MEET THE TEAM AT BLACKBURNE HOUSE

EXECUTIVE LEADERSHIP TEAM

Our team are passionate about supporting local women to achieve their potential.

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Anne has over 25 years of successful senior leadership and is committed to achieving social change through values-based partnerships and accelerating opportunities and initiatives that address inequities faced by women. Prior to joining Blackburne House, Anne spent 12 years as the Director of Education for the UK body of a worldwide humanitarian charity. Anne is responsible for the strategic direction of the Blackburne House Group and, believing in the life-changing power of education and self-development, is working to ensure the organisation continues to be a leading social enterprise and an empowering centre of education and wellbeing for women.

ANNE MCCOLL

Chief Executive Officer

ANGELA MCKENNA
Executive Director of Education

Biography to follow.

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Andrea has been with Blackburne House for 10 years; she is a successful social entrepreneur and currently the Executive Director of Operations at Blackburne House, managing the assets, a successful portfolio of projects and business areas. Known for her ability to transform enterprise and project ideas into meaningful business operations she has a proven track record in delivering social and economic change and improvement.  Her creative outlook and ability to support fellow entrepreneurs has enabled many businesses to transform their activities and grow their client base and turnover.  An experienced Business Mentor and Action Learning Facilitator Andrea continues to support individuals and businesses to deliver positive social impact across communities. 

ANDREA RUSHTON

Executive Director of Operations

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LISA MAIRAH
Executive Director of Digital & Entrepreneurship &
Head of SSE NW


Lisa has a career that spans over 20 years working within the Social Enterprise Sector. She leads the School for Social Entrepreneurs (SSE) North West team and also works to ensure that Blackburne House provides an effective digital and enterprise eco-system that supports the creation, growth of social enterprises and the positive social mobility of students across the North West. 

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HELEN BYRNE
Financial Controller

Over the past 20 years Helen’s career has focused on financial management and business development within the hospitality sector.  Her background in commercial business performance will support Blackburne House to flourish and grow as a social enterprise where profits are reinvested to support educational opportunities for women.

BLACKBURNE HOUSE BOARD

The Blackburne House and WTEC boards are made up entirely of highly-skilled, female leaders, who share a passion for empowering and supporting the personal and professional progression of other women.  

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LIZ CROSS

Chair of Blackburne House

 

A social entrepreneur, organisation and business consultant and experienced NED. Liz Cross (BSc(Hons), MBA, MBPS) has been on the Board of Blackburne House Group since 2011 and Chair since 2014 and has been actively involved in many aspects of its work and development since 1992. 

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THERESE PATTEN
Vice Chair of Blackburne House

Therese has extensive NHS Board level experience, working across community, mental health, acute and specialist healthcare now working as Chief Executive Officer at Bradford District Care NHS Foundation Trust. Therese joined Bradford Care Trust from Southport and Ormskirk Hospital NHS Trust, where she was Deputy Chief Executive and Director of Strategy. In this role, Therese led both Trust and district-wide sustainability programmes, working closely with clinicians and key stakeholders. She was also Chair of a Provider Alliance of 15 health, care and voluntary organisations, working together to provide an integrated service and improve health outcomes for local people. Previously Therese worked at Alder Hey Children’s NHS Foundation Trust, 5 Boroughs Partnership NHS Foundation Trust and Liverpool Community Health Trust. She also spent a short period working in the private sector with GP provider companies. Before joining the NHS in 1999, Therese spent nine years working in health development in Zimbabwe, Somaliland and Pakistan and joined Blackburne House as Non-Executive Director in November 2015 and was appointed to the role of Vice-Chair in November 2020. 

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JAYNE WORTHINGTON
Chair of Education & Quality Committee

 

Jayne Worthington is Group CEO of The Progress Group, a group of companies headquartered in Liverpool that are dedicated to changing lives through the power of education and training. She brings with her a vast array of skills and experience. Jayne was previously the Managing Director of The Growth Company - Education and Skills, a social business which was the largest apprenticeship and work-related training provider in Greater Manchester. Prior to joining The Growth Company, Jayne was Assistant Principal at the City of Liverpool College and has enjoyed working her way up to over 15 years in senior leadership positions in the further education sector, including being a Governor of West Cheshire College and a Non-Executive Director of Inspira (Connexions Cumbria).


Jayne has also worked across government departments to develop national and regional skills and employment policy and strategy and was the Leadership and Management Policy Lead at the Department for Innovation, Universities & Skills as well as National Skills & Employment lead for the North West Development Agency. 

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CLAIRE RYAN

Chair of The Finance, Audit & Risk Committee

Claire has over 20 years’ experience in social housing working at housing associations within Liverpool in a variety of roles and is currently a Director at South Liverpool Homes.  She is a Chartered Member of the Institute of Housing and has completed ICSA’s company secretarial qualifying scheme, acting as Company Secretary in her current role.

 

Her route into management started back in 2006 when she studied for a Chartered Institute of Management qualification at Blackburne House.  She has acted as a trustee and Board Member at Blackburne House since 2018 and in 2020 was appointed as the Chair of the Finance, Audit & Risk Committee.

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Annette has an extensive track record of collaborative and creative leadership in the criminal justice system and beyond, lately as CEO of the Merseyside Probation Trust. She is committed to changing the mindsets and perceptions about leadership as a coach, a NED and an advisor in supporting those outside of mainstream communities to discover their potential. 

ANNETTE HENNESY
Trustee of Blackburne House

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NINA ROBERTS

Board Member

Head of Strategic Brand Partnerships for Culture Liverpool Nina is new to the board, joining us in March 2019. She has 12 years of commercial and marketing experience and a passion for the education and empowerment of women in her home city. 

SALLY-ANNE  WATTKISS
Chair of SSE North West Advisory Board

Accountant with 25 years experience in a FTSE 100 company. Now supports social enterprises and community businesses with finical planning and business support. Sally-Anne is a board member at Kitty's Launderette, The Bluecoat, Avela Services and Homebaked Cooperative bakery and a school governor for The Aspire Federation in Birkenhead. 

 

KATE FOX
Vice Chair of Education & Quality Committee

Kate has acted as Board member and trustee at Blackburne House since 2018, and serves on the Education and Quality Committee as Vice-Chair, as well as the EDI Taskforce. Kate currently leads on accessibility and disability representation for Manchester International Festival (MIF) – a biennial, artist-led festival presenting original new works. They have a background in third sector and public sector organisations as a Producer, Trainer and Advisory Board Member. Prior to moving into the world of access, Kate spent eight years working at BBC Children’s, producing inclusive digital content for CBeebies. They’re also a founder member and co-owner of the fan-owned football club FC United of Manchester.