The Board

Our Board Members


Mark Lewis - Chair

Mark is also Chair of Action for Kids, a national children’s charity that provides services for young people with physical and learning disabilities.

In addition, Mark is the Chief Financial Officer of the Fairbanking Foundation, a charity dedicated to encouraging and helping banking institutions to improve the financial well-being of their customers.

A finance professional with over 30 years’ experience within Financial Services, mainly with major international banks, including 10 years in finance director / commercial director roles.


Ian Cox - Vice Chair

Ian Cox has been a Board Member at Trent & Dove Housing since 2014. He has been Vice Chair since 2015. He has a broad cross-sector experience across the Social Housing Sector.He has 35 years experience at a senior level, having been most recently been a Main Board Director of a Regional Construction Company.

He has been involved in the initiation and construction of around 5,000 affordable housing dwellings throughout his cross sector career.His career commenced in Housing Management at Birmingham City Council, moving on to work in the Housing Association sector.

This experience has also been added to by Voluntary Director roles, such as Birmingham Institute for the Deaf (BID Services) from 1996-2004.

Ian brings specialist Construction and Business development skills to the Trent & Dove Board.


Gary Middleton - Senior Non Executive Director

Gary is an Economics graduate, holds a Masters degree in Business Administration and is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Bankers. He has undertaken a number of senior leadership roles in the banking sector and has significant experience of real estate finance, restructuring, asset management and recovery.

Gary is passionate about the provision of quality, affordable housing and the key role that housing associations have in delivering this.

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Afzal Ismail - Non Executive Director

Afzal is an Executive Director for a large national housing group.

Afzal graduated with an honours degree in mathematics and a qualified accountant (fellow ACCA). He is also a member of the Institute of Internal Auditors.

He is regularly invited to speak on governance and risk management topics and has extensive previous experience of boards and chairing audit committees.


Sally Gibson - Non Executive Director

Sally is a Senior Registered Nurse at the Derby Royal Hospital.


Mark Ashby - Non Executive Director

Mark has worked for over 10 years providing care and teaching support for students with a range of learning or speech and hearing difficulties.

He has several years experience working within the prison service and 5 years experience as a manager/team leader in the restaurant trade.

His interest in Trent & Dove was sparked when he attended and passed the Derby University Governance Award.


Sophie Churchill - Non Executive Director

Appointed in April 2017. Sophie began her career in urban regeneration in Birmingham and was then appointed Chief Executive of The National Forest, which covers 200 square miles of the Midlands, where mining had left areas in need of sustainable regeneration.

Part of East Staffordshire and South Derbyshire, including Burton Upon Trent, are in The National Forest.  Sophie is Chair of TREE AID which uses trees and good silviculture to achieve similar transformations of livelihoods in the driest parts of Africa.  Her book 'The Art of the Chief Executive' was published recently and Sophie enjoys mentoring leaders at all stages of their careers. 

Sophie is the first woman President of the Royal Forestry Society and lives in East London close to many great green spaces. She is a carer, with a PhD based on the lives of adults with learning disabilities, and is learning the delightful craft of the grandmother. Sophie was awarded an OBE for services to the environment in 2011 and was made an Honorary Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Foresters in 2012.


Kathryn Robb - Non Executive Director

Kathryn joined the Board of Trent & Dove Housing in April 2017. A senior housing professional with 30 years experience ranging from front line service delivery to strategic development and leadership, she holds a Post Graduate in Housing Studies and is a Corporate Member of Chartered Institute of Housing.

She has experience in securing new business opportunities and funding bids as well as successful merger and stock transfer negotiations and establishing effective multi-agency partnerships. Kathryn believes access to quality affordable housing is a key element in enabling people to maximise their potential and is committed to supporting organisations to deliver the best outcomes for their residents and communities.


Geoff Prior - Board Co-optee

Geoff has been appointed as Co-optee from April 2017. He has over 35 years of experience within the housing sector working for Gentoo, Thirteen Group and Northampton Partnership Homes.

Starting out in architecture Geoff moved to the social housing sector and in particular within property services and asset management.

He brings extensive experience at director level to the full property spectrum from repairs to new build along with strategic asset management.