Born and educated in Swansea, Sally moved to Edinburgh in 2004 where she started her career as an Administrative Assistant at the Edinburgh International Conference Centre. Her first formal role as a PA was to the MD of the newly opened Harvey Nash Scotland offices where her responsibilities included setting up a new office and its procedures. In 2009, Sally landed her key development role as PA/EA to the Chie Executive of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, the world’s largest arts festival. Under the acclaimed Chief Executive, Kath M Mainland CBE, Sally gained important senior level and Board experience as well as valuable charity understanding. After 6 amazing years at the Edinburgh Fringe, Sally took on the newly created role as Assistant to Jamie Coleman at CodeBase, the UK’s largest tech incubator.
As well as her professional work, Sally recently qualified as a Microsoft Office Specialist and runs the Edinburgh PA Network. She is also the Secretary of her local Community Council. In her spare time Sally is an avid yogi and practices meditation daily. She also loves to read and is an active participant of a local book group and a regular cinema goer.
Karen started her career in the Public Sector in Yorkshire, and soon moved into the private sector in search of new challenges and a faster pace.
Karen spent 7 years working for a large multi-national company within the food industry and supported the Executive office through a large merger. She spent time working in fabric design, engineering and then moved into technology with BACG Ltd, a software company in the grocery retail sector. Initially for the CFO and later became a key member of the Executive team, managing a capital raise process with a private equity investor. She then moved to Dell Computers as PA to the EMEA CFO before moving to South Africa where she spent time playing golf and hosting family and friends.
Karen returned to the UK in 2008 and joined Hutchison 3G UK Ltd, initially working for the Finance Director and then the CFO. For 3½ years she has worked for Dave Dyson the CEO, managing the CEO Office team.
Karen lives in Maidenhead, is married with 2 step-daughters and enjoys co-running the Berks & North Hants PA network.
Originally brought up in the Isle of Man, where after a secretarial course she had roles as an office junior and shorthand typist, Gill moved to London to work for the Ministry of Defence as a PA in 1983. After a variety of roles including 4 overseas postings to British diplomatic missions she was promoted to Executive Assistant working for senior military and civilian personnel. Her current role as EA to the Defence Senior Adviser Middle East and Security Envoy to the Kurdistan Region of Iraq is her fourth at this level and she has an additional responsibility as Assistant Head of Profession (Secretarial). In 2013, Gill Co founded Network PA SW1 in London alongside Catherine Butler – something she is particularly proud of as it has brought together PA’s from a wide variety of sectors in the SW1 postcode, founded a strong community and assisted with the growth of the profession with its developmental events.
Gill is honoured to have been asked to serve on the EPAA Regional Board and is excited about taking an active part in an organisation developed specifically for those in the Assistant profession to enhance and develop it throughout the UK at all levels.
After graduating in 2003 with a BA Hons degree in Corporate Communications from Queen Margaret University, Edinburgh, Lorna embarked on a career in marketing, PR and events management in local and international recruitment firms based in Belfast and Edinburgh. She further honed her marketing skills with post graduate diplomas in both management and marketing.
Lorna’s career path changed in 2009 when she joined Visit Belfast (then Belfast Visitor and Convention Bureau), the official destination marketing management organisation for the City of Belfast, first as Receptionist, then Executive Assistant and most recently as Office Manager (PA to the Chief Executive). This is a varied role that sees her providing comprehensive executive support services to the Chief Executive, Chairman and Board of Directors, key stakeholders, senior management team and the wider organisation.
As co-founder of the fledgling Belfast PA Network, Lorna has been featured on several PA blogs (Exceptional EA, Practically Perfect PA and NI Jobs). She looks forward to developing the network through her involvement with EPAA.
Outside of work, Lorna is treasurer and social media coordinator for a community choir and a registered volunteer with Volunteer Now, and particularly enjoy volunteering at cultural events and festivals.
Kim is Assistant to the Managing Partner at Michelmores LLP, having joined the firm in 1996 as a legal secretary in the Corporate/Commercial Department. Her role is to provide a comprehensive, executive assistant level support function to the Managing Partner, provide a secretarial support function at core management meetings, including the Executive Board and to play an active role in strategic projects as determined by the Managing Partner/Executive Board; a recent example being supporting the launch of the first Chinese-owned UK-regulated law firm, YangTze Law.
Previously, as part of a dual role in addition to supporting the Managing Partner, Kim was Head of Professional Support and worked alongside the team of Departmental Support Team Leaders to manage their secretarial resources (c80) across their three offices. This included undertaking a review of their working practices, which led to a restructure of the support function.
Prior to joining Michelmores and having qualified at secretarial college, Kim spent 6 years working in the motor trade, holding a variety of roles including Sales Administration, Quality Assurance, Database Management and Secretary to the MD.
She is the Founder of the Exeter PA Network, which launched in June 2012, and now has c500 members, with monthly breakfast meetings, and two formal events a year, attracting c70 attendees.
When not at work, Kim enjoys life on the coast, and can be found walking the dogs or enjoying a cocktail or two!
Winner of Scottish PA of the Year 2017 and founder of Highland PA Network, Fiona was brought up on the West Coast of Scotland. She attended Inverness College, completing an HND in Hospitality Management before joining the airline industry. On returning north she joined the Royal Bank of Scotland and progressed quickly into the PA role where she found her passion. Moving to the University of the Highlands and Islands in 2009 Fiona was PA to the Marketing Director, before joining the Caledonian Sleeper based in Inverness in 2015 where she is PA to both MD and Chair.
Fiona holds a Diploma in Personal Assisting, the Chartered Management Institute qualification in
People Management and is qualified in first aid and facilities management.
In her spare time Fiona enjoys floristry and now supports a local florist delivering and arranging
wedding flowers. She also feels that there is nothing better than a walk on the beach!
Living in Loughborough, Lesley Dexter is Executive Support Manager and Company Secretary at East Midlands Chamber (Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire, Leicestershire), a role which sees her travel to their offices in Chesterfield, Derby, Nottingham and Leicester on a regular basis.
With over 10 years of Chamber experience, Lesley started with Leicestershire Chamber of Commerce as PA to the Group Chief Executive in May 2005 before moving to Derbyshire & Nottinghamshire Chamber in October 2013. Lesley provides support to the Chief Executive and Senior Management Team as well as being the organiser and primary contact for the Chamber’s Board. She also acts as Company Secretary for the Chamber’s various companies. Previous roles have included working for the British Psychological Society, Community Fund (formerly National Lottery Charities Board) and the University of Leicester.
Lesley is also the Founder of the East Midlands PA Network, whose aim it is to support and connect EAs and PAs in the East Midlands through training and networking opportunities, sharing best practice and developing collaborative relationships. The theme for the Network over the past couple of years has been “Building Confidence in our Profession” and Lesley is looking forward to contributing to the development of the EA/PA profession as a member of EPAA’s Regional Committee.
In her spare time, Lesley and her partner Dave enjoy competing at a variety of dog sports events including agility and flyball with their four dogs. Lesley is also involved with the RNLI’s Lifeboat Enthusiasts Society, speaking at various events.
Nikki was born and grew up in Hampshire where she started her career working for multinational IT company where she stayed for 10 years before moving to Jersey in 1999 where she took a challenging part time role as a debt collector. Soon after Nikki landed an exciting role as PA to the CEO at Vodafone and was a key member of the Executive team that was instrumental in bringing the Vodafone brand to the Channel Islands. Nikki has been in her current role as PA to the Senior Partner at PwC for 3 years, she also has the additional responsibility of Office Manager and mentor to 4 PA/Secretaries so every day is a busy day. In her spare time Nikki loves walking her dog Milo on Jersey’s beautiful beaches before retiring to the sofa with a box of chocolates and a good ‘chick flick’.
Nikki is genuinely privileged to have been approached by EPAA to join the committee and hope that her ‘can-do’ attitude and passion for improving the working lives of PA/EAs, and those they support, will help take the EPAA from strength to strength over the coming years.
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