Meet our team

Rachel Hargrave – Agency Director

Rachel has over 21 years of communications experience across a wide variety of clients including corporate (BP, Castrol, Honda Motor Europe, Canon UK and Canon Europe, BT, O2, Vodafone, GSK, Allergan, Linklaters, Mercedes-Benz, Daimler Chrysler, Bupa, Mars Group, Lloyds TSB), public sector (UK Trade and Investment, East Midlands Development Agency, Arts Council England; East Midlands and the NHS), and third sector organisations (Leicester Charity Link, Rainbows Hospice for Children and Young People, Hathern Dog Rescue and LOROS – the Leicestershire and Rutland Hospice).

Originally Rachel worked in film and video, moved into creating and producing live events (conferences, exhibitions, gala dinners and award ceremonies) before focusing on corporate communications.  This varied background has equipped Rachel with key skills in strategy, implementation and campaign measurement.

Rachel founded The Phoenix Partners in 2001.

Awards Won:

Corporate Engagement Awards – Best Relationship-Building Sponsorship Programme for Canon Europe Tuxedo programme.

It’s Worth Knowing…

Rachel is often accompanied to the office by her dogs – Dyson a 6 ½ year old liver and white Dalmatian (also known as ‘Billy’ – we don’t know why) and Zoe a 3 year old Lurcher (also known as Madam Poo … best not to ask!).  If you’re visiting us and you’d prefer them not to be around, just let us know and they’ll happily stay home and watch their all-time favourite telly, ‘Murder, She Wrote’.


Victoria Michalska: Studio Coordinator 

As studio coordinator for The Phoenix Partners Victoria oversees all deliverables across the key business strands of brand, design and PR, ensuring we are delivering the exemplary quality, creativity and customer care that our clients expect.

With a strong business background Victoria is a highly experienced and professional lady with a wealth of knowledge in all aspects of business. Adaptable and customer service focussed she has key skills in finance, sales and marketing and human resources.

Victoria helps and encourages The Phoenix Partners’ team members to work towards their individual career targets and mentors them to achieve these goals. Additionally she takes this skill set and applies it to our clients to help us to get to know them and ensure she understands their needs and business goals to help deliver the right solutions to them each time – every time!

It’s Worth Knowing…

Victoria designs and creates silver jewellery in her spare time. She also has a cheeky Terrier named Charlie who loves to have his belly rubbed by ladies! Her nickname at The Phoenix Partners is ‘The Boss’ and Rachel is a bit scared of her!


Rebecca O’Neill: Junior Graphic Designer

Graduating from De Montfort University with a BA Hons in graphic design and illustration, Rebecca initially travelled for two years before returning to the UK and beginning her career as a graphic designer.

Not quite ready to let go of the traveller’s bug, Rebecca began working for a holiday company

designing adverts for both local and national press, brochures and leaflets amongst other things, before joining us at The Phoenix Partners in 2013.

She credits her ability to develop innovative and artistic designs partly to the experiences sh

e’s had overseas. The blend of culture, scenery and imagery has provided her with a bottomless pit of inspiration for her design work.

It’s Worth Knowing…

Rebecca is a keen amateur photographer and is used to looking at

things from a different angle and focussing on alternative aspects to create unique and interesting images. If you’re looking for something that’s a bit ‘out there’, it’s worth giving her the nod! Read less… 


Richard Pepper: Creative Director

Having worked in the design industry for over 25 years, Richard has been involved in most aspects of the creative process from conception to production.  The overriding objective for him is to reach the heart of the story, strike the balance between accuracy and poignancy … and then to create a visual language and/or identity that captures that story along with the spirit of its author.

Prior to working with us, Richard was the Creative Director for Maritz Communications at their London-based operation.  Since 1997, the majority of Richard’s workhas involved him in the creation of strong brand identities to promote internal and external communications.  Richard has contributed to a broad cross-section of industries and organisations including automotive, pharmaceutical, financial, local government, human resources, business enterprise, IT and telecoms, and entertainment (film and music).

Awards Won:

Production Award – Design & Artwork, American Multi-Image Festival (AMI) – BMW ‘Passing the Crash Test’

Production Award – Design & Rostrum, Images Festival UK – BMW ‘Passing the Crash Test’

Outstanding Achievement Award – Design & Graphics, AMI – Volvo ‘Facing the Future’

Silver Award – Production, Images Festival UK – Astra (Opel) ‘One Generation Ahead’

It’s Worth Knowing…

A complete petrol head, Richard has been a biker all his life (as are his Dad and brother) and he has five bikes in total – two of which are ongoing projects as they currently lie stripped down on his workbench awaiting his tender ministrations.  We reckon that he thinks that this way his wife doesn’t know … but the very lovely Liz is no-one’s fool.  Richard, she’s soooooo onto you!


Nikki Lee: PR Manager

Following a postgraduate diploma in International Public Relations, Nikki has worked consistently in marketing communications roles and public relations consultancy for a broad range of clients including; the British Council, Buckinghamshire New University, Ernst & Young, IDP Education (Australia), West Nottinghamshire College, Robinsons Healthcare and ASDA.

Copywriting, editing and clear yet interesting messaging are all integral parts of Nikki’s skill base, together with the versatility to adapt according to the nature of the client’s business.

As Associate Consultant to an Education Research Agency, Nikki carried out rebranding research projects on behalf of numerous HE and FE organisations, as well as co-ordinating sponsorship, event organisation and fulfilling media relations campaigns.

Awards Won: Silver Cream Award – Broadmarsh Shopping Centre ‘No Smoking Campaign’

It’s Worth Knowing…

Nikki is a secret reviewer for a local Lincolnshire magazine.  She’s reviewed restaurants, spas and family leisure / tourist attractions.  Her favourite remains Stapleford Park … well, you’d be hard pushed to beat a freebie there now, wouldn’t you?


Louisa Bayley: PR Account Manager

Louisa has 25 years’ experience in regional journalism and business to business PR and primarily works with professional service firms in the East Midlands.

Lousia’s background means she slots in perfectly with clients such as solicitors, chartered surveyors, IFAs, recruitment agencies and management consultancies, raising their media profiles.

It’s Worth Knowing…

Louisa was the Business Editor for the Leicester Mercury for five years, which means that she knows exactly what will make a good story and grab the attention of the media. Read less




Sarah Jelly: PR Executive

Joining The Phoenix Partners in 2013, Sarah came from another Leicestershire-based PR and marketing agency. With a strong background in business to business PR she has key skills in copywriting, editing, researching and communication. In addition, as an executive for an agency, she also has the ability to adapt these skills where necessary and learn quickly to suit client needs.

Working in agencies means Sarah has been involved in a broad spectrum of clients from local estate agents to international industrial woodworking machinery manufacturers.

With a keen eye for detail and a lot of enthusiasm Sarah has a passion for writing and telling a story. She will ensure your company’s message is portrayed exactly as it needs to be in order to build brand awareness and encourage customer communication.

It’s Worth Knowing…

In her spare time, Sarah is a gymnastics coach for a local club and is yet another sport fanatic at The Phoenix Partners although she doesn’t quite have the same healthy eating ethics as the rest of the team. She certainly keeps the cupcake shop a few doors down from our studio in business.


Fiona Mullins: Finance Manager

Fiona is our wonderful, dedicated and very talented Finance Manager who looks after everything to do with money and the financial health of our business.

Fiona joined The Phoenix Partners in 2004 and probably knows the business as well as Rachel does. She sits on the management team and is Rachel’s ‘right-hand woman’, looking after the business when Rachel is away.

It’s Worth Knowing…

Fiona is a diehard sports fan, specifically the Leicester Tigers rugby football club.  She is also ‘Mum’ to Morris Mullins an adorable rescue Staffordshire Bull Terrier.



Associates of The Phoenix Partners

Paul McEniff: Webmaster 

Rather than simply being a ‘coder’, Paul has experienced the sharp end of retail and this translates into a clear understanding of the real world needs of your web visitors, and strong commercial awareness.

Paul has extensive experience of working within retail sales and marketing – with over 15 years under his belt working for high street retails and wholesale businesses at management level.

In-depth knowledge of the WordPress platform results in a seamless integration of bespoke functionality with the rest of your content management system for example booking systems, competition entries and interactive tools. Development of extensions and plugins to enhance the platforms’ offerings are also key tools within to his skillset.

It’s Worth Knowing…

Paul has built an impressive portfolio of clients from a wide range of industries including solicitors, wholesale suppliers, high street retailers and even a stuntman!


Rob Warner – SEO, PPC, Remarketing and Social Media Campaign Manager 

With in-depth knowledge of online marketing, Rob strongly believes that organisations could benefit far more from online opportunities if they commit to it as a core strategy and are prepared to respond to the behaviour of their online users.

Rob has worked full-time online since 2005 with a previous role including Head of IT for a large multinational. He has extensive knowledge of online marketing tools including search engine optimisation (SEO), pay-per-click (PPC), remarketing and social media.

It’s Worth Knowing…

Rob is a student of online marketing strategy and commits at least ten hours every week to continually learning, testing and implementing strategies and tactics from which his clients can benefit. In the ever changing online world being up-to-date on the latest developments is essential.