With long-serving Chair John Kinder set to announce his retirement at this year's Annual General Meeting, Valleys to Coast have moved quickly to make two new appointments to both its Board and Audit Committee.
Joanne Smith will come in as Vice Chair of the Board and Sophie Taylor will take up the role of Audit Committee Chair when John retires from both roles in December, with both bringing a wealth of experience from the housing sector and beyond.
Incoming Vice Chair, Joanne Smith has a strong understanding of the housing sector and Valleys to Coast itself, having been involved with the organisation for six years initially as their regulation manager and for the last 4 years as a member of the Board. Jo is currently the Governance and Regulation Manager at Coastal Housing Group.
Sophie Taylor too has significant experience of housing, having started her career at PwC, her first role in Housing saw her join the Finance team at Trivallis before becoming Head of Finance at Cardiff and Vale College in 2017. Sophie’s latest role saw her finding her way back to the sector earlier this year when appointed as Head of Finance and Procurement at Bron Afon Housing Association.
Speaking of her appointment as the Audit Committee Chair, Sophie said: “I am really excited to take this new role. Housing is a sector that I am really passionate about, and becoming a Board member earlier this year has allowed me to broaden my knowledge of the sector and the challenges they are facing. Valleys to Coast is at an exciting time in their corporate journey, with a new Chief Executive and ambitious plans; I hope that my previous audit and assurance experience can help to support them on this journey and provide the robust governance that all organisations will need during these challenging times.”
Reflecting on his forthcoming retirement, John Kinder said: “I have found my six years at Valleys to Coast to be interesting, challenging and enjoyable. I have been pleased to see the development of the organisation from one focussed on refurbishing properties to one which is now concentrating on improving its overall service to customers.
In the future I see Valleys to Coast continuing to build more social housing and helping to reduce homelessness in Bridgend. I hope this along with a focus on improving our core services to customers will see them and others regard us as one of the premier social housing organisations in Wales.”
All at Valleys to Coast are keen to thank John Kinder for his sterling efforts in his six years at the organisation. John’s retirement will be announced as part of this year's Valleys to Coast Annual General meeting which will be held entirely online for the first time on the 23rd September.