Meet The Board & Committee Members

Board Members

Joanne Griffiths: Chair

Joanne Griffiths is a Senior Leader with 30 years’ experience in Financial Services and Distribution. Joanne specialises in business turnaround transforming failing operations into productive and profitable businesses. Joanne has a depth of experience in delivering engaged and productive teams to impact positively on the business strategy and goals. Over her career, Joanne has cultivated working partnerships to provide focus and developmental opportunities for leaders of the future.

In a self -employed capacity Joanne is currently providing coaching and mentoring to Executives and Senior Leaders around translating visions into strategy against a backdrop of transformational and cultural change.

Joanne is also an associate to a SME Insight2Grow who are a North West based Learning and Development Company.

Melanie Foster : Vice Chair

Summary to follow.

Elaine Preece: Secretary

I was a volunteer for six years before I joined the Board. I worked on the two busiest collection points and in the office in Brinnington.  I have a comprehensive knowledge of our products, policies, procedures and a good understanding of how the office functions. I find this useful during Board meetings when operational and strategic issues are discussed.

I have a first-class degree in Politics and Contemporary History which gave me skills enabling analysis of complex documents. This has been vital when reading internal audit and risk assessment documents for example. Equally, as secretary, notetaking proficiency during meetings and précising them is part of my job. 

During my working life, I have been employed by an MP in their constituency office and by Stockport College in teaching and learning support. These two jobs brought me into contact with a people from a wide range of backgrounds and a myriad of problems.  I believe that I gleaned two useful skills for my role as a NED – the ability to work in a team and act as a constructive critic with our executive team.

Finally, I love my role in SCU. I enjoy working with  Board members, volunteers, our hard-working staff and last but not least, our members.

Andrew Foster: Treasurer

Newly joined in October 2020, Andrew is Chartered Accountant with over 30 years of industry experience working with small and medium sized businesses. Whilst originally from the wrong side of the Pennines, he settled in the “SK”’s in 1987 and looks forward to supporting the Board in promoting the credit union values throughout Stockport

In his spare time, Andrew is a committee member of the Stockport Association of Swim Clubs as well as a swim coach and Treasurer of a local swim club.

James McMillan: Chair of Audit Committee

James McMillan is a qualified Chartered Accountant and member of the ICAEW, and a certified Non-Executive Director. In 2020 he won the IoD Director of the Year award for his work at Stockport Credit Union.

James has first-hand experience of internal and external audit for third sector organisations and SMEs up to £200m turnover, corporate finance, and has extensive experience across business process improvement, HR, and programme management.

James is an entrepreneur and runs his own business advisory firm Audeo Fortis advising growing and scaling businesses, and myNexus Platform . James lives in central Manchester and his grandparents have lived in Stockport for over 40 years

James Gracey: Chair of Development Committee

James has over 25 years of experience across the Banking and Financial Services industry, specialising in Business Development, Regulatory Requirements, Contract Management, and Customer Journey.

Throughout his career James has worked with the majority of high street banks and major credit lenders, focusing on supporting customers in financial difficulties and defining strategies to deliver the best customer journey.

Rob Grant : Non-Executive Director

Rob Grant is a qualified Coach and Mentor who runs Business Bread, his own business consultancy focused on the development of people and business through connection of the individual actions, creative thinking and progression toward a clear vision.
Rob has more than 23 years-experience in leadership and management roles across many B2B and B2C sectors and underpinned by board experience in community and commercial organisations, including Non-Executive Director & Board Treasurer at Village Greens Community Co-operative, Marketing Director for Radcliffe Market Community Benefit Society Limited, Managing Director for Royal Mail Courier Services Ltd and other exec board positions for financial services organisations.

Rob is driven by understanding how things work and helping to make them work better as well as helping others achieve. He possesses a balance of analytical and creative thinking that has underpinned a successful career based on people management and doing things the right way. 

Funsho Oshewa: Non-Executive Director

Funsho has over 25 years’ senior experience in retail and investment banking. Since 2016, she has supported various banks, advising them on mitigating business regulatory risk, developing effective governance and commercial actions to grow their business. She also has recent experience of regulatory risk business transformation projects, focusing on resolving compliance and regulatory issue.

Funsho joined the board in 2020 and is currently a serving member of the Audit Risk Governance Committee.

Stephen Johnson: Non-Executive Director

Stephen Johnson has 15 years experience in Financial services, driving transformation projects within both Retail Banking firms and SME Financials. 

His current focus is supporting Financial Services firms through technological and regulatory change, helping to develop businesses into successful organisations and managing the challenges faced within a continuously changing landscape.

Stephen has an MBA alongside a number of project and technology accreditations and is looking forward to using his skills and experience to serve the members of SCU and ensure they are at the heart of everything we do.

Outside of the office Stephen has three children and enjoys watching MCFC when he gets the chance (sorry MUFC fans!)

Richard Kennerley: Non-Executive Director

Richard is an experienced Chief Executive and Non-Executive Director with more than 25 years of business growth, transformation, and turnaround expertise in the UK and APAC Region, spanning corporate / business banking, structured / acquisition finance, private equity, consumer finance/fintech, and credit management.

He has substantial Non-Executive experience in financial services, sport, entertainment and charity sectors, where he has held roles on the Board, Audit Committee, Risk Committee and Treasury Committee, guiding substantial turnaround, acquisitive growth and long-term strategic planning.

Credit Committee

The Credit Committee is an elected committee. At the Annual General Meeting members may be nominated and serve for a term of 3 years. The committee has a minimum of 3 people and a maximum of 8 people.

Members of the Credit Committee meet every Tuesday at our registered office at First House and consider some of the loan applications made by members. It’s a busy and varied role.

Dr Katie Booth

“Having a background in public health and cancer care research I have lived and worked in this community for over 40 years. During this time, I have always tried, as far as possible, to participate in community and charitable activities. In particular, I consider our work at the Credit Union is necessary in these times when ill-managed debt can be such a threat to family life and healthy living. I have been a volunteer with our organisation for five years, the last three as a member of the Credit Committee.  I have found our interaction with members important and at times humbling as we try to help members sometimes in desperate need”

Sheila Townsend

Sheila Townsend has served on the Credit Committee for a number of years.

Sheila believes that the Credit Union ethos of members being there to support each other through difficult times is a sound one; and thinks that the Credit Committee’s role is increasingly important in trying to help members who would probably be unable to access affordable credit elsewhere.

Sheila feels that one gains an insight when looking at complicated situations in detail and in speaking to individual members; and it is satisfying to see members regain control of their finances, despite these being so severely limited.

Dr Matthew Ellis

“I am a former Physics Teacher who took early retirement.  I joined the credit union three years ago and I have volunteered on the collection points, credit committee and the audit and risk committee.  I feel that credit unions have a huge role in the provision of appropriate credit to their members, especially at the moment, when a lot of credit providers are stopping trading.  It is the mutual nature of the credit union that is hugely important – Stockport Credit Union is there, not to make a profit, but to make the lives of its members better.”

Anne Philips
Mike Brownbill

Coming from a legal and insurance background,  I have been a Stockport resident since 2007. I was brought up in Trafford with family connections in Stockport as a child. 

My volunteering at SCU started in 2010. Initially involved in new membership, marketing and administration. In 2015 the members voted me onto the Credit Committee where I’ve been on the team for 6 years now.

In the past, I’ve experienced financial difficulties myself and understand the adverse impact on morale and mental health. There have been many changes with the expansion of SCU over the last decade.

Audit Committee

The Audit Committee has two volunteer lay member positions. The job of the lay members is to provide member oversight to the Board activities and assist with the work of the Audit Committee. The voluntary Risk Management Officer also assists the Audit Committee in managing risk and determining risk management strategy.

Graham Privett: Risk Management Officer

A non-voting invited member of the board Graham assists the board in a voluntary capacity with the Risk Management of Stockport Credit Union.

VACANCY: Lay Member

The Rules of Stockport Credit Union have been designed to have two lay members of the Audit Committee. This ensures that the members voice is incorporated into the oversight work of the committee.

VACANCY: Lay Member

The Rules of Stockport Credit Union have been designed to have two lay members of the Audit Committee. This ensures that the members voice is incorporated into the oversight work of the committee.