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 Members
Katherine Knight (Chair)
Chair of Nominations & Remunerations Sub Committee
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 & Board Safeguarding Officer)
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!
Georgina Crossman (Elected Vice Chair)
Chair of Development & Engagement Sub Committee
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.
Ali Smith (Elected Board Member and Board Welfare & Safety Officer)
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 (Senior Independent Director)
Chair of Marketing & Commercial Sub Committee
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.
Peter Kirk (Independent Board Member – Treasurer)
Chair of Audit, Operations & Governance Sub Committee
Pete brings extensive financial experience across a range of sectors, including energy, retail, and elite sport. Pete started his career in the energy sector and gained his CIMA accounting qualification studying alongside his day job. After 9 years, Pete moved to Asda and was the financial lead of the George.Com part of the business.
In 2020, Pete joined City Football Group where he currently works as the Head of Financial Planning & Analysis. He has been the financial lead on a number of strategic projects including club acquisitions, mergers, and business planning. Pete hopes to be able to support Rounders England with his knowledge and expertise over the course of his tenure.
Dana Abdulkarim (Independent Board Member)
Chair Equality & Diversity Sub Committee
Dana is an Assistant Principal leading across Personal Development and student experiences in a cross-phase Academy in Sheffield. Dana has experienced sport at International level. In 2000 she became the first Muslim and Arab woman to compete for England Internationally and in 2008 was the first Hijabi Muslim Woman to qualify to teach PE in England. Dana played Rounders for England 67 times. She presently plays in the Sherwood League and has been part of the talent development work within rounders over the past 12 months.
In 2012, Dana carried the Olympic Torch. She has extensive media experience, talking and writing about change, authenticity and visibility internationally. Alongside being a trustee with Chance to Shine where she offers educational and safeguarding insight, Dana is an Ambassador for Sporting Heritage, Rotherham’s Children’s Capital of culture bid and was on the steering group alongside being a present Ambassador for the successful UK bid to become the next host secretariat of the International Working Group on Women and Sport.
Brett Bader (Elected Board Member)
Brett has rich background across a range of sectors. He is the owner of a medical and training organisation. A natural energy and passion to build sustainable communities with charity and consultancy work. He is a national trustee for the Wooden Spoon Charity and Educators Trust. He has led in governance roles at national and regional level and creating projects to support women and girls development and social and physical activity in deprivation areas.
Brett is national performance coach and has been involved across a range of sports NGBs, writing coach education courses and delivering in their programmes.
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,
Board Meetings & Minutes
Please find below a list of the 2022 Rounders England Board meeting dates along with minutes from previous meetings:
Monday 10 July 2023 – 7:45 – 9:45 – Virtual
Saturday 7 October 2023 – 8:30 – 10:30 – Virtual
Monday 5 February 2024 – 19:45 – 21:45 – Virtual
Thursday 25 April 2024 – 10:00 – 14:00 – In person
Monday 8 July 2024 – 19:45-21:45 – Virtual
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.