Claire Wickham – Chair of TrusteesI have worked with Deaf and Hard of Hearing people for over 35 years. I started as a teacher in a residential school and then moved into adult education. I have also supported Deaf students at the University of the West of England and worked with Deaf and Hard of Hearing people on employment and research projects. I believe that society must change so that all Deaf and Disabled people have equal access to education, health services, employment and everything else that non-disabled people have and use. Deaf and hearing people need to work together to achieve this.
Gill Behenna – TrusteeI have worked in Deaf Communities as a Chaplain in Salisbury, Exeter and Bristol for just under 35 years (in Bristol since 2005). I am also a Registered BSL/English Interpreter and occasionally work as a freelance interpreter. For the last three years I have also been the National Adviser for Deaf Ministry in the Church of England. This enables me to keep in touch with the wider Deaf community. As a Christian Minister I have the privilege of leading the Bristol Deaf Church that meets regularly for worship. I also support people at some of the most difficult times of their lives as they experience illness or bereavement, and some of the best times as they prepare for marriage or celebrate the birth of a child. Access for Deaf and Hard of Hearing people to everything the Church can offer is very important to me. I am a Trustee of three small national Deaf-led charities and the voluntary administrator of a national charity. I have served as a Director of the Association of Sign Language Interpreters (ASLI) and was Chair of Governors at Elmfield School for Deaf children for five years.
Alasdair Grant – TrusteeI am profoundly Deaf and I'm bilingual in English and British Sign Language. I worked as a Civil Servant in the Department for the Environment, Food, and Rural Affairs for nearly 14 years prior to being made redundant in January 2016 as a result of the Government cuts. I was involved in the creation of two new National Parks for the New Forest and South Downs and the establishment of National Park Authorities to manage those new parks. I was a participant in Defra's four year Into Leadership Development Programme. These experiences have given me a thorough understanding of Government and Local Government processes and procedures and I have business skills in finance, HR, programme and project management, recruitment, town planning and conservation ecology.
Faye Stewart – TrusteeFaye Stewart has been a trustee for Centre of Deaf, Bristol since 2018. Having moved to Bristol in 2002 Faye was supported by the Deaf community to find her Deaf identity and wanted to repay this support by volunteering her time to CfD. Arts and culture has always been an important part of Faye’s life and she works as an Engagement and Audiences Relationship Manager for Arts Council England, in the South West team. Faye has also worked as a curator, a coordinator for RNID craft workshops and an outreach manager for art + power, a participation organisation in Bristol. Faye is Deaf, and uses British Signing Language, working with a pool of interpreters daily. Faye has re-established the Disability Network at the Arts Council after she recognised the need to provide mutual support and a collective voice for deaf, disabled, and neurodiverse staff, especially through the pandemic. Re-establishing the network has enabled Faye to support her workplace in being disability inclusive and confident.
Frank Evason – TrusteeFormerly hearing, I am now profoundly deafened and have a cochlear implant. Over a period of 40 years of increasing deafness I learned first hand about the problems of hard-of-hearing and Deaf people. During this time I learned BSL. I became a member of Bristol Over 50’s club and over about 8 years improved my signing so much that I was able to pass level 2. I volunteered for over 3 years at Poolmead in Bath, helping Deaf people who had additional imapirments with craft and woodworking. I spent 6 years as Treasurer of Yate Deaf Association. I have experience of owning and managing small companies, including running the finances, so I hope I will be able to be useful to CfD.