Meet our Management Team
Members of the Balance Board
Andrea Biggs – Chief Executive
Andrea led the spin out of her team from Kingston’s Adult Social Care in 2012 to create Balance. Andrea developed and shaped three services all aimed at improving the lives of disadvantaged people whilst in the council. Since 2007 she has secured ongoing funding from external funding bodies to provide employment support for people with mental health conditions. She also established a bespoke service for adults with Asperger syndrome, one of only a few in the UK.
Andrea has a strong track record in developing services and sound leadership and people management skills. She has a creative and innovative approach to developing services and understands the client groups served by the services managed. She has demonstrated the ability to manage budgets effectively, creating savings when required. External funding has enabled her to establish and develop new projects to meet previously unmet needs within the borough of Kingston.
Jeanette Swan – Trustee
Born in Scotland, Jeanette qualified as a Pharmacist at Heriot Watt University in Edinburgh and worked for 5 years in both retail and hospital sectors before joining the Pharmaceutical Industry and enjoying a career with Novartis AG, spanning 38 years.
For the first half of her tenure with Novartis, Jeanette held a number of positions of increasing responsibility in customer facing commercial line management functions in the company’s UK Pharmaceutical Division. She then embarked on a range of generalist and specialist Human Resources roles working at a local and global level in the Pharmaceutical, Consumer Health and Animal Health Divisions, in UK and Switzerland.
Jeanette is a business focused HR professional with significant breadth and depth of HR functional knowhow and strategic HR interventions to support the business and impact operational performance.
Jeanette retired from Novartis at the end of June 2015 and then worked part time for the company over the following 12 months. Now based in UK, she is a senior HR advisor with Stonehaven Consulting and works as a Volunteer Consultant undertaking a range of projects on behalf of the Cranfield Trust.
Alan Willmott – Trustee
Alan has worked in Social Care for 45 years in a variety of capacities. He started his career as a support worker in care homes for people with a learning disability before qualifying as a social worker.
Alan has managed Care Homes and has been a care manager prior to moving into training and consultancy for the care sector.
Retaining a strong interest in services for people with disabilities Alan was pleased to have joined the Balance Board to continue to use his experience and to support the aims and values of the organisation.
Shamaila Ahmedi (FCMA,CGMA) – Trustee
Experienced Finance and Systems Professional, with more than 20 years experience.
Paul Henson – Trustee
Paul is a partner in a national law firm specialising in property and litigation.
Paul was keen to be involved with a local charity and was attracted by the purpose and values of the Balance organisation; he has been involved with Balance since 2019.
Paul provides strategic legal advice and assistance to Andrea and the trustees.
Paul is a sports enthusiast (mainly watching these days) and enjoys spending time with his family.
Laura Di Bonaventura – Trustee
An Italian national, Laura has lived in the UK for the past 24 years, has a BA Hons in International Business and speaks English and German. Laura brings to the Balance board her marketing know-how, digital knowledge and communication expertise, developed leading the marketing efforts at top-brands such as LEGO, Remington and Varta. Laura is currently Head of Marketing at Company of Animals.
Laura says “Being part of the board of Directors at Balance, is a very rewarding experience. It offers me the opportunity to use my commercial skills to support this fantastic organisation committed to improving quality of life and independence of the most vulnerable of people.”
Ian Davison – Trustee
Ian has over 35 years of experience in the international oil and gas industry, primarily with BP, where he held a range of senior commercial management roles on projects in Europe, North America, the Middle East, Africa and Asia. He also worked for a leading independent energy consultancy, providing advice to governments and commercial organisations and acting as an expert witness in major international arbitration cases.
Ian joined the Balance Board in 2019 and is currently also a member of the Board of Trustees at Citizens Advice Epsom and Ewell. He was previously a pro bono mentor at UnLtd, a charity providing support to social entrepreneurs throughout the UK.