Board Members

Jonathan Lord

Chair, OpalAppointed as Chair in 2008, Jonathan is a Lecturer in Human Resource Management and Employment Law at Salford University. He has previously been a HR Director, Manager and Consultant, working across all three sectors. Specifically Jonathan has worked within the transport and construction industries, as well as carrying out HR projects within the public and voluntary sector.

Jane Pickering

Treasurer, OpalJane has been a Trustee and Treasurer since April 2018. Jane is a qualified Chartered Accountant with a wide range of experience working within the profession and for commercial enterprises. In addition Jane had been the volunteer treasurer for a number of local charities and, in 2008, she drew on all this experience and began working in the voluntary sector as a Community Accountant and CEO for Oldham Community Accountancy Service. This was followed by a senior role with Action Together when the two charities merged.<br />

Joanna Haigh

Board Member, OpalJoanna joined the Board in November 2018. She is a Child Protection Social Worker with extensive experience in health and social care in Oldham, working with people with learning disabilities and complex needs, as well as children and families. Joanna completed a work placement with OPAL as part of her social work degree and volunteered with the charity after completing placement.

Veronica Royle

Board Member, OpalVeronica joined the Board in 2004. During her time working for OPAL Veronica was involved in a number of projects developed in response to requests from people with learning disabilities and/autism. Projects covered a wide range of activities and provided work, leisure and social opportunities for people to develop skills and friendships.<br />Veronica is also a citizen advocate for people with learning disabilities.

Les Coop

Board Member, OpalLes has been a Trustee since 2012. A town planner by profession, Les worked in Local Government for 46 years finishing as Director of Environmental Services for Oldham Council. Les subsequently became a Planning Inspector for 10 years. Les is currently Treasurer of the ACE Centre which provides assessments and equipment for people with communication difficulties; a Trustee of Heritage Trust North West and Greater Manchester Building Preservation Trust; school governor; assistant churchwarden and Rotary club member.

Mary Meacher

Board Member, OpalMary joined the Board in 1998. Mary became involved with OPAL whilst working as a senior civil servant with Employment Services in Oldham where she developed an understanding of the challenges people with learning disabilities and/autism face accessing employment and benefits.

Cynthia Blythe

Board Member, OpalCynthia has been a Trustee since 1987. Cynthia worked for Oldham Education Department for many years and as Trade Union rep at her place of work.
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