Trustees & Trustees Annual Report
Phoenix has a board of six trustees from different backgrounds, and together they use they skills and experiences to support the management and strategic direction of the organisation. In addition, there are two young people also represented on the board to ensure that the organisation is ‘youth led’.
They all contribute their skills voluntarily to help Phoenix develop and grow.
Our Board of Trustees
We have a variety of people on our Board of Trustees, some are parents of deaf or hearing-impaired children; others are from business, education or health sector. We are also delighted to have a Youth Advisory Trustee, who represent the youth group to ensure that their voice is heard at the heart of the organisation.
Current Trustees are:
I became a trustee with Phoenix when the charity was first started by Jane in 2008, having previously known her through The Elizabeth Foundation, where she had worked as Teacher for the Deaf. I have two daughters, one of whom is hearing impaired with a moderate to severe hearing loss, who has recently started a degree at The University of Central Lancashire in Sign Language & Deaf Studies.
I have worked in the financial services sector in a variety of senior roles, and have been actively involved in supporting children and young adult deaf charities over many years, having previously acted as Treasurer and for the last 4 years as Chair for Phoenix.
I was invited to be a Parent Trustee shortly after Phoenix became a charity. Prior to this I had been Chair of the Fund Raising Committee. Heather & I have three children, two of whom are hearing impaired, Sam with profound sensory neural loss in one ear and Rachel with bi-lateral sensory neural loss. Rachel received a cochlear implant in 2012 & 2014, which has been very successful; she now works for the Hearing Dogs for Deaf People charity in the kennels.
I am an Architect, specialising in school design and working in North London and also a Governor of a primary school in Hertford, which all three of our children attended.
I have run the annual family quiz night for a few years and couple of Juggling workshops for Phoenix in the past and look forward to more when required.
My name is Phil Roberts, my wife Esther and I live in Cheshunt, Hertfordshire, we have a profoundly deaf teenage son, Joseph, who is a bilateral cochlear implant user and two younger hearing daughters, Sophie & Stephanie. An engineer and sales professional in the machine tool industry, I am passionate about the work of Phoenix as this charity and many of the founders have been instrumental in providing much needed support for my family. I have particular desire to work to see young deaf people prepared for the very best career opportunities, so they can make their mark in business & industry. I also feel very strongly about the need to provide that all important support to parents of newly diagnosed children – we remember all too well what it was like for us. My brief is to support the board of trustees with particular reference to fundraising development for Phoenix. I am committed to seeing the financial stability of the charity to allow it to achieve its goals.
I have been involved on the periphery of the Phoenix charity since it was set up, but only became formally involved when I was invited to become the treasurer for the charity in 2014. My involvement with deafness is largely a result of my wife who is deaf, which has also led me on to complete BSL level 1 as an aid to communication. Clearly my principal support to the charity is to help develop a sound financial strategy in order that the wonderful work carried out can be continued in a sustainable manner. Professionally I have principally worked in universities, I am a Professor of Aerospace Engineering and have been the head of a school of engineering within the University of London for many years, a role that also has required a similar focus on strategic financial issues.
I was invited to become a Trustee of the Phoenix Group at the AGM in December 2016. I've been involved with Phoenix as a parent for ten years, and have known Jane before that in her role as a Teacher of the Deaf. My son has Auditory Neuropathy Dis-synchrony of which hearing impairment is just one part of the condition. He's been attending mainstream primary school and now attends Knightsfield secondary school, which is specifically for deaf children.
We've found that Phoenix is a very important part of his well-being and social awareness and mixing with his deaf peers has been invaluable.
I'm looking forward to bringing my business acumen to the team, having worked in commercial property as a Buildings Contracts Manager. I'm currently working as a writer for a pop culture website, as well as having produced six books of poetry, two novels, one of which was loosely based on our experience as parents of a hearing impaired child. I'm currently working on my third novel.