Board of Management

Joan Mortimer

Joan MortimerChair of the Board of Management
Joan lives in Brighton and before her retirement in 2011 worked for an international IT and business services company, predominantly working with local government.

In the past she was a volunteer at the Brighton Women’s Centre, Women’s Aid and Lesbian Line and is a former member of the Threshold Management Committee. Joan brings strong business planning and strategic human resource skills, as well as experience of risk management and strategic commissioning.

She is committed to tackling the causes of poverty, homelessness and exclusion, and has a real understanding of the role of legal services in protecting basic human rights.

Sarah Butler

Sarah had a career in higher education management. Nine of those years were as a senior manager (director of a division) and part of the senior professional services team, at the University of Sussex.

Although she specialised in academic affairs and quality assurance in the last fifteen years, she also had extensive experience of university governance and strategic planning. From 2006 to 2014, she was seconded half time to the national Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education (QAA), working as an Assistant Director in the areas of standards, quality and enhancement.

Hugh Burnett OBE DL

Hugh is a former High Sheriff of East Sussex and is currently a Deputy Lieutenant for East Sussex.

A Chartered Accountant who has spent his whole career in sales and manufacturing, Hugh brings, amongst other things, extensive experience of strategic business development, planning and finance. He is Chair of Newhaven-based Enterprise Works, a charity and social enterprise helping new companies to develop and grow and has personally been given the Queens Award for Enterprise Promotion. He has extensive knowledge of key people in Brighton and Hove and within East Sussex.

Kirsty Coates

Chair of the Operations and Personnel Committee
Kirsty is Support Services Lead of Here (Care Unbound), winner of 2017 UK Social Enterprise Award.

Kirsty leads the team providing central service support including governance, HR, finance and facilities. Here deliver health services together with partners; it’s purpose is to create more possibilities for care in every moment.
Kirsty has worked in operations throughout her career and is passionate about the voluntary sector. She has worked in politics, international development, the arts and health services in organisations whose mission is to support people.
Originally from the Vale of Leven, near Glasgow, Kirsty moved to Brighton to study Cultural and Historical Studies and fell in love with the city.

Leona Daniel

Leona Daniel brings a wide range of legal experience to the Board having spent her working life as a solicitor, and has worked abroad in Zambia and Papua New Guinea.

Latterly Leona has specialised in family law and she has a particular expertise in children law. She has represented both parents and children in care proceedings. Families involved in care proceedings often have multiple problems, in areas such as housing, debt and substance misuse, where BHT offers such essential help. Leona has business experience having been a partner in a firm of solicitors and also run her own practice.

Gerry Main

Gerry Main is a current BHT tenant and former BHT client, and brings a wealth of valuable experience and insight to the Board.

Gerry is currently a Project Support Worker for Turning Tides, a community-based homelessness organisation that is active across Sussex. He brings knowledge gained from courses in business, mental health awareness and counselling, as well as an internship with Routes focused on fundraising and promotional activities. He has first-hand experience of the positive role that work and learning can play in recovery. He has also volunteered with local charity Impetus, linking people to community services and groups that improve their health and wellbeing.

Gerry said:

I think having tenants on the Board will really help with keeping BHT in touch with its roots and commitment towards supporting and working with the most vulnerable people in our society.

Mary Tawiah

Mary Tawiah is another current BHT tenant and former BHT client, bringing a diverse range of experience and skills to the Board.

Mary is a proud tenant of BHT and a graduate of the University of Sussex. During her studies, she was awarded the Sussex Excellence Scholarship and was a student representative for postgraduate students. She has worked for a variety of local organisations, including Southdown Housing, Lavender House, The Outlook Foundation and the NHS. She has volunteered for St Joseph’s Night Shelter, The Brighton Soup Run, St Anne’s Day Centre and Martlets.

Everything she does is strongly rooted in her deep love for mankind, as she believes we are all part of one human race. Mary is strongly committed to eradicating poverty and homelessness through empowerment, inclusion and education.

Melanie Davis

Melanie Davis’s background is in TV and media, and as a social justice campaigner.

She has been involved with many committees, as a volunteer member and Chair and as an elected Brighton & Hove City Councillor.

The committees included environment, community centres, schools, Citizens Advice Bureau, and several arts organisations.

Her strengths include motivating teams, recruiting volunteers, fund raising and improving communications. She is currently on the board of the new Brighton & Hove Green Spaces Forum and the Chair of the Friends of St Ann’s Well Gardens. She is also a representative on Community Works.

Peter Freeman

Chair of the Finance, Audit and Risk Committee
Peter has a wide experience in management and governance.

He is Chair of Governors at Coombe Road Primary School in Brighton. His previous Boards include BHASVIC Sixth Form College, the Institute of Development Studies, Shared Interest Society and the International HIV/AIDS Alliance. He retired from the Department for International Development after ten years in senior posts, latterly as Director for Africa.

Roger Hinton

Roger is a retired chartered secretary who has lived in Brighton for over forty years.

He worked in various administrative and teaching jobs before retirement, most recently with the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy.

Roger has served on the board of the Teachers Housing Association, including a period as its chair. He currently chairs the Regency Society of Brighton and Hove.

Roger brings to the board considerable experience in the fields of governance, business planning and the development and management of social housing.

Kelvin MacDonald

Kelvin is a Senior Fellow at the Department of Land Economy, Cambridge and is the Specialist Adviser on planning policy to the House of Commons Communities & Local Government Select Committee. He is a Visiting Lecturer at the Department of Architecture and Design at the University of Brighton.

He is a contracted Examining Inspector dealing with major infrastructure projects for the Planning Inspectorate. He was a member of the Board of Trustees of Shelter and a member of the Committee of Shelter Scotland until 2016. He was previously Director of Policy and Research and then the Chief Policy Adviser to the Royal Town Planning Institute.

Ian Millar

Ian lives in Brighton and has had extensive executive and non executive Board level experience across a range of public sector and charity organisations including housing.

He is a qualified accountant and has led on finance in health, education, criminal justice, financial services and local government. However, he also brings the Trust a track record of having led strategic planning, IT, estates, business development and communications, organisational development and transformational change for a range of large organisations.

Bill Randall

Bill Randall was a Brighton and Hove City Councillor for 12 years. He was Leader of the Council, Chair of the Housing and Communities Committee and Mayor of the City.

He was a partner in a successful publishing company and ran a PR consultancy working with housing organisations for 25 years. He was the first communications officer at both the National Federation of Housing Associations (NFHA) and the Chartered Institute of Housing (CIH) where he was the founding editor of Inside Housing.

An award-winning journalist, he is also the author of many housing publications. A former Chair of Shelter’s National Housing Aid Trust, he was a Family Housing Association (London) Committee Member and a Trustee of Age Concern, Brighton and Hove.

He is Chair of House, Brighton and Hove’s biennial contemporary arts festival and a Trustee of Brighton Table Tennis Club.