John Machin, Chair

John recently retired from his international career in the chemical industry, having worked and lived in many countries over nearly 40 years. He relocated back to the UK when he retired in 2015, but still holds non-executive director positions abroad. He’s now based in Middleton Tyas, North Yorkshire. John first got involved with Emmaus North East due to the “different and unique approach” taken by the charity, and the substantial scope of the South Tyneside project. With extensive experience in industry, he was keen to bring his knowledge to the third sector, and contribute to our exciting cause.

Jenny Atkin

Jenny is a practising solicitor specialising in commercial property. She is a Northumbria University graduate, born and raised in Newcastle. Jenny formerly worked at an international law firm based in the North East before securing her current role as senior associate within a fast-growing commercial firm in Gosforth. She has extensive experience advising various charitable and educational organisations throughout her career and was previously a trustee of an Academy School in Durham. Jenny was drawn to Emmaus North East because of its unique approach and the lasting skills and support it offers to companions. She hopes that her expertise will be an asset to our charity and will help to support our ambitious plans for the future.

Peter Churchill

Peter was born and brought up in the North East, and returned to work here after university. He is an architect who has worked for 30 years across many sectors including public and private sector, residential, healthcare, retail, and commercial. As well as project design and delivery, he has an interest in quality management and business development. His other current activities include part-time university teaching and examining, and hosting international post-graduate students.  Peter’s interest in Emmaus began through Don Pinchbeck (see below), with whom he worked as part of a locally active branch of the Royal Society of Arts.  The Emmaus live-work concept immediately appealed to him, so when new trustees were being sought to help with setting up our new regional community he was keen to become involved.

Alicia Clovis-Mothalib

Alicia moved to the North East in 2008 to complete her MA and loves the region so much that she laid down roots in South Tyneside. Previous work in marketing, education and supporting people with complex social welfare needs and disabilities was dominated by the desire to improve services and raise aspirations of the most vulnerable in society. She moved over to the charitable sector in 2017 supporting charities such as The Children’s Foundation and Pioneering Care Partnership with business development and income generation. Primarily, Alicia writes bids for grants, develops corporate and community relationships and encourages better approaches to fundraising. An interest in influencing good systems and governance led her to seek a voluntary position as a trustee for a charity with local impact.

Paul Evans

Paul is a retired Northumbria Police Inspector, who spent much of his career working in various parts of Gateshead.  While head of a community-based policing team, he built and maintained productive working partnerships with the local council and other voluntary organisations.  As an executive member of the Police Federation, he was also involved in strategic decision making at a local, regional and national level, whilst holding specific responsibility for governance, negotiating and communications. Paul now runs a successful small business which specialises in community-based one-day music events.

Don Pinchbeck

Don was originally an electronics engineer who rose through sales, marketing, training, and human resource roles, before moving into general management. He worked internationally as functional director, CEO and chair of several multinationals before conducting a series of company turnarounds in the public, private and third sectors. He served 15 years as a youth club leader, and several years as chair of a hospice.  Don is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and a Member of the Institute of Directors.  He recently completed a term as a member of the Emmaus UK Federation Committee.

Gemma Trainor

Gemma is a communications professional with substantial experience in both internal and external communications for a €14bn global paints and coatings organisation. Currently working for a multinational telecommunications company in an internally focused role, Gemma will bring a sound knowledge of reputation management, branding and crisis communications to Emmaus, alongside the understanding of ‘being on the other side of the fence’ for companies who are looking to improve their corporate social responsibility agenda. The vision to enable homeless people to rebuild their lives through a social enterprise that enriches and involves the local community really appealed to Gemma. As a mother to two small children she has a desire to show her children that if something is wrong with the world you can try and do something to fix it rather than walking by.

Julian Wenman

Julian has a background in healthcare with a particular interest in helping to transform people affected by mental health problems, addiction and dependency. He currently works in a managerial role at a large teaching hospital in the North East. Julian has an interest in the sustainability of charities, both from a social enterprise and financial perspective. He hopes his experience can bring a new dimension and perspective to Emmaus North East.

David Knox

Born and schooled on Tyneside, David was a soldier then Cambridge University graduate. London training led to in-house lawyering for an engineering multi-national and law firm partner work in Newcastle then Edinburgh. Returning to work in the North East in 2019 allowed more focus on legal services to charities, social business, trustees and non-profit clients. Commercial contracts, data protection, discrimination and employee benefits are his main legal interests.

The practical action against social exclusion started in France by Abbe Pierre and Lucie Coutaz in France struck David as making great sense for the North East. Since Selwyn Image imported their Emmaus formula, self-help, social business and self-esteem have become UK mainstream. Housing first is vital, but so is community: David’s other work with like-minded people should help Emmaus North East to help its neighbours – exporting “solidarity” is key to that formula. This social business has itself been helped by ideas from Emmaus communities in Bolton, Glasgow, Hull, and Mossley – to name but a few. He is also a member of a Reserve Forces & Cadets Association supervisory Board.

Chloe Watson

Chloe is a Communications and Engagement Consultant who recently moved to the North East from London. Before becoming a consultant, Chloe was Head of Communications and Engagement at the North Central London Strategic and Transformation Partnership; leading communications and engagement for the 28 NHS and local authority organisations. She also spent five years at NHS England leading mental health and digital communications. Chloe was drawn to Emmaus due to the holistic approach the charity takes supporting homeless people to not just find a home but create a meaningful life. She hopes that her extensive experience in communications will help build Emmaus’ profile and ensure a sustainable future for the charity.