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Bethan Smith
Bethan Smith
Board Member
Member of the Assurance Committee

Bethan joined the ClwydAlyn Board in September 2023. Bethan is the Programme Manager in the Good Practice Team at Audit Wales. The role of the team is to improve public services. Bethan has over 15 years’ experience of working in the public sector in Wales, having previously worked in various roles across Social Services for Adults and Children at Flintshire County Council.

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Brian Strefford
Brian Strefford
Board Member, Resident Committee Vice Chair and Member of the Property Committee

Brian has had a long interest in Social Housing: his parents lived in a council house for many happy years. He returned to Social Housing over 25 years ago when he became a tenant of ClwydAlyn.

Brian had a varied career, spanning the oil industry, licensed trade, financial services and IT, also having a spell in the early nineties as a volunteer for the CAB. Brian acquired many skills during this journey, including the ability to listen and talk to people.

Brian is on the Vice Chair of the Resident Committee and also sits on the Property Committee.

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Tania Silva
Board Member
Member of the Property Committee

Tania is a National Framework Manager for Construction and Consultancy Services working for Fusion21, as part of her role she manages the Youth Investment Fund Framework to provide procurement services to grant recipients of the Youth Investment Fund set up by Department of Culture Media and Sports.

Previously Tania led the North Wales Construction Partnership on behalf of the six North Wales Local Authorities. Tania specialises in the provision of compliant construction procurement for the public sector, supporting several organisations across the UK.

A collaborative approach is utilised to deliver major construction projects, incorporating regional requirements, national policies and innovative approaches to successfully deliver projects.

Tania is passionate about equality and diversity. Previously she was a board member for Women’s Equality Network Wales (WEN Wales) and has taken part in programmes to enable women into STEM subjects and to pursue careers in construction.

She is committed to supporting communities through the delivery of Social Value in the form of education, creation of training and work opportunities, in particular for disadvantaged groups and engaging with communities to understand their wants and needs to enable communities to thrive.

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Cris McGuinness
ClwydAlyn Chair and Vice-Chair of the People Committee
Board Member TirTai and PenArian

Cris McGuinness has recently been appointed as the new Chair of ClwydAlyn in September 2023. Cris is a KPMG trained Chartered Accountant who has spent her career to date working in social housing, with a couple of minor detours – one to work with asylum seekers and another to help expand public transport in Greater Manchester.

Cris is currently Chief Financial Officer for Riverside where she has been responsible for all things finance and development since 2018.

Originally from South Wales, Cris is passionate about equality, diversity and making a positive difference where she can.

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Sally Thomas
Board Member
Member of the People Committee

Sally joined the ClwydAlyn Board in September 2023. She has had a long career in the NHS and worked as a children’s nurse in hospital and school settings across Conwy and Denbighshire prior to leading the equality and human rights agenda at the Health Board across North Wales.

Through this work Sally has worked with colleagues at an all-Wales level and in partnership with the public sector across North Wales. She maintains an awareness of the diversity of the local population and has worked with individuals and groups to better understand individual lived experience including the barriers experienced by some people. In particular the impact of poverty, increasing social issues and matters affecting local communities. Sally advocates for the importance of inclusion, valuing an individual’s identity, demonstrating compassion, and making fair decisions.

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Sandy Mewies portrait picture On site picture of board member Sandy Mewies
Sandy Mewies
Board Member
Member of the Property Committee

Sandy joined the ClwydAlyn Board in July 2016 and is the former Assembly Member for Delyn, standing down after 13 years at the Senedd.  During her time at the National Assembly, Sandy was involved in scrutinising the Welsh Government’s Housing Legislation as Chair of the Communities and Culture Committee. She was also a Founding Member and Chair of the Cross-Party Group on Housing.  Previously, Sandy was also an Assembly Commissioner with a wide corporate portfolio ranging from security to equalities.

Sandy has also worked as a journalist for many years as well as in education and the voluntary sector. She was, for more than 15 years, a Councillor in Wrexham, chairing the Social Services Committee, as an Executive Board Member and was Mayor in 2001/02.  Sandy has also been a Home Office Appointee to the former North Wales Probation Board and is an Honorary Fellow at Wrexham Glyndwr University.

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Board member Rob Morton
Rob Morton
Board Member
Chair Assurance Committee, PenArian Chair – TirTai – Vice Chair

Rob joined the Board in August 2019.  Rob has spent the majority of his career in the oil and gas and private finance initiative sectors before moving into Social Housing.  Rob is the interim Director of Finance for Corporate Services for a supported living charity Norwood.

He has over 20 years’ experience in commercial and financial roles and is responsible for finance, business improvement, ICT and enterprise and growth. He is a fellow member of the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants.

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Board member Nia Hughes
Nia Hughes
Chair of TirTai, ClwydAlyn Board Member and Member of the Assurance Committee

Nia joined the ClwydAlyn Board in August 2019. Nia also sits on the TirTai Board and the PenArian Board.

Nia started her career in audit and tax at PWC and is a Fellow of the Association of Chartered Accountants. In 2015 Nia also became an Associate Member of the Association of Corporate Treasures.

After leaving PWC in 2010, Nia worked for US owned companies in the automotive and medical industries, gaining broad experience across all areas of international finance including merger and acquisitions and commercial contract management. In 2014, Nia moved into the housing sector as Assistant Director of Finance at Muir Group before becoming Director of Finance at a Liverpool based Association. In 2021, Nia returned to Muir Group as Executive Director of Resources, with responsibility for finance, Treasury, ICT and business transformation. Nia has held non-Executive Director positions for over 5 years at North Wales Housing Association.

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Peter Smith-Hughes
Board Member
Chair of Resident Committee and Member of the Assurance Committee

In his previous employment, Peter worked as a Senior Manager involved in Retail Development. The job involved acquiring and developing sites, bringing the new store to the point of opening. In later years, he became a Private Hospital Manager, responsible for budgets, staff, and accounting.
Peter believes this experience will be useful as he can see a balanced view of various issues and he’s able to see the big picture, offering logical thinking processes. Peter has a desire to improve the lives of tenants.

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Roger Rowett
Board Member
Chair - People Committee

Roger Roger joined the Board in June 2020.

Roger works independently as part of Taith Ltd with a focus on stakeholder engagement, organizational development, and service review. He has also worked as an HMI (Her Majesty’s Inspector) within Estyn, Senior Inspector with the Care Standard Inspectorate for Wales and Workforce Development Officer with the Care Council for Wales. Roger has a particular interest in strength-based approaches and is a member of the Association for Business Psychology. He has also written publications and guidance on Person-Centered Planning and Appreciative Inquiry.

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Hayley Hulme
Board Member
ClwydAlyn Vice-chair and Chair of the Property Committee

Hayley joined the ClwydAlyn Board in July 2021.

Hayley is Managing Director of Starts with you, a Housing Association subsidiary Social Enterprise. She is passionate about doing business responsibly and enabling people and places to make positive change.

She has almost 30 years experience in the Housing and Social Enterprise sector, working her way from Development Officer to Director of Regeneration in Housing, running her own regeneration consultancy and as MD of Starts with you.

Hayley is also a member of the Greater Manchester Mayor’s Social Enterprise Advisory Panel and Trustee of GM Chamber’s newly created Communities Foundation.

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Edwards Hughes
Edward Hughes
Executive Director of Care & Support and Executive Board Member
ClwydAlyn Housing

Ed joined ClwydAlyn in January 2017 having spent 8 years working for the Riverside Group in Liverpool, one of the largest Housing Associations in the UK. Having joined ClwydAlyn as Head of Resident Services, Ed oversaw the Groups General Needs housing stock, Extra Care and Customer Services. Ed was promoted to his current role in October 2020 and now has responsibility for the Group’s portfolio of Care & Nursing Homes, Extra Care & Supported Living services. Ed has considerable experience of partnership working across Housing, Health, Local Authority & the Third sector.

Ed has a BSc (Hons) from Cardiff Business School, is a qualified Prince2 practitioner and also has a Level 5 qualification in Health & Social Care management. Ed has previous Board experience having been Chair of Flintshire County Council’s Standards Committee and Vice-Chair on the shadow board of Dee Housing.

Ed has lived in North Wales all his life and is passionate about improving housing and support services within the region.

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Image of Clare Budden Chief Executive Officer at ClwydAlyn Housing Ltd Image of Clare Budden CEO of Clwydalyn
Clare Budden
Chief Executive Officer and Executive Board Member
ClwydAlyn Housing

I have worked in Local Government and Housing Associations for all my career and have lots of voluntary experience in the charity and social enterprise sector. I am qualified to post graduate level and a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Housing.

I Chair 2025, (a movement established to end avoidable health inequality in North Wales); and am a member of the Welsh Government Ending Homelessness National Advisory Board. I am an Associate Member of Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board in North Wales and I am Chair of the North Wales and Mersey Dee Business Council.

I am passionate about ending poverty and inequality, and I get angry that where you live, or are born, still affects life outcomes so much.

I am proud to be Welsh. I am a mum of four; living in the community where I grew up. I feel lucky, that I have been able to live the life I choose, and I want to do what I can to make sure others can too.

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The Board comprises eleven Board Members and two resident Board Member representatives.

As a Welsh Landlord we are required to adhere to the Code of Governance or explain why we don’t. The code comprises seven principles for good governance, including; Organisational Purpose; Leadership; Integrity; Decision-making, Risk and Control; Board Effectiveness; Diversity and Openness and Accountability. A review of our compliance to the code has been undertaken and we believe that we comply.

The day to day running of ClwydAlyn is the responsibility of the Executive Team and the Senior Managers.

The Board meets bi-monthly and there are also a range of Committees that have specific delegated authority and report to the Board on their activities.

The Assurance Committee
Provides the Board with assurance on the effectiveness of the Group’s internal control system (which includes Risk Management, Operational and Compliance controls), Internal & External Audit, Health & Safety, Financial Reporting & Care Inspectorate Wales compliance.
The Property Committee
Provides the Board with assurance on the quality, value for money and performance of investment in building new homes and maintaining existing homes.
Our People Committee
Provides the Board with assurance that our organisational climate and culture is operating and developing and is in keeping with our values and mission.

In addition, the committee ensures that staff reward, engagement, development and attracting and retaining the best people to meet our purpose is effective and that the staff, board, committee members and volunteers health and wellbeing is understood and cared for.
The Resident Committee
Provides the Board with assurance on Resident engagement, Resident scrutiny, performance on services to Residents and Resident influence on services.

Resident Scrutiny is defined as – adopting a resident centred approach to services provided by ClwydAlyn which delivers benefits to tenants, residents and communities. Scrutiny should lead to a continuously improving service; through tenants and residents shaping and being involved in decisions taken by ClwydAlyn.
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