About Us

Vision

To accelerate the use of nature-based solutions to achieve global Net Zero, Biodiversity Net Gain and Land Degradation Neutrality goals.

Mission

To be the most trusted and scalable global data services company in the measurement, monitoring and evaluation of natural capital assets.

Team

Josephine Wapakabulo

Chief Executive Officer

Josephine brings over 20 years' corporate, entrepreneurial and board experience to Downforce Technologies and served as inaugural CEO of Uganda's National Oil Company.

An electrical engineer with a PhD in data standards and executive MBA from INSEAD, she spent most of her early career at Rolls-Royce.

She is also an Adjunct Teaching Fellow at the University of Western Australia and Advisory Board Member of the Bloomberg New Economy Forum.

Jacquie McGlade

Co-Founder and
Chief Scientific Officer

Jacquie is a highly respected and experienced scientist and technologist.

Jacquie was Chief Scientist of the UN Environmental Programme and Executive Director of the European Environment Agency.

Jacquie has been a pioneer in the use of satellite technology for measuring and understanding the environment. Jacquie is also a hands-on technologist.

Maria Whittaker

Co-Founder and
Chief Development Officer

Maria brings extensive experience building data businesses particularly in the financial sector.

She was the Director of Strategy at DataExplorers (successfully exited to Markit), Global Head of Machine Readable News and Head of Ratings amongst other roles at Thomson Reuters (now Refinitiv).

Maria began her career in Investment Banking at JP Morgan and Salomon Brothers, has an MBA from INSEAD and a family background in farming in Argentina.

Aeham Abushwashi

Chief Technology Officer

Aeham has extensive experience in the software industry and has led tech teams in several successful start-ups.

Before joining Downforce, Aeham was CTO at OXMT, where he was responsible for R&D, technology strategy and information security.

Aeham holds an MSc in Software Engineering from the University of Oxford.

Aaron Amato

Full Stack Engineer

Aaron is a software engineer with a passion for spatial data mapping and environmental science. He holds an MRes in Spatial Data Science and Visualisation from UCL and has worked professionally as a DevOps engineer and Full Stack Developer.

Having years of experience in a startup environment, he has developed with a variety of Front end technologies for mapping and visualisation such as Angular, Mapbox and ThreeJS

Alex Bradley

Geoinformatics Data Analyst

Alex has a MSc in Chemical Engineering and is passionate about all things data, analytics, and machine learning.

He comes from an energy background where his work focused on assessing the environmental impacts of natural resource production in Canada.

His passion lies at the intersection of information technology, data science and environmental science.

Amy Etiang

Head of Africa

Amy is a seasoned strategy management consultant with 19 years' corporate, financial services and program management experience.

Amy was the Chief Commercial Officer for a Kenyan fintech start-up, prior to which she was in charge of Mastercard's strategic business in Kenya.

Ahead of joining Mastercard, Amy worked with Deloitte for 8 years leading strategy and program management engagements for a cross-section of DFIs in the East African region and she has an MBA in Global Business Management from USIU-Africa.

Chris Lakey

Systems Dynamics Modeller

Chris is passionate about using mathematical methods to extract meaning and utility from complex systems.

With a BSc in mathematics, MSc in Mathematical Biology and a PhD in Soft Matter Physics, Chris has significant experience building mathematical models and in applying a range of techniques to describe complex interactions, structures and environments.

Domen Keglevic

Full Stack Developer

Domen is a mathematician who has turned into software engineer. His industry experience includes implementation of algorithms, data processing and building web applications.

Prior to EcoBalance he worked at DFG Consulting and Slovenian Environmental Agency. He is skilled with C++, Python & Javascript.

Erick Opiyo

Data Analyst

Erick has over 13 years experience in Geoinformatics, working at ICRAF, UN-Habitat and Cadasta Foundation.

Erick oversaw deployment of several products dealing with AI and ML at Lima Tech Data and 8teq Solutions.

Before joining Downforce Technologies, Erick was Lead Developer at Kelop Software Solutions, where he lead development of various mobile applications.

Erick holds BSc. Geomatic Engineering, MSc. GIS and Remote Sensing from JKUAT and MSc. Software Engineering from University of Liverpool. He is currently a PhD candidate at University of Bonn.

Gary Williams

Dev Ops Engineer

Gary is a DevOps Engineer with a life‑long passion for technology.

He previously worked in the EdTech sector, planning and implementing cloud migrations of both traditional LAMP-stack monoliths and Kubernetes-based microservice architectures.

Gary enjoys automation, open-source software, heavy metal and strength sports. His dream is to complete the Húsafell stone challenges and achieve "Fullsterkur" status.

Jan de Leeuw

Environmental Scientist

Jan is a plant ecologist with experience in the application of earth observation and GIS in natural resource management.

He worked at ITC in the Netherlands and at ILRI and ICRAF in Nairobi where he led research on livestock and agroforestry based agricultural systems in tropical drylands.

Jesus Trujillo

Spatial Data Analyst

Jesus is a Forest Engineer specialized in Geospatial Analysis. He has an extensive experience working with satellite time series for monitoring forest decline processes in Southern Spain, as well as land cover/land use changes.

Enthusiastic trainer, Jesús has collaborated preparing and teaching GIS and Remote Sensing workshops and courses in several countries: Spain, Mexico, Angola and Mozambique.

Open Source Software user.

Jonathan Adams

Plant-soil interaction specialist

Jonathan is a Full Professor at Nanjing University, China. Originally from the UK, he obtained his bachelors from the University of Oxford and his PhD from the University of Aix-Marseille II, France.

Following a postdoc at the University of Cambridge, he previously taught at the University of Adelaide, Rutgers University and Seoul National University.

Prof Adams has published two books with Springer, and more than 150 international journal papers.

Kevin Morris

Spatial Data Analyst

Kevin is founder of Discovery Software, a company with diverse applications ranging from STEM - a Spatio Temporal Geographic Information System, educational games like FloodRanger and CoastRanger to WebBookings - an online booking system for sports clubs.

Kevin has expertise in software and website development, remote sensing, GIS and databases and has worked in collaboration with many UK government departments, the European Environment Agency and the United Nations Environment Programme.

Katarvia Taylor

Head of Business Development

Katarvia Taylor is an operational leader and author with expertise in programme and stakeholder management. She was previously the Senior Director for International Projects & Operations at The Whitaker Group. She also worked at the International Monetary Fund in the Technology & General Services Department.

Katarvia holds a Master of Science degree in Information Systems Technology from The George Washington University and a Bachelor of Arts in French, German, and Latin American Studies from Georgetown University.

Lindsay Todman

Agricultural Modeller

Lindsay has over ten years' experience in modelling soils and their interactions with crops.

Her modelling work has included simulating water flow through soils and representing the dynamics of soil microbial communities, at scales from a few grams of soil to agricultural landscapes.

Lindsay has a Master of Engineering from the University of Cambridge, an MSc in Hydrology for Environmental Manager and a PhD in Irrigation from Imperial College London.

Mahmut Guney

GIS Developer and Analyst

Mahmut is a geomatics engineering graduate who holds an M.Sc. in Informatics and a Graduate Certificate in GIS & Geospatial Management. He has worked as a GIS Analyst at TANAP for 4 years.

He then studied at Niagara College Canada GIS & GM and worked as a Peer Tutor for Python Programming & Databases.

After he came back to Turkey, he worked as an ABAP Developer for a year.

Scott Heckbert

Systems Dynamics Modeller

Scott holds a Ph.D. in geomatics engineering and a M.Sc. in natural resources economics.

Scott develops simulation models and 3D technologies to build virtual laboratories where scientists, decision makers and stakeholders can interact for improved understanding of complex social-environmental systems.

Viskantas Juodenas

Full Stack Engineer

Viskantas is a Full Stack Software Engineer from Lithuania, with a BSc in Computer Science from the UK.

He has broad technical experience across several industries and has built web applications, implemented enterprise software and deployed data warehouses in cloud environments.

Viskantas strives to continue building high quality software that successfully serves clients' needs.

Yuliya A. Miloslavina

Systems Dynamics Modeller

Yuliya is enthusiastic in developing dynamic agro-ecosystems models for assessing their sustainability and health.

A chemist by training, specialized in physical and biophysical chemistry with a PhD from Max-Plank-Institute in natural science, Yuliya brings an extensive experience in areas of photosynthesis, modeling and critical data analysis.

Yuliya participated in several collaborative networks, MSCA-ITN HARVEST, INTRO2, ESF EuroSolarFuels program, and enjoys working in a multinational, multidisciplinary team.

Board

Charles Brecque

Director of the Board

Charles was one of the first employees of Mind Foundry, an Oxford University spin out specialising in automated data science and AI. As an engineering graduate of the École Centrale de Lyon, Charles both mastered Mind Foundry's technology and built up its commercial presence.

In April 2020, Charles founded Legislate, a legal tech start-up and is also a Trustee of The Downforce Trust.

James Alexandroff

Board Observer

James studied law at the University of Bristol and qualified as a solicitor in London with Clifford Chance before becoming a fund manager in Edinburgh and then Hong Kong.

He co-founded Arisaig Partners, an emerging markets focused investment management firm headquartered in Singapore, gifting his ownership to the Perivoli Trust.

He is now a Trustee of the Perivoli Foundation and the Perivoli Africa Research Centre at the University of Bristol.

Mary Catherine Di Nunzio

Chair of the Board

Mary Catherine is a Chemistry graduate, a qualified lawyer in New York and England, and a US patent attorney.

She is a Trustee of The Downforce Trust and general counsel for several companies, including AI spin-outs from the University of Oxford.

Nick Zeltzer

Director of the Board

Nick commenced his career in investment banking at Macquarie Group and held roles in strategy and M&A at both Origin Energy and Puget Sound Energy (Seattle, USA), and led the Australian Renewable Energy Agency's Innovation Lab and Electric Vehicle Portfolio.

He currently works within CEFC's Clean Energy Innovation Fund and has an in depth understanding of the clean tech industry both in Australia and internationally.

Advisory Board

Alyson Greenhalgh-Ball

Alyson is founder of Conscious Impact and has over twenty-five years' experience in the public health sector and was a global nutrition lead within the food industry at the Kellogg Company.

Alyson is a board member for several private and public sector organisations, a former Business Fellow at the Smith School of Enterprise and the Environment University of Oxford and an active member of the United Nations SDG2 Advocacy Hub.

Hadi Michel

Hadi is a Product Manager, with experience working across the US, UK, and Australia.

He's helped build products for precision agriculture and environmental science, and has supported multiple start-ups through successful exits.

Ida Kubiszewski

Ida is Associate Professor at University College London in the Institute for Global Prosperity.

She was also a climate change negotiator, representing the Dominican Republic. Ida holds a BA in Astronomy and Physics, an MA in Energy and Environmental Analysis, and a PhD in Ecological Economics.

Her background, as well as her work with farmers and the banking sector, give her a unique insight into opportunities for Downforce Technologies.

Paul Hawken

Paul is an environmentalist, entrepreneur, author and activist who has dedicated his life to environmental sustainability and changing the relationship between business and the environment.

Paul founded Project Drawdown, a non-profit dedicated to researching when and how global warming can be reversed; and edited the ground-breaking Project Drawdown: The Most Comprehensive Plan Ever Proposed to Reverse Global Warming.

Robert Costanza

Robert is Professor of Ecological Economics at the Institute for Global Prosperity, University College London.

His areas of expertise include: ecosystem services, landscape ecology, integrated ecological and socioeconomic modelling, and social traps and addictions.

He is the author or co-author of over 600 scientific papers and 28 books. His work has been cited more than 130,000 times in Google Scholar with an h-index of 135.

Investors