David Carrington, Trustee

David is a UK based independent consultant working on the funding and governance of charities and social enterprises, on the promotion of personal philanthropy and on the development of social impact investing. David is a member of the Supervisory Board of Triodos Bank in The Netherlands and a Director of Big Society Capital in the UK. He is a founder Director and Chair of the Trust that publishes the journal Alliance and is a member of the Advisory Board of the Centre for Effective Philanthropy in the USA. He is a currently a Trustee of two other UK charities, Bridges Charitable Trust and The SOFII Foundation in addition to Gulan. In the recent past, he has been a trustee of several charities including the National Foundation for Youth Music, the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain and engage (the association of people working in gallery education).


Sarah Panizzo, Trustee

Sarah’s career for more than 35 years has been as a commercial solicitor. She worked with a City firm, and had responsibility for cross border work with Italy. Sarah now works as a consultant to Italian clients. She has had non executive board experience of a range of companies and as a charity trustee, including a 30 year involvement with INAS Italian Welfare, and as a lay member of various medical bodies, including as a lay member of the Steering Group of NCEPOD, the National Confidential Enquiry into Patient Outcomes and Death.

In 2004 Sarah began working with Della as her mentor when Della won a Millennium Award to hold a Kurdish fashion show. She and Della worked together on other fashion shows and cultural events, and this lead to the formation of Gulan to develop this further. Sarah has a home in Venice which has facilitated Gulan funding a bursary for a young Kurdish artist to spend time in Venice during the Art Biennale this year.

Carla Garnelas, Trustee

Since graduating from Edinburgh University with a degree in Social Anthropology in 2002, Carla has worked in the voluntary sector in London. In 2006, she received an MSc from Birkbeck College in Race and Ethnic Relations, focusing on issues of gender, ethnicity and identity. She worked for a number of years in the Jewish community as a youth worker, informal educator and adviser on recruiting and supporting volunteers. In 1999-2000 she spent a year in Nairobi, Kenya with VSO working with street children projects. Carla has worked at the Children’s Rights Alliance for England since 2005 working on a range of equality and human rights issues and is currently the Alliance’s Head of policy and public affairs. Carla served on the Board of the Jewish Council for Racial Equality for two years.

Rebwar Saed, Trustee

Rebwar Saed was born in 1962 in Suleymania, in Baban Province in what is now the Kurdistan Region of Iraq. Following the Anfal campaigns, Rebwar came to Europe where he formed the Shower of Birds Association which lead to the formation of the Modern Art Museum /Contemporary Arts Museum in Suleymania, Kurdistan. museum now exists and will open soon.

Rebwar studied for his degree and his MA in Fine Art at Middlesex University, and obtained his Phd for his work, Analysing Kurdish Political and Cultural Identity, from Middlesex in 2013. His research project is about his artistic practice in ceramics and his efforts to build the Modern Art Museum. His work is influenced by the political struggle in Kurdistan, and his time as an artist in exile until he returned to Kurdistan in 2004.

Vian Rahman, Trustee

Vian has a background in government public relations and finance. She has a Masters in International Relations and Diplomacy from the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London. Vian worked in finance in London and Tokyo for ten years, and subsequently was the Director of Communications at the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) Representation in London for six years. She now resides in Erbil, the capital of the Kurdistan Region in Iraq, and continues to work for the KRG.

Della Murad, Artistic Director

Della was born in the Kurdistan region of Iraq. She works as an image consultant and fashion designer in the UK. She has organised many fashion shows with the collaborations of museums such as the world famous V & A, the Museum of London and the British Museum, as well as runway shows in other countries including Netherlands, Germany, Dubai and Kurdistan. Her designs are improvisations on traditional Kurdish styles. Della was awarded the Millennium Award by then the Mayor of London Ken Livingston for her work and contributions to the British and Kurdish community in UK. She also promotes Kurdish food through her organisation, Della’s Kitchen.

In collaboration with Gulan and its Creative Director Richard Wilding, Della designed for the Kurdistan Regional Government the national badge for the remembrance of the victims of the Kurdish Genocide.  This was first used on 16th March 2013 at the 25th anniversary commemorations of the chemical weapons attack on Halabja.

Richard Wilding, Creative Director

Richard Wilding is a London based producer and photographer working internationally with museums, governments and charities on cultural exhibitions, websites and printed publications. He specialises in the documentation of architecture, archaeology and costume and is currently engaged with projects in the UK, Saudi Arabia and Iraqi Kurdistan.

Since 2012, Richard has been Creative Director of Gulan. He has travelled extensively through Iraqi Kurdistan with Gulan, photographing the culture and people.

In October 2013, Richard was awarded an outreach grant by The British Institute for the Study of Iraq (Gertrude Bell Memorial) towards Erbil: Research, Interpretation and Conservation of the World’s Oldest City, his joint book with archeologist David Michelmore, advisor to the High Commission for Erbil Citadel Revitalisation.

In February 2015, Richard gave a lecture at Leighton House Museum, London in which he included a selection of his photography from Kurdistan and Saudi Arabia. In November 2015 he gave a talk at the Ismaili Centre, London as part of the Nour Festival of Arts, focusing on his recent work in Kurdistan, including photographs of refugees displaced by the nearby conflict.

In 2016, he has given lectures for the Reconciliation and Peacebuilding programme at the University of Winchester, as part of their Talking Peace series, and for the Department of Archaeology at the University of Reading.

His connection with the Courtauld Institute of Art in London led to the discovery of photographs by Anthony Kersting in the Courtauld archives depicting life in 1940’s Kurdistan. These have been exhibited by Gulan at the Royal Geographical Society and the British Academy, London.

In May 2016, Gulan produced Return to Kurdistan, an exhibition of Richard’s contemporary photographs accompanied by Anthony Kersting’s black & white photographs of Kurdistan and Northern Iraq. The exhibition was hosted in the Cultural Centre inside the 6,000 year old Erbil citadel, and at the Talary Saray Sulimani, Sulaymaniyah.


Giovanni Garrisi, Patron

Giovanni is from Sicily, but now lives in Liverpool. He is a mathematician and software engineer. His company, Stanleybet International, is the leading retail sports betting group in Europe, with intermediaries in countries including Cyprus, Germany and Italy and locally licensed outlets in Belgium, Croatia, Romania and Poland. Giovanni’s interests include pure mathematics and human rights. His support for Gulan has been crucial to Gulan’s ability to grow and to expand its activities.