Stephen Burns, Chair of Trustees
Warden of the Great Account
Stephen Burns joined the Board in July 2016 to help bring more strategic expertise in housing management and new development to the charity. Stephen is the Executive Director for Care and Communities at Peabody, one of London’s largest and oldest housing associations and charities. He joined Peabody in 1998 and is now responsible for Peabody’s housing management and community investment. He also leads Peabody’s sheltered and supported housing provision.
Stephen’s work has been based in north Southwark since 1991. He has spent 11 years working for charities, technology companies and the welfare to work sector, and also held various voluntary and non-executive positions on Boards, including Trust for London. Stephen became our Chair in September 2020.
Claire Treanor is a planning and property professional with over 28 years’ experience. She was formerly a partner at Montagu Evans in the Planning and Development Department, where she worked for over 15 years. In April 2004, she helped establish DP9, a specialist planning consultancy widely regarded as one of central London’s leading planning practices.
She left DP9 in March 2013 and set up Treanor Consulting to widen the scope of professional planning and property advice and consultancy. Claire is a Southwark resident of many years and her other interests include horticulture, cycling – she helped set up the women’s cycling group pedElle to promote cycling among women in the property industry – and participating in a volunteer reading programme with primary school children.
Claire joined our board in December 2014. She sits on our Finance, Investment and Audit Committee.
Shane Holland is a third sector and business consultant, particularly within the artisanal food sector. He is Chair of Slow Food London, and Executive Chair of Slow Food UK. He is a Trustee of Borough Market has many connections within and around the Market itself.
Shane joined the Board in March 2018 and is a member of the Community Investment Committee and Finance, Investment and Audit Committee.
Ben Johnson PhD, Deputy Chair of Trustees
Thomas Cure’s Warden
Ben Johnson runs engagement programmes for a scientific and medical publisher and is a former local councillor in Southwark, where he lives. He is a member of the Public Advisory Board for Health Data Research UK, where he advises on patient and public involvement and engagement, and is a volunteer at Pembroke House in Walworth. He is passionate about the area where he lives and brings a wide range of skills and knowledge of Southwark neighbourhoods and things that matter to people living and working in them.
Ben joined the Board in March 2018 and is a member of the Community Investment Committee.
Cindy Glover has been resident of north Southwark for over 30 years and is deeply attached and well networked in her community. Her career spans 40 years working as a trained occupational therapist with older people. She has worked in the specialist area of dementia care and support, working in charities, hospitals and sheltered housing, helping design buildings and spaces that are appropriate. She currently works for the Southwark charity Time and Talents and feels it is a privilege to be working with older people, dealing with the challenges they face, and understanding their remarkable lives.
Cindy joined the Board in May 2019 and is a key member of our new almshouse design and services overview team.
Izabela Szmidt is an experienced finance professional and brings United St Saviour’s crucial insight into the world of debt financing and financial markets. She holds a global role at Credit Suisse AG, London, and is a member of the ICE LIBOR Managers Committee. She is a resident of north Southwark, and was a Governor, Deputy Chair and lnterim Chair at the Southwark-based Bridges Federation.
Izabela joined the Board in May 2019 and is a member of the Finance, Investment and Audit Committee.
Kathryn Dowlath (Ogunbona)
Kathryn is an experienced housing professional and is currently CEO of Harrison Housing, a charity provider and manager of high quality almshouses and sheltered housing for older people across London. Her background is finance and she is a certified ACCA accountant. She is passionate about providing excellent support to older people and is particularly excited about growing the size of our housing provision. Through her volunteering work Kathryn knows Southwark well, and she is also trustee of Lambeth-based youth music charity Kinetika Bloco. Like many of her fellow Trustees, she is a proud cyclist.
Kathryn joined the Board in May 2019 and is a member of the Finance, Investment and Audit Committee.
Dwight joined our Board in September 2020 and becomes one of our first Trustees who lives in and brings greater insight into the southern part of the London Borough of Southwark. He was co-opted on to our Community Investment Committee in early 2020, and as a trustee he will continue to bring his valuable contributions to that Committee for many years to come.
After a successful first career as an IT consultant, Dwight is now a professional musician, driven by diversity in music in particular. He is a performer, conductor and academic working across numerous musical genres. As a black musician born in this country he is acutely aware of the difficulties and challenges faced by black musicians of all social backgrounds and ages. Dwight has travelled the UK and globe with his French horn as an active member of the Armed Forces in the Band of the Grenadier Guards.
Princess Bernard is a technology consultant at a global professional services company and a director for the emerging youth organisation STEP NOW (Start To Elevate People Now), working with under-represented young people across Southwark and Lambeth. Princess graduated with a BSc in Accounting and Finance and therefore brings an array of diverse skills and perspectives to the table.
Princess is passionate about bridging the gap between the corporate world and the charity sector for the next generation of leaders. Since her teens, she has worked with her local councils (Southwark and Lambeth) to level the playing field within her community, being part of grant giving programmes and shaping community initiatives, and is excited to be able to share her thoughts and inputs with United St. Saviour’s.
Princess loves travelling, eating chip shop chips and reading self-development books (Ask and it’s Given completely changed my life! – I highly recommend!)
Princess joined the board in December 2022 and is a member of the Community Investment Committee.
Rebecca Towers worked, until recently, for 15 years at a senior level within Southwark Council and before that she was with the charity Groundwork (in Burgess Park). Rebecca has experience of leading teams to deliver services and projects across a wide ranging portfolio including parks, leisure, culture, youth and housing.
During her time at Southwark Rebecca was integral in establishing the council’s women’s network. Last year she took the lead for ‘We Walworth’ – a partnership between Pembroke House, local residents, organisations, central government and the council.
We Walworth is challenging existing ways of working, particularly in relation to power, decision-making and public service delivery. Her background and knowledge will contribute greatly to our Community Investment activity.
Stephen McDonald is currently Director of Growth at the London Borough of Barnet and worked as a Strategic Director for Major Projects in Southwark prior to that.
He has many years of experience in housing, regeneration and placemaking at an executive level, and particular expertise in designing and funding major development and infrastructure schemes.
He also helped to establish The Future of London – London’s public sector regeneration professional association. He is passionate about Southwark, his home for many years.
Jill McGregor is an experienced planning professional who has recently joined the award winning architecture and planning practice, BPTW, as a Director.
She has worked with private, public, social housing and charitable sector clients in her many years as a planning consultant and lives in Southwark.
Jill has a breadth of skills including planning strategy, feasibility, planning applications, project management and working with listed buildings, which we will definitely put to good use!