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NCVO's Trustee Board

Honorary Officers

Dr Priya Singh, chair

Priya Singh

Dr Singh has a background in general practice, specialising in medical law, ethics and patient safety. 

During her executive career with a leading international mutual membership indemnity organisation, she was responsible for professional services to 290,000 doctors, dentists, and other health professionals around the world.

She is executive director of the Society for Assistance of Medical Families, a mutual benevolent fund with charitable status and a member of NCVO; a non-executive director of Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust and South Central Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust; a member of the London Policing Ethics Panel; and an associate with Working With Cancer, a social enterprise helping people with cancer to return to and remain in work.

Paul Breckell, honorary treasurer

Paul Breckell

Paul is the director of strategy and transformation at Ambitious about Autism, the national charity for children and young people with autism. Prior to this he was the chief executive of Action on Hearing Loss from 201218 having worked for the charity since 2007.

Earlier in his voluntary sector career he was the finance and corporate services director of the Church Mission Society and the head of finance at the HIV/AIDS healthcare charity Mildmay. He is a chartered public finance accountant (CIPFA), having trained while working with the Audit Commission.

Paul is a past chair of the Charity Finance Group, the Disability Charities Consortium and the CIPFA voluntary sector panel. He has also in the past been a trustee of the Roffey Park Institute, a member of CIPFA’s council (board of trustees) and served on a number of charity audit committees.

He is passionate about volunteering. Along with as his various governance roles he regularly volunteers as a youth worker in his local community. He also writes and speaks on a number of topics in relation to disability, leadership, organisational development, governance and finance in the ‘beyond profit’ sector.

Paul was named one of Citywealth Magazine’s top 10 charity chief executives of 2016.

Emily Agius, co-vice chair

Emily AgiusEmily is the Head of Volunteering at Breast Cancer Now, with strategic responsibility for the charity’s volunteering offer. Prior to this, Emily headed up membership engagement activities at the University of Sheffield Students’ Union, which included democracy, policy, campaigns, 350 student groups and a diverse range of event programmes.

A passionate advocate for the sector, Emily’s volunteering roles have included being a trustee for the historic Croft House Community Centre, establishing a local Results UK branch, and being a pastoral leader for an International Citizenship programme.

Emily feels privileged to join the NCVO trustee board, and firmly believes in the importance of a collaborative approach within the sector in order to make the biggest difference to the people who need it.

In her spare time, Emily enjoys music, reading and walks in the Peak District.

Julie Bentley, co-vice chair

Julie Bentley

Julie is chief executive of Samaritans, she has been a charity chief executive for over 18 years and has led some of the UK’s most well-known charity names including Action for Children, Girlguiding, Family Planning Association and the Suzy Lamplugh Trust.

Julie began her career as a youth worker (after a stint of five years as a post person) and in the early 90’s worked in some of the most deprived parts of South East London, working with young drug users and those involved in crime. She began her leadership journey at a charity called Charterhouse-in-Southwark where she was first a manager of the young people centre and then over the next six years progressed to assistant director.

Julie has held a number of charity trustee roles through her career including with Shelter for six years.

In 2014, she was named by Third Sector as the ‘Most Admired Charity CEO’ and in the same year was a castaway for BBC Radio 4’s Desert Island Discs. In 2019, she was awarded The Charity Times Awards for ‘Outstanding Individual Achievement’ and was voted by Charity Times readers as one of the sector’s Most Influential Leaders.

In 2020 Julie co-curated a book on experiences of sibling loss following the death of her brother.


Paul Buchanan

Paul BuchananPaul Buchanan is responsible for Business in the Community’s (BITC) operations across the UK. This includes the delivery of the Covid-19 National Business Response Network, as well as all programme delivery and business leadership engagement in the regions and nations.

Paul has worked at BITC since 2001 and is a member of BITC’s executive management team. He has previously held a variety of roles including London regional director, London membership director, Head of membership recruitment and North East business development manager. He has previously worked at British Airways and more recently spent a year on secondment in the commercial team at Sky Plc.

Paul is the chair of The Boxing Academy Trust – an innovative and impactful school for young people at risk of exclusion. Paul has also been a trustee of the John Lewis Foundation since 2015. He is passionate about the role of business in creating more resilient, vibrant and successful communities.

Dr Sarabajaya Kumar

Sarabajaya KumarDr Sarabajaya Kumar is an interdisciplinary social science academic, an equalities consultant, and a disability activist. She teaches leadership and public policy to international civil servants and civil society leaders at University College London (UCL), and has previously held Faculty roles at the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE), the University of Oxford and the Open University.

Her research interests are in accountability, governance, intersectionality, ethical leadership; and her current projects include disability and equality and artificial intelligence.

A Fellow of the Royal Society for the Encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce (FRSA), she is also an accredited Executive Coach with extensive experience of coaching and mentoring university academics, grant-makers and social entrepreneurs.

A GLA 2021 list candidate for the Women’s Equality Party, Sarabajaya is also a member of The Activate Collective and the Policy Committee of the Women's Budget Group.

A serial social entrepreneur, she has, over the past three decades, founded and co-founded several not for profit organisations, working in, or with, organisations and people facing disadvantage.

Prior to her current role at UCL, Sarabajaya led initiatives in the voluntary sector, the National Health Service (NHS) and local government. She also worked as a volunteer with Mother Teresa in Calcutta, India, and with community-based organisations in West Bengal, India.

The thread that links her paid and civic work is her strong commitment to inclusion and social justice.

Red Godfrey Sagoo

Red Godfrey SagooWith a lifelong commitment to gender equality and human rights, Red began her professional career as an art director in the advertising industry, later transitioning to the third sector as a disaster services director for the American Red Cross.

Her journey then continued across food poverty and educational inequalities for marginalised groups with United Way, social integration for those with intellectual disabilities at Special Olympics California, and the refugee crisis impacting unaccompanied minors across European refugee camps with Safe Passage/Citizens UK, before arriving at Sophie Hayes Foundation.

As chief executive of Sophie Hayes Foundation, Red's leadership is focused on life-changing support for women and girls trafficked across the globe to the UK. This support enables sustainable freedom and independence through education and employability.

Red also currently serves as chair of the Management Committee for the Commonwealth's 8.7 Network, and board of trustees for the Bright Future Cooperative.

She has served on the boards for UN Women UK, Anti-Slavery International and National Voices UK.

Angela Spence

Angela Spence

Angela Spence has worked in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea since 2008 and is chief executive of Kensington and Social Council. She is passionate about the voluntary and community sector, recognising that the contribution the sector makes is invaluable in providing essential services and ensuring people get the support they need.

In her previous work in equalities, she supported the progression of black and minority ethnic undergraduates to work in professional industries within the private and public sector. She led on organisation development programmes for voluntary and community organisations supporting diverse communities across the country.

Angela thoroughly enjoys her work and the people she comes into contact with every day that makes her role worthwhile. Her desire is to continue to contribute to improving social justice and inequality.

Dan Sutch

Dan Sutch 96px bw

Dan is co-founder and director of CAST, working with charities, funders, investors and mission driven organisations to use digital technologies to address big social challenges.

Before leading CAST, Dan was part of the senior team at Nominet Trust and prior to that was head of development and a senior researcher at edtech innovator Futurelab. Dan's also a trustee of Wayfindr.

Dan's focus is on supporting social organisations to respond to the changing context in which we operate, using (and creating) digital tools to deliver high value, user-led services. From organisational strategy and individual digital services, through to programmes like Fuse the first digital accelerator for established nonprofits, Dan's work is to realise the potential of digital in achieving social and charitable aims.

Sheila Taylor MBE

Sheila TaylorSheila began her interest in community work started in the early 1980, chairing local committees and working to retain services within her local community. In early 1990s she began working with the Derbyshire Children’s Hospital on their Kite Appeal, joining them to raise £1.5m to make the hospital the best of its kind at the time. Following that work she progressed to the Prince’s Trust Derbyshire, assuming the Chairing of the Action Panel.

During that work, she was made aware of children being involved in street work and began working with Derby City Council to develop project to support young people identified.

This work led to the development of Safe & Sound Derby, and her work there was pivotal to the success of Operation Retriever, which saw nine men go to prison for 64 years. Following this, there was a surge of requests for support with similar issues across the country and Sheila left her organisation to develop the NWG Network.

This was a network of 256 people in 2011, but today is more than 14000 dissemination points across 300 organisations across the UK, she has been part of the Children’s Commission and the Northern Ireland Inquiries to look at Child Sexual Exploitation. She gave evidence in the Scottish Inquiry, and various national inquiries and reviews looking at the barriers and challenges of making our children safe in today’s society.

In 2016 the NWG Network were asked to host the National Child Sexual Response Unit as identified in the National Action Plan following her attendance at the No 10 Downing Street Summit in March 2015. Over the past three years they received 3,265 requests for support; engaged with 29,797 professionals.

Her work has taken her to learn from other countries in Europe and currently is part of a partnership of eight universities looking at abuse in sport and due to that work has now secured funding from Sport England to expand the Response Unit to work assuring Sports can be a safe activity for our young people to take part in.

Sheila values the importance of family and friends and the time spent together, she also enjoys gardening, cooking for friends and walking.

Ingrid Tennessee

Ingrid Tennessee

Ingrid was appointed chief executive of Quo Vadis Trust (QVT) Housing Association in October 2016. QVT is a charity providing social housing, care & support for people in South East London living with mental health challenges. She has a Master’s Degree in Clinical and Public Health Aspects of Addictions and is an accredited BACP Counsellor. Her leadership experience spans 25 years in the health and social care sector.

Ingrid grew up in a deprived area of Guyana, South America, but despite the challenges presented by this, became a Secondary School Teacher at a school where she was once a pupil. She moved to the UK in the early 90s.

The rich tapestry of her experience includes having served as a Special Constable in the Metropolitan Police Service gaining first-hand experience of hard to reach groups and individuals who have fallen through various safety nets. She has also served as a district councillor with Sevenoaks Council and became a member of the audit and housing committee, followed by being vice chair of governance.

Ingrid has an in depth understanding of the effects of homelessness, social, complex mental health issues and dual diagnosis, with expertise in designing and delivering tailored services for these needs. Her achievements include the innovative remodelling of first core and flexi approach to care and support for mental health services in the London Borough of Lewisham.

Ingrid has a passion for shaping person centred services for vulnerable people experiencing barriers to self-fulfilment. Her promotion of equality and diversity in the services she leads resulted in her being shortlisted for the National Equality and Diversity Housing Sector Award in 2017.

Her other achievements include successful implementation of volunteering programmes to support core staff in the third sector. She understands and has proven that this type of support maximises and augments permanent staffing capacity and service delivery in smaller organisations, primarily for the benefit of clients, but also for those involved in delivering the service and for wider society.

Ingrid feels honoured and privileged to serve as an NCVO trustee and looks forward to adding value to the organisation’s future.

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