We are proud of the fact that our team of highly experienced, multi-lingual and multi-cultural specialists really do enjoy nothing more than working in partnership with clients to meet their immigration objectives. They strive to make our clients say, “WOW”! It drives everything they do.
Here is a brief introduction to just some of our advisers: please click on an image to see each biography:
James Walters Director
James co-founded Smith Stone Walters in 2001 with David Hugkulstone and Gary Smith. Together, they have overseen the growth and development of the company’s UK immigration practice including the addition of offices located in New York, Hong Kong and Mumbai.
James has over 30 years’ UK immigration experience gained in the public and private sector and is a regular speaker at immigration and industry events. He is primarily responsible for managing client relationships, developing new business and managing sponsor licence operations.
David Hugkulstone Director
David co-founded Smith Stone Walters in 2001 with James Walters and Gary Smith. Together, they have overseen the growth and development of the company’s UK immigration practice including the addition of offices located in New York, Hong Kong and Mumbai.
David has over 30 years’ UK immigration experience gained in the public and private sector. He is primarily responsible for finance, recruitment and marketing, leading large-scale branding and communications projects for the company.
Gary Smith Director
Gary co-founded Smith Stone Walters in 2001 with James Walters and David Hugkulstone. Together, they have overseen the growth and development of the company’s UK immigration practice including the addition of offices located in New York, Hong Kong and Mumbai.
Gary has over 28 years’ UK immigration experience gained in the public and private sector. Gary is widely regarded as the company’s technical expert and is still actively involved in casework, leading a team of consultants to provide an exceptional level of service to a range of small, medium and large clients.
Yvonne Foley Operations Manager (New York)
Former Entry Clearance Manager at the British Consulate-General in New York, London-born Yvonne has managed our regional office for the Americas since 2009 and has wide-ranging UK immigration experience. Prior to emigrating to New York, Yvonne gained her managerial training and over a decade of experience in industry working for a leading British high street chain, world-renowned for exceptional customer service. Her career foundation, combined with over eight years working for the Consulate mean she is equipped with in-depth knowledge of the UK immigration system, an excellent network of contacts, exceptional attention to client needs and significant business acumen, allowing her to bridge the gap between the UK authorities and the corporate world with ease. As an expat herself, Yvonne is sensitive to the needs of the individual at the same time as remaining focused on business need. Yvonne’s broad experience in these key areas mean she is well equipped to lead her team, seamlessly guiding Smith Stone Walters’ clients through even the most complex of immigration scenarios.
Ming Peng Team Lead (Hong Kong)
Ming moved to the UK to undertake a post-graduate degree. After obtaining a Masters in Management and International Business, she began her career in UK immigration when she joined Smith Stone Walters’ UK team as a Consultant in 2010. She was subsequently transferred to the Hong Kong office in 2011 to support and expand the Asia market. Experienced in dealing with clients on a global scale where UK visa requirements often differ, Ming has developed a wealth of knowledge in UK immigration and now acts as Team Lead for our regional Hong Kong office. Her ‘can-do’ attitude combined with impeccable client service skills has won her client recognition and she achieved the accolade of International Immigration Adviser of the Year at the High-Value Immigration Awards in 2013. Fluent in English, Mandarin and Cantonese, Ming regularly contributes her insights to some mainstream publications in both China and Hong Kong, with the primary aim of strengthening the ties between Asia and the UK.
Ragini Parkar Team Lead (Mumbai)
Ragini began her career as UK Immigration Manager for an India-based corporate relocation service. From there, she joined Smith Stone Walters as a Consultant in our regional office in Mumbai, bringing to the role both specialised regional expertise and an understanding of client needs. Ragini is now Team Lead, managing the day to day operations of the Mumbai office and providing exceptional service and UK immigration assistance to our clients on the ground in India. Ragini also attends conferences and business events in order to develop business in the region.
Antonia Price Senior Account Manager
Antonia worked in the Global Mobility industry for seven years before joining Smith Stone Walters in 2007. She has extensive experience of advising companies and individuals on a full range of UK immigration categories covered by the UK Immigration Rules including the Points Based System. Initially joining as a Consultant, Antonia is now Senior Account Manager for one of our largest corporate clients. The combination of her global mobility and technical immigration experience gives Antonia a broad understanding of the requirements of our clients. Her customer-facing skills and dedication to excellent customer satisfaction allow her to provide an exceptional level of service to our clients. Antonia also represents Smith Stone Walters at networking events and global mobility exhibitions.
Susan Scott Senior Account Manager
Susan embarked on a legal career after graduating with an LLB law degree and undertaking the LPC. She has worked in UK immigration since 2008 and joined Smith Stone Walters in 2010. Susan has extensive experience of advising companies and individuals on a full range of UK immigration categories covered by the UK Immigration Rules including the Points Based System. Initially joining as a Consultant, Susan is now Senior Account Manager for one of our largest corporate accounts, dealing with around 400 visa applications a year for clients ranging from summer graduates to CEOs. Her legal background, attention to detail and organisational skills allow Susan to provide an exceptional level of service to our clients.
Jennifer Eaton Senior Account Manager
After graduating, Jennifer began her UK immigration career in 2004, working for large well known consultancy and law firms. She joined Smith Stone Walters as a Senior Account Manager in 2013 with extensive experience of advising companies and individuals on a full range of UK immigration categories covered by the UK Immigration Rules including the Points Based System. Jennifer works closely with clients to provide strategic advice in order to achieve the best solutions for their UK immigration needs. Jennifer has travelled overseas extensively and spent time working in Australia prior to embarking on her immigration career in the UK.
Jack Blackhall Deputy Team Manager (New York)
After graduating with a degree in Business Management, Jack began his career in UK immigration in 2009 with a 12-month internship working in the Visa Section at the British Consulate-General in New York. Upon returning to the UK in 2010, Jack joined Smith Stone Walters where he worked on one of our largest corporate accounts, advising on a full range of UK immigration applications. After spending two years in the UK office as a Consultant, Jack moved to our New York office where he is now Deputy Team Manager. Jack has developed excellent relationships within the Visa Section of the British Consulate-General in New York and specialises in providing exceptional UK entry clearance services to our clients.
Adele Le Deputy Team Lead (Hong Kong)
Before joining Smith Stone Walters in 2013, Adele acquired valuable experience at the Australian Consulate-General where she specialised in visa assessment and settlement of high net-worth clients. Adele initially joined Smith Stone Walters as a Consultant to address the needs of a growing client base. As a result of her dedication and exceptional client service, Adele is now Deputy Team Lead for our regional Hong Kong office. As a Hong Kong national, Adele is fluent in Cantonese, Mandarin and written Chinese. She is also proficient in the Japanese language and well acquainted with Japanese culture. Adele manages the Entry Clearance process for the Asia-Pacific region, providing major corporate Japanese clients with levels of expertise which only a UK visa specialist can supply.
Anthony Hall Senior Account Manager
Anthony qualified as a UK solicitor in 2009, gaining both UK immigration and employment law experience before joining Smith Stone Walters in 2010. Initially employed as a Consultant on one of our larger corporate teams, Anthony is now a Senior Account Manager on our Private Client Team. Assisting private clients on a wide range of immigration applications, Anthony also continues to manage some key corporate accounts. In addition to his caseworking responsibilities, Anthony leads an internal study group at Smith Stone Walters which is designed to facilitate technical learning and development within the company. Anthony has first-hand experience of the relocation process, having spent 10 years of his childhood living in Indonesia and becoming fluent in the language. Prior to embarking on his UK immigration career, Anthony spent two years teaching English in Japan.
Ekaterina Gladkova Senior Account Manager
After graduating in her native Russia, Ekaterina relocated to the UK to continue studying and was awarded a Masters Degree in Business Administration in 2006. Ekaterina began her UK immigration career in 2003 working for high street law firms where she specialised in various aspects of UK immigration law. From there, Ekaterina joined Smith Stone Walters in 2006 as a Consultant, initially managing a number of small and medium sized corporate clients. Ekaterina is now a Senior Account Manager on our Private Client Team, managing the Entry Clearance process for the EMEA region at the same time as continuing to assist high-net worth individuals with investor and entrepreneur applications. Her personal experience of moving to the UK makes Ekaterina sympathetic to the pressures facing our clients and their families during the relocation process. A leading specialist in complex business visa applications, Ekaterina is also the main point of contact for our Russian clients.
Liezel Nel Account Manager
Liezel began her UK immigration career in 2006 with an international law firm based in the UK, before joining Smith Stone Walters as a Consultant in 2009. Liezel has extensive experience of assisting private clients on a wide range of UK immigration applications and now holds the position of Account Manager on our Private Client Team. In addition to her private client caseload, Liezel also manages corporate client work. Having relocated from South Africa to the UK in 2006, Liezel is well placed to empathise with our private clients and their families who are going through the sometimes stressful process of moving overseas. Fluent in Afrikaans, she is in great demand by our South African clients.
Phill Allcorn Account Manager
Phill began his UK immigration career in 2004 and gained over ten years’ experience in the immigration sector before joining Smith Stone Walters in 2014 as Account Manager for one of our largest corporate clients. Having worked for well-known consultancy and law firms, Phill brought with him extensive knowledge of advising companies and individuals on a full range of UK immigration categories covered by the UK Immigration Rules including the Points Based System. Phill has excellent customer-facing skills and his dedication to outstanding service enables him to provide clients with the best solutions to their immigration needs.
Kathrine Ayers Account Manager
Kathrine began her UK immigration career with Smith Stone Walters in 2007, initially training as an Entry Clearance Specialist. She progressed quickly into a Consultant role, gaining experience of a wide range of UK immigration applications, and is now Account Manager for some of our large corporate accounts. Kathrine has comprehensive knowledge of past and current UK immigration systems and processes. This technical knowledge, combined with her friendly and supportive personality, has enabled Kathrine to build lasting relationships with her clients.
Richard Hall Account Manager
Richard began his UK immigration career with Smith Stone Walters in 2011, initially training as a Consultant and gaining experience in a wide range of UK immigration applications including the Points Based System. He is now Account Manager for one of our largest corporate clients and acts as the key contact for a number of mid-sized clients, working closely with both the companies and their employees to provide first class immigration services. After graduating and before pursuing an immigration career, Richard spent three months living and working in the USA.
Kaming Yip Account Manager
Kaming qualified as a UK solicitor in 2009, gaining high-net worth UK immigration experience before joining Smith Stone Walters in 2011. Initially employed as a Consultant on one of our corporate teams to service a diverse client base, Kaming is now an Account Manager on our Private Client Team, specialising in a wide range of immigration applications for private individuals. Kaming has first-hand experience of the relocation process, having spent five years of his childhood living in Holland. As the son of Hong Kong nationals, Kaming is fluent in Mandarin and spent a year in China teaching English before embarking on his UK immigration career.
Louise Matthews Account Manager
Louise joined Smith Stone Walters in 2007, progressing quickly to become an Entry Clearance Specialist. From there she moved into a Consultant role, gaining experience of a wide variety of UK immigration applications for both corporate and private clients. Louise is now Account Manager on one of our corporate teams, where she uses her in-depth knowledge of UK immigration categories covered by the UK Immigration Rules including the Points Based System to effectively manage a number of large corporate accounts. Her technical knowledge, combined with her friendly and patient approach, has enabled Louise to develop strong relationships with clients.
Rob Liu Account Manager, Head of Greater China Desk (UK)
After graduating with a First Class law degree in China, Rob relocated to the UK to complete a Master’s degree and gain a wealth of experience in HR consultancy, international recruitment, business development and marketing communications. Rob began his UK immigration career with Smith Stone Walters in 2013 and has since worked with global organisations and SMEs in both western and far eastern cultures to facilitate business development within the Chinese market. Rob has progressed to become an Account Manager at Smith Stone Walters and Head of our Greater China desk in the UK, advising on a variety of applications from both individual and corporate clients. His business knowledge, extensive cross-cultural understanding, and native Mandarin language skills provide him with a unique ability to deliver exceptional service and to nurture trustworthy, long-term relationships with our Chinese clients.
Kiran Rasoda Account Manager
Kiran began her legal career after graduating with an LLB law degree and undertaking the LPC. She joined SSW in June 2014 with experience in both corporate and private immigration, and is now the key contact for a number of medium and large client accounts. Kiran assists our clients in complying with current UK immigration legislation, helping them to fulfil their duties as the employers of migrant staff. Able to respond to the cross-cultural needs of many of our clients due to her Indian background and fluent Punjabi language skills, Kiran’s comprehensive approach towards client-care is enhanced by her legal background, enabling her to maintain first-rate client relations and deliver an exceptional level of service.
Alastair Mason Account Manager
After completing the Graduate Diploma in Law, Alastair began his UK immigration career at a London law firm with a focus on private client work, gaining experience across a wide range of UK immigration categories. Alastair joined Smith Stone Walters in 2013 as a Consultant, providing advice to a number of medium and large corporate clients, before progressing into an Account Manager role. Alastair has become the key contact on a number of corporate accounts, using his technical expertise to ensure that the best immigration solutions are identified and that client requirements are consistently met. Having travelled extensively and studied in Australia for a period, Alastair is well placed to understand the demands which our clients face when relocating to the UK.
Puja Patel Account Manager
Puja began her career in UK immigration after graduating with a LLB law degree from Brunel University in 2011. Puja developed her passion for immigration law during a year’s student placement in private immigration and pursued this passion into the corporate arena upon graduation. Puja joined SSW in 2014 as an Immigration Consultant and soon progressed to become an Account Manager as a result of her extensive technical knowledge and excellent client service standards. She is now the key contact for a range of corporate clients from a variety of industries, assisting with their Tier 2 needs, EEA workforce issues and sponsor licence duties. Puja’s knowledge of Indian culture and fluent Gujarati language skills are greatly appreciated by many of her clients, and her involvement with internal knowledge-sharing initiatives makes her an invaluable asset to SSW.
Amrita Singh Account Manager
Amrita has been in the legal profession since 2007, working across various areas of Law whilst studying and qualifying as a Chartered Legal Executive. Amrita joined Smith Stone Walters in 2017 with wide-ranging UK immigration experience gained during employment with large professional consultancy and law firms. Amrita is the Account Manager for one of our largest corporate accounts, in addition to dealing with smaller accounts and private clients. She has broad experience of advising companies and private individuals on a full range of immigration categories covered by the UK Immigration Rules and has extensive knowledge of complex immigration applications, including those made outside of the Rules. In addition, Amrita has wide-ranging knowledge and experience of EEA Law. Amrita’s amiable personality and Hindi and Punjabi language skills, combined with her extensive legal training and qualifications, enable her to provide exemplary customer service to our clients.
What clients say
Simply amazing customer service!
- B.S., Cloud Solution Providers
The whole process was smooth and really satisfying, with excellent communication. Thanks.
- N.R.Z., Leading Provider of Consumer Electronics Technology
Fantastic service! Thanks especially to Susan Scott (SSW UK) for her prompt feedback and readiness to help.
- J.B., Private Client
I've been through several visa processes in the past and SSW took the bulk of the stress and ambiguity out of this process for me. They were professional and responsive, making what can be a very frustrating and tenuous experience clear and efficient. Many thanks!
- N.B., Leading UK Cancer Charity
I was very pleased with the level of service and professionalism from Nodoka (SSW UK). I also appreciate how she was able to understand the human side of this process and how stressful it is. She was able to put me at ease. Thank you again!
- H.D., Chartered Accountancy Firm
Prestina (SSW India) was always at hand to answer all of my queries, however trivial they were. I couldn't be happier.
- A.B., International Law Firm
...simply outstanding throughout. Not a single complaint or issue at all; there's not much more to say other than keep doing what you're doing and I very much hope we get to work together again.
- V.P., Training Course Providers
Many thanks for Ming's (SSW Hong Kong) hard work on my case. She is very reliable and helpful. Much appreciated. 100% satisfactory and 5 stars!
- K.Z., Private Client
You folks are aces.
- I.R., Investment Bank
Immigration Team of the Year – WINNER
Winning this award for a second time, SSW was praised for its ‘continual investment in staff’, ‘innovation and preparedness’ in the face of Brexit and its ‘valuable contribution to clients and the immigration sector as a whole’.
This Re:locate award continues to recognise excellence in the field of UK immigration.
Excellence in Employee and Family Support – HIGHLY COMMENDED
The SSW team was highly commended for its entry to this category, thanks to its focussed approach to individual client needs.
This Re:locate award is aimed at individuals and organisations, from any sector, who provide a specialist service to relocating employees and their families.
Immigration Team of the Year - HIGHLY COMMENDED
Smith Stone Walters was Highly Commended for this award category at the 2015/16 Re:locate Awards due to its ‘high professional standards and responsiveness to clients’.
The award recognises the providers of specialist immigration support to companies that are relocating employees and their families.
HR & Supplier Partnership - HIGHLY COMMENDED
The SSW team received Highly Commended for its entry in this award category due to its ‘positive relationship with the client company’.
Th award recognises relocation partnerships which enhance a corporate client’s business objectives and/or the quality of the relocation support provided.
Excellence in Employee and Family Support - WINNER
Smith Stone Walters was recognised as the category winner due to its focus on the employee and family, and dedication to going that extra mile.
This award is for individuals and organisations, from any sector, who provide a specialist service to relocating employees and their families.
Immigration Team of the Year - WINNER
Smith Stone Walters was named Immigration Team of the Year 2013/14 due to its consistent client service and outstanding level of client satisfaction.
This Re:locate award recognises providers of specialist immigration support to companies that are relocating employees and their families.
We believe in proactive, clear and responsive communication.
We excel at building open and honest relationships with our clients and each other.
We work collaboratively across all SSW teams.
We embrace personal growth
We share knowledge and best practice with our colleagues.
We recognise achievement and celebrate success.
We pride ourselves on maintaining
a positive team and family spirit.
We are always transparent and ethical in our actions.
We enjoy a professional, supportive and fun working environment.
We are professional in our conduct and deliver service with a positive, can-do attitude.
We strive to make our clients say, “WOW”!
We passionately believe in giving back. That is why Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) is a business issue for us. It goes hand in hand with our core values and our vision of success.
We actively encourage our staff to support local initiatives and communities in three key areas: fundraising, volunteering and the environment.
Smith Stone Walters’ fundraising efforts are directed from within, by our staff. We engage in a wide range of team and individual activities and the company operates a gift-matching scheme to maximise fundraising. Guided by company consensus, we collectively choose a charity to support each year. The worthy cause we are currently proud to support is the Rainbow Trust Children’s Charity www.rainbowtrust.org.uk
Every year, staff members at Smith Stone Walters are encouraged to devote a full, paid work day to support our chosen charity.
Although we now operate a paperless file management system, we know we can do better, so we are currently working on making our operations as environmentally friendly as possible.
Work with us
Do you enjoy being a member of a positive team with strong family spirit? Do you consider yourself transparent and ethical in your actions? Do you appreciate a professional, supportive and fun working environment?
If you answered “yes” to the above questions, consider joining a company that attracts and retains the best employees.
To apply, please forward a covering letter and your CV to firstname.lastname@example.org.