Our Board of Trustees
Neil has been a trustee of VAST since 1998, and has been the Chair since 2006. A committed socialist, believing in the usefulness of real partnership working, having worked in the private, voluntary, co-operative and state sectors, foster carer for nearly 20 years and still a governor at three different level schools. Neil has also served as an elected City Councillor for 11 years, until 2007. Enjoys most sports, walking, reading and has a keen interest in science. Neil is very passionate about Port Vale Football Club.
Mark is a Chartered Accountant. Until April 2009 he was a partner in the top seven accounting firm, Baker Tilly, having formerly been a Partner with KPMG. He has been the Honorary Treasurer of VAST since 1990. Mark has active community involvement including being a Council Member of the North Staffs Chamber of Commerce up until April 2009. He is a founder trustee of the Staffordshire Community Foundation and a trustee of The Dudson Centre and a member of the University of Keele Audit Committee . Mark is currently the Head of Finance and Corporate Services for the care charity, Saint John of God Hospitaller Services, which provides holistic health, social care and specialist support to many hundreds of the most vulnerable, disadvantaged and marginalised people throughout the UK.
John works for local housing and regeneration organisation Midland Heart as the Regeneration Manager covering the Staffordshire and Black Country regions. Working from the Duncalf Street office in Burslem, John is heavily involved in the overall regeneration of the Burslem & Middleport area alongside partners from the Stoke-on-Trent City Council and Renew North Staffs. John is a keen amateur photographer, a father of two daughters, and has been a Trustee with VAST since 2001.
Liz has a senior management background in health and the voluntary sector. She has worked in Stoke-on-Trent since 2001 in various general management and consultant roles in and for the NHS. She was interim Chief Executive of VAST in 2006. Liz is currently a Director of Change Through Partnership (UK) Ltd, and specialises in setting up social enterprises in health and social care.
John has been a trustee of VAST since 1992. An active member of the Stoke community, John is passionate about the CSO. He has also served as an elected Council member in the past. He has been a voluntary worker at Disability Solutions for over 20 years and also serves on their Management Committee, and is currently their Chairman. John has also in the past served as the Chair of the North Staff’s Race Equality Council and stepped down after completing a three year term.
Chris has been involved in community work throughout the UK for the past 10 years, developing and delivering health, education, environmental, and engagement projects to help overcome local inequalities. Chris is currently working for the Healthcare Careers and Skills Academy at the University Hospital of North Staffordshire developing projects designed to inspire the next generation of health professionals.
Yvonne Jeffries – CBE DL
Married with 2 children, Yvonne Jeffries has worked in education largely for Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent Authorities. During her Headship at Haywood High School, the school, in partnership with Keele University was involved in important research into strategies for raising aspirations of pupils in disadvantage areas. The results of the research were widely applauded, published and used in teacher training and development courses. A contributor to the Open University’s degree course and a speaker at a number of conferences, Yvonne also was invited to become a member of the initial Think Tank set up by Tony Blair as part of his “Education, Education, Education”, agenda. Still committed to raising the aspirations and achievements of young people she is actively pursuing her aims through her work in the Voluntary Sector and as a Governor in 3 schools. She was awarded a CBE for ‘Services to Education’ in 2000 and in 2001 was appointed a Deputy Lieutenant of Staffordshire.
Tim is Group Head of Regeneration, at the Aspire Group. Tim’s role includes leading Aspire’s environmental improvements, resident involvement and employment and skills agenda is all directed at improving the opportunities and experience of communities that Aspire works with.
Tim is also chair of Challenge North Staffs the local hate crime partnership.
Previously he held a range of roles in local government at Stoke-on-Trent City Council and Staffordshire County Council and before that in manufacturing industries. Tim lives with his family in Newcastle.
Peter has worked for over 25 years in a range of posts in youth work, community work, training and development, adult learning and regeneration. He has worked in Gloucestershire, Wolverhampton and Stoke-on-Trent as well as spenidng a number of years self-employed. An active member of his local community, Peter volunteers at a community cafe, supervises a full-time volunteer for a community organisation. In addition to VAST he is on the committee of the local allotment society and volunteers at a local church community centre.
Currently Peter is employed by Staffordshire University as a Senior lecturer in Youth, Community and Regeneration and also has a role as a partnership manager. He has worked for the University for the past three years and is based in the Creative Communities Unit.
Married and having two grown up children, Peter enjoys walking, cycling, gardening, growing vegetables and generally being outdoors.
Married, with two grown up children, David was appointed as a Trustee in 2012. He has been employed as an NHS senior manager in Stoke-on-Trent for the last 26 years. His roles have included Deputy Finance Director for North Staffordshire Health Authority and, latterly, Trust Board Secretary for Stoke-on-Trent Primary Care Trust. A public sector accountant by profession, David’s interests include enjoying the countryside, reading and supporting Stoke City Football Club.