Our Team

James Cooper

JCooper@Damhurst.com | Tel: +44 (0) 203 865 1129

Having begun his insurance career broking PI and D&O at Alexander Forbes, James moved into senior recruiting for the insurance market in 2006.  Prior to Damhurst & Co being founded in 2016, he led the London office for one of the market’s most successful insurance headhunting firms.

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He has spent over ten years developing strong relationships with the various insurance and reinsurance markets across London, Europe, Bermuda and the East Coast of the United States.  Having been rigorously trained in traditional search, James maintains a strong dedication to genuine research and likes to keep client teams small and focused.

On a personal level …
James lives in Kent with his wife and three daughters. When time permits, he also enjoys running, competing in charity obstacle races and country sports.

James Cooper - Mud Run - Insurance headhunter

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John Gillespie

JGillespie@Damhurst.com | Tel: +44 (0) 203 865 1129

After qualifying as a Chartered Accountant (ICAEW), John was Chairman and Managing Director of both Lloyd’s managing and names agencies for nineteen years.  He moved into executive search in 1996 and in 1999 founded his own executive search business specialising in insurance.

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For nearly 20 years he enjoyed a rich and stimulating career headhunting for his clients in the London and Lloyd’s market. He resigned his membership of ICAEW in 2017. His considerable experience combined with a strong and wide network within the insurance market, helps bring additional balance and stewardship to Damhurst & Co. John’s focus is on specific projects and themes within the business where his knowledge and background offer the greatest contribution. He also provides valued counsel on a broad variety of business matters.

On a personal level …
When away from work, one of John’s newest passions is training Truffle to become the ultimate working cocker.

John Gillespie - Insurance Headhunter

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Olivia Collie

OCollie@Damhurst.com | Tel: +44 (0) 203 865 1129

Olivia joined Damhurst in 2018 to work with the team in London to strengthen and enhance the quality of the client experience. Since starting her career in insurance executive search in 2011, Olivia has worked with a number of the industry’s most preeminent and dynamic leadership teams.

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Her application, care and passion for what she does has meant many clients have grown to value her guidance and support throughout the search cycle. Her track record includes executive and non-executive board appointments and senior key hires on both the functional and product sides of the business. Clients have ranged from global re/insurers and Lloyd’s market carriers to London market wholesale brokers. Olivia has worked and lived in both Singapore and the USA.

On a personal note …
Olivia lives in London with her husband, although hails from the Scottish Borders originally. Outside of work, she enjoys reading biographies, travelling and exploring far flung parts of the world.

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Sophie Jackson

SJackson@Damhurst.comTel: +44 (0) 203 865 4336

Sophie is Executive Research Assistant at Damhurst, providing support to the team and our clients on a day to day basis. After spending several years working in recruitment and property, Sophie’s career took a different direction when she moved abroad and lived first in Milan and then Barcelona and became a CELTA qualified English Teacher and freelance writer.

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On her return to the UK Sophie worked in a support role to a successful figure in the world of advertising and facilitation. Sophie’s creativity, authenticity and passion will help us to deliver high quality work to our clients.

On a personal level …
Sophie’s love of travel, furniture restoration, a daughter at university, a cocker spaniel and pilot husband keep her on her toes!

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Our Partners

Phil Willcox

Phil is a specialist in leadership coaching and development with a niche angle on the role emotion plays at work.  His company e3 supplies consultancy, L&D courses and executive coaching to management teams across a broad spectrum of industries.

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The key and critical component that connects any client of e3 is their senior team’s genuine commitment to embracing change and to challenging the status quo.  e3’s clients range from Boots and Harley Davidson through to a number of insurance brokers and carriers.

Whilst Phil’s day to day role at e3 is to help his clients drive performance by placing emotion at the core of work, he has a strong personal interest in the dark and the light sides of communication by analysing behaviour to establish what people are communicating and/or hiding.  e3 is working with the team at Damhurst & Co to enhance and refine the executive search and assessment process.

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