Support . Empower . Advocate . Promote

Management Team

Marie Casey

Chief Executive Officer

As Director of Hastings Voluntary Action, Marie prioritised service user involvement and established the first advocacy projects in Hastings and Rother - XPRESS, My Choice and Mental Health Advocacy. seAp grew out of these projects. Marie has extensive experience of supporting community activities, project and organisational development, managing people and resources and promoting consumer rights. In addition Marie has chaired a wide range of voluntary organisations, multi-agency groups and public bodies including an NHS trust. She has lived and worked in Hastings for 21 years.

Marie was chair of the seAp Board of Trustees from its inception in 2000 until 2009 and continued to be a trustee until she took on her new role of CEO. Marie has also been CEO of Care for the Carers and has established links with service users, third sector colleagues and statutory bodies at local, regional and national levels.

Liz Fenton

Head of Business and Operations

Liz Fenton is responsible for taking forward key strategic developments in service delivery and business development.  Her brief includes Quality, Client Involvement, Volunteering, Evaluation, Marketing and Fundraising.  She has worked in the charity sector for 30 years, most notably as CEO of Voluntary Action Westminster, CEO of Care for the Carers, Expert Advisor on Carers to the Department of Health and most recently as CEO of the Princess Royal Trust for Carers, where she led the project which resulted in the merger with Crossroads Care to create Carers Trust.  Liz has a B.A. (Hons) in Business Studies and is a qualified Executive Coach.

Val Ford

Director of Training

Val comes from a background of working in a range of settings, teaching and supporting children and young people with physical and learning disabilities through their educational years to transition into adult services. The passion for ensuring these people were at the centre of all decisions about their lives brought Val to Advocacy. Val joined seAp in 2006 and through her experience as an advocate and tutor, became involved in the writing and delivery of the first accredited Qualification for Independent Advocacy Award in 2009.  Val now heads seAp’s successful City & Guilds approved Advocacy Training Centre. The reputation and quality of Val’s training and assessment has been rewarded with the highest accolades - Medal of Excellence for Assessing 2012 and the Lion award for Tutor of the Year 2013. Val also represents seAp as a Civil Society Leader for Euclid Network.

Simon Hicks

Resources Manager

Simon is responsible for overall management of finance, human resources, ICT, and health and safety. This includes policy and procedures, strategic and operational issues and internal and external reporting. He works closely with the Management Team, particularly in relation to budgets and financial control issues and takes care of seAp’s insurances, coordinates facilities management and oversees seAp’s approach to environmental issues.

Simon has over 20 years experience and has previously worked as Head of Finance for Creating Futures Ltd, Sussex Oakleaf Housing Association and Knowsley Care Society. Voluntary roles have included serving on the Board of Prospect Housing Association, Collingwood Housing Association and as Honorary Treasurer of Mid-Sussex CVS.

Chris Noble

Area Manager (South West region)

Chris joined seAp at the start of the ICAS contract in 2006 after working for the Citizens Advice Bureau as a Mental Health Project worker helping people with severe and enduring mental health difficulties, including representing their interests at Tribunals.

After achieving both a Law Degree and Postgraduate Diploma in Law, Chris’s career focussed on working in the voluntary sector. Now an Area Manager for our South West region, she has considerable experience of providing, developing and managing advocacy services with seAp as well as delivering advocacy training for the Qualificatio in Independent Advocacy.

Iain Wilson

Area Manager (South East Region)

Iain joined seAp in 2012 as part of their Business Development Team, and was originally involved at the inception of the organisation as a voluntary representative on the Board of Trustees.

Iain has extensive experience of working at a management level in both the statutory and voluntary sectors. He worked in local authority children’s services as a provider of registered, domiciliary and respite care and is a qualified social worker.

Iain has significant experience in the learning disabilities field, and as a service provider with Mencap, where he was Regional Manager in the South East and South London with key responsibility for delivery of housing and support, service development and close working with local authority commissioning teams.