People

The staff team at Unitarian HQ support the vitality of our wider movement.

Liz Slade

Liz Slade

Simon Bland

Simon Bland

Rory Castle Jones

Rory Castle Jones

Liz Slade (Chief Officer)

Our Chief Officer, Liz Slade, works with the Executive Committee and leads the staff team. She joined us in March 2019 after a senior career in the healthcare industry. Originally from Dorset, Liz joined our New Unity congregation in north London, starting her on a spiritual journey which led her through leadership in the Sunday Assembly movement to leading pilgrimages treating works of literature as sacred texts, before becoming our Chief Officer. She is excited by the role that Unitarians can play in bringing a cultural shift to make it easy for everyone to participate in a spiritually healthy community, and sees this as a necessary part of creating a society that is more equal and in balance with the natural world. Contact Liz.

Simon Bland (Ministry & Congregational Support Officer)

Simon work with congregations, ministers and lay leaders on all matters of operation and governance. He also provide the administrative support to the Ministry Strategy and Interview Panel. Based in Lincolnshire and with a history of community development and voluntary sector involvement, Simon enjoys the countryside, travel and change. Contact Simon.

Rory Castle Jones (Communications Officer)

Rory looks after our central website, social media, and e-newsletter, as well as offering guidance and support to our congregations. He lives in the Swansea Valley in Wales and is currently training to become a Unitarian minister, having previously worked in Higher Education. Outside of work, he enjoys learning languages, long walks in the mountains with his husband and dog, and travel. Contact Rory.

Cherralyn Davies

Cherralyn Davies

Melda Grantham

Melda Grantham

Gavin Howell

Gavin Howell

Cherralyn Davies (Finance Assistant)

Cherralyn is part of the finance team as a Finance Assistant. She resides in Central London and has lived there for most her life. Outside of work, she enjoys spending quality time with family, travelling to the countryside, and interior design. Contact Cherralyn.

Melda Grantham (Welsh Department Secretary)

Melda is the Secretary for the Welsh Department, which supports and offers guidance to the Unitarian congregations of Wales. Formerly the Superintendent Registrar for the County of Ceredigion, she is a first language Welsh speaker, lives in the Llandysul area with her husband, dog and horses, and is also currently training for the Unitarian ministry. When time allows, she enjoys a range of creative pursuits, especially textile art. Contact Melda.

Gavin Howell (Safeguarding Lead and Youth Coordinator)

Put simply, Gav makes space which meets need. He works in collaboration with groups to cocreate safe and enabling spaces for all. With the support of volunteers, he coordinates several youth and family initiatives on behalf of The General Assembly. His background is in education with Nurture being his specialism. Originally from Co. Down, he now lives in Norwich and is a member of The Octagon Chapel. He values play, spontaneity, and occasional bouts of rascality. Contact Gavin.

Rev Bob Janis-Dillon

Rev Bob Janis-Dillon

David Joseph

David Joseph

Audrey Longhurst

Audrey Longhurst

Rev Bob Janis-Dillon (Congregational Connections Lead)

Bob has the privilege to support the areas of growth and development in our movement, by helping congregational leaders connect with one another and supporting their vital work. Bob is an accredited spiritual director, as well as a parish minister who previously served congregations in Wigan, Warrington, Chester, and New Jersey. He hails from USA and lives in Northwest England. Contact Bob.

David Joseph (Finance Manager)

David has overall responsibility for the work of the finance department. He has a professional background in both the charity and commercial sectors. Away from work, David has an interest in ‘noir’ films. Contact David.

Audrey Longhurst (Administrator)

Audrey is the voice you will hear if you call the Essex Hall switchboard and deals with general enquiries. Book sales fall under her remit, together with a variety of administrative tasks and liaises closely with the Accounts team.  Audrey worked for many years in Human Resources before joining the GA.  She loves living in Central London and is based at Essex Hall and so enjoys walking home along the South Bank of the River Thames during the balmy spring and summer evenings. Contact Audrey.

Andrew Mason

Andrew Mason

Andrew Mason (Operations Manager)

Andrew acts as Building Manager for our Central London Office premises, and also provides office management and administration services, arranges our Annual Meetings, and produces our Annual Report and Directory. Andrew lives in Surrey, and has been with the GA since 2000. Contact Andrew.