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With mental health constantly in the news, it is good to be chairing a charity that helps people with difficult issues. I am hopeful that, with this greater awareness, we can look to a brighter future for those with poor mental health and through that obtain more funding for those need our support.

Jennie Flory, Chair


Mind in Somerset is governed by a non-executive board. Board members oversee the direction and strategy of the charity, holding the senior management team to account and scrutinising their decisions. Board members serve on an unpaid, voluntary basis. 

We are fortunate to have a strong board of trustees with diverse experience and skills. We are proud to include service users on our board, as well as people with experience in mental health, law, finance, management and a range of other disciplines. More than half of the members of our board have lived experience of poor mental health.

Jennie Flory, Chair

Jennie has worked as a Chartered Company Secretary since 1982 and spent three very happy years working as the HR Director and Operations Director of a wine company underneath the arches at Waterloo. She then became involved in working with charities and spent 12 years with Marie Curie Cancer Care as their Fundraising Director for the South West after which she became the Director of Fundraising for an independent hospice near Bath for 5 years, during which time for one year she worked as Acting Chief Executive. She is the Senior Partner of her Charity Consultancy and works nationally advising charities, mainly on strategy. She was a governor of Yeovil District Hospital for three years and now takes very seriously her role as Chair of the newly-formed charity Mind in Somerset.

Geoff Pateman, Treasurer/Vice-Chair

Having studied economics at Loughborough University, Geoff went on to serve in various Finance Manager roles at HBS and Mouchel. He became a trustee and Treasurer of MindTWS in 2013 and is delighted to continue in this role with the new charity. Geoff's other interests include gardening and steam railways.

Jon Thackeray, Company Secretary

Jon has a strong background in IT, first as a project manager at HP and then with various consultancies, finally founding his own IT consultancy in 1995. Jon became a trustee in 2017. His hobbies include enjoying time spent with his five grandchildren.

Dr John Cox

John worked in the National Health Service as a GP for 30 years. He also worked as a Clinical Assistant in Psychiatry and as part of the Adult Family Therapy team for 25 years. Latterly he was approved under Section 12 of the Mental Health Act to help in assessments. He still does some work for a computer company Patient.info. John became a Non-Executive Director at South Somerset Mind in 2014 and a trustee from 2017. He has been a Champion for Mental Health with the Somerset PCG/PCO/CCG and is still a keen advocate of whole-person care. His personal interests include music, gardening, sport and his local community.

Jenny Sparks

Jenny cannot remember when she was not interested in mental health! As Chief Officer of a Voluntary Sector Infrastructure organisation she managed the first pilot Mental Health Advocacy and Mental Health Participation Projects in Somerset during the 1990s. More latterly she worked as an Associate Lecturer in Health and Social Care at the local FE College. She joined Mind TWS as a volunteer in 2013 to investigate and develop funding streams and subsequently became a Trustee in 2016. She is very excited about the potential of Mind in Somerset to improve the mental health and wellbeing of people living in Somerset and beyond. She enjoys relaxing with her family and friends, gardening, walking and the countryside.

Sarah Baker

Dr Chris Norris

After hospital experience in psychiatry, Chris became a GP in Shepton Mallet and retired in 2012. He maintains a professional interest in mental health through sessional work for the Tribunal service as a medical member on Social Security appeal boards. He became a trustee in 2017 and is looking forward to the exciting times ahead following the merger.

Frances Geatches

Frances worked in the National Health Service mainly as a midwife and midwifery tutor. After early retirement, she trained as a psychotherapist. She became a volunteer at South Somerset Mind in 2008 and was a trustee from 2010. She says she is delighted to now be a trustee on the Board of Mind in Somerset and looks forward to new developments in the services for the support of mental health throughout the county.

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