Dr Kirsty Darwent, Chair

Dr Darwent has been chair of the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service since 2017 and has wide-ranging leadership experience within the charitable and public sector along with a professional background as a chartered psychologist and systemic psychotherapist.

Bill Matthews, Deputy Chair

Bill has two decades experience in governance and tribunal roles, much of which has been in the criminal justice sector. He is currently Chair of the Scottish Criminal Cases Review Commission and a member of the Fitness to Practise Committee at the Nursing and Midwifery Council.

Chief Executive

Joanna McCreadie, Chief Executive

Joanna is a social worker with extensive experience working with looked-after children and young people, and with survivors of abuse.  She has a wide range of experience in child protection, residential care and education, having worked with national inspectorates and leading charities.  Joanna has led and contributed to national reviews and guidance, most recently co-leading work on love as part of the Independent Care Review.

Senior Management Team

Gary Gallacher, Head of Operations

Gary has a background in supporting adults and children who have experienced complex trauma throughout their lives. This includes a variety of different settings as both a practitioner and senior leader. Gary also has a wide range of experience in developing therapeutic support for those accessing services.

Mel Lowe, Head of Policy and Improvement

Mel has over 20 years of experience working in different roles across government. Before joining Redress Scotland, her work focussed on developing and supporting implementation of national approaches, and policies for children and young people with additional support needs.

Michelle Nairn, Head of People

Michelle is a human resources professional with experience working in the public, private and voluntary sectors, having led strategic and operational change across the profession through the HR Voluntary Sector Forum. Michelle has also contributed to national workforce initiatives within social care and has been involved in national reviews such as the Independent Care Review.

Mike Stevens, Head of Finance and Resources

Mike is a skilled finance leader, having gained experience across a variety of public sector organisations including communities and local government, education and student support. He is a fully qualified accountant with the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants and holds qualifications in personality and ability testing in an occupational environment with the British Psychological Society.

Panel Members

Andrea Darling

Dr. Darling has a background in safeguarding. She is a Research Associate at Durham University, and Senior Research Fellow for a programme examining vulnerability hosted by the National Police Chiefs’ Council of England and Wales.

Andrea Higgins

Dr. Higgins is a consultant clinical psychologist with expertise in trauma associated with historical abuse. She has led and contributed to psychological services within the Republic of Ireland and Scotland.

Andrew Anderson

Andrew has over 30 years experience in international human rights work. He has served on a number of charity boards, and his former posts include Executive Director of Front Line Defenders, and Chair of

Andrew Laing

Formerly Her Majesty’s Inspector of Constabulary in Scotland, Andrew has over 30 years experience of working with vulnerable and under-represented groups, including those exposed to trauma.

Anne Houston

A social worker with forty years’ experience, Dr. Anne Houston OBE led the development of ChildLine for 17 years, and was CEO of Children 1st. She is currently Vice Chair of the Care Inspectorate.

Anthony Marr

Tony has extensive experience with adult survivors, and as part of his role with Speak Out Scotland he is working with The Promise Partnership to develop new services for children and young people. He is a panel member for the Scottish Government’s Survivor Fund.

Brian Houston

A qualified social worker, Brian has more than 30 years’ experience working with children, young people and families. He has worked in different settings as a practitioner and leader. Brian is currently Head of Support at The Promise.

Chantelle Whitehead

With experience in local government, including advising child safeguarding boards and partnerships, Chantelle is also a legal advisor to the Independent Review Mechanism, and a member of several regulatory committees.

Claire Breen

A social worker with experience in frontline child and adult safeguarding. Claire is a committee member for the Northern Ireland Social Care Council and an independent social care member for fostering and adoption panels.

Deborah Brayshaw

Debbie has been responsible for trauma-informed services for children and young people in care, and for care leavers. She has worked with the Church of England on past-case reviews.

Duncan McPhie

A graduate of the University of Glasgow, the LSE and Trinity College, Dublin, Duncan has been an advocate since 1996, and spent four years as an Advocate Depute prosecuting Serious and Organised Crime in the High Court.

Eileen Skinner

As a solicitor, Eileen had wide experience of cases of sexual, physical and emotional abuse. She was previously Director of the Diploma in Professional Legal Practice at Glasgow University, and is currently a member of a number of regulatory committees.

Emma Lewis

With over 23 years’ experience of working on complex casework with vulnerable groups, Emma founded the Roots Foundation, a charity which supports people who are or have been in care. She is a panel member for the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse.

Finlay Young

Investigative journalist Finlay Young has worked on justice and human rights issues around the world, supporting a range of governments and organisations. His work has exposed institutional abuse, and supported the legal response to sexual violence.

Georgina Blower

A practising barrister, Georgina specialises in criminal justice, public inquiries and inquests. She has experience in sensitive and complex cases and is a legally qualified chair presiding over police misconduct hearings.

Geraldine Gallagher

Geraldine has helped to design and deliver programmes around criminal justice and probation services, particularly concerning young offenders. She has previously been a children’s reporter and a member of the Parole Board for Scotland.

Gillian Dick

A former Detective Chief Inspector with Police Scotland, Gillian has worked extensively with vulnerable groups, including cases of sexual, physical and emotional abuse, and with third-sector victim support groups across Scotland.

Jacqueline Nicholson

Jacqueline has experience in mental health, including work with adult survivors of abuse. She is currently an associate lecturer at the Open University, and Panel Chair on several national committees for nursing, midwifery and social work issues.

James Mollison

James is currently a panel member and chair of the General Teaching Council for Scotland Accreditation and Fitness to Teach Panels and the Judicial Complaints Reviewer for Scotland. James is experienced in risk, governance and assurance roles.

Jane Gordon

Jane is a lawyer with 25 years’ experience that includes human rights, criminal justice reform and advising national policing bodies. She co-founded and led a charity that worked to address discrimination and violence against women and girls.

Julia MacLaren

Julia has worked with the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service, prosecuting cases in the Sheriff Court and working within the High Court Unit Sexual Offences Team. She is a Legal Member of the Parole Board for Scotland.

Lindsay Reynolds

A solicitor with extensive experience in equality and human rights law, Lindsey worked at the Equality and Human Rights Commission for over eight years. She is a legal member of the Mental Health Tribunal for Scotland, and a trustee of JustRight Scotland.

Lynne Harvie

Lynne has supported survivors of sexual abuse for a decade with the Strathclyde Rape Crisis Centre, providing face-to-face, telephone and group counselling support. She has 25 years’ experience as a senior leader across the public, private and third sectors.

Marcia Samuels

Marcia is a social worker with over 30 years’ experience, including work with survivors of historical abuse. She is a panel member for the Redress Board in Northern Ireland and a facilitator for the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse.

Margaret Moyes

With a background in social work, Margaret was Chief Executive of Scottish Adoption before her recent semi-retirement. She currently chairs Fostering and Adoption panels for two local authorities and a voluntary agency.

Mary McCallan

A qualified solicitor, Mary worked at the WAVE Trauma Centre and Victim Support Northern Ireland before joining Relatives for Justice in 2016. She is a member of the Appeals Panel Northern Ireland and the Gender Legacy Integration Group.

Michaela Jones

A solicitor with wide experience in cases of historical sexual and physical abuse, Michaela is a panellist on several regulatory bodies, and serves as a tribunal judge for the Mental Health Review Tribunal for Wales.

Paul Gilroy

Before retirement, Paul was Head of Service in CrossReach. He has over 35 years’ experience in the care and education sectors. He was the joint chair of the Interaction Action Plan Review Group with the Scottish Human Rights Commission.

Rachel Happer

A clinical psychologist with over 20 years’ experience in complex trauma, with a particular focus on institutional abuse, Rachel is the former head of Scotland’s acknowledgement forum, and is experienced in working with survivors of historical abuse.

Rhona Adams

A solicitor for 34 years, Rhona has wide experience of supporting vulnerable clients, including in cases of sexual, physical and emotional abuse. She is also a trained and experienced mediator.

Sam Gower

Clinical Services Director with the Midlands and Lancashire Commissioning Support Unit, Dr. Gower is a clinical psychologist with extensive experience in complex trauma, child development and residential care.

Sandra Campbell

A social worker for over 40 years, Sandra has held several roles as a senior leader in the public sector. She is currently Convener of the Scottish Social Services Councils, and a board member of the Care Inspectorate.

Sara Lurie

Sara is a qualified social worker with wide experience of working with children and families. She recently retired from The Fostering Network, where she was the Director of Scotland, and the UK safeguarding lead.

Susan Aitkenhead

As a Registered Nurse, Susan has worked in a number of roles including national policy and professional regulation. Her experience includes work examining the quality of current and historic care.

Susan Fallone

An advocate at the Scottish Bar and JP in Edinburgh Sheriff Court, Susan’s legal practice and experience has a particular emphasis on child and family law. She was appointed a Children’s Safeguarder in 2013.

Victoria Smith

A solicitor for 25 years, Victoria has also worked as a decision maker for organisations including the Ministry of Defence and NHS Resolutions, as well as for several regulatory bodies. She is an independent assessor for The Student Loans Company, and a part-time tribunal judge.

Yvonne Stewart

A former solicitor and then children’s reporter for almost a decade, Yvonne has held a succession of senior posts within the trade union movement, and is currently lead negotiating officer for a health union. She is a member of the Mental Health Tribunal Scotland.

Zeenat Islam

A public law barrister, Zeenat has experience in working with community organisations, vulnerable individuals and people from minoritised groups. Since 2017 she has been instructed as Junior Counsel to the Grenfell Tower Inquiry.

Non-Executive Members

Paul Edie

For 23 years Paul worked with one of Scotland’s biggest local authorities, where he served as Chair of Housing and Social Care. He has also chaired the Board of the Care Inspectorate, Scotland’s social care regulator.

Roy McComb

Roy has held senior positions in the RUC/PSNI, and the National Crime Agency. He now provides international law enforcement advice and has delivered training on organised crime and counter-terrorism, including effective governance.

Neil Mackay

Neil’s career in the financial services sector has included executive roles in commercial, risk and compliance activities. He is a board member at the Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator and has chaired the governing body of a large secondary school.

Colin Spivey

Colin is currently Chief Executive of the Parole Board for Scotland, where he has implemented significant organisational changes, including the introduction of a victims team. He began working with Redress Scotland, in an advisory role, during the formation of the organisation.