How we are governed

 
As an independent charity, we have a Board of Trustees who are collectively responsible for ensuring the organisation is financially sound, well managed and that it meets its charitable objectives.  The Board provides leadership and guidance to the Chief Executive who has day-to-day responsibility for leading and managing the organisation. 
 
Find our annual review here
Find our annual accounts here
 
Our Trustees and Chief Executive:
 

Chair: Paul Southon

 

Paul’s career started in nursing and Health Visiting. In 2003, while completing his Masters in Public Health, he moved into a full time public health role, and worked in NHS and local authority public health until 2017.

During this time Paul led work on early years, public mental health, and the social determinants of health such as housing, employment and poverty.

Since early 2017, Paul has been running a public health consultancy and training company.

Vice Chair: Abisola Latunji-Cockbill

 

Abisola started her career in Birmingham in 2011, after having studied at the University of Birmingham and the College of Law.  She qualified as a solicitor in September 2013 and specialises in employment law and business immigration.

Abisola continues to work in Birmingham at Mills & Reeve LLP.

Abisola enjoys long-distance running, reading, live music and contemporary art.

  

   

 

Honorary Treasurer: Stuart Crowe

Stuart has spent the entirety of his career within the West Midlands engineering & manufacturing community. A qualified accountant, he initially held a number of senior Finance roles in various local businesses before advancing into a series of Leadership positions responsible for operations across the Midlands as well as mainland Europe.


He is now utilising the skills & mindset he has developed to support other small & medium-size enterprises in Non-Executive roles or more informally.


Stuart plans to offer a different perspective to Citizens Advice Birmingham & to support the Senior Management Team in the challenges it faces to deliver effective & timely advice to the people living in the area he has lived & worked in all of his life.

 

Trustee: Liam Brooker

Liam has spent more than ten years working in a range of roles, mainly in local government, with a focus on policy and public affairs . For the past five years he has worked on the HS2 project, working to ensure that the second phase of project is on track to deliver benefits to the Midlands and North.

Liam moved to Birmingham in 2016. In his free time he enjoys getting to know his new home city through its events, food, and cultural life. He looks forward to using his experience to support the work of Citizens Advice Birmingham.

 

 

Trustee: Richard Burden

Richard Burden joined the Board of Citizens Advice Birmingham in January 2021. He is Chair of Healthwatch Birmingham and Solihull and  was previously Member of Parliament for Birmingham Northfield from 1992 to 2019. During his time as an MP, he served as a Shadow Minister and on several Select Committees including chairing the Commons Committee set up to scrutinise West Midlands affairs.


An experienced community leader, Richard drove initiatives to build community resilience in South West Birmingham during a time of deep social and economic challenges, including those related to the loss of car manufacturing at Longbridge.


He also served as a Stakeholder Governor of the Royal Orthopaedic Hospital NHS Foundation Trust until the end of 2019.


A specialist in the automotive industry, Richard is an Honorary Fellow of the Institute of the Motor Industry. Richard also has years of experience in international affairs. He served for ten years on the House of Commons International Development Committee and led cross-party work on conflict resolution and human rights, specialising in Israel and Palestine. He is also a member of the West Midlands Board of the Remembering Srebrenica charity.
 

Before being elected to Parliament, Richard worked as a Trade Union Official representing members in the Water sector, NHS and Local Government.

 

Trustee: Chaitali Desai

 

 

Trustee: Sunny Gill

 

Sunny Gill is the Founder and CEO of Silver Mountain, a multi-disciplinary Digital Marketing and Video Production Agency headquartered in Birmingham.

Silver Mountain has a global client base, spanning across the UK, Europe, the Middle East, China and Australia.

Sunny has over 15 years sales and marketing experience across a diverse range of sectors including manufacturing, FMCG, energy & utilities, telecommunications and professional services.

In 2018, Sunny won the E2E Next Big Scale Up Entrepreneur to Watch Award. He was also shortlisted for Birmingham Young Professional of the Year (BYPY) and the City of Birmingham Business Awards (COBBA).

Sunny is on the Board of Trustees for Citizens Advice Birmingham, an ambassador of Birmingham based Charity, LoveBrum and holds an advisory role with UK based NGO, The Asian Sports Foundation.  He is also an alumnus of Aston Business School

  

Trustee: Jill Lambert

Jill is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals (CILIP) and has held senior positions in several universities.

She is Chair of the Birmingham branch of the charity Vision Care for Homeless People (VCHP), and also Treasurer for the OXFAM Books and Music shop in Lichfield.

 

Trustee: Phil Marris

 

  

Trustee: Councillor Gareth Moore

Gareth joined the Board of Trustees in 2013 as a local authority nominee and is currently a Conservative councillor for Erdington Ward, elected in 2011.

Birmingham City Council Committee Membership 2016-2017:
Licensing and Public Protection Committee
Licensing Sub Committee B
Planning Committee

Gareth is also a governor at four schools and a trustee of the Sir Josiah Mason Trust.

Gareth strongly believes that help and advice should be readily available to all and had been a strong supporter of the work of the CAB, before he joined the Board.

In his spare time Gareth has a strong passion for history and studies Ancient and Medieval History at the University of Birmingham, where he became involved in politics.

  

Trustee: Liz Alvey

Liz Alvey settled in Birmingham in 2013. Liz's professional experience encompasses business and strategy development, contract management and commissioning of services. She has worked in the construction industry and local government and in various not for profit organisations.

Liz's history with the CAB service goes back to 1982 as a volunteer advisor at Newcastle upon Tyne CAB. She went on to manage a busy Inner London CAB and later served as a Board Member for the Croydon CAB Service. Liz has served on the Boards of a number of charities and not for profit organisations.

She is passionate about ensuring people get access to high quality services in their own locality

Trustee: Lydia Stockdale

An award-winning journalist turned communications professional, Lydia was features editor at Inside Housing magazine before moving into public relations in 2014.

As a journalist, Lydia focused on social policy, mainly writing in-depth analysis pieces, reportage, and political interviews, but she also worked on articles about careers and management issues for Property Week and The Guardian.

Currently Public Relations Director at Birmingham-based agency See Media, Lydia now specialises in strategic communications, stakeholder engagement and storytelling, on behalf of clients including housing associations and charities.

Lydia is a member of the Chartered Institute of Public Relations and holds its Professional PR Diploma. She has an MA in Journalism from Goldsmiths College, the University of London, and a BA in English and History from the University of Leeds.

Trustee: Lucy Vernall

Lucy Vernall runs The Academic Ideas Lab which works to connect large audiences with new academic research. Her background is in factual television and she has made programmes for all the major channels in the UK, working for both in-house BBC and independent production companies. 

A graduate of Queens' College Cambridge, Lucy moved to Birmingham in 1999. She is a member of Women in Film and Television, an UnLtd Fellow, and an alumna of the Edinburgh Television Festival's 'Ones to Watch' scheme.

A former Trustee of Action on Postpartum Psychosis, Lucy has a special interest in mental health and in supporting young families, as well as in making services more inclusive.

                                         

Chief Executive: Janice Nichols

Janice took up her post as Chief Executive in October 2013. She is an experienced manager and leader and has held senior management positions in local government and the voluntary sector. Janice has knowledge of the advice sector, previously working as a welfare rights officer in London. 

Janice has a law degree from Coventry University and a Masters in Public Administration from the University of Warwick. She is also a qualified executive and leadership coach.

Janice is a Trustee of Warwickshire Welfare Rights Advisory Service. 

Janice is very committed to helping people access the best possible advice services when they need them; she and the Birmingham CAB team are working to provide an excellent service to the people of Birmingham.