Meet our trustees

Nick Winser

Nick Winser  (Chair)

I became Chair in January 2017 and I’ve been a trustee since 2015.

I’m an engineer by profession and I’ve spent my career in the energy sector, primarily working for the National Grid. I was its UK and European CEO from 2011 to 2015.

I’m now the Chairman of Energy Systems Catapult, a government-led initiative, and I’m on the board of several other organisations. I’ve been a Non-Executive Director of the construction company Kier and the President of the Institution of Engineering and Technology.

My wife, Denise, was diagnosed with MS in 1999. I’ve seen many of the challenges that come with the condition, and the opportunities and difficulties of accessing effective treatments and therapies.

Ruth Hasnip

Ruth Hasnip (Vice Chair)

I’ve been a trustee since 2014 and became Vice-Chair in January 2017. I’m a director of MSS Trading, our trading subsidiary, and I have a special interest in our People Committee. 

I’ve worked at board level for the past 15 years and I’m passionate about effective marketing, building brand awareness and innovation. I’ve worked as Executive Director of Marketing Communications at the Design Council, and Public Affairs Director at the Barbican, where I developed its new brand strategy and corporate identity.  

My mother was diagnosed with MS when I was five years old, so I know first-hand the challenges of being a young carer.

Jason Atkinson

Jason Atkinson

I’ve been a trustee since 2015, after several years volunteering with my local group, including doing lots of fundraising. I’m the chair of the People Committee and a passionate supporter of the Stop MS Appeal.

I’ve worked at board level for over 20 years and I have commercial, business development, marketing and financial skills. I’m currently Managing Director of Russam GMS – one of the UK’s longest established and fastest growing recruitment companies.

My wife, Katie, was diagnosed with MS in 1999 just before our wedding. I understand the challenges faced by people with MS, their family and friends, and the value of what we offer at the MS Society.

Susan Crane

Susan Crane

I’ve been a member of the MS Society for 14 years and I became a trustee at the start of 2019.  I’m a member of the Governance Committee and the Research Strategy Committee.

I grew up in New York but settled in the UK over 30 years ago. I’ve spent my professional life in the charity sector, working mainly in international development. I’ve been a Director in charities and in higher education. I’m currently an Honorary Lecturer at UCL where I teach about both management and reproductive health.

I was diagnosed with relapsing remitting MS 14 years ago and I’m a member of the West Central London MS Society Group.

Christine Gibbons

Christine Gibbons

I’ve been a trustee since 2015. I’m the chair of the Governance Committee and I also sit on the Research Strategy Committee. A member of my family had MS which is why the cause is particularly close to my heart.

I have over 30 years’ experience as a pharmacist and 18 years of executive board level experience in NHS hospitals. During that time, I led transformational projects, including the introduction of telemedicine to rural areas.

I’ve been a trustee of several charities and this has given me significant experience in charity governance.

Downshan Humzah

Dowshan Humzah

My professional experience is as a business growth, transformation and digital specialist. I’ve held senior roles with RSA Insurance, Virgin Media, Orange, P&G and three start-ups - and currently hold a number of directorships and advisory positions.

My personal background explains my passion in promoting ‘access to opportunity’ for those less-privileged – which I’ve furthered through my work across civil society.

I’ve been a trustee since 2018. As the MS Society pursues its vision of a world free from MS, I wish to contribute to the acceleration in research, support and treatments to improve the lives of those affected by MS.
Karen Jones

Karen Jones

I’ve been a trustee since 2017. Before that, I was a member of our Cymru Council for six years, including three years as its Chair. I was also chair of a local group. I’m a member of the People and Governance Committees.

My background is in law and my interests lie in governance, compliance and equality. I’m a trustee of another charity and a Chair of a housing association.

I was inspired to volunteer with the MS Society as my closest friend has lived with MS for nearly 30 years. I understand how each diagnosis of MS affects so many people and I’m committed to playing a part in stopping MS.

head shot of Marion King

Marion King

I’ve been a trustee since 2018 and I’m a member of our Audit, Risk and Finance Committee.

My background is in the financial services industry. I have held senior leadership roles for well-known companies for over 30 years. The companies include MasterCard, VocaLink and RBS where I am currently the Group Director of Payments.

My eldest sister was diagnosed with MS in 1980 at the age of 27 and sadly passed away in 2009. I supported my sister throughout her battle with progressive MS. I have a personal understanding of the wide impact that MS can have. I’m passionate about finding a cure.

Rufus Olins

Rufus Olins

I became a trustee at the start of 2019 and sit on the Audit Risk and Finance Committee.

My management and financial experience includes CEO and Board roles at media businesses, charities, academies and a multi-billion-pound retail group. My expertise includes branding, communications, campaigning, community and membership organisations. My career began as a journalist on Campaign and The Sunday Times.

I have first-hand experience of the challenges of MS.

Sarah Schol

Sarah Schol

I’ve been a trustee since 2018, having previously served on the England Council, including as chair. I have served on the Governance committee and am currently on the People Committee.

My experience is in HR, having worked in senior leadership roles for large corporations, including Coca-Cola Enterprises. I am now the owner and director of a business which focuses on helping organisations improve engagement, flexibility, wellness, and performance.

My mother was diagnosed with MS in 1984 and lived with it for over 25 years, so I have a personal understanding of the challenges of the condition and how it affects both the individual and those that love and care for them.

Stuart Secker

Stuart Secker (Treasurer)

I’ve been the Treasurer and a trustee since 2016. I’m the Chair of the Audit, Risk and Finance Committee.

I’m a Chartered Accountant and a partner at a large accountancy firm, with nearly 20 years of experience advising clients in the financial services industry.  I also have experience in leading people and strategy with a strong focus on risk management.

My sister-in-law was diagnosed with MS in 2007. Her resilient attitude in the face of MS (‘I may have MS, but MS does not have me’) inspired me to start fundraising for the MS Society, pushing myself to take on various marathons and ultrarunning challenges.

MS Society Trustee Anne Shinkwin

Anne Shinkwin

I’ve been a trustee since 2015. I’m a member of the Audit, Risk and Finance Committee.

I have over 16 years of experience working in senior fundraising roles in the charity sector and I’m currently Director of Fundraising at the Cystic Fibrosis Trust.  This experience, combined with my PhD in Medicinal Chemistry for Cancer Research UK, has given me an understanding of the crucial link between research and fundraising.

My sister had MS so I understand the challenges faced both by the person with MS and by carers. I’m honoured to be a trustee and to be able to bring my skills and experience to support the organisation.

Photo shows MS Society Trustee Ceri Smith

Ceri Smith

I’ve been a trustee since 2017 and I’m a member of the Governance Committee.

I’m a Director at UK Government Investments. Before that, I spent 20 years as a civil servant. I’m a non-executive Director of the British Business Bank and Homes England.

I was diagnosed with MS over 10 years ago and I had my first symptoms more than 20 years ago.  I want to help us to increase our impact, and to do more to help us reach the thousands of people with MS who are not members. This means providing high quality and authoritative information, funding world-class research and continuing to influence public policy to support all people living with MS.