Adrian Punaks

Adrian Punaks


+44 (0)7748 603 692

‘Be interested and be interesting’ was the first thing I learnt 20 years ago when I started fundraising, and it’s been a helpful mantra each day in the incredible organisations where I’ve worked: UCL, Birkbeck and Imperial. It’s all about connecting with people, and those connections are the catalyst to thoughtful, targeted philanthropy that makes a difference. At UCL I led the brilliant team that closed the largest campaign in Europe, outside of Oxford or Cambridge, raising £624m a year ahead of schedule. Trusted partnerships were key, with donors, advocates, partner charities, the advancement team and stellar academic and clinical colleagues. I’ve seen what works and what doesn’t, and learnt a great deal along the way. I’m excited to bring some of that to bear working with More’s clients.

Some I've worked with recently

  • Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge
  • Guy's and St Thomas' Charity
  • Murray Edwards College, Cambridge
  • Royal Dublin Society
  • Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam
  • University of Southampton
  • Vlerick Business School


  • Comprehensive campaigns: planning, launching, closing – what works, what doesn’t
  • Principal gift fundraising: UK and international, from trusts, individuals and corporates – particularly complex 7- and 8-figure donations
  • Medical/health fundraising: effective partnerships between universities, NHS and other charities
  • Corporate fundraising: I was central in the negotiations that resulted in UCL’s ‘carrier bag’ retailer coalition in 2015 raising >£20m for the UK Dementia Research Institute
  • Working with institutional leadership, senior volunteers, academics, clinicians and HNWIs
  • Alumni/Supporter relations and advocacy
  • Building confident, effective and high-performing teams, and keeping them on track
  • Coaching, mentoring and helping develop the next generation of brilliance in the advancement sector

Before More

  • Executive Director of Development at UCL – ten years in an amazing university with an amazing team. Planning, designing, launching and closing a year early the largest campaign in Europe outside of Oxbridge
  • Head of Development, Birkbeck, University of London – seven years in an unique and essential institution in the HE sector, targeting philanthropy to support widening access and world-class research
  • Individual and major gift fundraising at Imperial College London – where I cut my teeth in face-to-face fundraising and got hooked
  • Studied Politics and International Relations at the University of Reading

Outside More

  • I’ve always been a keen cyclist – these days as a commuter in London and, when I can, in the countryside and on the coast
  • Proud Dad to our wonderful daughter
  • An enthusiastic and relatively effective cook, especially baking bread
  • In recent years, a love of pottering in the garden and growing things
  • Swimming in the sea, a river or a pond and – if needs be – a swimming pool. I love a dip on the Suffolk coast with my Mum and brother, or a Christmas day plunge in the Highgate ponds.
  • CASE Crystal Apple holder for teaching excellence, and regular contributor to wider sector activities as both a teacher and speaker