National Officers and Council

Council is Voice Community’s policy-making body. Members are elected by Voice Community's membership. Council members also serve on Voice Community’s various Committees.


National Officers

President: Chris Wilson

I have been a committed trade unionist since age 17 (a long time ago now),  and I have represented Northern Ireland Voice members on National Council, and have served on a number of national committees,  including: Events, Volunteers and (as Vice President), Employment and Personnel and Finance Committee as well as serving alongside other National Officer colleagues.

I re-established the Northern Ireland Executive Committee, and currently chair the same. I combine my Voice Community role with church ministry (in a lovely rural setting) and part-time tutoring (mainly History) and various bits and pieces of  other trade union work as presidential and professional responsibilities allow.

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Vice President: Teresa Bottomley 

I joined (PAT) Voice in 1976; my mum was already a member because we were both inspired by a local activist. During a recruitment drive to set up a network of student representatives by National Officers, I joined the Student Executive Committee as the representative for my teacher training college. I also a became an active member of the local Federation.

I have continued to be an active Committee member of my current local Federation. I have been a member of Voice Council for about 9 years. During  that time I have been a member of various Committee’s of Council, including Volunteers’, Events, Employment and Personnel and Finance at different times. I am also a member of the England Executive Committee, this is one of the vital links that enables its members to discuss issues that only pertain to the English education system,  just like its counterparts for the other three devolved nations.

I have also been National Chairman of Voice. This time I am instead Vice President (from 19 June 2021) of our Voice Section within the Community Union. I am committed to ensuring that our full transfer into Community continues to be based upon Voice Community's values, and awareness of the concerns of our members within the field of education.

I currently teach children with special needs part time in a primary school.

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Immediate Past President: Joy Rowley

I became a teacher as a second career after deciding that I wanted a more rewarding career than sitting in an office. I have worked mainly in special schools across a range of ages. 

I have been a member of Voice for most of my teaching career. I initially attended annual conferences and from my contacts there became involved as a Field Officer, initially in Warwickshire and now in Yorkshire and the North East since relocating in 2005.

I am honoured to be President and I am looking forward to working with the other National Officers to lead the union.

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Honorary Secretary: Yvonne Johns

Honorary Treasurer: Margaret Volpé

Assistant General Secretary (Voice Section): Deborah Lawson

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Click here to read more about Deborah Lawson.

Other members of Council

President Emeritus: Melynda Standring: I have been a member since 1984, and I remain impressed by the integrity of the people who represent members across the UK and beyond. I have served in numerous branch and national committee member roles. Currently, I am on the Wales Executive Committee (WEC) and have served on the Voice Finance Committee, the Rules Review group, the National Council and National Officers’ group and as Vice President and President. The breadth of work we do never ceases to amaze me, from nursery to tertiary, and I have experience in many of these areas, working in schools, nurseries and further education and as self-employed. The thing that binds us together is Professionalism – definitely with a capital ‘P’!  Email Melynda

England Representatives:

Kathryn Bottomley (Equality seat)

Kaisra Khan

Christine Moody

Viv Parkinson

Ian Toone

Kay-Lesley Hallam Black

Michael Barton

Angie Rutter

More about the England Executive Committee (EEC)

Scotland Representative:

Caroline MacDonald

More about the Scotland Executive Committee (SEC)

Wales Representatives:

May Castrey

Nick Griffin

More about the Wales Executive Committee (WEC)

Northern Ireland Representative:

Sandra Wilson

More about the Northern Ireland Executive Committee (NIEC)