Esi Cathline joined the board in 2022, bringing years of experience within Education having taught and worked both nationally and internationally. She is an adopter, foster carer, mother and grandmother. Her experiences of children's social care include being the chair of a foster carers association and an Expert By Experience board member on the Independent Review Of Children's Social Care. She is also a board member of The project board for the RAA Centres Of Excellence programme. Esi is very much a supporter of WAF as an adoption charity which advocates for and promotes support 'by adopters for adopters'.
Mike Clarke joined the board in 2022, bringing over 30 years experience across the public sector including the BBC, Arts Council England and in local government....Most recently as director for libraries, archives and civil registration services in Westminster and Kensington & Chelsea London boroughs, Mike was awarded the MBE in 2021 for services to libraries and volunteering. Before coming to We Are Family, Mike was a trustee with Spread The Word, which supports new writing talent in London, and volunteered for the NHS during COVID-19 and as a Soho Angel, as part of the End The Night Right initiative. Currently Mike is a freelance consultant, and is also an independent member of the scrutiny panel for his local district council. Mike is passionate about what We Are Family does and stands for - as a child Mike experienced infant adoption and wishes there'd been something like it then. Mike now enjoys life near the sea in Kent, and outside of work his interests are theatre, singing, books and being walked by his retired greyhound Will. Mike is a member of both the Board’s Programmes and Strategy and Finance, Fundraising and Resources Committee.
Liz Hocter has been a member of We Are Family since 2014 and joined the board as a trustee in 2021. She is a qualified HR professional and works principally with organisations that are experiencing significant growth or transformation.... Liz is also a skilled communications specialist with a background in developing strategic and technical content to build employee engagement and create sustainable behavioural change. In 2018, Liz founded a specialist workplace consultancy, advising investment funds on hiring, communications and change management. Liz is studying an MSc in organisational psychology and is an adoptive parent to two children. Liz is a member of the Board’s Programmes and Strategy Committee and the Finance, Fundraising and Resources Committee and is the trustee lead for HR.
Mark Hoult-Allen (Chair)
Mark Hoult-Allen (Chair) joined the board of We Are Family in 2019 and was appointed to the Chair on March 2020. Mark began his career in stage and theatre management and also held a number of roles in arts funding including Head of National Touring and then Director of Business Process for Arts Council England.... Following the Arts Council, Mark spent nearly seven years at Comic Relief, first as Head of Grants Operations and then Head of Business Planning & Process. Mark has been a school governor and has held directorships and trusteeships in a number of not-for-profit arts organisations. Mark is now a freelance consultant specialising in charity governance, compliance, and risk. Mark and his partner have two adopted boys, one in his late teens and one in his early 20s. Mark is the trustee lead for data protection and sits on both the Finance, Fundraising and Resources Committee and the Programmes and Strategy Committee.
Anna Willow joined the board in 2022. Anna’s early career in family support and child protection forms the basis of her more recent work as a senior manager in the third sector..., focussing especially on children whose lives have been significantly impacted by trauma associated with domestic violence, parental incarceration, homelessness and wider structural inequalities. Anna leads work which challenges people to consider childhood disadvantages through a lens of equality and power. As an experienced consultant, partnership facilitator and specialist for the needs of children in and leaving care, Anna brings stakeholders together to acknowledge problems as systemic, challenging them to consider ways ahead which are inclusive and empowering of those who are least heard. Anna’s own lived experience makes her a strong and resilient advocate for children and families – of all forms, shapes and sizes. Anna is a member of the Board's Programme and Strategy Committee.
Diane McGrath joined We Are Family as a trustee in 2020 and is the mother of two adopted sons. A British/American national, Diane has 20+ years’ experience in senior business development and global marketing roles for companies including Disney, Procter & Gamble, McKinsey and Reckitt Benckiser.... She has also worked for several nonprofits, such as Sesame Workshop, where she launched Sesame Street in South Africa, Russia and Poland. Most recently, she was on the governing board of Brighter Children, a charity bringing education to impoverished communities around the world, as well as a fellow for Team4Tech, a nonprofit using technology to increase access to education in developing nations. Diane also oversaw fundraising for a local school district in California, raising £3.5M with a team of 60 volunteers. Diane holds a joint MBA/MA from The Wharton School/The Lauder Institute at the University of Pennsylvania. Diane is a member of the Board’s Programmes and Strategy Committee.
Stuart Meek joined the board of We Are Family in February 2021, having adopted his son in 2013. He is an operations director in the rail industry and has worked in TfL and train operating companies in the UK and abroad.... He specialises in strategic change, trade union negotiation and crisis management. Stuart is a member of the Board’s Programme and Strategy Committee and Finance, Fundraising and Resources Committee.
Sobia Shamim joined the We Are Family board as a trustee in February 2021. She is a certified accountant and a commercial and international finance director with over 20 years’ experience in various senior finance roles.... Past employers include British Airways, Cadbury's and Revlon and she is currently working as an FD in the media industry, Sobia has extensive experience in personnel leadership, process improvement and finance & business performance delivery within global blue-chip, FMCG and tech environments, with a strong focus on financial oversight, risk management and internal controls. Sobia is a member of the Board’s Finance, Fundraising and Resources Committee.
Andrew Taylor-Dawson joined the trustee board of We Are Family in 2020. He is Development Manager at the human rights organisation Liberty, where he manages membership and individual giving.... Andrew's core experience is in fundraising, campaigning and communications. He is a co-founder of Fundraising Space, a community that supports learning in the sector and he sits on the board of Board of Global Justice Now as National Secretary. He is an adoptive father and writes a blog about his personal experiences as well the wider issues surrounding adoption and child permanence. Being on the We Are Family board is a way for him to bring together his professional experience and life as an adopter, while helping other adoptive families. Andrew is a member of the Board’s Finance, Fundraising and Resources Committee.
Stephanie Wong joined the trustee board of We Are Family in December 2020. She is a Digital Strategist, currently driving commercial data innovation at ITV plc.... She has over 10 years Data and Digital Media experience and was previously Head of Digital Targeting at The Financial Times. Her expertise lies in emerging technology and strategy utilising disruptive data, such as AI and Machine Learning. She's particularly drawn to We Are Family's focus on building a strong parenting community network. Adoption and parent-child relationship development lie extremely close to her heart. Although not an adoptive parent herself, Steph's aunt was adopted at a young age and played a significant role in her upbringing. She wants to support the vision to reach more families and supercharge the digital transformation of We Are Family's services online. Stephanie is a member of the Board’s Programme’s and Strategy Committee.