Old name, new purpose: why we’ve gone back to RNID

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Leaders and trustees

Our people are at the heart of our organisation – along with all our amazing members and supporters. Find out more about our leaders and trustees. 

Mark Atkinson, Chief Executive

Mark wearing a suit and smiling

Mark joined RNID in October 2018 after five years at Scope, including three and a half as its Chief Executive in which he led the development and execution of a transformational new strategy.

Mark’s career has predominantly been in the social and charitable sector working in leadership roles across strategy, policy and communications for organisations including Citizens Advice, Youth Sport Trust and Ambitious about Autism. Mark worked for the Local Government Association in both Westminster and Brussels and previously was National Vice President of NUS.

Alongside his work at RNID, Mark is a Trustee of Prisoners Abroad, a human rights and welfare charity that supports British citizens imprisoned overseas.

John Morgan, Trustee

John joined the Board as Chairman of RNID in December 2016.

He is currently Chief Executive of Morgan Sindall Group plc, having co-founded Morgan Lovell in 1977 which then reversed into William Sindall plc in 1994 to form Morgan Sindall Group plc.

John is a chartered surveyor with a BSc degree in Estate Management from Reading University and an MBA from the Open University, and has lived with hearing loss the majority of his adult life.

Claire Bailey, Trustee

Claire Bailey joined the Board of Trustees in 2018 as a co-opted trustee to bring her financial expertise to the work of the Board. She is the Chief Transformation Officer for GKN Driveline, a global partner to the automotive industry and she has a distinguished CV of financial leadership and transformation across a number of sectors.

Lindsay Foster, Trustee

Lindsay is Executive Director of a leading national deaf charity, who are also the lead awarding body for British Sign Language. She is passionate about improving communication between deaf, deafblind and hearing people, and creating better communities in the process.

She says: “I want to make sure that deaf and deafblind people have the same opportunities as everyone else, and the same access to education, employment and services. I am confident I can use my skills and experience in this area of education, diversity and inclusion to progress the aims of RNID.”

Ingrid Gallen, Trustee

Louise wearing striped top and smiling

Ingrid is both the parent of a hearing impaired child and a Chartered Accountant working within the third sector. As the Company Secretary of a regional charity that contracts with health trusts and government departments, Ingrid understands the internal and external issues facing charities in the current economic climate.

This combination of personal and professional skills enables Ingrid to contribute effectively to the decisions made about the direction of RNID on behalf of service users, staff and other stakeholders within Northern Ireland, ensuring that their voices are heard.

Ingrid’s personal interests include swimming and she is involved with the Great Britain Deaf Swimming Club.

Gideon Hoffman, Trustee

Gideon is an advisor and investor in commercial media and technology ventures. Previously a founding partner in a media business, Gideon oversaw growth to international scale. He also spent a decade advising ministers on policy matters at HM Treasury.

Gideon has severe hearing loss and has worn hearing aids since childhood, as do his son and mother. He is a Fulbright Scholar and holds an MBA from Columbia Business School.

Richard Jones, Trustee

Richard wearing a check shirt and smiling

Richard Jones has many years experience in social care and health services having worked for central government, local government and the NHS. Richard was President of the Association of Directors of Adult Social Services in 2010 and was awarded a CBE in 2011.

Richard’s last role was with NHS England, where he had responsibility for commissioning a wide range of health care services. Richard is now an independent consultant who works with a range of social care and health services clients. Richard is also a trustee with Shared Lives, and is a non-executive director for Anchor Housing.

As the brother of two siblings with hearing loss, Richard has experience of the impact of hearing conditions within his family.

Tom McCarthy, Trustee

Diagnosed deaf aged three, a hearing aids user aged four, Tom grew up with hearing loss. Fortunate to get the support needed to attend mainstream school, Tom was keen to make a difference on graduating from university. He joined NHS Scotland’s graduate management training programme and now is an Improvement Advisor with Healthcare Improvement Scotland. Tom leads national improvement programmes for people with dementia. Previously an active Scottish Advisory Group member, Tom lives in Edinburgh. 

He says: I will share my experiences and skills to ensure that all people with hearing loss are able to live their lives to the fullest. I look forward to fully playing my part and contributing to the work of the Board.’

Jacqueline Press, Trustee

Jacqueline is profoundly deaf with two daughters, one of whom is hearing and the other profoundly deaf. After attending a hearing school as a child, Jacqueline became interested in the understanding of cultural and mainstream aspects of deafness to gain a greater insight into the lives of those impacted by deafness. This interest led Jacqueline to become a Family Services Manager at the Jewish Deaf Association supporting the elderly, deafened, hard of hearing, young adults and families. Jacqueline recently created a social network for young deaf people

Dr Brian Caul, Trustee

I developed close links with RNID in the 1980s when I was Director of Student Services in the University of Ulster, and co-founded the Joint Universities Deaf Education Centre (JUDE) with QUB. Later I served as Chair of the N.I. Advisory Group of RNID. RNID published my research study of the school-leaving qualifications of young people with hearing loss in Northern Ireland, and my biography of Francis Maginn, the great pioneer for the rights of deaf people. I have also chaired the Boards of two third level Colleges. As a result, I have substantial experience and expertise in governance, strategic planning and the management and overview of large scale budgets.

Since November, 2015, I have been the chair of CRAICNI, a training agency which runs courses on cultural awareness. All the trainers are from ethnic minority backgrounds. Because of our network of contacts, we are liaising with the team running the HTIAC project in Northern Ireland.

In recent years, I have given lectures to community groups and run an information desk at Causeway Hospital for RNID. Following the recent grant award, I am assisting with volunteer recruitment. I am married, a grandfather, 76 years old and have tinnitus in my right ear.