Karen’s background is in programme management and logistics. Having worked in production in BBC news and current affairs, she changed career and worked as an aid worker in Indonesia, Kenya, Sierra Leone and Liberia, working on both emergency aid programmes and long-term development projects. These included emergency food relief, water and sanitation projects and a variety of medical projects with both refugees and local populations. Karen joined Signal’s Africa-focussed predecessor the Woodford Foundation in 2007 in a part-time capacity and became full-time in 2009.
Joanne has been employed as an Outreach Worker with Signal and its predecessor the Shropshire Deafness Association since 2009, working to improve communication with the deaf community of which she is an active member. She provides support, assistance, signposting and representation for a variety of deaf clients. She is a member of the Disability Independent Advisory Group (DIAG) working with West Mercia Police, which raises awareness of deaf culture, access and communication. Joanne became deaf after contracting meningitis at six months of age. She was educated at the Royal School for the Deaf in Exeter and the Mary Hare Grammar School.
Paul came from an arts background after studying for a degree in Three Dimensional Design. He soon entered the world of environmental conservation after college and worked for the British Trust for Conservation Volunteers (BTCV) for over 16 years as a trainer, co-ordinating and teaching both practical conservation skills and habitat management courses. He also worked as BTCV Area Manager for Shropshire and Staffordshire. Paul then moved on into charitable fundraising for the World Wide Fund for Nature, before emigrating to Australia where he has worked in both the charity and private sectors. Now returned to the UK, Paul has continued his career in the third sector and has become our first Signal: The Hub Manager.
Having worked in marketing for over 15 years, Catriona brings with her a range of skills including business planning, project management, communications and public relations. Catriona is delighted to be working for Signal and enjoys using her skills to make a positive difference to the people we support.
Emma has had many years of working in mental health, helping adults with enduring mental health issues to enjoy a more active lifestyle within their community. More recently, she worked for the Alzheimer’s Society for six years supporting people with dementia and their carers, as well as facilitating a dementia training programme for carers. Regularly out-and-about for Signal, Emma coordinates our various training courses, talks and public events.
Sarah has spent much of her life volunteering and fundraising for various charities, including the MS Society, Age UK, Carers UK and Shropshire RCC. She secured a placement in Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust’s Audiology department and has long held an interest in this area due to her father’s own severe hearing loss. Sarah loves the variety that her role at Signal brings.
Tabby has joined the team to lead on Signal’s fundraising strategy. She has over ten years’ experience in project management, capacity building and fundraising within the third sector. More recently she has worked as a consultant, supporting third sector organisations with income generation, governance and development. Tabby has a strong track record in securing income and brings with her knowledge on funding, having worked for The Big Lottery Fund in her career. She is passionate about supporting local communities to reach their full potential and enjoys meeting people of all walks of life.
Suzanne studied foreign languages and literature and social science at Cambridge and Birmingham universities and has worked in the fields of logistics and journalism. She also has a history of and continuing involvement with local environmental, human rights and anti-poverty campaign groups. Suzanne volunteered at Signal before joining the team as a staff member, and she thrives on witnessing the positive differences that the charity’s work makes.
Heather brings a wealth of wide-ranging business experience to her administration role. As well as covering essential day-to-day tasks, Heather supports her colleagues, helping in any ways possible, to streamline their workload and to make their working lives easier. She enjoys the variety that her role brings (!) and loves working for Signal.
Kelvin is an experienced finance professional with a focus on the charity sector and international development. He joined Signal on a part-time basis in 2017 and is a valuable addition to the team.
We are overseen by a Board of Trustees. The Board oversees the working of the charity and makes sure that the funding that we receive is used in the most effective way.
Martin moved to Shrewsbury in 1981 to become a teacher at Kingsland Grange Preparatory School for Boys. After a 28-year career, of which 20 years were spent as Head Teacher, he left to become the Community Development Manager of Shrewsbury Town Football Club in 2009. This role enabled him to network with organisations and individuals across the community. His work revolved around getting the football club into the community and the community into the football club, so that many initiatives were supported that will make a difference to people’s lives. Projects involving health, education, social inclusion and sports participation were implemented in partnership with other organisations within Shropshire. In August 2012 he became Head of Community Development and Head of Human Resources at the football club. In June 2014 Martin moved to the role of PR and Communications Executive for the Greenhous Group, a motor vehicle fleet and retail dealerships across Shropshire.
Rita has over 25 years’ experience of working in the voluntary sector, including supporting parents’ groups to develop and manage community-based childcare services, the development and management of a region-wide out of school care network, the development of the Scottish Out of School Care Network and the initiation and latterly management of a childcare community enterprise. Rita has worked in partnership with a range of voluntary and public sector bodies, including local authorities, colleges, universities and voluntary sector organisations and networks. Rita served on the Board of the Scottish Out of School Care Network from its inception in 1991 to October 2010. She currently works as Senior Trusts and Foundations Fundraiser with Sense Scotland.
David spent his career working in London in the education sector. He worked in both state and independent schools, latterly as Headmaster at Forest School where the pupil numbers doubled under his headship. David returned to Shropshire after he retired and settled back in Shrewsbury, becoming a committed member of the local community including the Shropshire Wildlife Trust, Shrewsbury Drapers Company and St Chad’s Church. David brings a wealth of management experience to Signal’s Board. In 2016 he was awarded an MBE for his services to charity and the community in Shrewsbury.
Kath is a proud Salopian whose early working life was spent in Local Government. For the past 20 years she has worked in education, supporting young people with special educational needs.
She has considerable experience of volunteering with Shropshire St John Ambulance and has held various roles within the youth section of the organisation. Kath is a committed member of St Peter and St Paul’s Church, Wem. She joined Signal’s Development Committee in 2013 and became a Trustee in 2015.
Alex has spent his career in the financial services industry and brings his financial experience to the charity sector. He is currently the CEO and Managing Partner at Financial Relationships LLP.