Executive Leadership Team
Paul Reddish OBE: Chief Executive
After initially starting life in the Private Sector, Paul made the leap into the charity sector to take up the post of Chief Executive of ProjectScotland, a Scottish based charity leading on the support of young scots to get on in life through volunteering.
A serial volunteer, he’s volunteered as a youth worker, sports coach, treasurer and trustee and chair roles of different charities. Paul is now applying all that learning, knowledge and passion for the impact volunteering can have on people’s lives and communities to develop the work of Volunteering Matters. Outside of work, Paul is a keen cricketer and cyclist. The time spent doing both of those over the last few years has declined as he and his wife Lucy try and keep up with their three very active young children.
EMMA THOMAS-HANCOCK: DIRECTOR OF VOLUNTEERING DELIVERY
Emma joined Volunteering Matters in 2001 and began work with us delivering training in Volunteer Management to external organisations. Now, she is the Director of Delivery and is responsible for the operation of the charity’s volunteering and social action projects and programmes across the UK. This involves ensuring efficient and effective management, delivery against stakeholder requirements, and the development of delivery models which can be scaled and replicated and which demonstrate high social impact.
She is also a trustee of a charity based in Brighton that supports people in recovery from drug and alcohol addiction as well as being a Voluntary Sector Community Mentor and the Welfare Secretary for a community football club.
Stephen Skeet – Director of business development and impact
Stephen has been at Volunteering Matters since 2016. He has a background in supporting young people who have experience of the care system, and young offenders. Outside of work Stephen has a range of volunteer roles in his local community in Ipswich and Suffolk.
He has volunteered as an Independent Visitor in Suffolk. Since 2014, been Vice-Chair of Trustees at The Mix, a Suffolk based Youth Work charity. Since 2018 a Governor of Highfield Maintained Nursery and Children’s Centre in Ipswich. In 2020 Stephen became a Trustee at Raedwald Academy Trust who operate alternative education provision in Ipswich. He’s also a volunteer football coach at St Margaret’s CEVA Primary in Ipswich.
Graham Robertson – Director of Enterprise
Graham is Director of Enterprise at Volunteering Matters and oversees Volunteering Works and Social Enterprise arm – Get The Gen.
He has over 12 years’ experience working in the Charity Sector having previously worked with Amnesty International and Plan International in senior roles in London. He is also a member of the Board of Trustees for the Lawscot Foundation, a charity set up by the Law Society of Scotland and currently chairs their Fundraising Committee.
Graham has a passion for working with young people and supporting Social Mobility, which shines through in every aspect of his work. Before his charity career, Graham was a successful sportsman playing in both Scotland & England as a Professional Footballer for Raith Rovers and Millwall, and still has a passion for all sports.
Angie Lees – Head of finance
Angie is an FCCA qualified accountant and has an Honours degree in Applied Accounting. Her finance career started in public practice. Once qualified she worked for a Scottish children’s charity and then in the independent school sector in Edinburgh, prior to joining Volunteering Matters in 2020.
Angie’s role with Volunteering Matters is Head of Finance where she looks after the finance functions of the charity including monthly/annual reports, budgets and forecasts.
Out of work, she likes being outdoors, walking with her partner and their two German shepherd dogs. Angie loves nature, wildlife and her cottage garden.
valerie brown– Head of human resources
Valerie (Chartered Fellow CIPD, MSc, BSc Hons) started working for Volunteering Matters on 29th June 2015 and has over 20 years’ experience as a HR professional, working in both the Public and Voluntary sectors. Valerie is also Chair of Volunteering Matters’ Wellbeing Committee.
Valerie considers herself to be a ‘Human Resources Generalist’, who specialises in Employee Relations, Leadership Development and Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion. Due to the scale of Volunteering Matters, Valerie has got involved in most areas of the charity which has given her the opportunity to get to know nearly all of our people!
Passionate about volunteering, Valerie has worked as a volunteer outside of the organisation; as a member of the Independent Monitoring Board (IMB) and as a mentor for young women of colour. For both personal and health reasons Valerie has taken a break from both of these activities, but plans to get back involved as soon as she is able to do so.
samina ansari – Head of Communities and Inclusion
Joining the team in Autumn 2021, Samina has roots in youth and community work in one of the most ethnically diverse areas in Scotland. She brings with her over 15 years’ experience of working in the third sector, advocating for gender equality with an intersectional and trauma informed approach, including leading an award winning national ethnic minority women’s organisation, Amina MWRC. Laterally, Samina was involved in improving outcomes for babies, children and young people going through Children’s Hearings, a care and justice system unique to Scotland, and was involved in shaping and developing the organisations first ever equality strategy for over 3000 volunteers and staff.
The golden thread throughout Samina’s career has been working alongside diverse volunteers and communities to instigate and enable change so everyone can thrive.
Currently, Samina is the Vice Chair of a grassroots women’s organisation which supports asylum seeking, refugee communities and sits on a number of advisory boards including Common Purpose and the Rank Foundation, as well as being a Mentor for young ethnic minority people with the John Smith Centre, University of Glasgow.
Trustee Board 2021
Chair: Anne Heal
Anne Heal has been Chair of Volunteering Matters since 2015. In 2020, she was interim Chair of NCVO, where she is now Vice Chair. Anne is a trustee of Balletboyz and a director/governor of the London Design & Engineering UTC. She is also Chair of the Governance and Nominations Committee of Diabetes UK.
Anne currently holds non executive positions at the Office of Road and Rail, Elexon, the General Dental Council, and MOSL – where she is Chair. She previously chaired Thames Water’s Customer Challenge Group. Anne is a member of the Enforcement Decision Making Committee of the Bank of England and of the Regulatory Decisions Committee at the FCA.
Vice-Chair: Pru Whitwell
A senior, colleague-oriented leader who supports leadership teams to design and drive sustainable change that their people understand and can buy into culturally, commercially and personally. Pru leads colleague communications globally for Standard Life Aberdeen and has worked in a range of roles across Edinburgh’s financial services sector since arriving from Sydney in 2008. Pru, her partner and two dogs came to Scotland for an 18 month stay but accidentally fell in love with it and have been there ever since. Pru is passionate about equity, fairness and setting people up to be the best they can be through experience, support and access to opportunity.
Andrew has been a Trustee at Volunteering Matters since 2015, and was appointed as Vice Chair of Trustees in 2017, serving on both the Finance and Audit Committees.
Andrew is non-executive Director at Clarion Housing Association, Homerton University Hospital NHSFT, and an external member of the Finance Committee of Oxford University. He has a strong interest in tackling homelessness, chairing the Centre for Homelessness Impact, acting as a trustee at Mayday Trust, and volunteering with Hackney Winter Night Shelter. He spent most of his executive career in public services, with spells as a Deputy Chief Executive at Essex County Council, Chief Executive at the Valuation Office Agency, and finally Director General, Public Services, at the Treasury from 2009– 2011.
Emmanuel Ayoola is a motivated and committed professional who is passionate about people development, community building and the non-profit sector. He is currently the director of the award winning STEM charity Generating Genius, who have supported over 450 young people progressing into STEM degrees and careers.
He is also the founder and chair of Grace Sustains Africa, through which he has built water fountains, agricultural projects and classroom renovation projects in Sierra Leone. Emmanuel is excited to support Volunteering Matters’ new strategies, particularly in the areas of corporate fundraising and diversifying the volunteers and beneficiaries.
Martin is the Mortgage Transformation Director for Lloyds Banking Group. He was previously Managing Director for Scottish Widows Bank and a Director of Finance for Retail at Royal Bank of Scotland. His past experience is focused on banking and insurance in the UK and Europe.
Martin has an MBA from INSEAD and an Engineering degree from The National University of Ireland, Galway.
As well as being a Trustee of Volunteering Matters (and previously Project Scotland), Martin is a Trustee of the Bank of Scotland Foundation, the Bank of Scotland (Ireland) Staff Benefits Scheme and the INSEAD Trust for European Management Education. He is also a member of the Development Advisory Committee for the School of Engineering at the University of Edinburgh.
Martin lives in Edinburgh with his wife Sarah and three children.
Simon has recently retired from the civil service, where he worked in a number of Government departments, specialising in policy and finance.
Julie Kirkbride is a board Member of Ofsted, a Trustee of the News Schools Network, and a volunteer for Westminster Connects and Beanstalk – the children’s reading charity. She is a former Conservative MP, Daily Telegraph Political Correspondent and BBC TV and ITN News Producer.
She was raised in Halifax, Yorkshire where she attended a local state grammar school. She studied Economics and History at Girton College Cambridge and attended UC Berkeley on a Rotary Foundation Scholarship.
Katrina is from Edinburgh, and is currently in her first year of university at the London School of Economics. She has been a volunteer and activist since the age of 15, advocating on gender equality, human rights, and young peoples’ participation in society. She is part of youth-led network Youth For Change, which campaigns internationally on gender-based violence and is also an ambassador for the #iwill campaign, set up by HRH Prince of Wales, which encourages young people into social action and volunteering.
Patrick has been a Trustee of Volunteering Matters since 2016. Patrick was previously an award-winning Chartered and Certified Financial Planner and had over ten years’ experience before turning to fundraising in corporate partnerships and philanthropy. Volunteering has been a part of Patrick’s life since childhood and he has vast experience volunteering for a broad range of causes both locally and in Europe. He was shortlisted for the UK’s #GivingTuesday champion 2015 and invited to a parliamentary reception in recognition of his dedication to volunteering.
Sue is Chief Executive of Hackney-based charity Inspire, which creates opportunities for local young people to find their talents and thrive. Passionate about community involvement and equality, Sue was previously Deputy Chief Executive at national mentoring charity Brightside, and has been a board member for the Mentoring and Befriending Foundation and the National Education Opportunities Network (NEON).
Julie-Anne Jamieson is currently Chief Executive of the Scottish Child Abuse Inquiry, a high profile independent public inquiry.
She has worked in a variety of leadership roles within public inquiries, Skills Development Scotland and Scottish Government.
Julie-Anne’s non-executive roles include Director of Career Development Institute (CDI), the UK wide professional body for career development professionals and Trustee of Project Scotland. She is a former trustee of Changing the Chemistry, a charity promoting diversity on boards and now leads its Strategic Communications Advisory Group. Drawing on her professional background in career development, Julie-Anne is a long standing Project Scotland volunteer mentor and also does executive mentoring.
When not working, Julie-Anne enjoys singing and getting outdoors as much as she can; whether it be running, walking, cycling or her most recent enthusiasm – sea swimming in Scotland’s chilly waters.
Zara lives in Edinburgh, she has worked in and with a wide variety of not for profit organisations specialising in organisational change, inclusion and accountability work, particularly with young people.
Zara is a Churchill Fellow and has advised the UK Government, the British Council, the Council of Europe and the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights on disability and inclusion issues. Prior to joining Volunteering Matters Zara was the Chair of Inclusion London. She started volunteering when she was 10 years old, and it has been an integral part of her life since.
David Wilkinson has been a Trustee of Volunteering Matters since 2009. He is Chair of the Finance and Investment Committee, and also a member of the Audit
Committee. David is a business adviser from a financial background, helping entrepreneurs grow their companies and manage the issues and opportunities that come from rapidly scaling up their businesses. He is a Non-Executive Director and Chair of Audit Committee for the Goal Group of Companies, as well as Chairman of CH Bailey plc, and a Senior Independent Non-Executive Director at Be Heard Group plc. He is a former Ernst and Young Partner, with former roles as Head of Entrepreneurial Services and IPO Leader at Ernst and Young, and was an audit partner in London and Bristol offices for 24 years.
Iona Wyn has been a Trustee of Volunteering Matters since 2017 and represents Wales. Iona has been the Head of External Communications at the Welsh Government
since 2006. She is a Fellow of the CIPR and Joint Chair of CommsCymru – the network of public sector communication professionals in Wales. Iona is also a Wales Committee Member at Action for Children and is a former trustee at Ty Hafan.
President: Lord freud
David Freud was the Minister for Welfare Reform from 2010 till the end of 2016. Beforehand, in 2008/09, he acted as adviser on welfare reform to the UK Government. This followed publication of his independent report in March 2007: “Reducing Dependency, Increasing Opportunity” on the Welfare to Work system.
He was the CEO of The Portland Trust in 2005-2008, whose mission is to encourage peace and stability between Israelis and Palestinians through economic means.
He spent 20 years at UBS, where he was Vice Chairman of Investment Banking and Global Head of Transport/Leisure/Business Services, retiring in 2003.
His book “Freud in the City” was published in May 2006 as an insider’s account of what really happened in the City of London through the financial revolution of the late twentieth century.
Prior to his banking career, David worked at the Financial Times for eight years, four of which were spent on the Lex column. He was educated at Whitgift School and Merton College, Oxford.
He has spent the last decade working with Volunteering Matters to develop the ground-breaking intergenerational mentoring project, Grandmentors.
John Pulford MBE (vice-president) // Martha Burnige // Richard Harries // Dorothea Hodge // Tim Loughton // Bob Maggs // Laura Marks // Archie McAvoy // David Mellor // Carole Milner // Madeleine Moon // Joyce Ohajah // Clare Parry // Sir John Shortridge // Kate Simpson // Carol Tongue // Rolande Anderson // Kate Morris // Lucy De Groot