Steve has over 42 years employment support experience, including 27 years with Tomorrow’s People where he has had a number of operational and development roles, culminating in his current position of Business Director of the South West. Prior to joining Tomorrow’s People, Steve worked for 15 years within the government’s employment and training departments. In addition to his ERSA Board role, Steve is Board Champion for the ERSA Supply Chain Forum. Steve is also a Merlin Advisory Board member and has participated in both ACEVO and NCVO Special Interest Groups on Employment Support.
Alex Stevenson (Vice Chair)
Chief Operating Officer - G4S Employment Support Services
Alex is currently the Chief Operating Officer of G4S Employment Support Services, joining them in 2010 as one of the team responsible for G4S entering the Employment Support market with the procurement of the Work Programme. Alex has overseen the award of various contracts including Community Work Placements and ESF Troubles families. Alex started her career as an Employment Advisor delivering Employment Zone at Ingeus, before taking on a number of senior operational positions managing Pathways to Work and New Deal contracts prior to joining G4S.
Chief Operating Officer - Working Links
Brian joined Working Links in April 2000 and was one of its original founders, starting as a director in the North East. In May 2013, Brian took up the role of Chief Operating Officer and is responsible for all its operations and driving high-performance across the business. Brian spent his early career with Jobcentre Plus and so has considerable experience within the employment support market. Whilst working with Jobcentre Plus, Brian completed his MBA at Newcastle Business School, specialising in services for unemployed people. Outside work, Brian is a governor of Northern Counties College which provides education programmes for adults with complex disabilities.
CEO - BITA Pathways
Elizabeth Armstrong is the Chief Executive of BITA Pathways. Prior to this she was the Director of Health, Wellbeing and Integrated Services at APM, an Australian owned company delivering employment support programmes across Australia, New Zealand and the UK. Liz has over 20 years’ experience in the UK Employment Support sector as a chief executive and in senior management roles. Before taking her position on the ERSA Board, Liz was Chair of ERSA’s Disability Employment Forum.
CEO - Pluss
Steve became involved in the Employment Support sector in 2007 when he joined Working Links. He progressed to the role of Sales Director, and was with the company during the bidding processes for major new employment contracts including Pathways to Work, Flexible New Deal 1 & 2, Work Choice and Work Programme.
Steve joined Pluss in June 2011, initially on a self-employed basis. He became a full-time employee in December 2011, and part of the Leadership team in 2012 where he was initially responsible for Business Development. In 2015 he was appointed CEO.
Director - SETAS Ltd
Richard started SETAS Ltd (Specialist Employment, Training, Advice Services) in 2017. Richard previously worked at RBLI as Head of Work Programme Delivery and later as Director of Employment Solutions. Prior to joining RBLI Richard had twelve years’ experience successfully managing large and diverse training and employment related contracts for private and third sector organisations, including Shaw Trust, Skills Training UK and Crisis. Richard is a Fellow and board member of the Institute of Employability Professionals and, before joining the Board, was Chair of ERSA’s Supply Chain Forum.
Chief Operating Officer - Ingeus UK
Barry Fletcher is responsible for Ingeus’ delivery in the UK, overseeing their divisional teams covering employability, skills, youth services and health.
With Ingeus since 2004, Barry has held operational management roles in the Midlands and Scotland before becoming North West Regional Director in 2011. Before becoming COO in February 2015, Barry was Director for National Employability and Skills, leading their central support functions and training business.
Managing Director - PeoplePlus
With over 20 years experience in the employability sector, Rod brought together three leading employment and skills training companies, A4e, Avanta and EOS, last year to create PeoplePlus, now the largest provider of the Government’s Work Programme. Operating from over 150 bases across the UK, the business now has a portfolio spanning employability, skills, justice, enterprise, money advice and the care sector. Under Rod’s leadership, PeoplePlus is focussed on driving high-performance and integrating all its services with the aim of transforming the lives of disadvantaged people and helping employers grow stronger workforces.
Rod joined the ERSA board in 2015.
Programme Director - MAXIMUS UK
Robert is currently the Programme Director of MAXIMUS UK, in this role he is responsible for the employment services business in the UK. Robert joined MAXIMUS in 2013 as the Supply Chain Director before moving to the Operations Director role and then into his current position in March 2016. Prior to MAXIMUS, Robert worked in a number of different roles at G4S Employment Support Services and Ingeus in both the UK and Australia. Robert started in the employment services industry in 2004 as an Advisor on the New Deal Programme and over the last 12 years has worked on a variety of different contracts with various customer groups and has experience in both operational and subcontracted delivery.
Chief Executive - Bootstrap Enterprises
Elizabeth has been the senior manager at Bootstrap Enterprises in Lancashire since 1989, where she has managed the expansion of Bootstrap from a small five person Local Economic Development Agency into the leading Welfare to Work provider in East Lancashire, employing over 130 staff. Originally working in the East Midlands, Elizabeth has 30 years’ experience of managing programmes and designing innovative local delivery including business start-up, social enterprise development, welfare to work and job creation programmes funded by a wide range of funding sources, and more recently the Work Programme, Work Choice, ESF Families Programme and Supported Employment, delivering for 6 prime contractors. Elizabeth is Lancashire Social Enterprise Champion 2013-14.
Dr Helen Cameron
Head of Public Affairs - The Salvation Army
Helen joined The Salvation Army in October 2010 as Head of Public Affairs. She oversees policy and political engagement across the organisation's different client groups including people experiencing long term unemployment. Earlier in her career she worked as a senior manager in a Training and Enterprise Council and as a DWP civil servant. Her doctorate is in social policy from the London School of Economics where she also taught voluntary sector management. Helen is board champion for the Media and Public Affairs Network.
Group Director of Skills & Employability - learndirect
Iain manages the day to day operations and strategy of learndirect in his role as Group Director of Skills & Employability, delivering services to over 200,000 individuals each year. Iain has worked in both the public and private sectors; across England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland; as a subcontractor and a prime across the whole range of Employment Related Services contracts and is seen as an industry expert on integrating employability and skills programmes. Iain has a track record of developing innovative high performing large scale government contracts such as Work Programme, as well as improving operational performance on existing contracts. Iain previously worked for NCG, Reed in Partnership and prior to that for Dixons group for over 10 year and has an MBA from the Open University.
Laurie Russell (Employment Support Scotland Co-Chair)
Chief Executive - The Wise Group
Laurie Russell has been Chief Executive of the Wise Group since 2006. The Wise Group is a social enterprise established in 1983. It makes a positive difference to people, communities and society by helping customers gain new skills and employment, reducing re-offending, regenerating communities and tackling fuel poverty in Scotland and NE England.
Laurie was Chief Executive of Strathclyde European Partnership Ltd that managed the programmes of European funding for the economic and social regeneration of western Scotland from 1989 to 2006. He was previously employed by Strathclyde Regional Council and led a community regeneration initiative in Clydebank in the early 1980s. Laurie chaired the board of Social Enterprise Scotland for six years from 2007 to 2013.
Kate Still (Employment Support Scotland Co-Chair)
Director for Scotland - Rathbone Group
Kate joined Rathbone in 2012 to manage Rathbone’s activities in Scotland. Prior to this Kate was Director of Development and Delivery for The Wise Group, a social enterprise with headquarters in Glasgow. Kate’s expertise includes skills and employability, economic development, regeneration, sustainability and criminal justice. Kate is passionate about the work Rathbone does supporting young people to transform their lives.