Charity № 1072595 Company № 3576786

Reaching People

Commitment to lasting change

Reaching People – Board Members

Gaynor Quilter

Chair (Independent)


Gaynor is a highly experienced not for profit leader with a track record of managing and supporting people, teams and organisations to create, shape and deliver change projects and programmes. Gaynor has worked in charities for over 30 years, principally working with young people in a range of sectors; in youth homelessness with Centrepoint as Hostel Manager and Alone in London as Deputy Director, Learning disability with Macintyre Care Residential School as Interim Director, Parenting with Parentline Plus and in Mental Health with Young Minds as Director of Participation.
Gaynor was the CEO of Alone in London and set up the first homeless family mediation service in the country in 2000. After 10 years she led on the merger with a larger national charity that secured the advice and counselling service for young Homeless people.
She returned home to Leicester to be a carer for her Mum. She then become CEO at Apex Works, where she extended the Support, Learning and Job offer of Apex to include projects that work with Homeless people and those with a Learning Disability. She consulted with service users to choose the right 6 job sectors for them and “practise labs” were set up that enable service users to practice, learn, gain skills and experiences that would lead to a more fulfilled, healthy and ideally happier life. Gaynor is now MD of mindfulness community intreat company. She teaches mindfulness practices to a wider range of people; is a mindfulness coach for senior and emerging leaders and advises on mindful change management projects mainly within the Charitable sector.

Gaynor has been a Trustee for a range of organisations over the years including: Connections at St Martin’s, Homeless Network, Nigerian Popular Theatre Alliance and Cardboard Citizens. For 9 years Gaynor was Vice Chair of Centra care and support . She was co-founder of Reaching People and is now their independent Chair.

David Ahlquist

Business Development Manager, Locality UK (Independent Trustee)

Dave had an involvement as a member in the early days of Reaching People and now sits as an independent trustee. With over 15 years’ experience in the social enterprise and charity sectors, he has led on the setting up and leadership of two social enterprises and on organisational change programmes for two more. He has provided business support to organisations and individuals notably through posts with UnLtd and Community Action Network (CAN) and across several volunteer roles. He is able to draw on this combination of ‘hands on’ and advisory experience in his current main role as a Development Manager for Locality UK.

Kathryn Burgess

Executive Director, CALS (Member Trustee)


I have been involved in the field of social welfare law advice since 1980, during which time I have worked as an adviser, supervisor and manager, before taking on my current position as Executive Director in 2000. I am a Trustee of Advice UK, the co-ordinating body for independent advice providers in the UK.

I have always looked for new opportunities and our organisation was the first not-for-profit agency in Leicester/Leicestershire to contract with the Legal Services Commission; I lead the successful bid for the East Midlands Money Advice Partnership, which has 25 delivery partners across the region and for which CALS is the lead agency managing an annual budget of almost £3m. CALS has established a Community Interest Company to support its long-term sustainability as a free social welfare law advice provider.
I enjoy identifying and pursuing opportunities for the development and improvement of social welfare law advice services, and passionately believe in the role of the not-for-profit sector in delivering these services. Recent changes within the sector involving partnership and collaborative working with other providers covering a range of areas of work is new, innovative and exciting, which is why I believe in Reaching People’s potential to make a difference. Even after so many years in this field, my enthusiasm remains.

Tony Cusack

Emerald Centre (Member Trustee)


Tony has worked as a professional youth and Community development worker in the voluntary sector with more than 30 years of experience, managing community programmes working with all age ranges. Tony also has a level 5 Management Leadership qualification and has worked for the last 12 years managing the Emerald Centre and its successes.

Miriam McKee

Miriam has over 30 years working in the engineering sector for major multi- national companies including Dunlop, Hunting Plc and BBA Plc – achieving positions as Commercial Director, Managing Director and Chief Operating Officer.

Miriam also has a long record with the charitable sector with15 years experience as a non-executive director for a variety of charities; in health, supporting adults with learning disabilities, credit union etc. The largest of these charities has a turnover of £55m.

She was recently elected to Hinckley and Bosworth Borough Council, taking on duties including Finance portfolio holder, ICT and children’s services.

Mandy (Wardle) Wardle-McLeish

Chief Executive of the Community Health and Learning Foundation.
Mandy is a Fellow of the Faculty of Public Health and a registered Specialist in Public Health with nearly 30 years of experience in Public Health gained in local authorities, the NHS and now in the voluntary community and social enterprise sector (VCSE). She has worked at local, regional and national levels with a particular interest in reducing health inequalities .She is also Fellow of the Royal Society of Public health and the RSA.

Mandy took over as CEO of the Community Health and Learning Foundation in 2017. CHLF works to reduce health inequalities by working to Improve the health literacy of the health and care system and to empower people to protect and improve their own health and wellbeing.
CHLF develop and provide provide consultancy, resources and training for organisations, professionals, and community development programmes for communities.