The Board

The Board work strategically and are responsible for ensuring Rounders England delivers its strategic plans. With the exception of the CEO, all Board members work on a voluntary basis.

Rounders England have three sub committees who report directly to the Board: Profile, Customers and Business and Commercial. A number of working groups feed into these sub committees.  Rounders England believes in strong corporate governance. All Board Directors sign ‘Terms of Reference’ which sets out our expectations that they act in the best interests of Rounders England, and in a manner consistent with their legal duties.

We comply with the diversity requirements of the Code of Sports Governance, and are actively working to foster all aspects of diversity within our leadership and decision making. Our diversity aims have been approved and adopted by our Board and will be delivered as part of our Diversity Action Plan 2017-2021.

We will adopt a target of, and take all appropriate actions to encourage, a minimum of 30% of each gender on our Board. We will demonstrate a strong and public commitment to progressing towards achieving gender parity and greater diversity generally on our Board, including, but not limited to, Black, Asian, minority ethnic (BAME) diversity and disability. In addition we will take appropriate actions to support and maintain the afore-mentioned diversity targets.

  • Volunteer Board

    Volunteer Board Members

    Katherine Knight (Chair)

    Katherine Knight is Director of Intelligent Health whose mission is to build active communities. She combines a love of being active with over 20 years’ experience in sports marketing and PR. She worked at The Football Association in Marketing and Communications for women’s football helping it become the top female sport in England. She was instrumental in creating ‘Game Changer’, The Football Association’s 5-year strategic plan for women’s football following the 2012 Olympics.

    Katherine has used her experience to make Intelligent Health a world leader in mass participation activity programmes transforming health across a community. Their award-winning Beat the Street programme has reached almost one million participants.

    Katherine is also a parent governor of a secondary school, loves all sport, entertaining and even finds time for a bit of carpentry!

    Natalie Justice-Dearn (CEO)

    Natalie started her career in Sports Development in 1999 working for the Birmingham Football Association where she combined her passion for playing the game with developing Girls and Women’s football in the early stages of its growth.

    In 2010 she left her position as Football Development Manager to work for British Cycling. Natalie was the brainchild behind British Cycling’s successful Breeze programme which saw thousands of women get into cycling through a thriving volunteer network. In 2015 Natalie moved onto British Triathlon as Director of Development. Here Natalie led the development team through a successful period of change for GO TRI, the Women in Triathlon agenda and was successful at securing public investment through Sport England by ensuring the organisation continued to deliver against government outcomes for Sport and Physical Activity.

    Natalie is passionate about making sport accessible and truly believes in how sport can change lives. She enjoys being active and spends most of her free time chasing her two young sons around the park or BMX track!


    Dawn Wesson (Independent Treasurer)
    Dawn is currently Head of Controlling for B Braun Medical Ltd, a major healthcare products and services provider to the NHS. She is a qualified accountant with 14 years experience providing financial information to senior management and board level, including forecasting, monthly and annual accounts and information for external auditors. In more recent years, Dawn has held a leadership position on the Executive Committee , helping to develop and deliver on strategy both for the wider organisation and the Finance department as well as developing her commercial skills to launch products to new markets.

    In her spare time, Dawn is a enthusiastic runner and treasurer to Sheffield Running Club and found rounders during an injury break. Having experienced rounders to be an exciting and inclusive sport which allowed for a variety of skill levels and included a great social community, she is passionate to develop the sport’s profile and improve the players’ experiences

    Georgina Crossman (Elected Vice Chair)
    Georgina is a self-employed PhD graduate with many years’ experience of working in the equestrian sector, in research and insight as well as event management, including Olympic and Paralympic Games. She has extensive knowledge of the Further and Higher Education sector, gained through roles in land-based colleges and universities, in addition to working for an exam board.

    Georgina is involved locally in rounders, as a player, umpire and coach, and believes rounders is an incredibly powerful sport, bringing together all kinds of people and enhancing their lives and communities.

    Kate Halfpenny (Elected Board Member)
    (Safeguarding Champion)

    Kate is a secondary school PE teacher with over 19 years experience. More recently, she is also a member of the governing board and Senior Leadership Team in charge of Safeguarding and Pastoral Care in an inner city school. Kate works strategically with external agencies and boards regularly and excels in collaborative working to achieve expected outcomes. She has also worked for OCR exam board as a moderator in PE qualifications.

    Kate has chaired her local Rounders league, represented Leicestershire and England, and currently coaches the England under 21 and senior teams. She continues to umpire both locally and for England alongside playing regularly in Leicester. Her passion for Rounders has been lifelong, as has her belief that team sport brings out the very best in people regardless of the level at which they play.

    Ali Smith (Elected Board Member)
    Ali is the Regional Security Analyst for the UKI for a Global Logistics company. Her career background gives her a strong tactical and strategic insight to address threat, risk and harm; and her analytical foresight and attention to detail have led her to focus on the continuous improvement, development and success of the two Rounders Clubs that she is involved with.

    Ali has played Rounders for nearly 12 years, and is a Level 1 Coach. She has been Club Chair at Ossett Rounders Club in West Yorkshire since 2014, and has just launched the new Rodley Rounders Club in Leeds, this season. Ali strives to encourage Women to find their place in the game, and to help them be the best that they can be. Her hobby is truly her passion.

    Farhad Divecha (Independent Board Member)
    An expert in sports, travel, and finance industries, Farhad joins with over 20 years of experience, including expertise in digital strategy, search and social media marketing, ecommerce, mobile commerce and growth analytics. Farhad is currently Managing Director at digital marketing agency, AccuraCast. Prior to AccuraCast, Farhad worked with 3Com, Tata Group, Household Financial Services, and Equisys.

    Zoe Burton (Independent Board Member)
    A Senior Manager at Deloitte Consulting, Zoe joins with over 9 years of experience in advising CEOs and CIOs on how to best use technology and digital tools to meet their business outcomes. Zoe currently leads Deloitte’s Digital Transformation proposition in the sports sector. She has spent the last 18 months working with a number of leading sports clubs and governing bodies to help them define and implement their digital strategies.

  • Life Members & Vice Presidents

    The positions of Life Member and Vice President are honorary, granted by the Rounders England Board to acknowledge the contribution individuals have made to Rounders. In addition to the prestige of the position, the Life Members and Vice Presidents receive all of the benefits of individual membership.

    Judith Hughes,    Derek Petty MBE,   Sheila Irving,   Sue Handy,
    Joyce Dingsdale,    John Phillips,    Lyn Southway,    Brenda Harrison,
    Rosalie Tudball,    Flo Wallis,   Terry Woolhouse MBE,  Kevin Smith,
    L Munden,   Brian MacKinney,   Sue Manson,   Debbie Powell,
    Garth West,    Sylvia West,    Joan Bryan,    Joan Hughes,   Brett Bader,
    Claire Eckersley,  Michele Golland

    Alison Howard (Nov 2020), Brian MacKinney,   Norah Gregory,    Felicity Banks,
    David Waterhouse,   Les Willoughby,   Terry Woolhouse MBE,
    Alan Fergus,    John Burgess,    Kath Bridge,   Dave Dorrell,    Cliff Randall,
    Frederica Crawford,    Shirley Walker,   Garth West,   Chris Thatcher,
    Pauline Connington

  • Board Meetings & Minutes

    Please find below a list of the 2021 Rounders England Board meeting dates along with minutes from previous meetings:

    Sunday 7th November 2021 – live via facebook

    Saturday 22nd January 2022 – Virtual

    Saturday 9th April 2022 – Virtual

    Saturday 2nd July 2022 – Venue TBC

    Saturday 8th October 2022 – Venue TBC

    Find detailed the Rounders England Board meeting minutes, maintaining our transparent and honest approach to business. Click on a link below for the minutes to open. If you can’t find what you’re looking for contact us.

    2021 Minutes

    Minutes from Saturday 30th January

    Minutes from Saturday 27th March

    Minutes from Saturday 10th July

    Minutes from Saturday 2nd October

    2022 Minutes

    Minutes from Saturday 22 January

    Minutes from Saturday 9th April  – Minutes from this meeting will be made available after the 2nd July meeting

Our Journey

Starting out as the National Rounders Association in 1943, the organisation's development over 70 years makes interesting reading.

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