Welcome to Catalyst!

16 March 2023 by Leanne Hughes

It’s been a busy few months here at Catalyst EU, we have grown and welcomed lots of new faces to the team. Building and growing our teams is an integral part of how we can provide our partners with great service and expertise. When you work with Catalyst, you work with experts, so it is important that our people have the right skills and attitude. We all share a common belief in the importance of free and open-source software and a commitment to doing great work for our clients and the communities we work in!

We wanted to get to know the people behind team Catalyst,  join us in welcoming our new colleagues to the Catalyst EU team!

Let’s meet the team…

Jacob K

Role – DevOps Engineer in the SRE Team
Describe what you do – Make sure everything is up and running
Kids? – Nope
Pets? – 2 Dogs (Freddie and Willow) and a cat (Hope)
Favourite Drinks? – A Pint of Red Stripe
3 words that describe me – Adventurous, curious and friendly
Couldn’t do my job without –  my laptop and a lot of coffee
Hidden skill – Recently learnt how to snowboard
Passionate about – Trying new things, love to give anything a go!
One item you would take on a desert Island – A snorkel (If you’re stuck on an island may as well go for a swim)


Role –  Digital Marketing Lead
Describe what you do – I tell the world about all the great things Catalyst do!
Kids – Yes, my loves Jude and Ruby
Pets – Yes, a 3-year-old Cockapoo called Bear
Drinks – Coffee, red wine and water mostly in that order
3 words that describe me – Always writing lists
Couldn’t do my job without –  Coffee, a list and social media
Hidden skill – I can whip up a celebration cake in a day 
Passionate about – Good food
One item you would take on a desert Island – My Spotify account – I can’t survive without listening to Beyonce daily!


Role – Senior Software Developer
Describe what you do – I work on programming Moodle plugins
Kids? – A great niece now 4 years old who stays overnight about once a fortnight and brings us huge joy. It’s like being a grandparent without the expensive tiring bit to get there.
Pets? – Daisy the cat is 19 years old, has very few teeth, only one working eye, stone deaf but we love her. 
Favourite Drinks? – Flat white, Mango Lassi and a Moodle Mojito
3 words that describe me – Moodle obsessive developer
Couldn’t do my job without –  VSCode…(how dull of me)
Hidden skill – I have Tourettes… I  make odd noises e.g hoot like a pigeon, or have apparently random movements, this is because, around the age of 45, I developed non-coprolalic Gilles de la Tourette’s syndrome. The non-coprolalic means the non-sweary version. This means I have a hidden superpower/skill when it comes to teaching. Because I find it hard to concentrate I assume the students won’t and so approach it differently from someone who is just trying to broadcast information. 
Passionate about – Free/Libre software, and keeping it both Free and Libre
One item you would take on a desert Island – The very nice acoustic guitar a Marting D45 or maybe a Gibson Hummingbird, plenty of spare strings, a winder, tuner and a stack of sheet music (or a device with a huge amount of songs on it.)


Role – Finance Assistant
Describe what you do – Assisting the UK branch with their accounting needs 
Kids? – 3 .. including my husband
Pets? – Unfortunately not yet, working on it but I’ll wear down my hubby soon enough 😉
Favourite Drinks? – Coffee, water but with an awesome Braai going nothing beats a cold Savanna 
3 words that describe me – Easy going, Loyal, Trustworthy
Couldn’t do my job without –  Coffee
Hidden skill – Cooking Master
Passionate about – My Kids
One item you would take on a desert Island – Being optimistic here I’m seeing an opportunity for a lekker holiday so I would have to say my best friend, Ciara


Role – Junior Software Engineer
Describe what you do – At the moment, I am trying to settle into the development process. Get familiar with Moodle development, GitLab, AWS, and SLA workflows.
Kids? – No kids 😢
Pets? – No pets 😭
Favourite Drinks? – Water, chamomile tea, coffee, and occasionally beer (Hoegaarden is my favourite one 🤤)
3 words that describe me – pragmatic, achiever, and lazy (constantly fighting it) 
Couldn’t do my job without –  a team, laptop and monitor.
Hidden skill – 3D rendering and modelling. Know how to play the guitar.
Passionate about – solving problems.
One item you would take on a desert Island – a fully charged satellite phone 😃

It’s been a pleasure onboarding so many new faces over the past few months and how well they have settled into the teams. We look forward to working with you to help achieve Catalyst’s goals and continue developing your skills and knowledge to embed you into the business and our culture.

Ella Tugwell, Head of Internal Services

Would you like to join Team Catalyst? Do you want to work for a great company with a firm belief in open source culture? Check out our current roles