Leader Biographies

Natalie Derry Witt/Kieffer Ccentric

Natalie Derry

General Manager, UK

Natalie Derry is general manager of Witt/Kieffer International's London office, with oversight of operations in the UK and mainland Europe. Based in Edinburgh and London, she previously served in the same role for Witt/Kieffer Ccentric, the precursor to Witt/Kieffer International.

Natalie has partnered with a range of UK and international clients in healthcare and academia. In the field of education she has led leadership recruitments for many Russell Group public research universities in the UK as well as leading higher education institutions based in the U.S., EU, and Asia-Pacific as they address leadership needs locally and at campuses across the globe. In healthcare Natalie has supported NHS trust clients in the UK as well as leading hospitals, health systems, academic medical centers, and medical research/life sciences institutes in numerous global locations.

Natalie completed her Bachelor of Nursing degree in 1994 and started her professional life as a general surgical nurse in Scotland. Subsequent roles in Australia and the United Kingdom included neurosciences nursing at the Royal Brisbane Hospital and at the National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery, London. She returned to the UK in 2006 and successfully ran her own healthcare recruitment business before entering executive search in 2009.

• Bachelor of Nursing (Registered Nurse), Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia
• Graduate certificates in Neurosciences Nursing as well as Education Management and Leadership

Petra Klerken

General Manager, Hong Kong

Petra Klerken, based in Hong Kong, is responsible for operations in the Asia-Pacific region. She has over 15 years of experience in human resources, management and recruitment within various sectors.

She started her career as an HR business partner, specializing in recruitment. After successfully establishing an interim management division focused on the non-profit sector and managing several recruitment and HR teams, she and her family accepted an opportunity to move to Hong Kong. Petra gained entrepreneurial experience running a company that strives to empower women in maintaining their work-life balance before starting in 2016 at the Hong Kong office of Witt/Kieffer Ccentric, now Witt/Kieffer International.

For Witt/Kieffer International, Petra supports clients based or operating in the Asia-Pacific region to fill leadership positions in the healthcare, life sciences, and academic world. Her experience as both client and consultant in executive search is a great asset in helping clients to identify and recruit the best leaders for their organizations.

Bachelor in Human Resource Management, Saxion University of Applied Sciences, Deventer, Netherlands

Mary Comer

Senior Consultant

Mary Comer is a senior consultant for Witt/Kieffer International, based in Edinburgh, Scotland. She joined the firm in 2016 under its previous name, Witt/Kieffer Ccentric.

Prior to this, she spent more than 10 years at a major UK executive search firm, where she worked on a wide range of assignments across the commercial, public and not-for-profit sectors. At the firm’s London office for the first five years, Mary co-headed the research team, before returning to her home city of Edinburgh to help establish a Scottish office, its first outside London. Since joining Witt/Kieffer International, Mary has led assignments for top universities and medical schools in the UK and in mainland Europe.

Prior to her career in executive search, Mary worked in London for the industrials team at global financial PR firm Finsbury, before joining the new business team at Condé Nast, the luxury publisher, to work across its magazine websites and contract publishing titles.

M.A., English, University of St. Andrews, St. Andrews, Scotland