Simon has been Chair of Connected Voice since 2015 and is also the Chair of Northern Stage. He has previously served as Chair of North Tyneside Regeneration Partnership and of Tyneside Cinema. In his professional life, Simon was HR leader of Procter & Gamble Innovation Centres, retiring in 2018 after more than 30 years. Simon has lived in the North East since 1981, is married to Julie and they have two grown up children. He is passionate about the impact the arts can make in transforming lives and the responsibility everyone has to make society better, particularly for those in most need.
Simon Elliott - Chair
Martin Horrocks - Treasurer
Martin Horrocks has more than 30 years practical senior management experience, working largely in the field of finance, but with significant roles in the fields of HR and organisational management. The first half of his career was mostly in the commercial manufacturing world :-very large marine engines, cables and carpets. He cheerfully admits to running away to join a travelling ice skating show, and is still slightly embarrassed about the brief spell in recruitment consultancy. Having seen sense, he embraced the charitable sector, working in the fields of infrastructure, culture and education.
The organisations he’s worked for have varied in size from £500k to £30m turnover, employing between 8 and 600 people. He’s currently enjoying being Finance Manager at Durham Students’ Union.
Nitin Shukla - Trustee
Nitin is Policy, Performance and Scrutiny Officer at the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner for Northumbria. He has worked in the public sector for over 30 years and has experience of equality and diversity. Nitin is Chair of Haven Tyneside which provides supported accommodation for vulnerable people; Vice Chair of Governors at Bridgewater Primary School; Development Board Member of Marie Curie Hospice and member of the ITV Tyne Tees Diversity Panel. Nitin is also a member of Newcastle University Court and Secretary of the North East Gujarati Association. He is a passionate Rotarian, Past President of Newcastle West Rotary Club.
Elaine Slater - Trustee
Elaine has worked in the charitable sector since 2004 and has a vast experience of supporting vulnerable and disadvantaged people. She is currently the Chief Executive Officer at Tyneside Women's Health supporting women to improve their mental health and emotional wellbeing. Elaine is a trained and qualified counsellor and is an experienced charity leader.
Paula Park - Trustee
Paula is a Chartered Accountant with over 15 years’ experience in a diverse range of businesses. After qualifying with Deloitte, Paula worked in a variety of international businesses before moving into the charity sector five years ago. Paula is currently Director of Finance for Newcastle University Students’ Union and their subsidiary trading company, which provide a range of services and opportunities to the students of Newcastle University. Paula has a degree in French and German and enjoys travelling and using her language skills.
Amanda Lee - Trustee
Amanda currently works as the Research Centre Manager at St. Oswald’s Hospice. She has worked for over 20 years primarily with public sector organisations (NHS, universities, further education colleges, local authorities); third sector entities (charities, community interest companies); and commercial businesses (pharmaceutical, medical tech., engineering). As such, she has significant experience in cross-boundary working. Separately, Amanda also specialises in coaching and supporting organisational and team development.
Hannah Owens - Trustee
Hannah has a BSc in Environmental Science and has over 10 years’ experience working in sustainability and environmental management. Hannah is currently Sustainability Manager at Newcastle University, leading on development and delivery of sustainability projects and action plans to address the climate and ecological crises, and create a more sustainable future.
Hannah is passionate about all areas of sustainability and environmental justice. She has a keen interest in engagement and education for sustainability, as well as incorporating decision making on environmental and social issues within investment strategies to bring about positive change.
Colette Harrison - Trustee
Colette has worked in the charity sector for over 20 years with a particular interest in connecting arts, education and volunteering. Colette has provided consultancy support locally and nationally to develop volunteering programmes. In Europe she has supported employability initiatives.
Colette is currently Development Officer, Sector Support at Community Foundation Tyne & Wear and Northumberland, supporting charities to recruit trustees and brokering pro-bono support from the private sector.
Previous governance roles include as Chair of Youth Action Network, National Council for Voluntary Youth Services and Fertile Ground. Colette is currently Chair of Grey College Advisory Board at Durham University, a mentor with The Girls' Network and Trustee with Fagus Anstruther Memorial Trust.
Tracy Huitson - Trustee
Tracy is NHS GP Practice Manager, West End Family Health. Tracy has worked in the healthcare and voluntary sector for 15 years, taking responsibility for leadership and governance for medical and community services, maintaining a focus throughout on equal access to healthcare for those less able to access it easily. In addition, Tracy helped to establish and grow West End Family Health CIC, a collaboration of practices who came together with voluntary sector organisations explore new ways of working to improve the wellbeing of people living in Newcastle.