute taking.

Prior to becoming a VA, Angela worked at Marks & Spencer Head Office for 18 years as Executive PA to several Directors in various parts of the business, including the Food Group, International Group, Property Group and Marketing Group.  She worked alongside the Board EA’s and the Board Secretariat, planning and coordinating Plc Board meetings whilst also preparing documents for submission and distribution. In her previous career, she worked in the Food & Beverage Industry as a Front of House Restaurant Manager and as a Restaurant Launch Manager.  Former colleagues and clients have remarked on her efficiency, charm and positive energy which are instrumental to her ability to support her Executives as effectively as possible. 

Outside of orchestrating calm for hectic schedules, Angela loves to walk and explore the countryside with her two gorgeous Cocker Spaniels. She is also a regular ‘Park Run’ participant and loves to work out in her home gym.   

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