Simon O'Connell

Simon O'Connell

Executive Director of Mercy Corps' European Headquarters & SVP for Global Partnerships

With almost 25 years of experience working for positive social change in a wide array of countries and contexts, Simon O’Connell is an experienced and entrepreneurial leader.

Since early 2015, Simon has been Executive Director of Mercy Corps’ European headquarters, overseeing the organisation’s European offices and a global portfolio of programmes. He also spearheads Mercy Corps' global partnerships and influence team and strategy, which helps Mercy Corps advance its efficacy and mission by building partnerships in new regions and sectors.

Passionate about promoting equitable access to opportunity and catalysing positive change, Simon’s main areas of expertise are in setting strategy, leading teams and fostering partnerships with governments, organisation, corporations and other entities around the world.

Prior to his current role, Simon was Mercy Corps’ regional director for west and central Africa, managing large teams and a substantial portfolio of programmes in some of the continent’s most challenging environments.

Earlier in his career, Simon held several country leadership positions and has worked in over 20 countries in Africa. He attended the London School of Economics and Imperial College London.

A regular speaker, opinion piece writer and influencer in social change, Simon serves as an advisory board and council member to several World Economic Forum and World Bank initiatives. He lives in the UK with his wife and two small children.