6 November 2020 (London) – The National Organisation for FASD announced recent changes in its Board of Trustees, with the addition of four new members who have national and regional stature. Stuart Kelly, board chair said, “The National Organisation for FASD is thrilled to announce four new trustees have joined our organisation. These changes come at a dynamic and exciting time for the organisation, which has expanded its programmes and has recently rebranded and upgraded its web presence in advance of major changes coming nationally.”
The new trustees are:
- Tania Griffiths QC was the first female member of Exchange Chambers, Liverpool. She is also a Recorder (part time judge) and is responsible for issues of equality and diversity within Chambers;
- Nikki Pasek MBE brings more than 20 years’ experience working in local government. Nikki was awarded an MBE in recognition of her service to local communities and won the Guardian’s Public Servant of the Year Award for her work;
- Rev Prof Gina Radford MBBS, MFPHM, FFPHM, FRCP, FRCGP(Hon) is former deputy chief medical officer for England. She currently serves as part-time vicar in Devon. As Deputy Chief Medical Officer, she provided public health advice to Government Ministers, policy officials and a range of national and international groups and individuals;
- Róisín Reynolds has worked in the drug and alcohol field since the early 90s in both clinical and managerial roles. She is Senior Advisor for Alcohol Exposed Pregnancies at the Greater Manchester Health & Social Care Partnership and has been involved in the development of the Drymester campaign.
The new trustees bring a high level of enthusiasm and experience to help the organisation’s mission at a time of national change.
Gina Radford is a name familiar to those seeking policy improvement on FASD. While Deputy CMO, she invited individuals with FASD and their families to brief policy makers on their daily experiences and struggles, this was believed to be the first time such a meeting was convened by the Department of Health and was a turning point in many ways. Upon joining National FASD’s board she said, “I am delighted to become a Trustee of such an important and vibrant organisation. For too long FASD has been poorly recognised both clinically and within society more generally. We need to build on the progress that National FASD and others have made in changing attitudes and improving services and support for those experiencing the effects of FASD. I am looking forward to working with National FASD as it takes its important work forward.”
Tania Griffiths who has extensive professional and lived experience working with, advocating for and supporting people with additional needs and mental health needs, shared her enthusiasm, “I am really looking forward to becoming part of this dynamic team at this ground-breaking time: together, let’s make things happen!”
Nikki Pasek has experience leveraging community projects into national models of change. She said, “I am delighted to be given the opportunity to work with the National Organisation for FASD as I understand the challenges that FASD can bring to children and families. I welcome the opportunity to not only support work to raise public awareness of FASD, but also to help ensure that children and adults with FASD get the help and support they need as quickly as possible.”
Róisín Reynolds has had a profound impact on the field recently through her work leading a transformative alcohol-exposed pregnancies project in Greater Manchester. Róisín said, “I am very excited about joining National FASD as a trustee at a time when FASD awareness is increasing and when NICE are publishing FASD quality standards. It is an honour to work with an organisation who has been fighting for these developments for many years – #changeiscoming.”
Former board chair Michael Attwell said, “The National Organisation for FASD has grown from a one-woman charity, launched by Susan Fleisher to raise awareness of FASD and support those affected, to have become a national player with substantial public programmes and policy-making influence. We welcome the expansion of our Board with such distinguished new trustees, whose expertise and judgment will help to consolidate and further enhance the charity’s important work.”
Chief Executive Sandra Butcher welcomed the new trustees. She said, “Leadership and creative engagement of the Board of Trustees is critical to helping ensure the organisational foundations are strong enough to meet the growing demand we know will come as a result of this increased focus from the NICE, the NHS and other entities. As both an advocate and a parent of a teen with FASD, I am grateful to know these strong women are joining our fantastic board of trustees. Collectively we have a lot of work ahead to bring about the change that is needed to improve the lives of those with FASD and their families and to ensure the risks of alcohol in pregnancy are better understood.”
The National Organisation for FASD provides support to people affected by Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD), their families and communities; campaigns to raise public awareness; and promotes relevant policies and practices. For more information, see:
www.FASD.me (to be launched within the coming week)
Biographies of the new trustees
Miss Tania Griffiths QC
Tania Griffiths Queens Counsel was the first female member of Exchange Chambers, Liverpool. She is also a Recorder (part time judge) and is responsible for issues of equality and diversity within Chambers. She has professional and personal experience of neurodiversity from working within the Justice sector where neurodiverse people are significantly overrepresented and as an adopter she has experience of FASD/ADHD/ASD and a range of educational and other needs. She is part of the award-winning pro-bono team within Chambers providing legal support to families for The National Autistic Society’s Education Rights Service including free legal representation before the Special Educational Needs Tribunal and is currently working on building similar initiatives with the ADHD Foundation. She is very familiar with the educational needs of children with and legal issues relating to EHCPs, SEND, Social Care and accessing support with employment issues through Access to Work. She is passionate about creating a positive environment in which neurodiversity and the special gifts it brings can be celebrated rather than endured.
Nikki Pasek MBE
Nikki Pasek MBE brings more than 20 years’ experience working in local government. During that time, she has worked in both strategic and operational roles focused on developing services to support local communities and businesses. She has significant Board level experience having held positions as a Chair, Non-Executive Director and Trustee. She has a well-developed network having worked closely with a number of national organisations and stakeholders during her career. Nikki was awarded an MBE in recognition of her service to local communities and won the Guardian’s Public Servant of the Year Award for her work.
Reverend Professor Gina Radford, MBBS, MFPHM, FFPHM, FRCP, FRCGP(Hon)
Rev Prof Gina Radford is former deputy chief medical officer for England. She currently serves as part-time vicar in Devon. She has been advising the Church of England nationally and Exeter Diocese on their response to COVID-19 and has been working with government on specific aspects of its response. As Deputy Chief Medical Officer, she provided public health advice to Government Ministers, policy officials and a range of national and international groups and individuals. She covered the full spectrum of public health but had a particular focus on Non-Communicable Diseases, including development of strategies such as a Childhood Obesity Strategy, Tobacco, Alcohol, Rare Diseases and Work and Health. While Deputy CMO, she convened a series of meetings on FASD. She has been Chair of a large number of committees nationally including a Public Health Advisory Committee for the National Institute of Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE). She also has experience as a trainer of public health professionals, lecturer at undergraduate and postgraduate levels and as an assessor of Medical Schools’ Undergraduate courses.
Mrs Róisín Reynolds has worked in the drug and alcohol field since the early 90s in both clinical and managerial roles. During this time she also worked as a reviewer for the Health Care Commission and has delivered the RCGP Part 1 and 2 – Working with Drug Users in primary care in venues across the North West. Róisín has also facilitated workshops at several national conferences. Her current role as Senior Advisor for Alcohol Exposed Pregnancies at the Greater Manchester Health & Social Care Partnership, is to lead on an initial 2 year ‘proof of concept’ programme to reduce alcohol exposed pregnancies and progress towards and ambition of ending new cases of Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder. She is a member of the NICE specialist committee for the FASD quality standards and has been involved in the development of the very successful Drymester campaign as part of her current role.