Break has been supporting children, young people and families since 1968

People

As Break has grown, developed and diversified, so has our team of experienced and skilled Managers and Trustees in order to provide the highest quality support.

    Executive Team

  • Hilary Richards - Chief Executive

    Hilary has a degree in Business Studies, a social work qualification and a Masters degree. She has more than 20 years' experience working within child protection in the field of social care.

    Call: Hilary 01603 670100

  • Rachel Cowdry - Director, Business Development

    Rachel Cowdry is a qualified social worker with more than 20 years' experience in a variety of settings. She has an executive diploma in Strategic Management and is an associate lecturer at UEA on the Leadership and Management programme.

    Call: Rachel 01603 670100

  • Mike Hudson - Director of Resources

    Mike Hudson joined Break as HR manager in 2011. He is a Chartered Member of the CIPD, who, after a career in the food industry, took a post graduate qualification in Personnel Management. Mike and his wife Pat are foster carers and are currently providing a long term placement to a sibling group of three children. 

    Call: Mike 01603 670100

  • Trustees

  • Trevor Brown - Deputy Chair

    Trevor Brown is a retired senior social work manager and business manager of voluntary sector care organisations

     

  • Maureen Gardiner - Trustee

    Maureen is retired with a background in IT, marketing and innovation and futures research. She has held senior management roles in the gas industry, in local government and in the Post Office. She has been an industrial representative on academic and research boards and a management consultant. She is currently a trustee of the Norwich Diocesan Association of Bellringers.

     

  • Prof. June Thoburn CBE LittD - Trustee

    June is an Emeritus Professor of Social Work at the University of East Anglia. A qualified social worker, June has taught and researched across the field of child welfare since 1980. She provides expert evidence in complex foster care and adoption cases; and is a member of the national Cafcass Board and of the Norfolk Family Justice Council. Between 2001 and 2008 she was Vice Chair of the General Social Care Council and was until recently the Chair of Jersey Child Protection Committee. She is a trustee of Family Lives (formerly ParentlinePlus) and the Norwich Contact Centre and a patron of the National Association of Independent Reporting Officers (NAIRO), the Grandparents Association and the Hamlet Centre. June was awarded a CBE in 2001 for services to social work.   

  • Sally Martin - Trustee

    Sally has worked in fashion and advertising in London for Martha Hill ltd, a family-run fashion and cosmetic business in PR, and as a director, a position she still holds. She is also a director of Martha and Daughter. She worked in Paris in fashion for two years for Models International in the 1970s. She is now company secretary for her husband's architectural and restoration business in Norfolk. She holds a current pilot's licence and has flown light aircraft for 34 years. Sally was one of the joint masters of the North Norfolk harriers and is still on the committee. She rode in several races and still rides (not in races!).

     

  • Johnnie Sam - Trustee

    Johnnie is Deputy Chairman of Ridgeons, one of the largest privately-owned builders’ merchants in the country. He has a background in consultancy, IT and business development. After working for Deloitte, Coopers and Digital Equipment, he has been a director or senior executive of several technology companies. Johnnie is currently a governor of Hills Road Sixth Form College, Cambridge.

     

  • Geoff Gildersleeve - Trustee

    Geoff has a distinguished career in children’s social services with a wide range of experience and responsibilities. He held a number of posts in Norfolk Social Services at assistant director level between 1991 and 2006, when he retired. Since then he has chaired a Safeguarding Children’s Board and a Serious Case Review Panel, been a member of Independent Diagnostic Teams and provided advice to a number of statutory bodies as a consultant.  

  • Frank Shippam - Treasurer

    Frank is a partner at Norfolk-based chartered accountants MA Partners LLP. He holds the Diploma in Charity Accounting issued by the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales and a considerable proportion of his professional work is spent advising charities and not for profit organisations in financial and governance issues. Frank is also a governor of a Church of England primary school.

  • Anne Ovens - Trustee

    Anne is an FCCA-qualified accountant and IFRS specialist whose main role is as the director of Aspiration Europe Ltd since founding the company over 10 years.

    Anne’s business provides outsourced IFRS compliance, finance department services and business project support to organisations in a wide range of sectors including technology, financial services and mineral resource extraction industries. 

    Before this, Anne worked in a number of finance roles within several commercial organisations, including The Financial Times Group.

    Anne is also a former kinship foster carer and holds a number of voluntary positions including Vice-Chair of Governors for a local primary school and PCC treasurer (and charity trustee) for a local church.

  • Alastair Roy - Chair of Trustees

    Alastair joined the Break board as chair in 2015. His professional working life
    was in the NHS, mainly in Norfolk, where he held senior and chief executive posts. His special interests have included public health and partnership working to
    tackle inequalities and improve health status. These interests
    continue in his commitment to Break. More recently he has chaired Horizon Health
    (a C.I.C. specialising in offender health) and is chair of Community Action
    Norfolk. As the Independent Person (I.P.) for Standards in Public life for
    three local authorities in Norfolk, he has wide experience of governance.

  • Karen Ward - Trustee

    Karen is currently the research director for Aditi Unlimited and a strategy director with Price Bailey. She has previously worked in academia; as a senior civil servant in the Department for Work and Pensions; in the Cabinet Office; and as a senior leader in the private sector. She has also worked in an advisory capacity to the charity sector for over five year,s acting as board coach to a number of organisations. British by birth, Karen has lived in Germany, Nigeria and the USA and worked in more than 30 countries.

  • Anne Joyce - Trustee

    Anne is Head of Events at Norwich-based Moneyfacts Group and has worked in
    marketing and live events for almost 20 years. She has started departments from
    scratch at two organisations, building event brands that have become very
    well-recognised in their respective industries and running projects across
    Europe and the USA. Anne has supported Break in a fundraising capacity since
    2007, including running sponsored marathons and half marathons and coordinating
    group participation fundraising projects.

  • Adam Nicholls - Trustee

    Adam has been working within the marine survey sector for almost 20 years. After finishing electronics and electrical engineering courses at practical college he secured a position as an Offshore Engineer where he was deployed all around the world.  In 2000, Adam moved to government agency CEFAS and from here his career moved to a commercial role at the marine science specialists Gardline. Adam left Gardline to develop and run his own commercial brewery, but returned after selling it in 2012 to oversee the group's growing Metocean department and sits on the executive leadership team.

  • Simon Fowler - Trustee

    Simon is a former solicitor who has spent most of his working life in Norfolk. In retirement he is a non-executive director of a number of local charities.

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