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About our Boards

Ongo Partnership is made up of housing, commercial and community based companies, and each area of the business has its own Board of Non-Executive Directors. These are the people who govern our business.

Our housing business is regulated by the Government’s Regulator for Social Housing (RSH), who regularly inspect us to ensure we are meeting its governance and financial standards.

The Boards meet throughout the year and once a year Ongo Homes holds an Annual General Meeting. Some Board members may sit on more than one board or committee, for example, Group Common Board and Audit & Risk Committee.

If you would like to see the minutes from meetings, please get in touch and we will send them to you. 

*We're really sorry that we can't share the minutes of our Ongo Commercial, Home Sales and Development Boards because they contain some commercially sensitive information. 

Ongo Partnership (Known as Group Common Board): Terms of Reference 

To view our terms of reference, click here.

Ongo Developments: Terms of Reference 

To view our terms of reference, click here.

Ongo Communities: Terms of Reference 

To view our terms of reference, click here.

Ongo Commercial: Terms of Reference

To view our terms of reference, click here.

Ongo Governance & Remuneration: Terms of Reference 

To view our terms of reference, click here.

Ongo Audit & Risk: Terms of Reference

To view our terms of reference, click here.

To take a look at our board structure, click here. 

  • Group Common Board

    Our Group Common Board oversees all the activities of the companies within the group. It meets throughout the year. Here are the Board members.

    Bob Walder (Chair)

    Bob spent his career working for housing associations based in Manchester, the Potteries and Lincolnshire.  He was Chief Executive Officer at Longhurst Group for 26 years and retired in 2015.  Since then he has enjoyed a number of non-executive roles chairing three housing associations and a local University.  Bob was appointed Chair at Ongo and is committed to a team approach working with the new Board, Ongo’s tenants and all members of staff.

     

    Melvin Kenyon


    Melvin worked for twenty years in retail for the John Lewis Partnership, Richard Shops, Boots, and T&S Stores where he was a member of the main board for five years. Later he spent almost ten years working for an agency of the Department for Education in a variety of leadership roles, including Chief Operating Officer. His core skill is in IT and he has also been responsible for a variety of other corporate services including HR, procurement, membership, and facilities management. He is passionate about customer service and intends to translate that into doing his best for tenants. Born in Oldham, Melvin is an Oxford graduate who now lives in the East Midlands.

    Michael Finister-Smith

    Helen Lennon

    Helen is a values-driven housing professional with 30 years experience of working in statutory and not-for-profit organisations. Currently the Chief Executive for Connect Housing, in West Yorkshire, she is a passionate advocate of social housing as a tenure of choice and as a foundation to a healthy life. Her background is in housing management and supported housing but during the course of her career she has been responsible for most aspects of managing a housing association. She believes in servant-leadership; housing associations should be supporting their Local Authority partners; the NHS and most importantly existing and future customers (tenants and other service users).  As such she Chairs Leeds City Region Housing Partnership.

    Liz Cook

    Liz is an collaborative and cohesive leader who has the drive and determination to deliver customer excellence, through effective challenge innovation and partnership. She is committed to the provision of exceptional housing services. Liz has worked in public sector housing for 30+ years as CEO of ALMO, Chief Housing Officer at Leeds, Programme Director for Vulnerable People at Sheffield and Assistant Director at Barnsley, gaining extensive experience delivering strategic and operational leadership in a range of different organisations with different cultures and challenges. Liz started her career delivering housing management and regeneration in East London. Liz is now Assistant Director of Housing at Chesterfield Borough Council. Liz is a board Director at Unity, a BME Leeds based Housing Association and chairs their HR & Governance Committee. Liz spent 5 years as a Northern Housing Consortium Board Member & member of their Risk & Audit Committee.

    Rachel Cook

    Rachel Cook is the Chief Executive and Monitoring Officer for the Humberside Police and Crime Commissioner’s Office.  Born and raised in North Lincolnshire upon graduation Rachel was employed within the local authority in a Regeneration and External Funding setting.  Since then she has worked across public, private and third sector in a variety of roles including Policy, Business Development, Contract Management and Operations.  Her experience stems many sectors starting with Regeneration, moving into Economic Development, Skills and Education, Criminal Justice, and Policing.  Over fifteen years of senior management experience, Rachel is motivated by helping create the conditions for people to succeed and realising the potential of others.  Passionate about collaboration, partnership working, seeking best value for the public purse while driving quality of public service. 

    John Wright

    John is currently in a Director of Finance role at Thirteen Housing Group, the largest Registered Provider in the North East of England. He has held senior finance positions at a number of other Registered Providers and has worked in the social housing sector for over 18 years.

    John trained to be an accountant whilst working for one of the country’s largest housing providers, Places for People Group, and is now a Fellow Member of Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (FCCA). He has also received a B.A. (Hons) degree in Business Economics from Coventry University.  As well as finance expertise, the skills John brings include governance, risk management, procurement, debt recovery and change management.

    Paula Gouldthorpe 

    Paula has a strong track record of maximising resources and strengthening partnerships between the public, education and private sectors. As Entrepreneurship Manager at the University of Hull Paula works alongside academics to grow commercial skills and start-up businesses. Paula has over 15 years’ experience of mentoring business owners, with prior roles in partnerships, marketing, environment and renewables industries. Paula has represented on strategic boards on regeneration, innovation, and business support, chairing a board which invested £10m into community development. Paula is passionate about life-long learning, sustainability and community engagement and holds a degree in Social Policy & Politics, a Master’s in Business and is a Fellow member of the Higher Education Academy.

    Natalie Cresswell

    With over 28 years’ experience working within a variety of administration roles, Natalie is currently the Operations Manager at E-Factor Group Ltd., where she leads on a number of areas including the Facilities Management of an extensive commercial property portfolio, the HR Management for the company as well as developing the efficient processes, in order to ensure the continued smooth running of all E-Factors services and centres. She is also a member of E-Factors’ Leadership team and so is actively involved in the business growth of the Company.

     

    Tim Mills

    Tim has been involved with voluntary work for over 30 years including chair of Scunthorpe and district Mind for over 15 years. He's been an involved tenant at Ongo for 6 years, setting up a local community group, secretary of Community voice and sitting on panels such as scrutiny and complaints before joining the board as a tenant member.

     

     

    Steve Hepworth

    Steve Hepworth took over as our Chief Executive in April 2018, although has a wealth of experience working for Ongo, being Operations Director before securing the Chief Executive role.In fact, he has worked here since we formed as North Lincolnshire Homes in 2007. North Lincolnshire Homes rebranded as Ongo in 2012.

    Previously, whilst working for North Lincolnshire Council, Steve led the team responsible for consultation with tenants that resulted in the formation of North Lincolnshire Homes as a housing association and the transfer of 10,000 homes from the council. In total, Steve has over 20 years experience in social housing – starting his career as a rent recovery officer at Wakefield Metropolitan District Council back in 1990.

  • Ongo Developments

    Ongo Developments oversee our new build schemes.

    Liz Cook (Chair)

    See info under Group Common Board

    Natalie Cresswell

    See info under Group Common Board

    Moya Jones

     

    Pete Stones

    As our Director of Property, Pete oversees the delivery of our repairs and maintenance service, the development of all new homes which we build and the regeneration of our homes and estates.

    A qualified construction professional, he has worked for Ongo since 2009, initially as Director of Regeneration. He also sits on the board of Pickering and Ferens Housing Association. His previous role includes Head of Reinvestment at Boston Mayflower Housing Association. 

  • Ongo Communities

    Our Ongo Communities Board look after the community investment activities and Ongo Recruitment and Crosby Brokerage issues.   Our members are:

    Helen Lennon (Chair)

    See info under Group Common Board

    Tim Mills

    See info under Group Common Board.

    James McKellar-Main

    James is currently a Neighbourhood Sergeant with Humberside Police based in a multi-agency setting looking at Early Intervention and supporting families. He has lived and worked in the Scunthorpe area for the past 35 years and has an extensive knowledge of the area. James is passionate about seeing positive activities for young people to help them develop into role models and succeed into the future. Through his current role James has extensive knowledge of problem solving and a strong partnership approach to achieving results within local communities. He also sits as a Local Parish Councillor and governor of a local secondary school. 

  • Ongo Commercial

    Our Ongo Commercial Board look after the commercial businesses which include Ongo Heating & Plumbing Ltd (trading as Hales & Coultas Heating and Partnership) and Ongo Roofing Ltd (trading as Ashbridge Roofing). Our members are:

    Bob Walder (Chair)

    See info under Group Common Board

    Paula Gouldthorpe

    See info under Group Common Board

    Paul Warburton

    Paul is an experienced Housing Operations Director with over 26 years' experience in Social Housing leading the Strategic, operational and service delivery of multiple disciplinary team and has a proven track record of high end customer focused service, improving business efficiency, value for money and community sustainability.

    Paul also has over 6 years governance experience with Grove Village Board Limited, the country's first social housing PFI an Lancashire mind, where he is a Trustee and the Chair of the Finance and Audit subcommittee, he is passionate about delivering great services and championing customer interests using large scale change and systems thinking to improve service satisfaction & bottom line results. He has extensive experience of working as part of various Senior Leadership Teams, developing business plans and strategies and working with a number of external partners to oversee delivery of these.

    Ashley Harrison

    Ashley is our Director of Resources & Commercial Services which means he looks after the finance, procurement, IT and commercial areas of the business.

    He has vast experience in working in the financial sector and is a member of the Fellowship of Chartered Certified Accountants (FCCA) and Associate of the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (ACMA). He joined Ongo in 2015, initially joining as Head of Finance, before becoming Director of Resources and Commercial Services in 2018 after a short spell as interim Director.

    A family man and part time golfer, Ashley gets a buzz from the great bunch of people he works with at Ongo.

    Lee Coulson

     

     

  • Ongo Govermance & Remuneration Committee

    Our Governance & Remuneration Committee is tasked with reviewing and making recommendations on matters concerning remuneration of non-executive members and executive staff of Ongo Group. Our Members are:

    Rachel Cook (Chair)

    See info under Group Common Board

    Melvin Kenyon

    See info under Group Common Board

    Tracy O'Neill

     

  • Ongo Audit & Risk Committee

    Our Audit & Risk Committee advise the Ongo Group Board on whether the Group has robust risk management, internal control and assurance frameworks in place. Our members are:

    Michael Finister-Smith (Chair)

    See info under Group Common Board

    Rachel Cook

    See info under Group Common Board

    John Wright

    See info under Group Common Board

    Daniel Klemm