Our Trustees

Antony Jacobson

Antony has had a long career in publishing and as a management consultant, and an equally long involvement in the VCS. He chaired the local Community Health Council for many years, was a founder member of CommUNITY Barnet and served as our Chair for a number of terms. He was also Chair of Barnet Health Authority and Chair of Smokefree London, and involved in enabling the passing of the legislation to eliminate smoking from public places.

 

Adam Goldstein - Co Chair

Local Finchley resident and married father-of-two, Adam, has been Co-chair of CommUNITY Barnet since October 2013, having also been a pro bono adviser to charity chief executives, and an independent director on the board of Macintyre Academies Trust since January 2013.

Adam has also been Management Consultant with PricewaterhouseCoopers since 2008, responsible for delivering large programmes in the public sector. Prior to that, he spent 5 years in central Government at the Department for Education and Foreign Office.

 

Tony Vardy - Co Chair

During Tony’s commercial career, he has lived in the UK, the United States and the Middle East.  His corporate life spanned telecoms, media and technology, rising to become a Director of British Telecom and Managing Director of a large cable television group. The second phase of his career has been in professional services and consultancy, in which he has held UK and international leadership positions in global firms, most recently as Managing Director of Korn/Ferry Whitehead Mann, the leading boardroom consultancy based in London.

A long-term resident of Barnet, Tony has supported a range of non-profit organisations, including a year as Honorary Assistant Treasurer of the British Psychological Society, provision of planning and financial advice to Circle 33 Housing Trust in Camden, and assisting a number of non-profit organisations based in Barnet with their top-level recruitment.

Tony has a degree in Psychology and an MBA from the London Business School. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society for Arts and a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants. He is very happily married with three children and four grandchildren who now take up much of his spare time!

 

Christopher Cormie

Chris is married with two daughters and has lived in Barnet since 1997. He is now retired, having worked in senior positions in the construction industry for over 40 years. His specific experience included working for both UK and International Clients on a wide range of project types successfully delivered to meet demanding time, cost and quality requirements.

His interests include cooking, reading, cinema, travel, the gym and sports, and he is a season ticket holder at Barnet Football Club.

In 1996, Chris was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis, which affects his left leg; however, he maintains a positive attitude and focuses positively on maintaining his independence and mobility.

He has been a committee member and Chair of the Queens Road Area Residents Association since its start up in 2006.

He is currently Chair of the Trustees at the Hertfordshire Multiple Sclerosis Therapy Centre and has been a Trustee there since 2009.

  

Andrew Harper

Andrew Harper is a trustee of CommUNITY Barnet, chair of governors at Claremont Primary School in Cricklewood and an independent member of Haringey Council’s Children’s Service Sector-Led Improvement Board (SLIB).

Andrew spent 26 years with BP, mainly in corporate communications, in London, Brussels and Melbourne, working variously in publications, internal communications, government and political relations and issues management. Among other duties, he led cross-industry and cross-cultural task forces, to define and conduct advocacy on public policy issues affecting the oil and petrochemicals industries in the UK and the European Union.

In May 2005, Andrew began an alternative career, in local government, representing Garden Suburb ward on Barnet London Borough Council until he retired in May 2014.  Within six months of election, he became chairman of the Council’s Education Overview & Scrutiny Committee and vice-chair of Environment and Transport Overview & Scrutiny; he also chaired the Finchley & Golders Green Area Environment Sub-Committee. 

Re-elected in May 2006, Andrew was appointed to the Cabinet as Lead Member for Policy and Performance. Subsequently, he held the Environment and Transport portfolio, as well as being Conservative Group Whip. In December 2009, he was elected Conservative Group Deputy Leader and Deputy Leader of the Council, and took on the Children’s Services portfolio.

In May 2010, Andrew was elected again in Garden Suburb and re-appointed Deputy Leader of the Council, a post he held until July 2011, and Cabinet Member for Education, Children and Families, which he relinquished in May 2013.  Also, between March 2012 and May 2013, he was the London Councils Conservative Group spokesman for Education and Children. 

Andrew is a graduate of the Local Government Improvement & Development Leadership Academy, and has undertaken the Adults, Children, Health and Well-being Lead Members’ programme. He served as Barnet Council’s nominee on the governing body of the Hampstead Garden Suburb Institute, and as a governor of Henrietta Barnett, Akiva and Rosh Pinah schools; also as a trustee of Arts Depot in North Finchley. He joined the Governing Body of Claremont Primary School in September 2013, the Haringey SLIB in March 2014 and the CommUNITY Barnet Board in May 2014.

Andrew has worked as a consultant to the Industry and Parliament Trust, of which he is a Corporate Fellow and the Chemical Industries Association, as well as in a voluntary capacity for the Environment Trust and the Bromley-by-Bow Centre.  

He is also a member of the National Trust and Middlesex County Cricket Club. His favourite pastimes include singing in chamber choirs, coastal walking and watching cricket.

He married Stefanie, a professional musician, in 1982. They have two children, Jenni, aged 28, and Alec, 27, both of whom are also musicians.                  

  

Jyoti Shah

Jyoti has been a trustee of CommUNITY Barnet since 2009, offering her services through the Income Generation sub-committee. The sub committee ensures local voluntary organisations attain financial support and advice to establish their working practices.

Her interest in developing support for the local community extends over 15 years. Jyoti is a director of Sangam Association for Asian Women, a not-for profit voluntary charity organization founded in 1971. She has particular experience with issues facing Asian and ethnic minorities groups. During her tenure as President at Sangam (2004-2006), the association received the Queens Golden Jubilee Award for services to the community. Her current role includes Chair for Grant Services.

Her enthusiasm and commitment to community services has extended to representing Sangam within other organisations, including The Barnet Advisory Group (Metropolitan Police), the Domestic Violence Support Service and the Community Steering Group, sub group of the local strategic partnership.

In recognition of her contribution to the local community, she received the London Borough of Barnet Civic Award in 2007and the Barnet Community Voluntary Award in 2009.

Her interests include art history and travelling with her six grandchildren!

 

Marley Obi

Marley’s Interest in being a CommUNITY Barnet trustee stems from having worked with the charity from August 2014 – April 2015. She found that the work she did there was not only very rewarding on a personal level, but eye opening to the immense challenges faced by the organisation, and the need to ensure that it’s supported accordingly to continue the critical service it provides to the voluntary sector in Barnet.  

In addition to the work Marley did at CommUNITY Barnet, she also has extensive experience of communications within the private sector and a background in journalism. These are skills she can bring to the board in particular with regards to helping the charity defining and marketing its traded services and measuring impact.  

Marley believes CommUNITY Barnet is uniquely placed to provide support, expertise and training to the voluntary and community sector in Barnet, and would like to volunteer on the board to support the team as they provide this valuable service to the community.