Philip has long experience as a senior manager in adult and further education. Retired in 2015, for the last nine years he was Deputy Principal of Newham College and was previously Vice Principal of City Lit. His experience encompasses education and charity governance and as an agent of transformation and change.
Wendy Jones is a freelance writer who combines communication skills and an understanding of the media with senior level experience of complex organisations in the public and voluntary sector and wide experience of charity governance. A former BBC education correspondent and Today programme reporter/presenter, Wendy has also worked both as the BBC’s deputy secretary and its head of education policy. She has been a trustee of several charities, including the Alzheimer’s Society and the Poetry Society, and two years ago helped to found a national education charity, National Numeracy. She also served as a complaints panel chair in the NHS for a number of years. She has personal experience of dementia through the illnesses of both her parents.
Alan Merkel was a partner in the solicitors firm of Edwin Coe, based in Lincoln’s Inn, in its litigation department. He retired from practice in 2015, but continues to work there one day a week, doing internal auditing. He is a volunteer at the London office of War Memorials Trust, and does outdoor conservation work on Hampstead Heath and at Kenwood for Heath Hands, of which he is currently a trustee. He also attends a monthly drop in centre for asylum seekers.
Mycal is a facilitator and trainer in the field of dementia support. Clients have included include Alzheimer’s Society, Dementia UK, Dementia Pathfinders and My Home Life, working with people with dementia, family carers, care home staff, managers, domiciliary workers, volunteers, healthcare practitioners, nurses and local council employees. He is also a film maker. He worked for ATV and Central Television and has made a number of training and information films, including Keith's Story, a powerful film that stuns by illustrating our own false preconceptions about dementia. He served for three years as Director of Brent Samaritans and then later as Samaritans London Regional Representative and regional trustee of the national charity.
Tim O’Brien qualified and worked as a chartered accountant before a career of over thirty years in the metals and petrochemicals industries. This involved a wide range of commercial and financial roles including at board level. In recent years he developed and championed transformation of governance and risk management in Shell’s Downstream business. Since 2013 he has been a lay trustee of Kings College students' union where he chairs the audit and risk management committee. His interests include both collecting art and trying to improve his own drawing skills, opera, theatre, Russian and running.
In 2013 Lydia was one of 10 successful candidates out of 400 applicants to work as an apprentice with MediaCom Beyond Advertising where she has enjoyed a successful career ever since. Currently as a content producer, she is involved with TV adverts, branded content and digital media, working on client projects from receipt of brief to final delivery. The role includes writing production briefs, creative treatments and voiceover scripts. Key projects include creative development of 9 simultaneous briefs fort Bayer digital and a major internal communications tool for Dell Computer. In her previous roles with MediaCom, her clients have included Sony Mobile, Volkswagen Group and TUI.
In her spare time she is a painter. Her work has been shown in galleries in London and around the UK as well as being held in private collections.
Lydia has personal experience of vascular dementia and Alzheimer's Disease and has witnessed the pressure this places on caregivers.