Our Trustees & Ambassadors
Clean Sheet Founder
Jane, Clean Sheet’s founder, has a 30-year background in Business Development and has extensive voluntary sector experience, establishing charities for older people and a national network of volunteer-led Job Clubs.
Many years ago, Jane experienced first-hand the impact of a family member going to prison. After the family member had served their prison sentence, they thought they could move on as a family. However, this wasn’t the case as they faced rejection again and again whilst trying to find work. Despite being highly-skilled and determined to move forward there were no opportunities for him. This was a renewed trauma for the family and they faced some very challenging times.
He finally found work when an old friend offered him an opportunity. Within ten years, he was leading an international property development company.
Many years later, while chatting to an ex offender in one of her Job Clubs, the memory of this experience prompted Jane to set up Clean Sheet, supporting both former prisoners and potential employers for their mutual benefit.
Her work was recognised with a British Citizens Award for Industry (BCAi) in 2018.
Meet the Trustees
Chair of Trustees
Mike is the Chair of the Clean Sheet board. He has extensive experience within Criminal Justice, having been CEO of several probation organisations and operating as a senior civil servant with responsibility for probation reform.
In addition, his experience spans the private sector where he has been responsible for building and delivering bids for commercial contracts. Mike also has considerable experience of chairing and serving on boards as both an executive and a non-executive director. He used to chair one of the Community Rehabilitation Companies delivering probation services.
Robin has been running his own business since 2014 with his wife Diana, after 25 years in the British Diplomatic Service – much of it living in and working with Africa. He is also a trustee of two charities linked to the Newfrontiers network of churches in the UK and worldwide. Robin believes that some of the most transformational life stories can happen in the criminal justice sector, and that it is a privilege to have the opportunity to contribute to that through the work of Clean Sheet.
Stephen is a qualified accountant and has a wealth of financial experience, having had a successful career helping manage finances for better public services – in transport, local government and education.
Meet the Ambassadors
JAMES TIMPSON OBE
James Timpson OBE is Chief Executive of Timpson Ltd, a retail business with over 2000 shops. James is Chair of The Prison Reform Trust and a Trustee of Tate.
“At Timpson we are proud to be an official Clean Sheet employer. We fully understand the benefit that employing ex-offenders can have on your business and we know that Clean Sheet feel the same way. Being part of their employers directory means that our vacancies are viewed by a significant number of work ready candidates, who have an offending background. The overwhelming majority of these candidates are hardworking, professional individuals who just need that opportunity to put their past behind them and be given a second chance. I would highly recommend becoming a Clean Sheet employer to any business who are serious about recruiting from this group.”
Erwin James is a Guardian columnist and Editor in Chief of Inside Time, the national newspaper for people in prison. He became a writer in prison where he served 20 years of a mandatory life sentence. He is the author of three books: A Life Inside – A Prisoners Notebook, (Atlantic, 2003), The Home Stretch – From Prison to Parole, (Atlantic, 2005) and Redeemable – a Memoir of Darkness and Hope (Bloomsbury, Feb 2016). He is also a trustee of the Prison Reform Trust and a patron of the charities: Create, Human Writes, and the Prison Phoenix Trust. He is a Fellow of the RSA and an Honorary Master of the Open University.
“It’s a pleasure to support the work of Clean Sheet as employment is key to desist from crime.”
Keith Fraser is a retired senior police officer with 32 years’ experience, divided between London and the West Midlands. He has managed departments, multi-million pound budgets, works in inner city and many other environments. He has extensive experience of working in partnership at a strategic and tactical level. He’s been actively engaged for many years trying to find ways to support offenders and their families out of a life affected by crime. He is currently a trustee for a number of other charities. He is also the Chair for the youth Justice board for England Wales, within the Ministry of Justice. He enjoys walking in his spare time.
“It’s a pleasure to support the work of Clean Sheet as employment is key to desist from crime.”
Dominic is the founder of Dominic Headley & Associates (DHA), a specialist consultancy practice providing expert advice, training and support to employers across all sectors so that they can apply a business as usual approach to recruiting people with convictions.
He created DHA because he is passionate about diversity, social mobility and business efficacy. He believes now more than ever when they are struggling to fill their chronic skills gaps, employers need to remove any unnecessary barriers that prevent them being able to confidently and effectively recruit and retain talent from this huge untapped pool.
As a former legal officer at Nacro, Dominic is considered one of the foremost experts in the UK on managing criminal records within the workplace. He is a trusted expert adviser to numerous government departments on criminal record policy matters and the author of the Nacro publication ‘Recruiting safely and fairly: a practical guide to employing ex-offenders’ .
“I am delighted to support the amazing work of Clean Sheet in my new role as an ambassador. They are a truly wonderful organisation that I have admired and worked closely with for very many years. They make a real difference in people’s lives and it is my honour to be a part of their journey.”
IQBAL WAHHAB OBE
Iqbal Wahhab has lived in Britain for almost his whole life and in a career spanning 30 years he has built a reputation for delivering world-class excellence through his highly successful restaurant businesses, Roast and The Cinnamon Club. It was Iqbal’s early experience in the media which saw him run his own hospitality PR business and Indian food publication, Tandoori Magazine that launched his career in the restaurant industry.
In 1999, Iqbal sold out of Tandoori Magazine and created the multi-award winning Cinnamon Club in 2001 – a restaurant and bar aimed to change the way we view Indian dining. In 2003 he co-authored The Cinnamon Club Cookbook and in 2005 opened the highly renowned Roast, the British restaurant and bar in Borough Market.
Iqbal has won a number of major awards and accolades during his career. He was voted one of the Top 10 Restaurateurs in Britain in an Independent on Sunday survey and listed in the Caterer Power 100, GQ 100 Most Connected and The Sunday Times Maserati Top 100 business start-up mentors. He has also received an Honorary Doctorate in Business Administration from the University of East London and an Honorary Doctorate in Science from the University of West London.
He chairs two social enterprises – Mum’s The Chef and Bounce Back and is actively engaged in the prison reform agenda. In 2016 he wrote “Charity Sucks”, a polemic published by Biteback.
Iqbal has recently been announced as the New Chair for the National Independent Advisory Group, Action on Race Equality in the Criminal Justice System.
“Clean Sheet is a fantastic project which I’m very pleased to support as an Ambassador. Linking employers with energetic and committed people who wish to get away from their former lives and become assets in a workforce is a crucial process to slash re-offending rates.”
Ian Acheson is a 50 year old Ulsterman with a long involvement in prison security and counter terrorism from operational to command level.
In 1994 Ian joined Her Majesty’s Prison Service as a prison officer rising rapidly to Governor rank. Ian has extensive involvement in operational command of serious prison incidents, hostage negotiation and counter-terrorism policy and practice relating to the threat posed by IRA terrorists and lately the very different challenge posed by Islamist extremists in custody.
On leaving the prison service, Ian was appointed Director of the international prison charity ‘Prisoners Abroad’ supporting British citizens detained overseas. A spell as Head of Region for the Government’s Youth Justice Board in South West England led to a role in the Senior Civil Service with the Home Office as Director of Community safety with responsibility for running the UK Government’s counter-terrorism strategy, CONTEST in South West England.
Ian left public service in 2016 as Executive Director and Chief Operating Officer for the Equality and Human Rights Commission, the GB statutory regulator for the Equality and Human Rights Acts.
He currently works as a senior advisor to the prestigious Counter Extremism Project, a US-based international NGO that brings together worldwide expertise to combat ideologically inspired terrorism.
“As a former Governor I saw first hand the potential and desire many people in prison had to give back to society beyond the prison gates. We all knew that being given a second chance and helped into employment could transform the fortunes of offenders and, as important, prevent them from creating further victims. But nothing like Clean Sheet existed then. Now this agile organisation is on the rehabilitation front line, helping more and more offenders off that dismal conveyor belt of offending, reoffending and repeated victimisation. It’s practical, down to earth and fiercely ambitious for its clients. I’m proud to be a supporter.”