Become a leadership mentor and support emerging leaders

Woman in a board meeting talking and raising her hands
Leadership quote from Kings Fund

What does it take to become a mentor and help shape someone’s career?

Experienced and skilled leaders across the voluntary, community and social enterprise (VCSE) sector in North Yorkshire have given their time to help support new and emerging leaders on their career journey.

You can watch previous mentors speak about their experiences here.

Interested in becoming a mentor? Do get in touch or call 01904 704177.

As a mentor, you have an important part to play in someone’s career journey.

The success of our Leadership Mentoring relies on experienced and skilled leaders generously giving their time voluntarily to support and grow new and emerging leaders.

Why be a mentor?

In addition to playing an integral part in strengthening our sector across North Yorkshire, there are many positive benefits from being a mentor:

  • Enjoyment and satisfaction from supporting someone who is either new to the sector or looking to develop their career.
  • Professional development – to develop your own mentoring skills and receive training from an experienced professional from Coaching York.
  • Peer support from other mentors in the cohort – we know from other leadership mentors that this is a key part of mentoring, learning from other leaders and expanding your leadership network.
  • Enhancing the sustainability and champion the VCSE sector in North Yorkshire as a desirable career pathway.

The time commitment

We ask our mentors to commit to one hour of online mentoring per month for six months. We recommend 30 minutes preparation and 30 minutes follow up per mentoring session.

The next cohort of mentoring will start in October 2023.


We are looking for skilled leaders to mentor on the next cohort of our Leadership Mentoring Programme. If this could be you, please fill out this application form and send it to

Most mentees are seeking general confidence building and work/life balance skills, but we’re also keen to hear from potential mentors who can offer career development guidance and from mentors in a creative industry.

At the start of each cohort, we hold a mentor training workshop run by our partners, Coaching York.

If you have any questions please contact

Thank you to all our mentors.

Meet our team of leadership mentors
Catherine Dearden
Catherine Dearden

Digital Champion Coordinator, Citizen's Online

Catherine is the Digital Champion Coordinator for Citizens Online, and is responsible for coordinating the successful delivery of digital inclusion support services across North Yorkshire. In addition to recruiting and training volunteers, Catherine has a wealth of experience of targeted marketing, maintaining the website and gathering and analysing data.

Read more about Catherine
Chris Hailey-Norris, CEO Selby District AVS
Chris Hailey-Norris

CEO, Up for Yorkshire

Chris is the Chief Executive of Up for Yorkshire. Over the past 30 years he has worked and volunteered in the VCSE sector, managing a range of advice and infrastructure support organisations. Chris is a qualified life and business coach, an iMA practitioner, a trainer for the Workers Educational Association, and Chair of a range of partnerships covering equity and advice, anti-poverty, dementia, and police practices. In addition, Chris feels he has a healthy obsession with 80s pop music!

Read more about Chris
David Marsh chairman Tadcaster Swimming Pool
David Marsh

Chairman, Tadcaster Swimming Pool

The charity that David chairs has over 1,000 volunteers and provides a much loved service to the local community. He is particularly skilled at tracking and reporting KPIs and is keen to support an individual who seeks to make an impact in society.

Read more about David
David Sharp CEO North Yorkshire Youth
David Sharp

CEO, North Yorkshire Youth

David works as the CEO of North Yorkshire Youth which supports young people with a number of provisions including youth clubs and one-to-one sessions. He enjoys the diversity of everyday, and in particular developing the ways he approaches obstacles and generating practical solutions and is looking to support a mentee with general support and guidance.

Read more about David
Elizabeth McPherson
Elizabeth McPherson

CEO, Carers Plus Yorkshire

Elizabeth has worked with Carers Plus Yorkshire since 2002, and currently works as the CEO, managing a team of over forty people and working to ensure the long term sustainability of the charity. She enjoys seeing the team develop, leading with compassion and positivity to encourage staff to reach their full potential (despite stretched resources). She is looking to support a mentee with career planning, achieving worklife balance and general support and guidance.

Read more about Elizabeth
Haydn Moorby Davies Harrogate Skills for Living
Haydn Moorby Davies

CEO, Harrogate Skills for Living

Haydn is the CEO of a Harrogate based charity that works to support people with learning difficulties and autism. He thrives on the breadth of challenges the charity faces in addition to the autonomy he has to resolve them. Having benefitted from mentoring himself, Haydn would love to share his own experiences and give back to someone in a similar position.

Read more about Haydn Moorby
Helen Beevers

CEO, Advocacy Alliance

Helen is the CEO for Advocacy Alliance, managing a team of staff and volunteers in addition to being responsible for gaining funding for the organisation and ensuring the charity delivers their key outputs. She has been working in the sector for many years, and is open to discusing career development, workplace wellbeing and personal development with a mentee.

Read more about Helen
Helen Hunter CEO Age UK North Yorkshire & Darlington
Helen Hunter

CEO, Age UK North Yorkshire & Darlington

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Read more about Helen
Jane Hustwit
Jane Hustwit

Former Chair York CVS, Vice Chair Involve Yorkshire and Humber

Jane has over 50 years of experience working in the voluntary and public sector in a range of roles, including as a communications strategist and interim director in addition to being a trustee and chair. In addition to having plenty of experiences and general guidance to share, Jane would be happy to help with recruitment.

Read more about Jane
Kim Bevan CEO The Retreat
Kim Bevan

CEO, The Retreat

Kim is the Chief Officer of a mental health provider supporting people who would benefit from psychological therapy or autism and ADHD diagnoses. She enjoys the variety of the role, and positive impact the organisation has on peoples’ lives in addition to the opportunity to learn something new everyday. Having benefitted from mentoring herself, Kim wants to pass this invaluable experience onto the next generation of voluntary and charity leaders.

Read more about Kim
Leisa Burniston Next Steps Mental Health Resource Centre
Leisa Burniston

Service Manager, Next Steps Mental Health Resource Centre

Leisa manages multiple mental health resource and drop in centres that aim to prevent loneliness and isolation. She is excited to mentor someone working in a similar field, providing guidance about workplace wellbeing, building a network in addition to general support and guidance.

Read more about Leisa
Liz Lockey, Hambleton Community Action
Liz Lockey

Chief Officer, Hambleton Community Action

Liz has been the Chief Officer of Hambleton Community Action since 2019, after spending most of her career in operations management roles in a range of fields within the private sector. She is a Chartered Manager and Fellow of the Chartered Management Institute, with more than 15 years practitioner experience in senior leadership roles, balanced with theoretical understanding and academic study. Liz has postgraduate degrees in social sciences, manufacturing leadership and international human rights law. She is an advocate of lean management and agile approaches, and has a “green belt” in Six Sigma (process improvement methodology). She is highly analytic, definitely unorthodox, and passionate about reducing and removing inequality, injustice, abuse and neglect.

Read more about Liz
Louise Terzza

CEO, Time Together

As CEO at Time Together, Louise believes that everyone has the potential to learn and develop with the right support, and she leads with compassion and social responsibility. She likes supporting individuals on their professional journey to help them grow. Enjoying giving back to her community, Louise is also a trustee for a youth charity and a governor at a primary school. In her spare time, she enjoys yoga and a good book or podcast.

Read more about Louise
Lucy Downes


Lucy has worked as a CEO at a Housing Association for young people for the past five years, and previously worked in several large and small VCS organisations. While she does a bit of everything in her role, she would particularly like to support an individual interested in fundraising and is also interested in mental health.

Read more about Lucy
Natasha Babar-Evans

Chief Executive, Better Connect

As CEO for Better Connect, Natasha loves working with the team, delivery partners and stakeholders who all share a passion for making a genuine difference to the lives and work of people in Yorkshire. She is an experienced mentor and previously ran entrepreneur accelerators in the North for NatWest  where she saw first hand the power of mentoring to support entrepreneurs. Natasha has owned her own business and comes from a corporate background where she was a lawyer and banker before she made the switch to working with charities and non-for-profit organisations. Natasha comes from a diverse background and would be very happy to share her experiences with mentees and how she overcame barriers.

Read more about Natasha
Neil Irving

Former CEO, North Yorkshire Forum for Voluntary Organisations

Neil has more than 30 years of experience working in the voluntary sector in a range of roles, including chief executive and chair of trustees. He has also worked as an assistant director with North Yorkshire County Council. Having benefited from mentoring himself, Neil wants to pass this invaluable experience onto the next generation of voluntary sector leaders.

Read more about Neil
Paul McCay

Chief Officer, The Wilf Ward Family Trust

Paul is responsible for the operational and strategic leadership of a regional charity providing care to adults with learning disabilities and complex needs. He is most interested in personal and professional development in addition to workplace wellbeing.

Read more about Paul
Phil Bramhall Community Business Manager Chopsticks
Phil Bramhall

Community Business Manager, Chopsticks

Phil works as the Community Business Manager of a charity, and enjoys seeing his team helping clients with learning disabilities grow in self confidence and flourish in a supportive environment that provides them with meaning and personal achievement. As part of his role, Phil helps co-create innovative and enterprising projects with new partner organisations, and would love to discuss this with a mentee in addition to the environmental initiatives organisations can get involved with to benefit local communities and the planet.

Read more about Phil
Philippa Robson CEO SASH
Philippa Robson


Philippa is the Chief Executive of a youth homeless charity operating in North Yorkshire, York and East Riding that works to break the cycle of homelessness for young people in the region. Philippa benefitted from a great mentor previously in addition to other leadership development opportunities and feels she point in her career where she can share her learning experiences with an emerging leader in the sector.

Read more about Philippa
Richard Holmes Citizens Online
Richard Holmes

Project Manager and Volunteer Digital Champion, Citizens Online

When he’s not researching the development of diamond based microelectronics, Richard volunteers with Citizens Online to facilitate and support digital inclusion. He enjoys making a difference, and is willing to support a mentee with general wellbeing in addition to personal and professional development.

Read more about Richard
Robert Ling, Assistant Director of Technology and Change at North Yorkshire County Council
Robert Ling

Head of Digital, North Yorkshire County Council

Robert is the Assistant Director Technology and Change at North Yorkshire County Council, covering everything from customer service and data and technology, as well leading the overall transformation team for the council. He enjoys the challenge of the role, and is looking to support a mentee on personal development and building a network.

Read more about Robert
Sally Steadman, CEO, The Society of Sports Therapists
Sally Steadman

CEO, The Society of Sports Therapists

Sally has experience working across business support services, education, the voluntary, community and social enterprise (VCSE) sector and not-for-profit organisations. She is the CEO of a membership organisation and holds trustee roles at a number of organisations and also provides marketing consultancy predominately in education. An experienced mentor, Sally has worked with individuals to help them progress in their careers, overcome challenging situations and support personal development.

Read more about Sally
Simon Cross CEO Northdale Horticulture
Simon Cross

CEO, Northdale Horticulture

Simon is the Service Manager for a charity that provides a work based day service for adults with le arning disabilities and or physical disabilities, in addition to delivering leisure and out of hours services and further education for young people aged 19-25 years. He enjoys identifying new opportunities and shaping the organisation as it moves forward, and is particularly interested in assisting a mentee with any fundraising queries or concerns they may have.

Read more about Simon
Tom Doyle
Tom Doyle

CEO, Yorkshire Mesmac

biog needed

Read more about Tom