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the team


The UK's Critical Minerals Association team brings together changemakers and disruptors with experience across public affairs, communications, marketing, research, client relations and mining. Our expertise in critical minerals enables us to intersect with government and industry and support our members to be a part of future responsible critical mineral supply chains. 

Find out more about who we are below. 

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Jeff is an experienced public affairs and campaign strategist with experience working in the highest levels of business and politics. He brings skills in lobbying, public and government affairs, and campaign strategy development. He is well connected with political arenas in the UK, EU, Middle East, and Africa. Coming from a mining background, he knows the importance of the mining sector and is passionate about securing the UK’s critical mineral supply chains. 

Jeff Townsend


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Kirsty is an experienced policy development professional with a background in leading communications campaigns, managing high profile events and writing reports, including the CMA’s flagship papers on Environmental, Social, Governance; Developing a Talent Pipeline, Planning & Permitting, and Mineral Rights. Prior to founding the Critical Minerals Association, she worked as a consultant for The McCain Institute and The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis & Malaria, organized events for President Biden, the Rt. Hon. Theresa May.

Kirsty Benham



Olimpia is a geologist by training having completed her BSc Geology at Durham University and MSc Exploration Geology at the Camborne School of Mines. Olimpia coordinated and authored CMA's flagship report on responsible sourcing which influenced the UK's very first Critical Minerals Strategy. Olimpia actively champions critical minerals and unites industry and like-minded governments to drive greater supply chain integration. She also serves as Senior Advisor to the CMA Australia and CMA USA.  

Olimpia Pilch

International Partnerships & Business Manager

About Me


Eileen graduated from the London School of Economics and previously worked as a Correspondent for the London Globalist. She authored her dissertation on international climate leadership and supply chains for the energy transition. With experience in content creation and social media marketing for emerging NGOs, Eileen leads our communications and media campaigns. She is passionate about growing the UK’s talent pipeline and is launching the CMA’s TikTok to improve public perceptions and engagement with critical minerals. 

Eileen Maes

Public Affairs & Communications Associate


Sam graduated from the University of Lincoln with a First in International Relations & Politics. Passionate about UK politics, he authored his dissertation on working-class disillusionment with the Labour Party. Sam has previously worked in the office of an MP and has formal political campaigning experience. His interest in critical minerals stems from its role in geopolitics and UK security. At the CMA, Sam leads on MP outreach on a cross-party basis, forging relationships with members of the UK Government, Shadow Ministers, as well as members Select Committees. 

Sam Howard

Public Affairs & Communications Associate

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