Meet the Trustees

Mala Janes - Chair of Trustees

Mala qualified at Leeds and work as a teacher, in many parts of the country for most of her working Life. She left teaching to become a social worker, working as a Placement Reviewing Officer for adults with Learning disabilities for Bedfordshire County Council.

Over many of those years, Mala also worked as an Adult Leader trainer for the Scout Association both at county and national level.

Following the death of her husband, Mala took early retirement and moved to the North East in 2001 to be near family and was a trustee of Chopwell Wood.

Mala experienced a sight affecting stroke in 2014 which led her to the doors of NCBA and wanting to help other visually impaired people in the area.

Alistair Wade - Vice Chair of Trustees

Currently Vice Chair of Trustees at Vision Northumberland, Alistair brings proven management and project experience from the Paper and Packaging industry where he worked as UK Sales Director. In addition he was responsible for the implementation of a European Training Academy based in Paris.

Since retirement 10 years ago, Alistair has been involved in various community organisations including a local rugby club, cycling charity and he is also a Trustee of a community transport charity based in SE Northumberland. Alistair uses his experience in income generation, management and finance to support and strengthen the organisation. 

In his spare time he enjoys cycling, walking and being involved with family.

Geoff Bushell - Trustee

Geoff began his career as a Project Engineer on design and installation of High Voltage Sub Stations and small scale power generation for the Middle East. His career then varied between Project Management and Maintenance Management in a Pharmaceutical and New Drug Discovery environment involving the development of active ingredients for early stage drug trials for such conditions as Dementia, Cancer & AIDS.

His Senior Management responsibilities included the day to day operation of a team of 60 Engineers and support staff and Projects often with a value in excess of £10M. By 2007, Geoff was engaged in the Pharmaceutical Industry as a Consultant on a part time ‘Contract’ basis and later retired in 2013.

In addition to voluntary work for Vision Northumberland, Geoff also does voluntary work for Morpeth Lions Club where he is currently a Trustee and Club Secretary. He also has a Cabinet position within Lions Clubs District specialising in Health and Safety.

In 2017 Geoff became a Trustee and Company Secretary for Contact (Morpeth Mental Health Group) Ltd and still continues at this time to support the business side of this Mental Health Organisation based in Morpeth.

Jack Moffat - Trustee

Jack has been a trustee here for over a year and is currently working as the North East Engagement Manager for the sight loss charity Thomas Pocklington Trust. Jack is very familiar with the sight loss sector having volunteered for 8 years before finding full time employment.

Jack is registered as severely sight impaired/blind so this work is extremely close to his heart. Jack states that ‘Vision Northumberland as an organisation have always supported me. It is a huge privilege to be a trustee’

Susan Taylor - Trustee

Following a successful career in banking, Sue changed course and for the next 30+ years worked (first in Sussex, then Tyneside) as CEO of two very successful voluntary societies for visually impaired people. In Sussex she enabled an organisation very much set in the past, change the way it worked (mainly through residential care) to meet the ever increasing social needs of visually impaired people. In Tyneside Sue initially volunteered in the planning stages of Sight Service, put together a successful lottery bid and became its first CEO. Very much supported by Sight Service sponsors, RNIB and Guide Dogs for the Blind, Sight Service piloted an Integrated Low Vision Service nationally (initially with DOH funding and then health funding) and matched that with two local authority rehabilitation contracts. This service enabled Sight Service to win NHS awards for innovation.

Sue continued to drive quality services for visually impaired people locally, and then through Visionary (national network for organisations working with visually impaired people) regionally and nationally, being on the board of Visionary for six years and chair for two years.

Sue retired in 2018, but continued with her belief in ‘’volunteering’. She is now a trustee of Vision Northumberland, on the board of Healthwatch Northumberland, Secretary of Tynedale Lions, and regionally and nationally leads of ‘Sight’ for Lions Club International UK. Sue lives in Kielder Forest.

Christopher Offord - Trustee

Chris was born and educated in Hampshire before attending the University of Newcastle.  Following University, he was employed in local government in Devon, South Wales and finally in Northumberland, culminating in the post of Director of Technical Services at Northumberland County Council. Following this, Chris worked in private practice and for the Government.

Chris has been involved in charity work as a member of the Lions Club of Morpeth for almost 40 years and has been President four times as well as holding other positions.  Chris was a Special Needs Governor at a Newcastle School. He specialises in environmental matters at local, regional and national level. Chris also helps out on social events with two churches in Morpeth.