Our Advisory Board
Here at APVA we are passionate about the future of the VA profession.
APVA aims to be one of the leading professional body and organisation for virtual and remote based independent business owners including VAs, Social Media Managers and Online Business Consultants in the UK, Europe and across the globe.
We train, we educate and above all we champion virtual independent professionals and support and encourage our members to be professional, safe business owners. APVA sets best practice and professional standards across the profession.
It is our mission as a Board and an organisation to elevate the profile of our growing profession, ensure professional standards are met whilst changing the perception of the role and improving the industry for those internally and externally.
“Alone we can do so little. Together we can do so much.”
Kitty Fairbairn, Founder, Aspen VA Services
Kitty joins the Advisory Board as our newest VA, having launched her business, Aspen VA Services, at the start of the year following completion of the APVA Nurture Programme.
Kitty comes to the VA world from a financial services background, having worked in the City of London supporting board-level executives. She’s dedicated to providing first-class, traditional EA support on a virtual basis to busy individuals and small businesses. She takes great pride in becoming her clients’ right-hand person, putting solutions in place to ensure efficiency and optimal conditions to help them achieve their goals. Essentially taking care of their to-do lists, allowing them to get more done!
Kitty lives in London with her husband and young son and decided to make the move from EA to VA towards the end of her maternity leave. Working as a virtual assistant has been the perfect solution – allowing her to continue doing a job she loves, whilst providing flexibility and more time to spend with her family.
Having recently launched, Kitty understands the challenge of making the move from employee to business owner and all that entails – which is why she’s so passionate about APVA and the invaluable support community and coaching programmes it provides. Kitty is delighted to join the Advisory Board and is passionate about helping to champion high standards and accreditation within the VA and online business owner community. She knows the importance of having a supportive and collaborative community in getting your business off the ground and making it a success.
When Kitty isn’t working she loves spending time with family and friends, trying out new restaurants and visiting the theatre, particularly musicals – in a past life Kitty trained as a professional dancer.
Heather Warner, CEO, Enigmatic Business Solutions
Advisory Board Member
In 2018, Heather set up Enigmatic Business Solutions from her home office in Dunfermline, Scotland. It was definitely the right time to set up her own business, realise a lifelong ambition, leave the commute to Edinburgh behind and channel her energies and expertise into a new and exciting challenge.
She enjoyed an amazing 25-year career in Edinburgh working as an Executive Assistant and Business Manager supporting some of Scotland’s top CEOs, Boards of Management and C-Suite level executives. Some of her highlights included working on a £100m construction project in the education sector spanning over 6 years and working in a 5-star hotel where she loved meeting the celebrity guests. Her favourite guest though has to be the Scottish comedian, Billy Connolly, for his wit and humour, he has us all in stitches laughing at him.
As an advocate of lifelong learning, Heather completed a BA (Hons) Business Management (1st class) and an MBA at Edinburgh Napier University. Continuing to learn is a critical part of her life and one she absolutely loves. Heather continues to mentor students to degree and Master level, by sharing her expertise and experience, and finds it very rewarding as she nurtures them to achieve their academic goals and graduate. CPD is very important to Heather and she has attained Fellow Practitioner status of the Executive and Personal Assistants Association.
Starting her business in 2018, there was so much to learn to transition from corporate employee to business owner, Heather welcomed the opportunity to join the Nurture programme and it proved to be invaluable, it was a great foundation to set up her business and provided her with a collaborative and supportive community to share ideas and solve problems.
Heather is delighted to join the APVA Advisory Board to offer her expertise, insights, experience and passion to ensure that the VA industry continues to go from strength to strength. She is fully supportive of accreditation and believes APVA is definitely leading in the way in pushing the boundaries and championing high standards to provide a professional environment and a clear way to stand out professionally for all VAs and online business managers.
Outside of work, Heather is a huge Disney fan and loves visiting the Walt Disney World in Orlando with her husband Dave (although she is far too scared now to go on the big rollercoasters!!). Plans are already in place for her next big adventure and she would love to go back to New York too. She also loves reading, live concerts and eating out. Two claims to fame are that she has been to the top of the Forth Road Bridge between Fife and Edinburgh (absolutely amazing view) and she has been in a prison cell, but that is another story!!!
Holly Copsey, Director, Virtually Priceless
Advisory Board Member
Holly launched her Virtual Assistant business in 2018 following a successful City career which included the roles of EA to the Global CEO of Barclaycard and Chairman of Lloyds Banking Group. She now supports corporate clients as a Virtual Business Manager, working with a team of VAs to offer comprehensive PA services and operations support for their businesses.
Virtually Priceless has grown rapidly since its inception and clients include CEOs, non-executive directors, consultants and not-for-profit organisations, most of whom are in or have close links to the financial services sector.
Holly has a wealth of experience in dealing with a range of influential stakeholders and managing upwards effectively. She is highly proactive, loves working her magic on challenging schedules and is particularly passionate about supporting business owners through periods of rapid growth.
Holly has a degree in business studies, a Pitman Executive PA qualification and was runner-up in the Best Newcomer category of the 2019 UK VA Awards. When she’s not looking after clients, you’ll find her running around after her two young children, hiking around the Essex countryside with her dogs or getting stuck into her dream garden project which started in 2021.
8Charlotte Wibberley, CEO & Founder, APVA
Charlotte set up first her award-winning online business after leaving a long blue chip corporate career following the birth of her son in 2012. She then went on to launch her consultancy in early 2015, which support online business owners with automating their businesses, nurturing their audiences and making more sales – this is ongoing today. Charlotte has won several awards and been a finalist on many occasions with regards to her work within the VA industry and in online business more generally.
The Association of Professional Virtual Assistants (APVA) was founded in January 2016 with a mission to support, nurture and champion the VA & Freelance industry, and to create a safe space for high performing online businesses to collaborate, knowledge share and continue their professional development.
As an industry body the APVA supports & trains aspiring and existing VAs & online business owners and supports existing VAs to maintain professionalism as well as grow their businesses. Through their pioneering accreditation they are committed to regulating and supporting the industry as it grows and run as a not-for-profit organisation.
Founder and CEO of the APVA, Charlotte campaigns heavily to improve industry standards and engage with VAs and business owners alike around the true value of the VA and worth that they bring. In 2017, she started the #timetoeleVAte campaign in partnership with IPSE to redefine the VA profession, change perceptions and improve how the freelance and VA industry is seen both by those inside and outside. The APVA now survey VAs annually and share the data freely to give everyone an insight into how the industry is progressing.
Charlotte has been quoted around the subject of women in self-employment on a number of occasions and was proud to be one of the key case studies for Dame Julie Deane’s Self-Employment Review in 2016. She passionately supports small businesses and freelancers and splits her time between running her consultancy (which support online business owners with automating their businesses, nurturing their audiences and making more sales), training & coaching new VAs and spearheading a revolutionary & collaborative movement for VAs & freelancers with the APVA.
Charlotte has won several awards and been a finalist on many occasions with regards to her work within the VA industry and in online business more generally, including Digital Woman of the Year, WearetheCity Rising Star Awards and Pitman Training SuperAchievers Working Mum of the Year.
Outside of work Charlotte is wife to fellow entrepreneur Andrew, and mum to Alex, 8 and Evie, 6 who are her ‘big why’ and keep her busy and out of trouble!