Our People

Who we are and where we come from?
David Preston

David Preston


David has 25 years of international marketing experience, both client and event agency side.
Comfortable suiting up or dressing down. An experienced Blue Chip manager, mentor and coach to individuals and small businesses.

A specialist in Event Marketing, David has worked tirelessly to change the understanding within the world of events from solely creativity to a combination of creativity and accountability. David is passionate about talent development and he delivers conference speeches and workshops across the event industry, raising awareness of the need to build talent and nurture leaders of the future.

As a practicioner of events David utilises his day2day experience to shape his opinions and education to ensure it is relevant to todays teams. An avid coach and mentor, David is never happier than encouraging others be the best form of themselves.

Richard John

Richard John


Richard is a business trainer, consultant, writer, and presenter. His approach to learning is to take this wealth of experience and to transfer it into effective training delivery, which makes a difference by utilising experiences and connections with audience to enhance behaviours and skills.

Comfortable with major blue-chip organisations or SMEs and micro businesses, Richard’s engaging and witty style bring clients returning time and time again.

Richard previously worked for Derby university as a Workforce Development Fellow and is currently a Course Director for  Events and Sponsorship programmes at the Chartered Institute of Marketing, keeping his finger on the pulse of all things educational.

Laura Capell-Abra

Laura Capell-Abra

Career Coach

Laura has grown up in the events industry. Top 35 under 35 in the inaugural ones to watch list in the events industry.

Over her 15 years in the industry she has run events for companies such as Visa, Toyota, BBC, Various Governments around the world.

Specialising in coaching and mentoring, Laura also runs The Stress Matters programme, promoting the event industry to recognise, train and implement programmes to better manage stress within their organisations.

Richard Tierney

Richard Tierney

Content Coach

Richard Tierney has worked in Event Production for over 30 years; producing conferences for more than 60 of the FTSE 100 companies as well as stints in television, theatre and concert production.

Trained at Drama School (LAMDA), Film School (The Royal College of Art) and London Business School. Richard has worked in more than 20 countries.

Believing the heart of any event to the performance of speakers, Richard currently focuses on presentation coaching. He is the author of The Introverted Presenter which aims to show how Introverts can be great presenters and even enjoy the process. Richard is also the Curator of TEDx London.

Clare Poynter

Clare Poynter

Marketing and relationship guru

Clare has a wealth of experience in the events industry. An extremely accountable & dynamic project leader, who excels in the creation of event and marketing strategy. Highly skilled in project and team management, Clare has led the successful delivery of multiple events for brands across, Telecomms, Automotive, Electronics, Finance and the Public Sector, both in the UK and internationally. As a working mum she relishes the opportunity to utilise her event industry connections whilst fitting work around her young family.

Rosanna Machado

Rosanna Machado

Project Director and passionate educator

Rosanna has worked in corporate communications for 20 years and specialises in managing large-scale events. From setting the strategic direction to handling the complexity and detail of production and delivery, she is skilled at guiding project development at a senior level, liaising with clients and stakeholders, troubleshooting and getting the best out of teams and budgets, both large and small. Known for the creativity and flair that she brings to the table, she will get under the skin of your organisation and find the best way to bring your content to life.

She has trained and mentored team members, colleagues and friends throughout her career and is passionate about training the next generation. She specialises in looking at the personal skills you need to excel in the events world.

Mariska Kesteloo

Mariska Kesteloo

Public Speaker, Influencer Marketer and educator

Entrepreneur, public speaker and Past-President of Meetings Professional International in Belgium. With more than 15 years working experience in tourism and the MICE sector, she’s an authority in the industry. Passionated about meetings & events Mariska founded her company Word of MICE in 2017. Her company connects the MICE industry with the right social media influencer, to tell the story of the suppliers in an authentic, creative and fun way within the right target audience.

Zoe Tuffs

Zoe Tuffs

Transformational Coach

Zoe has delivered corporate events for over 20 years. She has led teams in blue chip organisations as well as in fast paced creative agencies delivering award winning work for global brands such as Google, Toyota, BMW, and Samsung.

More recently, Zoe has focussed her passion for people development. Now trained as a Transformational Coach, she helps event professionals focus on their strengths, values and beliefs to level up and achieve their goals.

Winston the Realise Bear

Winston the Realise Bear

Social Media Expert

Winston. Originally from Harrow, joined Realise as our social media expert. He travels with the team, recording activities and events and attends all the workshops and events so that he gets to meet and inspire the learners to utilise social media in their work.


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events and live communication industry.


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