We are delighted to announce that five new Trustees have joined our board. With a huge range of skills, experience, and networks, the new appointment of Chris DeMarco, Alison Hill, Julie Jeancolas, Dr Gemma Pugh and Rachel Roxburgh as the new Vice Chair, is exciting. 

Sophie Epstone, Founder and CEO of Trekstock, explains why this is so important:

"We're a growing and determined national charity, supported by a dynamic and passionate Board of Trustees. We're delighted to welcome our newest members at this exciting point in Trekstock's journey. Appointing such a robust and supportive governance team is crucial to helping us scale up our services, grow our partnerships and continue improving the lives of young people with cancer across the country."

Rachel Roxburgh, supporting Chairman Rob Challis as the new Vice Chair of the Board, is a strategic consultant for charities, businesses and non-profits. With over 20 years in the sector, her knowledge, experience, and intelligent approach has contributed to successful strategies, including transforming service delivery, measuring impact, sustainable fundraising models and brand awareness. 

She began her career at Cancer Research UK, heading up Race for Life in its infancy, to becoming a £60m brand. She has held various charitable CEO roles for youth-focused charities, including being the inaugural CEO for Dallaglio RugbyWorks setting up this award-winning charity to utilise the power of sport to engage young people, and also with employability skills charity Working Options in Education. 

As a strategic consultant, she advises charities and companies, including Sir John Beckwith Charitable Trust, the Good Business Festival and Votes for Schools. Passionate about young people and social mobility, she works with businesses to help implement and effectively activate their D, E & I agendas within the youth sector. 

Following her appointment, Rachel commented:

"I have followed the growth of the charity since Sophie founded it. I am so impressed in how they always ensure that they listen to the community they serve, providing the necessary support they need. Having worked in the charity sector for most of my career, I hope to provide my experience of strategic growth moving forwards. I am looking forward to meeting the inspirational young adults we help and helping the team grow and be bold, brave and brilliant!"

Alison Hill has many years of experience in cancer and palliative care nursing both in London and elsewhere. This has included acute hospitals, primary care and hospice. More recently, she moved into strategy and is currently the Director of Cancer Nursing at Barts Health NHS Trust.

Alison's areas of interest include the role of the clinical nurse specialist, patient experience, and hospital palliative care. She is also a member of the Royal Marsden School Board, and she has a keen interest in education and training. 

Speaking about how she hopes to help shape Trekstock's future, Alison said:

"I think my background will be very useful as I have an up-to-date understanding of how cancer services in the NHS work. For me, I am interested in the offer to younger adults and their families, patient information, and how we look to diversify the offer to different groups. I am also keen to contribute to education and training."

Chris DeMarco, Managing Director of Strategic Accounts and new Markets at Legal & General, also joins Trekstock's Board of Trustees. With over 35 years of industry experience, extensive experience in investment banking and running teams across Europe and North America, he has a lot to offer the charity. 

Chris has ambitious plans as part of Trekstock's board:

"I hope that through the contacts I've made over my thirty-five years in London, that I can help the charity grow its financial base to deepen the support it provides to a broader audience. Trekstock's purpose, supporting a group underserved by the NHS, strikes me as immensely worthwhile. There is a growing movement across City of London firms to encourage employees to look after their mental and physical wellbeing and Trekstock's mission is one that City firms should support." 

Dr Gemma Pugh, a behavioural scientist with a specialist interest in survivorship among young people with cancer, is the final trustee to be appointed. As the Head of Patient Reported Outcomes Research at Anthony Nolan, and with a PhD from University College London, she has a wealth of experience to offer. Much of her research has centred on physical activity and quality of life outcomes after treatment. She previously worked with Trekstock evaluating our RENEW exercise programme and our Meet & Move programmes. 

Speaking about what drives her ambition to support Trekstock:

"When I started my PhD, I was shocked by how little age-specific support there was for young adults post-treatment. Trekstock are filling the gap and making sure that physical activity support programmes are available to people in their 20s or 30s. I'm passionate about the benefits of exercise and hope my expertise can help support Trekstock to develop tailored programmes for young adults. I'm most excited to get involved with our ambitious plan to roll RENEW out to three major cities within the UK." 

RENEW is a specialist exercise programme, created by Trekstock and cancer experts, and is available to anyone in their 20s or 30s who have been diagnosed with cancer. RENEW is an eight-week programme which has been designed to improve physical and mental wellbeing, of either individual, buddy and small-group classes run by cancer exercise specialists. The goal is simple: to keep young people with cancer moving in whatever way works for them, whatever their diagnosis.

Julie Jeancolas, Managing Director heading the Media, Product & Partnerships teams at dunnhumby, a leading customer data science company, is another addition to the Board of Trustees. Julie is a senior leader with extensive experience in Digital, Advertising and Data. 

Prior to her position at dunnhumby, Julie was a Director at Google and responsible for scaling their Platforms and Ads business via a network of Consultancies and Media Agencies. Before joining Google, she held leadership and board positions in large agency groups including WPP, Publicis and Dentsu Aegis

Commenting on why Trekstock is so important to her:

"For me, Trekstock is one of the most innovative and inspiring charities around. It has built unique community through deeply understanding the needs of young adults with cancer. With my background in digital and commercial partnerships, I hope to help Trekstock reach more people, secure more resources and have greater impact. I look forward to supporting Trekstock in reaching a greater and more diverse audience as well as growing partnerships across the UK and beyond."

To find out more about our new Board of Trustees, click here.