Our Staff

Marsha Dickson

President and Co-Founder
Is also Irma Ayers Professor Emerita at the University of Delaware (UD). Dr. Dickson began Better BuyingTM while on the faculty in the Department of Fashion and Apparel Studies at UD. She is an award-winning scholar who, during her academic career, gained wide recognition as a global academic leader for her research, teaching, and practical engagement with global suppliers, retailers/brands, and sustainability groups. She has conducted research on social responsibility in numerous countries around the world.  Together with colleagues at UD and from colleges and universities around the world, Dr. Dickson led innovative initiatives to enhance student learning about sustainability, co-founding in 1999 Educators for Socially Responsible Apparel Practice, which brought sustainability topics to the forefront of fashion education, and in 2007 launching UD’s innovative, online graduate certificate in Socially Responsible and Sustainable Apparel Business.  During 14 years on the board of directors of the Fair Labor Association, Dr. Dickson worked with a cross-sector network of brand, manufacturer, and civil society stakeholders to develop policies and practices that support decent work in factories and on farms around the world. Through sustained engagement, Dr. Dickson has built thoughtful working relationships with leaders in corporate social responsibility and sustainability, buying groups, suppliers, industry associations, civil society organizations, and foundations.

Leonie Abraham

Vice President of Business Development 
Is focused on driving forward the next stage of Better Buying’s growth and development, and supporting its vision of transforming buyer-supplier relationships. Prior to jointing Better Buying, she spent 20+ years immersed in the apparel industry and its supply chains as editor of Just Style, steering the site’s editorial content and direction, developing insightful research and analysis, and growing Just Style into an internationally recognized and influential global brand. Leonie has extensive knowledge of global sourcing and production, and social responsibility and sustainability. She also has strong relationships with brand and supplier executives gained from travelling to factories around the world and attending and speaking at conference about the sector’s challenges and opportunities.

Kelly Duncanson

Senior Manager of Operations
Has industry experience in wholesale sales and corporate responsibility. She holds a Master’s degree in Fashion and Apparel Studies with a graduate certificate in Socially Responsible and Sustainable Apparel Business from the University of Delaware, where she researched sustainable business model innovation and identified indicators to measure this type of innovation within companies. Kelly also holds a Bachelor’s degree in Fashion Merchandising with minors in Spanish and Business from Texas Christian University. Kelly manages Better Buying’s internal operations and human resources, and provides support to Better Buying’s business development and research efforts.

Lindsay Wright

Senior Manager of Communications
Is a communications leader with many years of experience in communications and media strategy, research communications, journalism and commentary, policy and public affairs, marketing, and stakeholder engagement. Previously Communications and Media Manager at Ethical Trading Initiative, Lindsay has also held a number of senior communications roles in UK universities, including University College London, Imperial College London (UK Energy Research Centre), Birkbeck, and the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine. She holds a Postgraduate Diploma in Communications Management from London Metropolitan University, and a First Degree in English and Drama from Queen Mary and Westfield College, University of London.

Laura Leach

Senior Manager of Research
Has more than 20 years experience as a research manager and data scientist/architect for international private, public, and non-profit sectors, the US federal government, and the military. Laura joined Better Buying Institute from US Customs Border and Protection (CBP), where she was the Principal Data Scientist/Modeler, developing strategic statistical modeling for CBP’s daily operations along the Southwest Border and new web-based data visualization reporting techniques. Prior to this, Laura was a Senior Consultant at Deloitte Consulting, where she led federal workforce analytics and workforce planning for the Food and Drug Administration and the CIA, as well as a Survey Research Manager for the Graduate Management and Admissions Council where she led two of the four annual major research efforts, developing interactive web-based reporting tools and published industry survey reports. Laura has a Bachelor of Science in Research Psychology, with Honors, from George Mason University, a Graduate Certificate in Survey Design and Data Analysis from the Statistics Department at George Washington University, and a Master’s degree in Cognitive/Experimental Psychology from Stony Brook University.

Doug Cahn

Senior Advisor and Co-Founder
Is a seasoned professional in the field of labor and compliance in global supply chains. He is a pioneer in implementing codes of conduct in supply chains for global companies, beginning with his 15-year tenure at Reebok International. For more information about Doug’s background, click here.

The Fair Factories Clearinghouse (FFC) is a non-profit organization whose mission is to facilitate informed ethical business decisions for a better and more livable world. FFC is a compliance industry software innovator, developing and operating compliance tools for many leaders in the footwear, apparel and outdoor industries. For more information about the FFC, click here.