We're the largest national children’s charity in the UK

Find out about how we're organised by meeting our CEO, trustees and patrons.


Javed Khan Barnardo's CEO

Dr. Javed Khan is a leading figure in the UK public and voluntary sectors, regularly advising government ministers, with high-profile contributions in the media, and at national and international conferences. He leads Barnardo’s 21,822+ people, being the largest children's charity in the UK. With over 800 delivery programmes, a large retail footprint, and services in all four nations of the UK, the charity supports over 358,000 vulnerable children, young people, their families and carers each year.

His non-executive board roles have included NHS Clinical Commissioning Groups, Hospital Trusts and local government improvement. He is a Companion of the Chartered Management Institute and a Patron of the National Citizen’s Service, and was a key member of the Independent Grenfell Recovery Taskforce and Specialist Advisor to the Justice Select Committee's Inquiry into Prison Reform.  Javed’s career achievements have been recognised by Honorary Doctorates from Birmingham City University (2015) and the University of Salford (2018).

He began his school teaching career in the West Midlands, and made rapid progress, becoming head of department, assistant principal and then director of development in a large further education college. He then entered local government as an Assistant Director in Birmingham’s acclaimed Education Services, under the leadership of Professor Tim Brighouse, and then to Director of Education in a London borough. Before arriving at Barnardo’s, Javed had a short stint in the Civil Service from where he went on to become Chief Executive at Victim Support. 

As a British Muslim with Kashmiri heritage, Javed is the first non-white CEO in Barnardo’s 154 year history. The son of Kashmiri immigrants who could neither read nor write when they arrived in the UK, Javed is a passionate advocate of the Barnardo’s philosophy: incredible things happen when you believe in children. 

Our trustees

Our Board of Trustees is responsible for our governance and strategic direction as a charity.

The Board agrees our vision and values, sets the strategy and policies for our key activities and monitors our progress. Our trustees are also responsible for appointing our chief executive and for our overall professional, legal and financial management.

Trustees are elected by the Members of Association at the Annual General Meeting. They serve a three-year term and are eligible for re-election.

    Members of the Board of Trustees

    John Bartlett (Chair)

    John is a finance professional with a career spanning forty five years; he retired from the position of Group Controller and CFO of Group Finance with BP in 2018 and prior to that was an Inspector of Taxes.  John is also currently a non-executive Director with HSBC, chairing the audit committee for their Middle East banking operations.  He is also a non-executive financial consultant to a number of private companies. John became a Trustee in 2014. 

    Neil Braithwaite (Honorary Treasurer)

    Neil is a chartered accountant and has worked in a variety of finance and leadership roles at Asda and the Co-operative Group. Neil is also chair of the Guinness Partnership, a director of the Co-op Academies Trust and the Barnardo’s Staff Pension Scheme, and a school governor. Neil became a Trustee in 2011.

    Neil Crockett 

    Neil brings a passion in using digital innovation to lead teams and organisations’ through rapid change in strategy, culture and execution and his most recent role was as Chief Digital Officer at Rolls-Royce PLC. His previous roles included a variety of senior executive positions over a 14 year career in Cisco and being CEO of the Digital Catapult, a leading advanced digital technology innovation centre. Neil has been involved in a range of UK digital advisory boards including the Smart London Board, the European Institute of Innovation and Technology and the Northern Ireland Matrix ICT growth panel and is currently a member of the Innovation panel for the Queens Awards for Industry. Neil also served for 9 years as a Governor at Coventry University and is an active supporter of Co Operation Ireland the largest Irish peace charity. Neil became a Trustee in 2019.

    Zoe Harris

    Zoe is a marketer who gets a real buzz from understanding what makes mainstream Britain tick, editorialising brands to make them part of popular culture – talked about on social media and in the face to face conversations that take place at the kitchen tables, school gates and pubs of Britain. Throughout her career, Zoe has led teams to build well-known brands such as The Mirror, Sky, Channel 5 and MTV through a creative and disruptive approach to multi-channel marketing. Zoe is now CMO at Go Co, the group that counts Go Compare and weflip amongst its brands, dedicated to saving consumers time and money, and has saved their customers over a billion pounds in the last decade alone. In her spare time, Zoe runs Stockwell Girl Guide Unit and is proud to be a trustee of Barnardo's since 2017.

    Dennis Hone (Senior Independent Trustee)

    Dennis has spent more than 20 years working in urban regeneration. He is currently Group Finance Director of the consultancy and construction company Mace. Before joining Mace, he was CEO of the Olympic Delivery Authority, and CEO of the London Legacy Development Corporation. In June 2013 he was awarded a CBE for his contribution to the London Olympic Games. Dennis became a Trustee in 2017.

    Briony Ladbury

    Briony is a qualified nurse, midwife, health visitor and family planning nurse.  Briony has a BA(Hons) in Professional Studies (Child Protection) from Southampton University and  an MSc in Inter-professional Practice (Society, Violence and Practice) from City University London. Her early NHS posts have included being a hospital paediatric liaison nurse and a health visitor for homeless families and women and children residing in women’s refuge accommodation.  Briony became a Designated Nurse (Child Protection) in a large London Borough in 1996 and was promoted to Senior Strategic Safeguarding Children Advisor and lead for domestic violence for NHS London in 2007.  Following the NHS reforms Briony continued in the role of strategic lead for NHS England, London Region.  Since retiring in 2015, she has continued to work as a safeguarding children independent consultant, undertaking a variety of projects, including authoring statutory Safeguarding Serious Case Reviews. She continues to support the committee of the National Network for Designated Professionals for Safeguarding and Looked After Children. Briony became a Trustee in 2019.

    Moni Mannings (Deputy Chair)

    Moni is Non-Executive Director of FTSE250 companies Polypipe Group PLC, where she also chairs the Remuneration Committee, Investec Bank PLC and Dairy Crest Group PLC. Moni is also a governing council member of Cranfield University and was previously a Board member of the Solicitors Regulation Authority and chaired its Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Committee. She was formerly a senior partner at international law firm Olswang LLP. She subsequently became Chief Operating Officer of Aistemos Ltd, an intellectual property data analytics company. Moni became a Trustee in 2017.

    Darra Singh OBE

    Darra is a partner at the global professional services firm EY (formerly Ernst and Young), where he leads the government and public sector practice in the UK and Ireland. He was previously Chief Executive of Job Centre Plus and of Ealing and Luton councils. He started his career in housing in the charitable sector and then went on to become the CEO of two London based housing associations. He has led and chaired a number of reviews on behalf of senior members of the various Governments including the Commission for Integration and Cohesion (2007), the Riots Panel reviewing the causes of the riots in August 2011, the expert advisory panel advising Scotland’s deputy first minister on welfare reform (2013) and the independent review of the mandating of DNA evidence in the immigration system. Darra became a Trustee in 2016.

    Penny Thompson CBE

    Penny began her public service career as a Social Worker in Tower Hamlets, moving into management and leadership in Cleveland, after a decade on the frontline in London and Sheffield.  Penny returned to Sheffield as Director of Social Services in 1998, and subsequently took her experience of improvement into a number of CEO roles, including LB of Hackney, the Social Work regulator and finally, Brighton & Hove, stepping down in 2015. Since then, Penny has continued to contribute to public services as Independent Chair of Birmingham's Safeguarding Children Partnership since 2016. She is a College of Policing Senior Assessor; a Leadership Mentor and a Trustee. Penny has been a Governor on the Board of Sheffield Hallam University since April 2017. Penny became a Trustee in 2019.

    Raj Verma

    Raj is a global people leader and has been in the field of HR, Change and Transformation for almost 25 years.  Leading in one of the world’s largest services company, Sodexo, he is committed to support its mission to improve ‘quality of life’. He is passionate and purposeful about understanding the changing workplace and the global trends that affect it and the enabling role HR must take to make this happen.  Enhancing the employee experience, innovating through digital transformation, and engaging multi-generational talent where a sense of belonging and inclusion makes a real difference are all key to being a great people business. Prior to joining Sodexo, Raj was a member of the HR leadership at Santander Bank in the UK. His early career started in general management in financial services, before moving to Ford Motor Company where he specialised in HR across different brands and geographies. An alumnus of Warwick University, he sits on the Steering Committee for the Business School’s global mentoring programme and is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Personnel Development. Raj became a Trustee in 2019.

    Mark Waddington CBE  

    Mark has over 16 years experience working as a CEO in the field of child protection. For eight of these years he led the charity War Child, more than quadrupling income, increasing beneficiary reach by 1,200%, using the music industry to win the attention of the media and politicians on issues relating to the prosecution of war on children, and winning the UN Grand Award. Mark then joined Hope and Homes for Children in 2012, which has since doubled its income, trebled its beneficiary reach, taken a leading role in negotiating a cross-government policy statement on the UK’s position on promoting the deinstitutionalisation of child care internationally, and most recently in securing the new UN Resolution on Children Without Parental Care. Hope and Homes for Children has been one of the leading organisations in reducing the number of children confined within the orphanage system in Romania from over 100,000 to less than 7,000, while delivering similar systemic transformation of child care and protection in countries like Rwanda, Bulgaria and Moldova. Until joining the Board of Barnardo’s Mark was Chair of the Board of MICAIA, a development charity that is delivering exciting new solutions to the longstanding injustice of poverty in Mozambique with an emphasis on working with young people on the development of innovative social enterprise models. He was awarded the CBE for services to Global Child Protection in the 2019 New Years Honours list. Mark became a Trustee in 2019.

    Our President and patrons

    Our presidents, patrons and ambassadors have helped us raise hundreds of thousands of pounds through their work, which ranges from hosting events to donating gifts.

    Natasha Kaplinsky OBE 

    Natasha Kaplinsky OBE is our new President, as announced in July 2019. The newsreader, presenter and journalist is passionate about issues affecting vulnerable children and a recognised figure in British public life. She will help the charity to raise awareness of issues affecting vulnerable children, young people and their families, including mental health and wellbeing, child sexual exploitation and children who are leaving care.

    HRH The Duchess of Cornwall

    HRH The Duchess of Cornwall was Barnardo’s President from October 2007 until December 2016, when she became our Patron. 

    The Duchess has been very supportive of the charity, visiting a range of services and hosting a Buckingham Palace Garden Party to mark our 150th anniversary in 2016.

    Her Majesty The Queen

    Her Majesty The Queen was Barnardo’s Patron from 1983 to 2016, when she handed over the role to HRH The Duchess of Cornwall.

    Barnardo’s Chief Executive Javed Khan said:

    “We are extremely grateful for Her Majesty The Queen’s generous time and patronage, together with her dedication to the work of Barnardo’s since 1983. The Royal Family has given us tremendous support throughout our history, and there has been a royal patron since 1902 and royal presidents from 1923. I am delighted that HRH The Duchess of Cornwall, our current president, has graciously accepted the role of our new patron.”

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