Ray Ashley – English Federation of Disability Sport
(DAA Steering Group member, responsible for Partners & Networks)
Ray Ashley work as Head of Engagement for the English Federation of Disability Sport (EFDS). The EFDS is a national charity and body dedicated to disabled people in sport and physical activity throughout England.
The EFDS was established in September 1998 with the vision that disabled people are active for life. It supports a wide range of organisations to include disabled people more effectively in sport and physical activity by providing leadership, support and insight.
Since graduating in the field, Ray has worked within the Sports Development sector for 20 years and specialising in disability sport for the last 13 years. Ray currently manages the development and success of the ‘engagement and partnerships team’. He oversees engagement with national governing bodies of sport and other partnerships, including building relationships with the disability sector.
Martin Austin – Nimbus Disability
(DAA Steering Group member, responsible for Business Development and Revenue))
Martin is Managing Director and Founder of Nimbus Disability; a consultancy service working across a range of industries providing practical and tangible support in meeting and exceeding legal obligations toward disabled people.
Having read Psychology at University he found a career in the information and advice sector advising disabled people of their rights in terms of Social Security and anti-discrimination legislation. He found a passion for finding the fair and reasonable middle ground between the rights of disabled people and the abilities and capacity of service providers. This eventually led to the formation of Nimbus.
Nimbus offers a range of services including staff training, Access Auditing, Policy Auditing, Mentoring and Consultation. More recently Martin has led on the development of two new and unique services; CredAbility and The Access Card.
CredAbility is a quality assurance programme aimed at supporting businesses to showcase their ability to work with disabled people and to become a provider / employer of choice.
The Access Card is the first scheme of its type in the UK offering a universal and consistent way of disabled people evidencing and communicating their needs to providers quickly and discreetly. Nimbus started developing the Card initial in 2013 with formal launch in 2015. Venues now benefiting from accepting the card are widespread and include Arenas, Theatres, Football Clubs, Ticket Retailers, Festivals and Clubs.
A keen sportsman, Martin is Chair and player for Wheelchair Basketball Club Derby Wheelblazers and has also represented Great Britain in Sledge Hockey – the Paralympic version of Ice Hockey.
Dan Brooke – Channel 4
(DAA Steering Group member, responsible for Communications & Marketing)
Dan heads up Marketing, Press and Publicity, 4Creative and Corporate Relations across the Channel 4 group. He is also the Board champion for diversity. He joined from documentary producer Rare Day, where he was Managing Director. Previously, he was Managing Director of Discovery Networks UK.
He also worked at Channel 4 from 1998 to 2005, joining as the Head of Marketing & Development for FilmFour, rising to be Managing Director of Digital Channels. He was elected Young Marketer of the Year by the Marketing Society for his role in the birth of E4.
Under Brooke, Channel 4’s award-winning 4Creative and Marketing teams have been awarded Campaign’s 2015 Advertiser of the Year, Marketing Week’s 2015 Diversity Brand of the Year and Creative Review’s 2012 Agency of the Year.
He is on the Boards of Channel 4 and the Mass Extinction Monitoring Observatory.
Hilary Farmiloe – Aspire (Instructability)
(DAA Steering Group member, responsible for Communications & Marketing)
Hilary joined Aspire, a national spinal injury charity and inclusive community leisure facility in 2011, after working within the education sector in partnership with the Youth Sport Trust, to deliver the government’s PE and School Sport Strategy.
At Aspire Hilary leads the development of the InstructAbility programme which enables disabled people to gain training, experience and employment in the fitness industry. She has overseen its growth from a pilot project to a fully funded national project supported by many of the major leisure management companies.
Hilary has worked with numerous sector stakeholders including industry training providers, equipment manufacturers, and charities such as the RFU Injured Players Foundation and Help for Heroes.
Under her leadership the programme has featured in countless local, regional and national press features, gained several industry awards and is identified as a key policy recommendation in ukactive’s ‘Blueprint for an Active Britain’.
Hilary has been active in promoting inclusion at industry events such as Leisure Industry Week and across sectors via the Government’s DWP Disability Confidence Campaign using InstructAbility as a platform to position disabled people at the forefront of organisations, empowering them to break down barriers and affect change.
Stephanie Harvey – Office for Disability Issues
(DAA Steering Group member, responsible for National Government)
Stephanie represents the Office for Disability Issues on the DAA Steering Group as the Government lead. She has worked for DWP/Civil Service for 6 years, working in areas such as front-line operations in DWP and various policy areas for working aged people. More recently Stephanie joined the Office for Disability Issues (ODI) in Oct 2014, and works to ensure that information and experience collected through engagement with stakeholders is brought back in to government.
Other responsibilities in the ODI include leading on International issues. Stephanie uses her strong cross government links to inform the DAA Steering Group on issues and policies which may be of interest, as well as helping to further the aims of DAA priority areas by facilitating partnerships. Stephanie is an active member of the lead theme project group.
Stephanie has long had an interest in disability relate issues, having some personal experience with disabilities, and believes strongly in the talent and value that disabled people bring to society at large. Whilst still at university Stephanie undertook a summer placement with an advocacy charity in Scotland where she designed marketing material for the organisation; this opened her eyes to the importance of inclusive design. As a result of such experiences, she is extremely pleased to be working as part of the DAA to further enable disabled people to fulfil their potential.
Cam Nicholl – Digital Accessibility Centre
(DAA Steering Group member, responsible for Digital Development)
Cam Nicholl is a digital accessibility advocate, active in this field since 2004. A co-founder of the Digital Accessibility Centre (DAC), Cam is the Director for Sales and Service Development. The Digital Accessibility Centre is a successful not-for-profit Social Enterprise based in South Wales.
DAC currently employs 22 staff, of which 18 are people with disabilities. As a team they work tirelessly testing digital products such as websites, apps and TV programme guides to ensure that they are accessible to all regardless of age and/or ability. Cam herself has excellent practical knowledge of assistive software and their application to Web/mobile products, in addition to sound knowledge of accessibility guidelines and current UK and international legislation.
Cam is also a member of the Management Group and the Taskforce of the Alliance for Digital Accessibility.
Liz Sayce – Disability Rights UK
(DAA Steering Group member, Chair)
Liz Sayce is Chief Executive of Disability Rights UK, leading work to achieve equal participation for all, through programmes on independent living, career opportunities and shifts in cultural attitudes and behaviour. Liz is also a member of the Committee of Healthwatch England, a Trustee of the Equality and Diversity Forum and a member of the Social Security Advisory Committee. With a background in mental health and disability policy, previous roles include Director of Policy and Communications at the Disability Rights Commission, where she led formal investigations and a new ‘Disability Agenda’; and Policy Director of Mind. She led an Independent Review into disability employment programmes for Government in 2011 and has published widely on mental health, disability and social participation. She undertook a Harkness Fellowship in the USA resulting in a book (From Psychiatric Patient to Citizen, 2000 – updated in 2016), was awarded an OBE in 2009 for services to disabled people and an honorary doctorate from the University of Kent in 2014.
Charlie Willis – Independent Lives Southfield
(DAA Steering Group member, responsible for Disability Expertise)
Charlie Willis works for Independent Lives, a Disabled People’s Organisation in West Sussex and Hampshire. He is engaged with current disability issues and believes in the importance of shifting attitudes towards disabled people towards a more encompassing, less discriminatory view.
Empathy and understanding are integral to Charlie. He ensures that he regularly takes time to listen to the opinions of others, enabling him to share these views. His enthusiasm drives his involvement in the DAA steering group. Charlie states that ‘there is real value in being passionate about achieving equality for all.’