Helping connection happen

From the top down

TalkTalk Group’s leadership is made up of passionate people who help drive our mission to connect people all over the country. Each has a unique story of how they found themselves at TalkTalk Group, but they also have one thing in common: a vision for our future.

Meet the team

Sir Charles Dunstone CVO - Executive Chairman, TalkTalk Group

Sir Charles Dunstone set up Carphone Warehouse in 1989 aged 25 after he began his business career selling mobile phones out of his flat in Marylebone. Charles led Carphone Warehouse’s expansion across the UK and beyond and in November 2002, acquired Opal Telecom, providing the opportunity to launch a cost effective, residential, fixed line service to customers.

TalkTalk was launched as a subsidiary of Carphone in 2003 with the unique service proposition that all customers talk to each other for free, forever – our first big disruption to the industry. He led the demerger and subsequent listing of TalkTalk from Carphone in 2010, and remains a major investor following the take-private in 2020.

Through his investment vehicle, Freston Ventures, Charles invests alongside others in disruptive start-ups across a variety of sectors, including the online estate agency Strike, and food brands Five Guys and Chicken Shop.

In 2012, Sir Charles Dunstone received a Knighthood for services to the telecommunications industry and his charitable work. In 2015 he was appointed Commander of the Royal Victorian Order (CVO) for his work with The Prince’s Trust. Charles' charitable trust, the Dunstone Educational Trust, is the main sponsor of the Fulwood Academy school in Preston, Lancashire.

Dame Tristia Harrison - Chief Executive Officer, TalkTalk Group

Since March 2017, Dame Tristia has been the CEO of TalkTalk Group. Before that, she was the Managing Director of our consumer business. Since we moved our HQ to Salford in 2019, Tristia has worked to develop our community engagement programme in the North West. We partner with local food banks and other community interest projects to help disadvantaged families and children in the area.

Tristia is an Independent Non-Executive Director at Next Plc, the Trustee Chair of homelessness charity Crisis, and an Honorary Trustee for the national charity Ambitious about Autism. She’s also a member of the CEO board and a founding member of the industry campaign against online harm known as Internet Matters. For 9 years, from 2011 to 2020, she also served as Trustee at Comic Relief.

Dame Tristia received a Damehood for services to the telecommunications industry in the 2024 New Years Honours list. The citation also referred to her focus on recruiting, promoting and inspiring women in technology, and her charitable work.

James Smith - Chief Financial Officer, TalkTalk Group

James joined TalkTalk in April 2023 as Chief Financial Officer.

He has extensive experience in equity and debt financing, and in leading merger and acquisition transactions in regulated and infrastructure-led industries.

Before TalkTalk, he spent nine years as CFO at the FTSE 250 listed Capricorn Energy, and prior to that had an extensive career in investment banking at Rothschild and Merrill Lynch.

Susie Buckridge – CEO, TalkTalk

Susie joined TalkTalk in 2022, having first been Group Product, Data & Analytics Director, and a member of the Group executive committee, before becoming Chief Strategy Officer for TalkTalk consumer. She was appointed CEO, TalkTalk, in March 2024, as the consumer business began trading as a separated entity from PXC, TalkTalk Group’s network business.

Susie is an experienced CEO, having previously run YouView, TalkTalk’s TV joint venture, alongside shareholders BT, BBC, ITV, Channel 4 and Channel 5. Prior to that, Susie was a strategy lead at the BBC across technology, commercial and partnerships.

Tom O’Hagan – CEO, PlatformX Communications

Tom has played an integral role in developing and building PlatformX Communications (PXC) into what it is today. Tom joined TalkTalk in March 2022 on the acquisition of Virtual1, one of the largest wholesale providers in the UK B2B market, which he founded in 2007.

He first integrated Virtual1 with TalkTalk’s Wholesale Services business, and then its network and security arm, creating PXC. Tom has more than 20 years’ experience in the telecoms industry, having worked for leading global telecommunication providers both in the UK and the USA before founding Virtual1. This drive, determination and ambition saw Tom recognised as the Entrepreneur of the Year at the Comms National Awards in 2017.