Our alumni

Since it launched in 2020, Future of Greater Manchester’s professional development offer has evolved continuously. The constant has been the engagement and calibre of the candidates, and we’ve watched our GM Leaders Plus – and now GM Future Leaders – graduates move up, lead and deliver effectively across housing, regeneration, economic development, health, digital and infrastructure initiatives. We’re delighted to be part of their professional development, and to have so many alumni actively involved with Future of GM, mentoring next levels and sharing insight with peers and the wider sector. Together with programme sponsors GMCA, Hatch, Trowers & Hamlins and Arup, we salute them all, and hope you’re fortunate enough to work with them!


See all Future of GM / Future of London alumni here.

GM Leaders Plus 4

March 2023 – January 2024

Alison Bacon
Strategic Lead - Neighbourhoods, Manchester City Council

Alison has worked in local government and Greater Manchester for 10+ years. A specialist in migration, she has a record of working with public sector partners to deliver innovative solutions to pressures and local impacts. Alison co-designed the Syrian Resettlement Scheme in 2015 which set the blueprint for how refugee resettlement schemes are now delivered. After leaving GMCA in 2022, Alison returned to Manchester City Council as Strategic Lead in Neighbourhoods. She continues to work collaboratively with partners in the North of Manchester to managing emerging issues and priorities.

John Garland
Senior Associate Solicitor, Trowers & Hamlins

John has 15+ years' experience in the construction sector in the North West, working as an estimator and project manager, and has Associate CIOB membership. John's role sits within Trowers & Hamlins's Projects & Construction department where he trained and qualified in 2015. He has wide experience in the construction sector, acting for clients including local authorities, registered providers, funders, institutional investors, developers, main and sub-contractors. John advises on non-contentious matters such as construction contracts, development agreements, security documentation and major infrastructure projects, and has advised confidential clients on contentious matters and dispute resolution.

Luke Green
Head of Capital, Design and Technical Services, Stockport Council

(On joining GM Leaders Plus: Design & Technical Services Manager, Stockport Council)

Luke is responsible for the delivery of Stockport's capital programme across its built estate. He manages a pipeline of around 90 projects at any one time from inception through business case, design and delivery, with a combined value of over £100m. Luke joined Stockport in 2019, having worked as an architect and project lead on major projects throughout the UK. He uses his broad experience to ensure Council investment does not just deliver a built asset, but also offers maximum benefit to the residents of the locality it serves.

Alyson Heald
Partnership Director NW, L&Q

Alyson is responsible for the Group’s strategic relationships with key partners and stakeholders across the region. Alyson’s focus is on working collaboratively to understand the needs of residents and community organisations as well as the strategic priorities of local and regional government and other partners to help shape L&Q’s ambitious plans for the North West. With 18+ years’ experience in social housing, Alyson is passionate about the sector and the added social value housing providers can generate, as well as ensuring wider placemaking and levelling up agendas deliver positive impacts and opportunities for local communities.  

Tina Iball
Sustainability Manager, Accent Group

previous: Strategic Lead for Sustainability, RBH

Tina has over 14 years’ experience of working in sustainability, carbon reduction & environmental protection, most of which has been spent in local government. In her current role, Tina is the Sustainability Manager for Accent Group, responsible for leading the Sustainability team to deliver the social housing landlords action plans and driving improvements in carbon reduction for both the organisation and its homes. They are currently delivering domestic retrofit projects across the UK, utilising Social Housing Decarbonisation Fund (SHDF).  She is passionate about supporting tenants and engaging them on the journey to a low carbon future.

Dave Kelly
Assistant Director, Reform, GMCA

Dave has 20 years' experience in the public sector. After 14 years in UK law enforcement, primarily in strategy and policy developments in response to serious organised crime, Dave moved into local government where he has been at the forefront of leading Greater Manchester's public service reform portfolio. In his current role, Dave leads a team responsible for driving and supporting reform and social policy developments in GMCA the organisation and across Greater Manchester. Dave is passionate about achieving the ambition of 'Good Lives for All' in GM and is driven by a collaborative approach to doing better things rather than simply doing things better.

Greig Lees
Head of Development Delivery (North), Guinness Partnership

Greig has 20+ years' experience in the social housing sector. He joined Guinness in December 2020, responsible for the delivery of new homes across a range of tenures in the North of England. Prior to that, he was Head of Regeneration at Northwards Housing in Manchester. Greig has an MSc in Regeneration and Urban Renewal and is a member of the Chartered Institute of Housing. He's also a Non-Executive Director at Salix Homes and chairs its Growth & Development Sub-Committee. In 2022, Greig joined Beyond Housing as an Independent Development Committee Member.

Steven Manifold
Major Projects Manager (Bury North), Bury Council

Steven is a Chartered Surveyor with 20+ years' experience in the North West property market; he recently moved from private to public sector. Steven joined the Bury Council major projects team in 2021 to work on a number of large-scale regeneration projects, including a joint venture comprehensive town centre regeneration scheme. In previous roles, Steven worked for an international property consultancy, a regional surveying practice and a national property development company.

Steve Modric
Senior Manager, Strategy & Markets, Homes England

Steve leads on policy and strategy for cities and major conurbations at Homes England.  He has extensive experience of housing and local government, working in London and Manchester in delivery and policy roles.  Steve supported the establishment of the HCA in 2008 as part of the Government-led transition team and worked closely with DLUHC on the re-establishment of a regeneration role for Homes England following the Levelling Up White Paper. 

Kathryn Perry
Assistant Director Housing Services - Wigan Council

(On joining GM Leaders Plus: Enhanced Service Manager - Homes & Communities, Wigan Council)

Kathryn has 23 years’ experience in social housing in a variety of operational and leadership roles predominately in housing management. Throughout, she has provided a high quality, good value housing management service through effective performance management, tenant and stakeholder engagement and service improvement. Kathryn has played a significant part in contributing to the strategic development of the organisation, delivering priorities and leading and managing transformation in how services are delivered and in changing team culture across the directorate.

Dr. Manish Prasad
Associate Medical Director, GM Integrated Care Trafford

Manish is a qualified doctor with over 17 years' experience, 12 as a GP. He has diversified his portfolio and joined a role in NHS management which has seen him develop primary care quality as well as specific projects to improve patient quality of care and outcomes. His experience includes setting up and chairing the Local Clinical and care professional leadership which involves bringing together cross-organisational professionals to work collaboratively and in an integrated way for common goals. He has a compassionate, conscientious and pragmatic approach to his work and always puts the patient at the centre.  

Rosie Rees-Bann
Change & Transformation Lead, Manchester Local Care Organisation

Rosie has worked in improvement, change and innovation teams across Manchester City Council for 10+ years. As Change & Transformation Lead for Adults Social Care, Rosie is delivering the Better Outcomes, Better Lives transformation programme to embed strengths-based practice across Adults Social Care. Rosie is enthused by projects that involve working with people to collaboratively deliver sustainable change. A collaborative and curious leader, Rosie enjoys unpicking complex problems and designing better solutions that shake-up old systems and ways of working.

Angeliki Stogia
Associate, Arup

(On joining GM Leaders Plus: Senior Consultant, Arup)

Angeliki is a skilled communicator with highly developed political judgement and strong experience developing and delivering policy, programmes and complex projects that require significant attention to stakeholder engagement across a range of areas including environmental sustainability, climate change, transport, and infrastructure. Before joining Arup Angeliki was the Executive Member for Environment, Planning and Transport at Manchester City Council, where she led Manchester's campaign to become the first UK city to sign up to a science-based carbon budget to become zero carbon by 2038. Angeliki is passionate about building relationships and partnerships to support successful cities, address the climate crisis and tackle disadvantage and inequality.

James Tate
Senior Transport Planner, Arup

James is a chartered Transport Planner with 15+ years experience in the industry, the last seven with Arup. He leads teams on a range of sustainable transport projects across the GM city region. He has managed complex projects for a variety of public and private sector clients, often with a range of stakeholders. James particularly enjoys projects with a focus on community engagement, and is passionate about bringing forward schemes to help people walk, wheel and cycle safely around their neighbourhoods.

Ben Townsend
New Business Director NW, L&Q

Ben has 15+ years’ experience of in housing, development and regeneration, recently taking on the role of New Business Director NW at L&Q. Ben is leading the integration of the North West Development and Sales function into the L&Q Group following its acquisition of Trafford Housing Trust. He is a passionate advocate for the impact housing has on people’s lives, communities and the built environment. Having started his career at English Partnerships and Great Places, Ben is keen to pursue strategic, place-shaping projects with a range of tenures and an aspiration for the highest quality in design and build.

Chris Wilkinson
Head of Research & Analysis, Homes England

Chris joined Homes England in 2019, and his team is responsible for providing strategic insight to colleagues, partners and government. Chris has over a decade of delivering research and analysis, and worked for several years as a consultant at SQW before joining Homes England. Passionate about urban and community regeneration, Chris has a BA in Geography, MA in Urban Regeneration and Development, and in his spare time is a trustee for Groundwork. 

Lucy Woodbine
Principal, Planning & Housing Research, GMCA

Lucy is a social researcher with 18+ years experience in the housing sector. Her work at GMCA ranges from developing the research evidence base for Place for Everyone, providing data to support strategy decisions, to primary research into the experiences of those facing housing challenges. Lucy led the team that developed MappingGM, Greater Manchester’s online mapping and analysis tool. Prior to GMCA, Lucy worked for housing associations in London in operational and policy roles.

GM Future Leaders Pilot

June – November 2023

Jade Brunt CPFA
Principle Finance Manager, Manchester City Council
Patricia Allen
Inclusive Economy and Communities Manager, Trafford Council

(On joining GM Future Leaders: Work & Skills Specialist, Manchester City Council)

Samina Bird
Customer Service Team Leader, Manchester City Council
Davina Consoli
Communications Manager, Manchester City Council
Melanie Cook
Communications Business Partner, Manchester City Council
Stephanie Cosson
School Admissions Manager, Manchester City Council
Fred Crawshaw
Head of New Business, L&Q
Kieran Devlin
Interim Operations Manager, Wigan Council
Jen Elsam
Principal Project Manager, Tony Gee

(On joining GM Future Leaders: Principal Project Manager, Arup)

Caitlin Evans
Business Partner - Greater Manchester Resilience Unit
Sofie Haig-Smith
Building Safety Programme Manager, Manchester City Council
Maria Ioannou
Senior Consultant, Hatch
Kelly-Ann Jolly
Staying Close Coordinator, Manchester City Council
Regina Khanum
Affordable Housing Programme Manager, Manchester City Council

Future of GM Alumni Representative

On joining Future Leaders: Strategic Housing Senior Project Manager – Manchester City Council 

Sean Leach
Senior Consultant, Hatch
Alex Lloyd
Principal Engineer, Arup
Jo Moon
Project Manager, Barnardo's
Graeme Moore
Planning Officer, Oldham Council
Dr. Cara Mulholland
Lecturer in Project & Operations Management

On joining Future Leaders: Better Places Research Facilitator, Stantec

Sarah Mulligan
Construction Lead Architect - Design & Technical Services Team, Stockpot Council
Leah Sargeant
Business Support Manager, Wigan Council
Mo Shirazi
Operations Manager, CBRE

Co-Chair, Project Manager UK Junior Board

Liam Swanston
Senior Manager - Youth Work and Organisational Safeguarding Lead, The Proud Trust

On joining Future Leaders: LGBT+ Youth Work Manager, The Proud Trust

Lisa Turner
Principal Policy Officer, Strategy & Economic Policy, Manchester City Council

GM Leaders Plus 3

March – December 2022

Karl Astbury
Consultant, Programs - Resilient Cities Network

On joining Leaders Plus: Head of Strategy, RBH


Heather Coombs
Strategic Lead - Assets & Property, Wigan Council
Susie Cuthill
Deputy CEO - The Proud Trust
Steph Everett
Senior Partnership & Business Development Manager; Shadow Leadership Board - Homes England

Future of GM Steering Group 2022-present

Sherelle Fairweather
Digital Strategy Lead - Manchester City Council

On joining Leaders Plus: Digital Social Inclusion Lead

Ian Gilbert
Planning Director - Stantec
Laura Green
Development Manager - Stockport Council
Jennifer Kantor
Senior Associate - Trowers & Hamlins
Bethan McCaw
Delivery Manager - Greater Manchester Combined Authority
Beena Puri
Partnerships & Innovation Lead - Greater Manchester Combined Authority
Helen Shearer
Head of Start Well, Strategic Lead for Early Years - Bolton Council
Sam Styles
Associate, Structural Engineering - Arup

On joining Leaders Plus: Associate Civil Engineer

Dr Kelly Watson
Director - Hatch Urban Solutions

On joining Leaders Plus: Associate Director - Hatch

Ashleigh Williams
Major Projects Manager - NHS Business Services Authority

On joining Leaders Plus: Major Projects Manager, Bury Council


GM Leaders Plus 2

February – December 2021

Amy Beasley

Senior Manager, Economic Development & Spatial Planning – National Highways

On joining Leaders Plus: Service Manager (Place Planning); Transport Strategy & Growth Manager – Stockport Council

Mark Canning

Senior Partnership & Business Development Manager – Homes England

Oliver Chapman

Associate Director – Hatch

Charlotte Cordingley

Director – Lawrence Rose Property Services

Previously: Director of Housing & Property; Assistant Director – Corporate Property, Assets & Greenspaces, Wigan Council

On joining Leaders Plus: Head of Estates & Asset Management, Stockport Council

Lisa Dale-Clough

Assistant Director, Economy – GMCA

On joining Leaders Plus: Head of Industrial Strategy – GMCA

Lisa Harvey-Nebil

Chief Executive – The Proud Trust

On joining Leaders Plus: Head of Youth Strategy & Engagement – Manchester City Council

Matt Kelly

Service Manager, Parks & Streetscene – Wigan Council

Mark Moore

National Head of Heating & Hot Water Services – Guinness Partnership

Joanna Munnelly

Head of Digital Policy – GMCA

On joining Leaders Plus: Inclusion Manager – Stockport Council

Anne Parkes

Associate, Social Value – Arup

On joining Leaders Plus: Senior Social Value Consultant – Arup

Rachel Rosewell

Deputy Treasurer – GMCA

On joining Leaders Plus: Head of Finance – Manchester City Council

Tom Saville

Assocate Director, Civil Engineering – Arup

On joining Leaders Plus: Associate Civil Engineer – Arup

Andy Smith

Head of Change Partnering – Guinness Partnership

Tom Wainwright

Managing Associate – Trowers & Hamlins

On joining Leaders Plus: Senior Associate – Trowers & Hamlins

Ruth Welford

Assistant Director – Barnardo’s (VSC Lead, Special Projects)

Previously: Director of Operations – Arawak Walton

On joining Leaders Plus: Assistant Director – Barnardo’s


GM Leaders Plus 1

January 2020 – November 2020

Darren Ashworth

Partner – Trowers & Hamlins

On joining Leaders Plus: Senior Associate – Trowers & Hamlins

Joseph Conmee

Head of Strategy – Government Property Agency

On joining Leaders Plus: Town Centre Regeneration Programme Manager – Stockport Council

Angela Harrington

Director of Inclusive Economy – Manchester City Council

On joining Leaders Plus: Head of Work & Skills – Manchester City Council

John Herring

Director of Organisational Development & Culture – NHS GM

On joining Leaders Plus: Strategic Lead for Organisational Development – GM Health & Care Partnership

Andy Jackson

Associate, Civil Engineering – Arup

Shefali Kapoor

Director of Communities – Manchester City Council

On joining Leaders Plus: Head of Neighbourhoods, Manchester City Council

Future of GM Board member (2023-25)

Sarah Lowes

Major Planning Projects Manager – Trafford Council

Carl Moore

Head of Home Ownership & Supply (North West) – Homes England

Phillipa Nazari

Director, Data and Information Governance/Data Protection Officer – British Business Bank

On joining Leaders Plus: Deputy Director, Information Governance, GMCA


Phil Rimmer

Assistant Director, Revenues, Benefits and Customer Services – Bolton Council

Helen Walters

Town Centre Manager – Stockport Council

David Watson

Associate Director – Hatch

Marc Watterson

Associate Director, Town Planning – Arup

On joining Leaders Plus: Associate – Arup

FoGM Steering Group

John Wrathmell

Director, Strategy & Research – GMCA