Information about some of TEAS' key contacts in the UK, Azerbaijan, Brussels, Germany and France:
Tale Heydarov – Chairman
Lionel Zetter – Director
In 2013, Lionel was appointed Director of TEAS. Previously, Lionel held numerous senior roles in the public relations sector, commencing his career as Associate Director of the Media Information Group before becoming Company Secretary at PR+CI. He was Managing Director of Parliamentary Monitoring Services Ltd and Political Wizard Ltd, and Deputy Chairman of Dods Parliamentary Communications.
He has also held the positions of Director of the Enterprise Forum, Managing Director of Zetter’s Political Services Ltd, Vice-President of Public Affairs Asia, and Senior Counsel at APCO Worldwide.
Lionel is a Fellow of the Charted Institute of Public Relations (CIPR) and of the Royal Society of Arts, and a member of National Union of Journalists. He was President of the CIPR from 2007 to 2008, and is a former Chairman of the Government Affairs Group.
He is the author of books including Political Campaigning Handbook; Lobbying – the Art of Political Persuasion; and Blueprint – the Policies and Personalities of the Conservative Government. He also publishes the Zetter’s Political Companion series.
Lionel was voted Personality of the Year 2008 by readers of Public Affairs News (PAN), and was awarded the PAN ‘Outstanding Contribution’ award in 2012. He is also a regular feature of the PR Week Power Book.
t: +44 (0)207 808 1903
Leon Cook – Director of Marketing and Communications
Leon is Director of Marketing & Communications at TEAS and is responsible for the coordination of TEAS’ global office network, external campaigns, media relations, business forums, company membership and online presence. He has over 13 years’ experience in public relations and corporate affairs, having worked for some of the major communications agencies and corporations in the UK, the US, and The Netherlands.
Leon’s main objective at TEAS is to bring Azerbaijan and the economic opportunities it presents to foreign investors to the attention of organisations, politicians and media working in the European political domain. He is focussed on raising awareness of the country’s energy offering with international energy consortia amongst policy stakeholders in the EU and beyond, in addition to the numerous opportunities in the emerging sectors.
t: +44 (0)207 808 1902
Sabina Rakcheyeva – Arts & Cultural Advisor
Sabina is Arts & Cultural Advisor at TEAS and a member of the European Cultural Parliament. A renowned violinist, she was the first Azerbaijani graduate from the Juilliard School of Music in New York and, to date, has performed in over 40 countries.
Actively involved in the cultural diplomacy field, she has appeared at the UNESCO Hall in Paris, UN General Assembly Hall, Carnegie Hall, the Bundestag in Berlin and addressed the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. Sabina's objective at TEAS is to raise awareness of all Azerbaijani cultural aspects, including art, architecture, dance and music, through a range of concerts, performances, exhibitions and publications.
t: +44(0)207 808 1908
Taleh Bagiyev – Director of TEAS Azerbaijan
Taleh is Director of TEAS Azerbaijan. Prior to joining TEAS, Taleh co-founded and held the position of Chairman at the Anglo-Azerbaijan Youth Society. The Society worked to promote knowledge of Azerbaijan and the occupation of the Nagorno-Karabah region to a world audience.
He holds a Masters Degree in History and has co-authored a number of books, including Azerbaijan and Great Britain: Co-operation and Partnership 1991–2001, and oversaw the launch of Visions of Azerbaijan magazine in 2006 in collaboration with the London Azerbaijan Society.
Taleh’s objective at TEAS is to manage TEAS’ projects in Azerbaijan, including publications and films focusing on the country’s history, educational projects and programmes designed to acquaint visiting professionals and politicians with all aspects of the business, history and culture of the country.
t: +994 (0)12 539 63 45/47
Marc Verwilghen – Director of TEAS Belgium
Marc is Director of TEAS Belgium, having previously been a distinguished Belgian Senator, member of the House of Representatives and Minister. During his extensive ministerial career, he focused on developing countries, economy, foreign policy, science, justice and energy. He is also a practising lawyer.
As Vice-President of the Belgian Senate, Marc visited Baku in 2011 to celebrate the twentieth anniversary of Azerbaijani independence, and was astounded by the development of the country.
Marc is passionate about developing bilateral trade and educational relations between Belgium and Azerbaijan. He is also focused on increasing Azerbaijani–EU engagement at the highest level. This is both for trading purposes and as a means of bringing about greater awareness of the need for peaceful resolution of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict and the related humanitarian crisis.
t: +32 (0)2 550 34 34
Marie-Laetitia Gourdin – Head of TEAS France
Marie-Laetitia became Head of TEAS France in 2014. She has solid expertise in international relations and geopolitics relating to Eastern European countries. Prior to joining TEAS, she worked at the International Energy Agency (an autonomous body of the OECD) as Energy Analyst for a collaborative programme regarding clean energy technologies involving Russia, Ukraine and Caspian and Black Sea countries, and other regions. She has also worked at the French Prime Minister’s Office for European Affairs on issues related to the EU European Neighbourhood Policy.
Marie-Laetitia’s major focus is to raise TEAS’ and Azerbaijan’s profile among French stakeholders in France, engaging with French politicians, the private sector and civil society.
t: +33 (0)1 70 91 72 84
Shahin Namati-Nasab – Director of TEAS Germany
Shahin is Director of TEAS Germany, where he has developed TEAS’ presence in the country by raising awareness of Azerbaijan and developing relationships with key stakeholders in the region.
Educated in Germany, Paris and London, Shahin holds a Masters Degree in Research Economics, and an MSc and BSc in Economics and Mathematics for LSE.
His main objective at TEAS is to raise awareness of Azerbaijani culture and history, in addition to highlighting the economic developments in the country and the business opportunities that exist in the region.
t: +49 (0)30 26 39 93 71
Rena Rzaeva – Head of TEAS Istanbul
Rena is Public Affairs Executive at TEAS Turkey. Prior to joining TEAS, Rena worked at Accenture's Strategy Consulting division in the UK.
Rena holds a Bachelor’s degree from the London School of Economics, and a Master’s degree from University of Oxford, St Antony's College.
Rena has worked in Russia, Turkey and the UK, gaining experience across both public and private organisations, such as UBS, LUKOIL, CNN Turk, the British Consulate and Bloomberg.
t: +90 (0)212 381 86 37