The staff

Photo of Sallie Barker, Sport and Recreation AllianceSallie Barker

Sallie is the Sport and Recreation Alliance's Interim Chief Executive. She has responsibility for the operations of the organisation – facilities, IT and HR but the key area of her work is in developing and managing the membership, including the Alliance’s member services.

Sallie has been instrumental in increasing the number of members and in ensuring that our service to them is of a high quality and well regarded.

Sallie joined the organisation in October 2002, having worked at the GB Sports Council and Sport England for 12 years prior to that. She originally trained to be a teacher and holds an MA in Physical Education. She is currently studying to become a leadership coach.

Sallie is passionate about working for her community and in her spare time she is a trustee of the Torch Trophy Trust, a member of the executive committee of the European Non-Governmental  Sports Organisations, chair of the Women’s Playing Committee and board member of the English Lacrosse Association and a National Trust volunteer. She enjoys travelling and visits museums and stately homes wherever she goes!

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T 020 7976 3938

Photo of James Allen, Sport and Recreation AllianceJames Allen

James is the Head of Policy and leads the Sport and Recreation Alliance’s policy team, developing policy positions and working with the team to build a comprehensive evidence base across sport and recreation.

Before working at the Alliance, James held a range of communications and policy roles in both the private and not-for-profit sectors. He has worked previously in public affairs consultancy and on high profile national political campaigns. Most recently, he spent three years at the National Council for Voluntary Organisations, firstly in policy and later leading NCVO’s Public Services and Partnerships team.

He holds a Masters degree in Public Policy and outside work enjoys playing and watching a range of sports, and photography. To prove his resilience, he is an avid supporter of Newport County football club.

Email James
T 020 7976 3932

Kate sport_and_recreation_kate_lawrensonLawrenson

Kate is the PA to the Chief Executive and Company Secretary for the Sport and Recreation Alliance. She provides full administrative support to the chief executive and is the organisation's chief advisor on corporate governance procedures.

She also provides full support to the main board of directors, the General Council (our 'parliament'), the Finance Committee and the board of our trading company.

Kate organises the elections of directors to the board on a yearly basis, making sure that all protocols are carefully followed.  Kate is particularly passionate about her role in assisting a chief executive and board whose remit is to support the work of so many diverse and interesting members.

Kate joined the then CCPR in 1997 and worked alongside the then general secretary to establish an effective corporate governance strategy of systems and procedures for the organisation. She has worked alongside three chief executives and took on the added responsibility of company secretary in 2005. 

Kate was previously the PA to the district manager at the West Kent Benefit Agency (now DWP) based in Dartford, Kent for ten years.

In her spare time Kate is an avid reader and enjoys relaxing with family and friends.

Email Kate
T 020 7976 3941

Geoff_Obee_sport_and_recreationGeoff Obee

Geoff is Head of Finance at the Sport and Recreation Alliance. He manages all of its financial affairs and provides financial advice to the board of directors, chief executive and staff.

Geoff is a chartered accountant. Prior to joining the Sport and Recreation Alliance in 2010 he spent over 30 years in the private sector, mainly in the oil industry.

In addition to his work with the Sport and Recreation Alliance, Geoff is also treasurer and trustee of the Hospice of St. Francis in Berkhamsted.

Email Geoff
T 020 7976 3910

James_Stibbs_photo_sports_recreationJames Stibbs

James is the Head of Communications and is responsible for delivering the Sport and Recreation Alliance’s communications strategy.

Working across the organisation’s policy and services teams, James’s team is responsible for the Alliance’s publications, website, media relations and public affairs.

James’s recent successes at the Sport and Recreation Alliance have included leading the organisation’s re-brand and building its new website.

Before joining the organisation, James was a senior associate for a corporate communications agency, worked in parliament as a political secretary and was a senior researcher and author for the public policy thinktank, CentreForum.

Outside of work, James is a keen cook but he spends much of his free time trying to prevent his house from falling down. 

Email James
T 020 7976 3930

M 07974 344 843

Photo of Anne ClarkAnne Clark

Anne is the Management Accountant at the Sport and Recreation Alliance. She takes responsibility for the basic day-to-day accounting, preparation of monthly management accounts, submission of VAT returns and preparation of statutory accounts at the end of the financial year. 

She is also responsible for the vitally important job of preparation of salaries, as well as submitting various reports required by our pension providers and HM Revenue and Customs.

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T 020 7976 3911

Cristy Butcher

Photo of Cristy ButcherCristy joined the Sport and Recreation Alliance as an Events Officer in September 2013. She is responsible for the organisation and delivery of several of the events within the Alliance’s programme.

Prior to working at the Sport and Recreation Alliance Cristy was awarded her undergraduate degree in Events Management from the University of Greenwich and has worked in event roles at a variety of different organisations, including LOCOG and Interscience Communications.

Outside of work Cristy enjoys playing netball, spending time with her family and friends and has a passion for music, regularly attending live music events.

Email Cristy
T 020 7976 3924

simon_butler_photo_sport_recreation_allianceSimon Butler

Simon is Policy Officer at the Sport and Recreation Alliance, which serves as the UK’s umbrella body for the sport and recreation sector.

Simon joined the organisation in 2011 as Parliamentary Officer before moving into his current policy role, which focusses on extending physical activity opportunities to individuals of all ages and backgrounds.

Before joining the Alliance, Simon graduated from the University of Warwick with a First Class degree in Politics with International Studies, before working in Westminster for two years as Coordinator of the All Party Parliamentary China Group.

A long-suffering Spurs fan, his sporting highlight is managing to complete a marathon in just under four hours.

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T 020 7976 3902

Photo of Verity ComleyVerity Comley

Verity joined the Sport and Recreation Alliance in November 2013 as a Policy Research Executive.

Verity graduated in 2012 from Durham University with an MA (Hons) in History and Philosophy. She spent the previous year living in and travelling throughout New Zealand. In New Zealand Verity learned to surf, after a fashion, during the summer and Snowboard during the winter.

In her spare time Verity enjoys running, cooking, and travelling.

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T 020 7976 3922

Photo of Patrick Coyne the Sport and Recreation Alliance communications assistantPatrick Coyne

Patrick joined the Sport and Recreation Alliance in April 2012 and is the Communications Assistant. He is helping to effectively deliver the Sport and Recreation Alliance’s communications strategy across the organisation and to its members.

Patrick joined the Alliance after a period working in publishing for a range of peer-reviewed scientific journals and studied Sports and Exercise Science at university.

He also holds a Master’s degree in Applied Sports and Exercise Physiology from the University of Gloucestershire, where he coached the university basketball squads.

In his spare time Patrick enjoys playing a variety of sports namely cricket, rugby, football and basketball. Patrick also has the unfortunate pleasure of supporting Derby County FC.

Email Patrick
T 020 7976 3927

sport_and_recreation_alliance_david_fosterDavid Foster

David is the UK and EU Regulatory Officer at the Sport and Recreation Alliance, having joined the policy team in January 2011.

He is primarily responsible for European policy issues, but is also involved with policy matters closer to home. David works closely with our European partner organisations, the European Commission and the European Parliament. 

Prior to joining the Sport and Recreation Alliance David worked in the European Parliament in Brussels as an assistant to a British MEP. He studied European Studies and Modern Languages at the University of Bath and the University of Rome. 

In his spare time David enjoys watching and playing several sports, supporting Chelsea FC, cooking and travelling.

Email David
T 020 7976 3903

Photo of Richard GottfriedRichard Gottfried

Richard joined the Sport and Recreation Alliance as Membership Development Officer in January 2013. Working on the areas of membership and services development he will be delivering projects to benefit members of the Alliance.

Prior to working at the Sport and Recreation Alliance Richard worked in marketing and project management roles in education, community development and business and enterprise.

Outside of work Richard enjoys travelling the UK and he and his wife aim to visit every British seaside. He is an avid Minigolfer and has represented Great Britain in international competitions in Finland, Sweden and England.

Email Richard
T 020 7976 3928

Photo of Jennifer HaywardJennifer Hayward

Jennifer joined the Sport and Recreation Alliance in October 2013 as Communications Intern.

Jennifer has recently graduated from the University of Edinburgh with an MA(Hons) in English Literature. In her spare time Jennifer enjoys participating in triathlons, (because why be mediocre at one sport when you could be mediocre at three?) and was president of her university club.

When she’s not getting lost on the tube, Jennifer also enjoys reading, writing her blog and grudgingly going on the occasional run.

Email Jennifer
T 020 7976 3946
Photo of Libby JellieLibby Jellie

Libby joined the Sport and Recreation Alliance at the end of 2011 and is currently the Communications Officer. Libby provides editorial, marketing, creative, digital and media support across the organisation.

She started off her career working for Rough Guides at Penguin Books, before moving over to Westminster City Council where she won two PRCA awards for her work on the Every Older Person Matters campaign and was shortlisted for three PR industry young achiever awards. She has now immersed herself in to the world of sport and recreation.

In her spare time she likes to play netball, go running, read books, go to the cinema and theatre and spend time at home and with friends. She also loves food but is far better at eating it than cooking it.

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Follow Libby on Twitter
T 020 7976 3933

Photo of Mikkel LarsenMikkel Larsen

Mikkel is our Governance Officer. Mikkel works in rolling out our Code of Good Governance, building and updating our web resource Smart Sport and helped develop our EU project Better Boards, Stronger Sport.

Mikkel is a Sport Management graduate from Birkbeck College, University of London. As a keen badminton fan, he often annoyed both lecturer and fellow students by insisting that sport was about much more than just football.

Mikkel moved to the UK from his native Denmark to study his postgraduate degree having had a short stint in Manchester assisting Visit Manchester on their Manchester World Sport campaign.

Before moving to the UK, Mikkel was employed by the major coalition party in the Danish Government. In this role he worked as an assistant to the Deputy Chief of Staff on a range of policy areas including health and local authorities and in several election campaigns including a European parliament election.

After graduating from Birkbeck, he got involved as an intern in the Sport and Recreation Alliance, where he initially helped to develop Red Card to Red Tape and later worked on the annual member survey and other research projects before being taken on permanently in 2012.

Email Mikkel
T 020 7976 3947

Photo of Hayley MorrisHayley Morris

Hayley is the Office Assistant at the Sport and Recreation Alliance. In her role Haley helps all members of the team deliver their roles and functions and is the primary contact for and integral to the running of the room bookings system at Burwood House.

In her spare time Hayley is a fan of 80’s films and one day she hopes to be Molly Ringwald.

Email Hayley
T 020 7976 3932

Photo of Jo SwarbrickJo Swarbrick

Jo joined the Sport and Recreation Alliance as Parliamentary Officer in October 2013. A member of the policy team, Jo has responsibility for engaging with members of parliament and ensuring that sport and recreation remain high on the agenda in Westminster.

Prior to joining us Jo worked for a number of MPs and Lords in Westminster having previously studied History at the University of Warwick. Outside of work Jo enjoys playing football and tennis, and supports Preston North End FC.

Email Jo
T 020 7976 3904

photo_of_helen_tanHelen Tan

Helen is the Alliance’s Events and Projects Officer and is a member of the development team. She has responsibility for organising events for members and bidding on funding for projects that will benefit the Alliance’s member organisations.

She joined the Alliance from Badminton England in 2007, where she worked in the development team, having previously been a local authority sports development officer and studied sports development at university. Helen is currently finalising her Masters degree in Community Sports Development at Bolton University.

She also functions as the secretariat for the European Women and Sport network, enabling access to external funding from various UK and EU sources. 

She enjoys the feeling of delivering successful events, and the last-minute running around that funding bids entail. In her spare time, Helen is a keen badminton player – always happy to challenge anyone in the office, and has a young daughter.

Email Helen
T 020 7976 3928

sport_and_recreation_alliance_staff_sue_wressellSue Wressell

Sue is the HR and Office Manager at the Sport and Recreation Alliance. She has responsibility for the day-to-day personnel function of the organisation and office facilities, including contracts.

Sue has helped to recruit and work with many highly professional, able and friendly colleagues during her time at the Sport and Recreation Alliance – something she is particulalry proud of.

Sue is one of the longest serving members of staff and joined the then CCPR in 1990 as a technical assistant within the charitable arm of CCPR, the British Sports Trust. But over time, Sue’s role has changed and adapted to suit the needs of the organisation.

She took on more responsibility and subsequently became HR and Office Manager in 2002. Sue has always worked in the not-for-profit sector and was assistant to the education director at the Rochester Diocesan offices in Kent for four years prior to joining the Sport and Recreation Alliance.

In her spare time Sue loves spending time with her family and is a fan of Harlequins rugby union team, enjoying trips to the Stoop to see them play.

Email Sue
T 020 7976 3920

Also working at the Alliance:

Photo of Amanda BennettAmanda Bennett

Amanda is the Governance Advisor to the Sport and Recreation Alliance.

Read Amanda's biography.

Email Amanda

T 02079763926

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