Our trustees

Board of Trustees 2017

Meet our trustees

Sally Lefroy, Chair

I have over 35 years' experience working as a qualified social worker and senior manager in Children and Adult Services for West Sussex County Council and two London boroughs. I have always had a great interest in mental health and for a period of time I was an approved social worker under the Mental Health Act. In the latter part of my career I worked closely with NHS statutory services to improve and develop mental health services. I have been a carer for a close relative with mental health needs and I understand the impact on partners and families of supporting a family member who is experiencing mental health difficulties.

I was a co-opted member of Worthing Mind Executive Committee in the mid 1990s when I helped support the development of the organisation in its early days.

Since my retirement 10 years ago I have worked in a voluntary capacity as a trustee for several organisations. I joined Worthing and Arun Mind in 2012 and continued as a trustee of West Sussex Mind, becoming the Chair of the Board in 2016.

I feel I am able to use my social care skills and experience for the benefit of West Sussex Mind and I am keen to support the organisation to continue to expand; both in the development of innovative services and our education programme.

Brian Hughes  

I became a trustee of Worthing and Arun Mind in 2010 because of my strong interest in mental health issues and my concern at the way these illnesses were seen as different to, and less important than, physical illness. My career prior to retirement from the NHS had laid the foundations for my involvement with Mind. I became chair of Worthing and Arun Mind in July 2011 which I was proud to do until we merged with Chichester Area in December 2013. 

Creating a new community hub for mental health services in Worthing, merging with other organisations and growing to meet the challenges ahead has been a key goal for me. My particular interests as a trustee are in corporate governance, public involvement, public and community relations and in creating strong links between trustees and the communities we serve. 

Neville Pressley  

I have been a trustee of Worthing and Arun Mind and then West Sussex Mind for nearly 25 years. I am a 71-year-old retired chartered accountant having been a partner in a large local firm. I continue working in a part-time capacity as finance director for the family company which has a number of jewellery shops in Sussex.

I have been actively involved in the voluntary sector for more than 40 years. I was a trustee of Guild Care for 30 years, including a period as chair. I became a trustee of Worthing Mind in the early 90s, soon becoming chair and continuing till 2011. I was the first chair of Worthing Homes, serving for seven years, I served two nine-year terms as a governor of Northbrook College, being vice chair for 13 years and I was a trustee of the Ropetackle Centre for eight years. Apart from West Sussex Mind, I am also a trustee of the Adur and Worthing Trust, a charity set up to promote cultural activities

I am proud to have been associated for so long with what is now West Sussex Mind and I consider that my role in its development from a small charity, which started with only three staff, as having been the most rewarding of my voluntary career. My main activity as a trustee is serving on the finance committee.

Bob Smytherman

I have been a Trustee with West Sussex Mind since 2008 (formerly Worthing & Arun Mind). I have a strong commitment to support the development of good quality services for people with mental health issues. I am a very keen user of social media in keeping people informed about mental health related issues.

I am currently a Worthing Borough and West Sussex County Councillor. I was Mayor of Worthing in 2013/14 and used my Mayoral year to raise awareness around mental health in Worthing with West Sussex Mind being one of my chosen charities and was co-founder of Worthing mental health awareness week which takes place in October each year to coincide with World Mental health day.

As well as being a Councillor I am also Town Crier for Worthing a role which brings me into contact with many local people and public figures enabling me to further raise awareness around Mind’s work.

Daniel Bird  

I have been joint treasurer of West Sussex Mind since the charity was founded in December 2013. Prior to that, I was a trustee of Chichester Area Mind so have been involved with the charity for more than six years. I am responsible for ensuring the charity's finances are sound and for advising the board on the financial aspects of the decisions it makes. I work for a grant-making charity in London and am passionate about ensuring that Mind continues to run excellent services for local people, and that we take every opportunity to use our voice in the local community to raise awareness and combat stigma.

Alison Langley  

I have served on the board of trustees of Worthing and Arun Mind and then West Sussex Mind since 2005, when I joined after my retirement. I was an old age psychiatrist, with responsibility for the care of older people with mental health issues in and around Littlehampton. Apart from working as a trustee, I have also been a Mind quality assessor, looking at the way other Mind associations work, and helping us to learn from best practice.

In addition I have worked as an inspector for the care quality commission since 2012, assessing the quality of services provided by both hospitals and care homes. As a trustee I am particularly interested in making sure the services we provide are of high quality and meet the needs of the people we serve and in helping to improve how people who use our services can be more closely involved in the way they are run.

Sue Hawker  

I have worked in local government for 37 years, managing a range of public services In different counties across the country. I retired in March of this year, having worked for West Sussex County Council for 23 years as county librarian, head of democratic services, director of business change and director of community services.

Throughout my career I have been passionate about improving the opportunities for individuals and improving services and localities wherever possible. I am keen to continue to contribute to these important issues and feel that mental  health issues are integral to this and deserve more attention. It would be an honour to help West Sussex Mind develop their already vital, and much appreciated, services and role within communities as a member of the board of trustees.

Tony Woolgar

I have been a Trustee of Worthing & Arun Mind and now West Sussex Mind since 2014. When I was young I successfully trained in Nigeria and then worked for the Medical Research Council and later the Open University. Then I became unwell mentally and physically. Mind has played an important part in my recovery so I am pleased that I have been able to to serve as a trustee for over 12 years. As I am able to do more to promote understanding I hope to continue in this role.

Tracey Horne

I became a Trustee in 2018 after having received support at West Sussex Mind's Littlehampton hub for three years. I have been a peer mentor, supporting other service users in Littlehampton, for over two years. I really enjoyed my role as a peer mentor and this led me to want to become more involved and to join the Board.

Mind has supported me on my recovery journey and I am happy to give something back and also be a voice for service users.

I worked in education for 25 years, some of which was in a managerial position, and I hope to use all my experiences to benefit West Sussex Mind's Board.

Paul Karas

I am delighted to become a trustee of West Sussex Mind. After 40 years as a scientist and leader in industry, I have seen first hand how important mental health is to the success of both the individual and the business in the workplace – and how difficult it can be to achieve in today’s business and social environment.

Like many people, my family and friends have experienced the positives of good mental health support services.

Now that I have stopped work, I am trying to focus on worthwhile voluntary work that will make a difference for a mixture of small outdoor orientated clubs and larger organisations. I hope that my industry/business-focused background and scientific/analytical outlook will complement the skills and experience of my fellow trustees in West Sussex Mind. I aim to support the team to continue to innovate and make the best of new opportunities over the coming years.

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