2017-18 Slate


Board of Trustees

Slated Candidate, Role/Position

Jane Armstrong, President-Elect

Jane became a member of the Junior League of London in 2008 having previously served in both the Saint Paul and Seattle Leagues.  Her Junior League experience includes fundraising, leadership development, member recognition, and community partnership.  In 2011, she received the Membership Volunteer of the Year award.

Professionally Jane has over 15 years’ experience as a marketing leader working at GE, Corporate Executive Board, Bloomberg, and Thomson Reuters.  She is a graduate of Bates College with an MBA from Tulane University.  In addition to volunteering, Jane has participated in four marathons, enjoys a variety of fitness activities such as yoga, swimming, and tennis, as well as cooking and traveling. 


Ana Arxer, Finance Director

Ana Arxer Taylor has been a member of the Junior League of London since 2009.  She has served on various committees, including LEAD, DIAD and Nominating.  Most recently, Ana has been a Sustainer where she has continued to participate in various Junior League events and initiatives.

Ana is a graduate of Rosemont College with a BA in Economics, and holds an MBA in International Business from Hofstra University. Ana has spent her career working in Banking and Financial Services across different financial centers and business sectors.  Her experiences range from Credit Finance, Relationship Management, Strategic Planning, and Business Development.  Originally from New York, Ana has been living in London for over 14 years together with husband Will and their two children, William and Alexandra.


Tracy Firmino, Sustainer Director

Tracy joined the Junior League of London in 2011.  During her time in the JLL, she has served in leadership roles such as LEAD chair, Placement Director and as Community VP.  In addition, she has served as a Placement Advisor and a New Member Development committee member.  For 2013-2014 JLL calendar year, she was awarded ‘member of the year’.  Outside of JLL, she has also worked with Habitat for Humanity, Junior Achievement and the Charlotte Jaycees to improve her community when she was living in the US.

Besides being passionate about helping her community, she is a champion for Diversity & Inclusion and helping women succeed.  She served as a Diversity & Inclusion Council Member for Bank of America Merrill Lynch’s Technology group in EMEA, where she focused on attracting more women to senior roles.

Tracy graduated from Florida Atlantic University with a double major in International Business/Marketing and has received a Six Sigma Black Belt certification from Bank of America.  Her extensive business experience in training, leadership, strategy, process improvement and change management will be invaluable as a board member for the JLL.


Margaret Karnaze, Nominating Director

Margaret joined the Junior League of London in the autumn of 2009 and has served on New Member Development, DIAD, Centrepoint and Nominating committees. Professionally, Margaret has spent the last eight years working for the BBC in senior roles focused on strategy, governance, innovation and business development. Prior to moving to London, she lived in Washington DC where she worked as a management consultant. Margaret grew up in Albuquerque, New Mexico and studied Economics and History at the University of Pennsylvania.


Whitney Langston, Active Member-at-Large

Whitney moved to London in 2015 and joined the Junior League of London as a new member in Autumn 2015. Whitney has served as the Communications VP and on the LEAD Committee where she helped plan LEAD conferences and events.

Originally from Texas, Whitney graduated from the University of Texas Austin in 2012 and immediately started working for Accenture in their Management Consulting practice. She currently consults in their Digital Business Transformation practice where she works with Oil & Gas and Utilities companies. Whitney enjoys exploring London, running, and travelling around Europe. She is very excited about being a member of the Junior League of London’s leadership team and is eager to give back to the London community!


Melissa Allen, At-Large Director

Melissa joined the League in 2010.  She has served on the Board previously as a At-Large Director, Membership Vice President and as Active-at-Large where she was co-chair of the league’s Strategic Review.  She has also led the Holiday Hampers donations sub-committee, served as Co-Chair of DIAD, and was named Volunteer of the Year in 2012.

Melissa holds a Masters in Leadership and Strategy from London Business School and is the Head of the Risk Consulting practice at KPMG. She lives in Greenwich with her husband, Kale, and when she’s not volunteering she enjoys skiing, horse riding, and travel at every opportunity.


Joan Buerk, At-Large Director

Joan has been a member of the Junior League of London since 2001.  Prior to becoming a Sustainer, she served on a variety of committees including Boutique de Noel, New Member Development, Nominating and Placement. Joan is also a volunteer at the Prince’s Trust and several other community-based non-profit organisations in London. She holds a BA from Bates College and an International MBA from Kellogg/WHU Koblenz, Germany. Joan has a corporate background in marketing communications, having worked in media and client service at a variety of multinational agencies. Originally from Chicago, she lived in Vienna and Prague prior to settling in the UK with her husband and son.


Anna Mazzone, At-Large Director

Anna has been a solid supporter of JLL since she returned to London from NY City in 2006.  As an active member, Anna has led multiple committees for Boutique de Noel including managing the overall event in 2008.  She has served on the JLL Board as Vice President of Fund Development and also Sustainer Director. A graduate of the University of South Carolina, Anna has over 20 years in the international capital markets, working for Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Thomson Reuters, Markit, CME and Aravo Solutions.  Anna is also an Advisory Board member for Trunomi, a Silicon Valley technology company. She founded and built the industry’s first global KYC Managed Shared Service for Thomson Reuters. She is a dual American-British citizen.  Anna loves to build and create new ventures, enjoys hanging out with friends, travel, pilates, cycling and bulldogs.



Management Council

Slated Candidate, Role/Position

Bejay Ugale, Membership VP

Bejay Ugale joined the Junior League of London as a transfer from the Junior League of Boston in August 2010.  She previously joined Boston’s league in September 2007.  She has served in multiple leadership roles over the course of her league career, ranging from Membership Vice President, Active Programme Manager, Nominating Director, and New Member Development Committee Chair as well as serving as a member of various committees such as the Strategic Review and Communications Committees. She has volunteered extensively in the US and London with various community partners.

Bejay has a Master’s of Science in Investment Management from Boston University and a Bachelor of Arts in Economics (concentration: Industrial Econ) and Spanish from Bryn Mawr College.  She works for one of the largest global asset management firms as an Equity Specialist covering Europe, Middle East and Africa. She is part of the firm’s Professional Women’s Network’s steering committee and a member of the board of the Bryn Mawr Club of the UK.


Lauren Zimman, Fund Development VP

Lauren joined the JLL in the Fall of 2010. She has served on Events, New Member Development, Little Black Dress and Placement committees, including as co-chair of Little Black Dress in 2014-15 League year. For the past two years, Lauren has enjoyed serving as a Placement Advisor and worked closely with the Placement Director and Membership VP to welcome transfers.

Outside of the League, Lauren is a non-practicing lawyer. She enjoys taking horseback riding lessons, socialising with friends, traveling, volunteering and her dog, Coco


Rebecca Thorne, Community VP

Rebecca Thorne began her Junior League career in New York in 2001.  After four years in the Junior League of Denver, she landed in London in 2008.  She started as a member of the Community Research Council, determining the focus of education and employment for the future of the league.  Since then, she has been the Community Impact Champion, served on Nominating Committee, was a member of LEAD, the Chair of the Strategic Review Committee and has most recently sat on Placement, both as an Advisor and as Director.  She and her husband, Simon, live in East London with their sons, Jackson and Banner.


Kelaine Blades, Communications VP

Kelaine joined the Junior League in May 2016 and has served as Head of Social within the Communications committee. She has an extensive background in Marketing in global roles on both sides of the pond, spanning strategy, digital, comms, content, PR and brand development.  Kelaine moved to the UK 9 years ago and has held senior marketing roles in various technology businesses.  She is passionate about women’s rights and loves helping women succeed through volunteering, mentoring and coaching.

Originally from Chicago, Kelaine holds an MBA in International Business/Marketing Management from DePaul University and a Bachelors of Arts in Economics from the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana.  Outside of work and JLL, Kelaine runs her own business selling Rodan and Fields skincare, loves travelling, cooking, a night spent with girlfriends and wine, and cycling around Richmond Park with her hubby.



Additional slated roles

Slated Candidate, Role/Position

Blanca Gonzalez, Placement Director

Blanca has been a member of the Junior League since she joined the New Members’ Class in the autumn of 2010 in Miami, Florida. After transferring to London in May 2015 for a work opportunity, she joined the LEAD Committee and attributes being part of the JLL an excellent way to ease into a new country. Since going Active in September 2011, Blanca has sat on various Committees, ranging from Fundraising to Community and Membership. Her most memorable experience in the League was being a Mentor of a group of 13 New Members.

Since completing undergraduate and graduate study at Florida International University, Blanca has worked within the international divisions of Bank of America Merrill Lynch and Wells Fargo Bank, where she currently leads a diverse team of five professionals.

Blanca is passionate about empowering women to reach their goals and workplace inclusion through active participation in two Lean-In groups, The Ellevate Network, and Catalyst Inc.

In her spare time, Blanca enjoys travelling, trying new cuisines/restaurants, and practicing yoga and Zumba.


Tamsin Davies, Placement Committee Member

Tamsin joined the Junior League of London in Fall 2014.  Prior to serving as Placement Advisor, Tamsin has served as Fund Development Vice President, and a variety of roles on the Fund Development Council including Boutique de Noel Marketing Committee, Events Committee and later Events Co- Chair.

Since graduating from Columbia University in 2007 with a degree in Operations Research, she has over 9 years’ experience in working in strategy, product management and product development for a major financial institution.   In addition while working, she completed her Masters in Science in Operations Research from Columbia in 2013.

Her work and studies have led to adventures living in New York, Hong Kong, Sydney and now London.  Outside of work and the JLL, Tamsin enjoys flexing her creative juices as a stylist with Stella & Dot, trying new foods, drinks and gym classes, exploring the world, going to theatre, skiing, and volunteering for Alpha Chi Omega and Columbia University.  Tamsin currently lives in Little Venice with her partner Nick.


Shelley Thurman Twitchin, Nominating Committee Member

Shelley Thurman Twitchin joined the JLL in September 2012 and has been an enthusiastic participant, devoting her energies to the Fund Development Council through leadership positions on the Boutique de Noel and Events committees, followed by a year on the Board of Trustees (now Management Council) as Fund Development Vice President in 2015-26.  In 2015, Shelley was awarded ‘Leader of the Year’ for her efforts and achievements as Chair of the Events Committee.

A classically-trained clarinettist, Shelley holds degrees from the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music (BSOF), the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama (MMus), and the Royal College of Music in London (PGDip).  After changing careers to accountancy and obtaining ACCA qualification, Shelley now combines her passion for the arts with her professional skill in her role as Director of Finance at Kings Place Music Foundation, a multi-genre arts venue in the heart of Kings Cross.  An enthusiastic advocate for youth music and arts education, Shelley continues her faculty position at the Centre for Young Musicians (a division of the Guildhall School), a post which she has held since 2008.


Lauren Welch, Nominating Committee Member

Lauren Welch joined the Junior League of London in 2010. She served as a trustee of the JLL for four years, most recently as the JLL’s Active-at-Large and previously two years as Fund Development Vice President and one year as Communications Director. Lauren has worked in university and non-profit administration for over 15 years and is currently Deputy Director of Principal Gifts at Imperial College London. Lauren completed her undergraduate and graduate study at North Carolina State University.


Susanna Teixidor, Nominating Committee Member

Susanna joined the League in 2006/2007.  Since then, she has led the Little Black Dress Initiative, co-chaired Holiday Hampers for two years and participated on a number of committees, including BDN, 25th Anniversary and the Strategic Review Committees, before becoming a Sustainer.  Additionally, she served on the Board for two terms as the Community Council VP.

Susanna graduated from the University of Richmond, VA with a degree in International Business & Marketing and holds an MBA from Johns Hopkins University, MD.  She has ten years’ experience in Finance Services and for the last four years, she has overseen Business Change at a digital media agency.  She lives in Putney with her husband, and enjoys travelling, skiing and reading.