Jill Mindham-Walker - Chair

Jill became a trustee in 2015, serving as Chair since 2018. She has been a Head of Modern Languages in both state and independent schools. Prior to this she spent four years in a London marketing communications company promoting Spain to the public and the UK travel trade. She was Head of Communications of an international auction house after which she joined the Corporate Finance Department of a London Advertising plc, as associate board director.  As part of the new European network, Jill established a successful advertising agency in Madrid of which she was a main board director.  She now works as a freelance teacher and script writer for educational audio resources.

Rachel Swinburne - Lawyer

Rachel joined the Board of NDAS in 2018.  She is a partner at Clarke Mairs, – Head of Private Client and a Panel Deputy for The Court of Protection. Previously she worked for 17 years as a Law Society Children Panel Solicitor representing children in care proceedings. Rachel is also a Trustee of Oswin Projects who are involved in the rehabilitation of Offenders, working at/with HMP Northumberland.

Alison Richardson - Marketing

Alison joined the Board in Sept 2017 with oversight for marketing and communications.  She has over 25 years’ experience of working

in communications and PR. Latterly, she worked for one of the North East’s largest housing groups where she managed a small team

 to deliver a whole range of communications including  internal communications, branding,  public affairs and digital communications.

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Pat Oliver - Safeguarding

Pat joined the NDAS Board in 2019 as a trustee with safeguarding oversight.  She originally trained as a registered nurse but moved on to become a Community Nurse Manager, covering teams in North Tyneside and Northumberland, until she retired in 2018. During her career Pat has held supervisory roles in safeguarding, with day-to-day responsibility for numerous teams and individuals.  This frequently included work around child protection and associated concerns re domestic abuse. She is an accredited Health and Safety Assessor with wide experience developing and delivering domestic abuse awareness courses and latterly personal safety training for the NHS Trust.  She has worked with Independent Domestic Violence Advisers (IDVAs) and with refuges and is also an accredited Suzy Lamplugh Personal Safety Trainer. 

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Lucy Brooks 

Lucy has worked for thirteen years for the NHS as a Speech and Language Therapist.  She currently works for Newcastle City Hospital NHS Trust, specialising in working with children with Autism.  She supports an ever increasing caseload of children in thirty primary schools, working closely with families and school staff. Her role involves regular safeguarding support and supervision, and attending Early Help Meetings.  She has also worked as a volunteer for other local charities, including the Hexham Speech after Stroke Club and the Percy Hedley Foundation.

Dan Taylor

Dan recently moved to London but grew up in the northeast.  He has a degree in Economics from Durham University.  He is now working towards the ACA qualification as a trainee in the audit department  of KPMG in London. Dan looks forward to using his economics degree as Finance Trustee for NDAS. In his spare time Dan enjoys sport; he plays a lot of basketball and recently ran the Great North Run.

Lily Mindham-Walker

Lily comes from Northumberland but now lives in London.  She has a degree in Human Geography from the University of York and works for Imaginatives, a consultancy which specialises in sustainable economic development across the world. 


In her spare time, Lily likes to cook, go to galleries and ride. Lily did some voluntary work for NDAS in 2019 and was delighted to join the board of NDAS to gain experience as a young trustee with oversight of the charity’s social media communication.