Our team

Meet the ACCT UK Team

Our Senior Leadership Team

MURDO URQUHART, CHIEF EXECUTIVE

Murdo was a regular army officer for 37 years and in his latter years saw the work of the Army Cadet Force at close hand. Murdo was so enthused about what the ACF did for developing young people that, for the final 4.5 years of his service, he asked to head up the team providing regular army support to the ACF and concurrently persuaded his sons to join the ACF. Murdo retired from the Army in 2013 and after three years as a school bursar (which was a good developmental experience) it was a natural step in 2016 to join the charity dedicated to supporting the ACF.

I marvel at the commitment of the adult volunteers who deliver life changing developmental training to cadets. Through my sons I have seen and felt the lasting impact of committed and inspiring adult volunteers. The best way I can help is to put my former military experience and knowledge to good effect as Chief Executive of the charity dedicated to supporting the cadets and adult volunteers of the ACF.”

Murdo

RICHARD WALTON, DEPUTY CHIEF EXECUTIVE

Richard is passionate about helping young people to develop their character and interpersonal skills. Having been an Army Cadet himself Richard has been privileged to work and volunteer with young people in a range of organisations and roles across the charitable and state sectors. A keen advocate of lifelong learning, as an adult Richard has learned to communicate in British Sign Language, to knit, swim and recently to play the flute. Richard is fortunate to be able to draw on experience as a charity trustee and from his voluntary roles to support ACCT UK in its work.

ACCT UK makes a real impact on the lives of young people across the UK. As a long term volunteer in the youth sector it is doubly rewarding for me to be able to bring learning from my volunteer roles to my day-job with ACCT UK. I hope that my small contribution enables ACCT UK to deliver first class programmes and targeted grant making that develops the skills and character of young people.”

Richard

FAYE MEAKIN, HEAD OF DEVELOPMENT

Faye joined ACCT UK in 2016 after over a decade working in development roles for national arts and international development charities. She has wide experience in fundraising, memberships and grant making. Faye is particularly motivated to work at ACCT UK, supporting both cadets and adult volunteers in their ACF journeys and helping them to unlock their potential with life changing experiences and training.  She is committed to improving the life chances of young people and in her spare time Faye is also Vice-Chair of Governors at a local primary school.

One of the highlights of working for ACCT UK has been the way in which the charity responded to the financial implications of the national lockdowns in 2020, by offering grants to our family of adult volunteers to help those affected in those difficult times.”

Faye

Meet the ACCT UK Trustees

KEVIN ABRAHAM, CHAIR

Kevin became Chair of the Board of Trustees in July 2019. Previously, he had a full career in the Army, leaving in 2015, since when Kevin has worked as an independent consultant and, as a volunteer, with youth engagement programmes.

I believe very strongly in the effectiveness of well-structured programmes to make a positive difference to the life of young people. My ambition for ACCT UK is that we do more and better as a charity to help change the lives of young people.”

Kevin

JEMMA RALPH, VICE CHAIR

Jemma has recently made a career change and is currently retraining in Animal Management, Behaviour & Welfare with the end goal of becoming an Animal Keeper in a safari park or zoo. Prior to this Jemma worked as a trauma orthopaedic theatre nurse for eight years in both NHS and private hospitals before moving into the corporate role of Trauma Clinical Specialist teaching surgeons and staff how to use trauma equipment. Jemma became a trustee in January 2020 and in January 2021 Jemma became the first female and youngest Vice Chair in the charity’s history.

As a Cadet Force Adult Volunteer, I have seen first-hand the positive impact and role that ACCT UK has had in many people’s lives and, together with the board of trustees, I want to continue, support, and broaden that experience for all future beneficiaries.”

Jem

ALAN GOODWIN, TREASURER

Alan has worked in the charity investment sector for many years, and the charitable and social purpose behind what Alan’s work is a great motivator in his professional life. Alan considers it a privilege to have the opportunity to contribute more directly to ACCT UK through this role. In his spare time Alan has been a keen cricketer, a persistent golfer and long suffering football watcher.

I have been a trustee of ACCT UK for some time now and I see the new name and direction of the charity as invigorating our support to young people across the UK.

Alan

AGATA ZUKOWSKA, TRUSTEE

Agata has worked in advertising and media for 15 years. She started in advertising sales and worked closely with advertising and creative agencies throughout her career. In the last eight years she has focused on custom content creation, trade marketing and insights and analytics. Agata is currently working for Samsung Ads, developing their data and advertising technology propositions. She is a graduate of the University of Greenwich and London School of Economics, where Agata studied politics, culture and languages.

I always wanted to be involved in charity work outside of my daily job, since my career is very commercial in its nature. Through friends and family I knew what an important job ACCT UK was doing so when this opportunity arose I was thrilled to meet with the team and discuss how I can help. I have been serving on the board since 2017 and I am immensely proud of what we have achieved in this time.”

Agata

JUSTIN TARKA, TRUSTEE

Justin is an experienced legal professional with knowledge, skills and experience gained within various legal environments, both in the UK and internationally.

He specialises in providing advice on employment law and data privacy matters and is a Certified Information Privacy Professional (CIPP/E) and a member of the International Association of Privacy Professionals.

I was attracted to ACCT UK as their work is invaluable and I hope to help the charity not only in respect of legal matters but also to showcase the opportunities it can present to young people from all backgrounds”

Justin

RUADHRI DUNCAN, TRUSTEE

Ruadhri has over 20 years in the fund management industry where he’s operated as both a fund manager and a charity trustee. After leaving the Army (and having spent 9 years in the Grenadier Guards) Ruadhri started work with Leopold Joseph and Sons where he completed his fund management exams. In 1999 Ruadhri moved to Newton Investment Management, where he worked within the charities department for over 12 years, managing charitable fund before moving to Sarasin and Partners LLP in 2011. Ruadhri is married with four children and is an associate of the Chartered Institute for Securities and Investment.

I continue to be a great supporter of the cadet movement and the work of ACCT UK. The work of the charity during the recent COVID pandemic is a great example of its relevance and support of the Army Cadet Force.”

Ruadhri

DAVID KANE, TRUSTEE

David has been involved in some way with the army for almost 50 years, beginning his service as a regular soldier in the Royal Artillery in the 1970s. Following this, David joined the ACF as a volunteer in 1985 and served as Commandant of 1st (Northern Ireland) Battalion ACF from 2013 -2018. Alongside his voluntary work for the ACF, David worked in telecommunications for BT (now Openreach) for 41 years, before retiring in 2020.  In addition to David’s current role as trustee of ACCT UK, he also serves as a Trustee/Elder of Hazelbank Presbyterian Church in Coleraine, Northern Ireland. David enjoys walking, and sports, particularly football (he is an avid fan of Manchester United and his hometown Coleraine FC).

I am delighted to serve as a trustee of ACCT UK, a charity that continues to support the ACF’s adult volunteers and cadets. The importance of the charity was clearly demonstrated during the Covid-19 restrictions as numerous adult volunteers benefited from the Hardship Relief Fund.”

David

WENDY ADAMS, TRUSTEE

Wendy works as a GP Nurse Practitioner in Elsenham and is also Clinical Head of Department and Educational Lead for various nursing specialities in the practice. Wendy has worked in a wide variety of clinical and health areas over the past 30 years. She is also a Trustee for St Clare Hospice and a local Parish Councillor. Wendy is married to Tony, and has two sons, a daughter and a dog called Bo!

Wendy’s experience of the ACF, healthcare sector, charitable sector and local  matters means she can bring a wealth of experience to the board.

I joined the ACCT UK board to be a voice for local and wider youth issues, to help challenge and support change and ensure that ACCT UK is seen and understood across our nation.”

Wendy

NICK WILLIAMS, TRUSTEE

Nick is married with three grown up sons. He became an Army Cadet in the CCF whilst at school.  After leaving school, Nick joined a Marine Insurance company in the City of London. He is now sole owner and Managing  Director of his own company specialising in providing support to  Marine Insurers in West Africa. In 1982, Nick joined the City of London & NE Sector Army Cadet Force as a volunteer. He was commissioned in 1989 and has served in a number of leadership appointments. Nick is currently a Deputy Commandant .

ACCT UK is a very important part of the support network that ensures the stability and continuance of the Army Cadet Force and, as such, has a clear role in making sure that young people of all backgrounds can access the ‘cadet experience.'”

Nick

CHRIS TEARNEY, TRUSTEE

Chris joined ACF as a cadet in 1970 and is currently a volunteer Colonel Cadets in the North East. He has volunteered in four ACF Counties and was a Vice President at the Cadet Forces Commissioning Board. From 1995 to 2009 Chris was a member of the ACF Training Committee. He spent his career in Local Government, starting as an Apprentice Electrician, moving into technical posts where Chris eventually managed the Electrical Office before moving into General Construction Management including Building Services, Building Maintenance, Housing Refurbishment and New Build, Procurement, Stores, Waste Management, Project Management and Highways Management. Chris is a Fellow of the Institute of Engineering and Technology and a Fellow in the Institute of Leadership and Management, registered with the Engineering Council as an Incorporated Engineer and a former Member of the Chartered Institute of Housing.

I became a trustee as I have always appreciated the work of ACCT UK in supporting cadets and CFAV’s, particularly those from the most challenging backgrounds. I have only missed two ACCT UK AGM’s in the past 30 years!”

Chris

CATHERINE HARRISON, TRUSTEE

Catherine has worked in Human Resources and Organisational Development for over 25 years in a range of private and public sectors organisations. She is a Chartered Fellow of the CIPD and currently employed as Associate Director of People, Culture and Inclusion at Lancaster University. Catherine is a proud member of the Army Cadet Force, now as a volunteer and, in her youth, as a cadet.

I strongly believe in giving as many young people as possible the opportunity to take part in a whole range of developmental activities. Such activities, that are experiential by nature, fun, based on forming friendships and working as part of a team, often come at a cost which means not everyone can access them. This is where the charity sector comes in and I’m very proud to be a trustee where grants can be made to provide life-changing opportunities to so many young people and the adult volunteers who support them.”

Catherine

DREW CASSIDY, TRUSTEE

Drew has worked in engineering for over 40 years, firstly as an apprentice before going off to university for further study. He has significant experience in training and development and held senior management positions in two blue-chip multinational companies. As a global manager, Drew has had the privilege of developing and implementing apprentice engineering programmes in the USA and the Middle East.

As a qualified coach, Drew has helped people to realise their true potential. He considers himself fortunate to have been part of an instructor group that supported over two hundred students’ training, helping them achieve a professional coaching qualification.

I joined the Army Cadet Force as a boy. Through being a member of this fantastic organisation, I enjoyed a variety of exciting experiences and developed a keen interest in service to the community. My ambition is that the organisation flourishes and continues to deliver on its motto, “To inspire to achieve”.
ACCT UK is a crucial enabler of various ACF activities, and it is for this reason I first became the Chair of ACCT Scotland then a Trustee of ACCT UK.”

Drew

DAVID CHIPP, TRUSTEE

David was an Army Cadet which he credits with preparing him to attend Welbeck College. David later commissioned into the Royal Engineers where he served for 10 years. The Army Cadets gave David a fantastic start in life and he believes it still gives thousands of children great starts and prepares them well for adult life. This is why David plays an active part as a trustee of ACCT UK, which helps young people and volunteers in the ACF. David is currently the Commandant of Gwent & Powys ACF. In his spare time David enjoys sport, walking the mountains and traveling.

I believe that ACCT UK being a forward-looking charity, which is constructive and with creative policies in dedicated support of the ACF, will exponentially help support the betterment of both cadets and volunteers alike.

David
whois: Andy White Freelance WordPress Developer London