RSAS is governed by a Board of Trustees and is chaired by Anna Woda.
Anna has had a successful career in project management, change management and the delivery of multi-million pound capital and revenue based regeneration projects at Director level in the public sector. Her career culminated in the inception and delivery of a new civic centre in Brent. Having taken early retirement, Anna joined the Board of Trustees of RSAS in 2010 and was elected Chair in June 2014. Anna’s mother has had vascular dementia for over 15 years. Anna has been the primary carer for her on a daily basis while also holding down a responsible full-time job. She has direct experience of the difficulties and stress that carers face and the impossibility of sourcing help and information from one place. It is for this reason that she is passionate about developing the best service that can help, inform and support as many carers of people with dementia as possible. She is keen to use her skills and experience to this end.
“I first joined the Board of Trustees at RSAS in 2012, drawn to the organisation by personal experience of Alzheimer’s disease, having cared for a close relative until their death. I also wanted to utilise my professional experience and skills, to add value to the board of trustees. My background is in nursing and midwifery having been in several senior positions within the NHS including Executive Director of Planning and CEO of a Local Health Board (LHB) in Wales. In retirement I have lent my experience to the boards of several organisations. I am drawn to partnership working, service development and mental health in older people, strategic planning and the management of change. I am so pleased to be re-joining the Board of Trustees of the RSAS at this exciting time in its development.”
“I joined the board of RSAS in 2014, having recently retired as a GP in NW London. I had a special interest in older people, and helped to set up a number of innovative services locally. I admitted patients to a community hospital and helped re-commission the local memory service in my area. I am currently chair of my local AgeUK, and involved in a new charity, Community Action for Dementia in Brent. It seems natural to me, as I move away from clinical practice, to put my skills and energy to supporting carers in other ways, and the RSAS commitment to action research means we can make a real difference to the lives of those who support and care for people living with dementia.”
“Watching the devastating effects and the ripple effect it has on family members, I wanted to get more involved with a charity that acknowledged the challenges people face with caring for someone who has this illness. With the new direction of the RSAS and my experience in business development across both the corporate and charity sectors, I feel strongly about being part of this new journey. The potential to create substantial social impact within an area of care with increasing need, fits well in my core belief that elder people should be treated with dignity, respect and compassion.”
Alan Cogbill spent 35 years as a Whitehall civil servant, holding senior policy, strategy, and finance roles. He worked closely with ministers, judges, academics, legal and consumer groups, and the Treasury. He then became first Chief Executive of the Local Government Boundary Commission for England, leading its set up and first five years of operation. Alongside Alan has been involved in not for profit bodies which tackle disadvantage. He was for ten years a non-executive director of Phoenix Futures, which helps former substance misusers rebuild their lives, and has completed six years as trustee of Avenues, which supports people living with disabilities, illness or injury. RSAS will extend his interest in organisations which help people cope. Alan pursues interests in government and policy as a Senior Research Associate at UCL Constitution Unit. He is a member of the Wales Governance Centre’s advisory board, and of the Council for Licensed Conveyancers.
“I joined the board of RSAS in December 2015. Having had a close family member (who has now passed on) with vascular dementia, I am acutely aware of the huge impact that dementia has on individuals and those who provide unpaid care for them. I joined RSAS in the hope that I can bring my own knowledge and experience to helping deliver the Society’s short and long term aims. Although I’m a veterinary surgeon by profession, my recent experience has been in senior leadership and management roles in the Civil Service, dealing with policy issues concerning animal and public health, and operational, financial and corporate services work. I have experience in change management and strategic planning. I’m also a trustee of Merton Mencap, which has given me a valuable insight into the provision of support for people with learning disabilities and their families.”
Darren joined the RSAS Board of Trustees in July 2017. Darren qualified as an accountant over 20 years ago and has spent most of his career within the financial services industry, including senior finance roles with Abbey National Group, ING Direct and Group Finance Director roles at a midlands-based building society. He has also held Group Finance Director roles in the not-for-profit sector at the Social Investment Business and the Chartered Insurance Institute. He is currently Chief Financial Officer at Saffron Building Society where he is also Society Secretary. Darren brings a wealth of financial and risk management experience to RSAS and has a personal interest in the objectives of the Charity following the diagnosis of a family member with dementia and having seen the demands placed on, and everyday challenges of, the carer.
David Goodridge is a life member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales, and was a partner in Kingston Smith LLP until 2014. In his professional career he acted for a wide range of clients, but specialised in acting for charities, and he holds the ICAEW Diploma in Charity Accounting. Since retirement David has taken up a number of Board appointments. He is a governor of the University of Hertfordshire, where he also chairs the Charitable Trust and the Audit Committee, and a trustee of the Luton Cultural Services Trust, The Duchess of Marlborough Alms House in St Albans and the National Jazz Archive. Leisure time will find him listening to music, watching motor sport and taking care of his bees.
“For over 25 years I worked in Human Resources in business environments and found myself drawn to organisations where major restructuring and attitudinal change was required. Over the past ten years I have been a Trustee of a nursing home, a major UK player in the provision of facilities, care and nursing for older people and people experiencing dementia. In addition I became a Trustee of RSAS in 2010. My professional and Trustee experience was invaluable in the first five years of my time with RSAS, but more importantly my change management experience and pragmatic approach to getting things done I hope will be of value to RSAS as it evolves into a different organisation. Whilst I am only limited experience of caring for my elderly parents I am only too aware of the many other situations where carers desperately need more support and respite.”
Having started his career with Bain & Co, Hugh Risebrow has spent the last fifteen years in leadership roles in private healthcare and the NHS, with BUPA, United Health Europe, Interhealth Canada, Guy’s & St Thomas’s, and synlab. He became a trustee in 2010, wishing to improve services for people living with dementia and their carers, following personal experience when a relative was diagnosed with vascular dementia.
“I joined the Board of Trustees at RSAS in June 2012. I am keen to support the development of a progressive organisation and I was drawn by the ambition of the staff and trustees at RSAS. I wanted to volunteer for a charity that would value my healthcare, management and business expertise but in particular I wanted to support carers. In addition to being a Chief Executive of another charity I am also the parent of a disabled son, so I know many of the pressures that carers face. I understand how hard it can be to find information and help when you need it most and I also know how exhausting and frustrating caring can be on a day-to-day basis. I feel strongly that by supporting carers we can enable people living with dementia to retain their independence, dignity and sense of self-worth. It is this that drives me to make a real difference through working with RSAS.”