Sean Lawrence, Chair
I commenced training as an ADI shortly after my 21st birthday and completed it before my 22nd. I then worked for Hertfordshire Action on Disability (HAD) as a Driving Advisor for 10 years, during which time I played an important role in developing the service and in establishing satellite centres in Dunstable, Yiewsley and Watford.
In 2017 I successfully applied for the vacancy of Driving Centre Manager at HAD and I have recently been promoted to the role CEO of the company. Having worked in the driving, mobility and charity sector for more than 10 years, I hope my knowledge as an Assessor – as well as my experience of being a Manager – will enable me to make good decisions as a Board member of Driving Mobility.
Ann Frye OBE, BA, FCILT, FCIHT, TPP, Vice Chair
Ann Frye is an international specialist in the area of mobility of disabled and older people.
Ann advises national Governments around the world and has worked with the United Nations, The European Commission, and the International Transport Forum. Ann has worked in this field for over 30 years; until 2006 she headed the Department for Transport’s Mobility & Inclusion Unit where she took the lead on research, legislation, and policy to promote the mobility of disabled people.
Ann devised and operated the The Mobility Roadshow and set up the Government’s own Mobility Centre and the funding programme for similar centres around the country.
Sian Mitchell, Treasurer
My name is Sian and I am currently employed as the Office Manager for South East DriveAbility based in Maidstone. I have worked for the service since 2018 through which time I have faced a great deal of challenges, especially through a particularly turbulent time for the NHS as well as Driving Mobility centres. I relish new opportunities and I look proud to be a part of the growth and future of Driving Mobility.
Edward Trewhella, Driving Mobility CEO
Edward has been the respected and valued CEO of Driving Mobility since 2017. Prior to this most recent appointment, Edward worked at Cornwall Mobility as the Chief Executive.
Edward has experienced a diverse career working in the nuclear, pharmaceutical and software industries, focussed on technology and communications, which culminated in international directorship at Oxford Brookes University. He also has in-depth experience of the charity sector having served as a volunteer in various charities as a Trustee and as Chair. He also served as a Chief Executive of a trade association. This rich background has empowered Edward to deliver real value to the charity, its personnel and service users – particularly with top level strategies and effective institutional relationships.
Since his appointment in 2017, Edward has thrived in the role, his passion is fulfilled everyday as Driving Mobility gives back to the community through the enablement of people with a disability. His proven leadership skills have synergised with the ‘phenomenal team we have nationwide’ as he puts it – together delivering real change in terms of inclusion and independence.
Alan is the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Into Independence Ltd – a consultancy focused on disability and equality training, access audits, promoting independent living and assistive technology. He previously served as CEO of Assist UK for nine years. He is a full-time electric wheelchair user and lives independently, travelling extensively and using most forms of transport. He spent most of his working life in finance holding a senior position for a multinational battery manufacturer.
Alan has a vast amount of experience of assistive technology, especially regarding adaptions to vehicles and has worked closely for many years with the directors and staff of Motability. One of his key achievements, was that he helped Capita procure a multi-million pound contract for providing benefit assessments for the Department for Work and Pensions.
In addition to being a Trustee of Driving Mobility, Alan currently sits on many advisory groups including the DWP (Department of Work and Pensions, PIP), D4D (Devices for Dignity), JCMD (The Joint Committee on Mobility for Disabled People), Disabled Living Manchester, Shopmobility, and is Chairman of DMUK (Disabled Motorists UK).
Paul initially gained experience at the Mobility Advice & Vehicle Information Service driving assessment centre on his third placement as a student in 2003, and qualified as an occupational therapist from Brunel University in 2004. Paul went on to join the QEF Mobility Service in 2005 and soon became the senior occupational therapist at the service which now has a large therapy team to implement the Driving Mobility standards.
Paul has created various courses and given talks to a broad range of external groups, facilitated good working relationships with stakeholders including the annual DfT, and he participates in Driving Mobility working groups, and he is now a mentor for students undertaking the new Oxford-Brookes course. His clinical knowledge and experience of working at a busy mobility centre means he will ensure he is be able to provide sound guidance and support to the charity.
I have been part of Driving Mobility since 2006, initially as a Driving Advisor and more recently focusing on Centre Management. In 2017, I was recruited by RDAC to set up a new Assessment Centre in Greater Manchester. This involved the planning, development, and implementation of a start up centre which quickly developed into a successful and integral part of RDAC and gained Driving Mobility accreditation within the first 12 months.
In 2021, I took on the role of Chief Executive Officer of RDAC and have continued the development of the charity into a large and successful organisation. I have experience and knowledge of the requirements for centre and staff development, outreach provision and service expansion in order to meet the requirements of clients within our sector.
I have a passion for the industry and am thoroughly looking forward to being a part of the Driving Mobility board and helping to shape the future direction of the organisation.
Leanne joined Cornwall Mobility in 2021 and is their Business Development Manager.
She started her career working in Local Government and went from working in law to spending 8 years in Human Resources.
In 2002, following a suspected sprained ankle, tests showed that Leanne had Cancer. Despite several amputations, treatments and challenges, Leanne made the decision to turn every negative into a positive.
Leanne is a published author and has a fully inclusive fitness DVD that still sells worldwide and she’s appeared on television, radio and in newspapers and magazines.
Leanne is thrilled to be joining Driving Mobility – ‘I’ve always perused ventures I believe in and having a disability myself, being the Client, having been through the assessment process, I feel I’m in the unique position of seeing this business from all sides and making a difference’.
After time working as a PA for various companies in the City of London and the North East of England, I joined Cumbria, Northumberland, Tyne & Wear NHS Foundation Trust, in 2000. Although a big cultural change from the world of private enterprise, I enjoyed 14 years working with the Northumberland and North Tyneside Crisis Mental Health Team as Team Secretary, Medical Secretary and later as Pathway Co-ordinator to the newly formed Initial Response Team, a 24/7 mental health crisis line service. Having seen first hand the amazing work crisis mental health teams do, I enjoyed the variety of work and in particular, the interaction with clinicians and service users.
Staying within CNTW NHS Foundation Trust, 2017 saw me move to a managerial role at Walkergate Park Hospital, part of the Neurorehabilitation and Specialist Services Clinical Business Unit in Newcastle upon Tyne, managing admin staff to 23 different services over 10 sites. A couple of years later, the Hubs Transport Service pilot was rolled out. The prospect of being able to again work directly with service users (something I’d missed) while creating a brand new service, really appealed and I was delighted to be appointed to the role.
Fast forward to November 2022 and I’ve been trusted with the Mobility Team Manager role of North East Drive Mobility. It’s been a steep learning curve and one that I’m still climbing, helped by a very knowledgeable Clinical Lead, and an amazingly skilled, hardworking team! I’m sure my time with the Driving Mobility Board will also be a big learning experience, but hopefully one where I can bring a different perspective with a fresh pair of eyes!
Prior to working in the driver training industry, Andrew was completing his higher education which included an HND in Business and finance and Degree in Business Administration. He worked in the retail sector while studying and intended to pursue a career in retail management until the company he worked for was bought over and made redundancies.
Andrew qualified as a driving instructor in 2003 and started his own driving school, which is still running. A year later, in March 2004 he started working with Disability Action’s driving school. He very quickly developed a passion for helping disabled drivers and went on to train in the area of medical fitness to drive assessments. He is now the lead driving assessor at Disability action and is studying towards a Masters, through Chester University.
Steve has worked in the mobility healthcare sector for over 40 years for a variety of manufacturers, importers and exporters, retailers and distributors. This has also included working on product development in the Far East to ensure products met all EU, TUV and FDA regulations for international and home markets.
Working with manufacturers and importers in all healthcare and mobility, Steve has been dedicated to improving information and guidance available from our industry, working with healthcare professionals, consumers and other sector stakeholders. Steve recently worked for the British Healthcare Trades Association (BHTA) developing their sections Get Wise leaflet range, publications and their new website design in 2020.
For several years, Steve has been working closely with the aviation sector and through this, has worked with Graham Race (QEF) on the Tryb4uFly programme, which led to them producing the “Get Wise to Flying with a Disability” information leaflet. Working closely with the mobility industry, airlines and airport handling companies, Steve developed and maintained the “Air Transport Information” section of the BHTA website for the mobility industry, updating product data important for the safe carriage of mobility products in airline holds. He continues to engage with the sector to improve information for travellers with disabilities and mobility impairments.
Steve is an active member of the PWMS (Powered Wheelchair Mobility Scooter) project steering group, working with the team to develop a national training scheme to certify trainers in the basic assessment and operational tuition of Class 2 and 3 mobility vehicles.
Steve worked closely with Driving Mobility, on behalf of BHTA, to ensure a smooth transfer of the National Federation of Shopmobility business, and intellectual property in 2020. He re-introduced the NFSUK scheme printed directory in 2017, to help promote schemes nationwide.
Steve has been a mentor for apprentices throughout his career, and recently guided two apprentices through their programmes to completion in Digital Marketing and Communications, including social media.
I am an Occupational Therapist / Clinical Assessor at Derby DrivAbility.
I qualified in 2003 from Derby University and have since undertaken further post graduate training obtaining a PGCert in Occupational Therapy
Prior to joining the team at Derby I spent 16 years working on acute hospital wards where I was the Specialist OT for the inpatient amputee service. This frequently involved covering the high dependency units and supporting of colleagues from different specialties who may not be confident assessing and discharge planning this patient group.
Although I have only been at Derby a short time I particularly enjoy supporting and enabling our clients in the process of returning to driving or being able to go out with their families again. At Derby we work closely with our armed forces, and I love nothing more than being able to give something back those that sacrifice so much for us to allow them to now move forward onto the next stage in their recovery journey.
Out of work I enjoy taking my lovely dog out for a walk, and as an avid rugby fan I have a season ticket for Leicester Tigers so you find me most weekends cheering them on.
Dean has been an Approved Driving Instructor for over twenty years and established his driving school in 2007 where he now manages a team of ADIs. He was recruited as a Driving Adviser for the Wales Mobility and Driving Assessment service in 2018 and also worked part-time as an administrator in order to acquire knowledge in this sector.
He successfully completed the Oxford Brookes University course in September 2022 and is now a full-time member of the team at WMDAS where he is passionate about helping others.
Outside of work Dean enjoys family time, playing golf (with limited success!) and watching sport. He is looking forward to becoming a board member of Driving Mobility and deepening his understanding of the decision-making processes involved.
Kim joined EAD in April 2017 as an administration assistant having previously worked in a variety of admin roles including at an estate agents, a floorcare company where she was dealing with multiple teams and multiple diaries and a laptop storage company where she was working in admin and marketing.
During her time at EAD she has progressed her career to become Office Manager and latterly Assistant CEO. She has a good overview of the mobility service and can problem solve on her feet but always with the clients best interests at heart. She is a big advocate for promoting the work of EAD and Driving Mobility
She is currently chair of the Hubs steering group and is organising the Hubs officers meetings having taken on a very pro-active role of liaising with the DfT about the Hubs project.
She is pleased to join the board and continue developing the mobility service with the other board members.
In Kim’s spare time she is running around after her husband, two year old son and all of her animals. Kim also likes to run her two cockerpoos at agility for fun.
David is an experienced Manager with a record of achievement in general management, strategic formulation, project and financial management gained in both the Third Sector and Manufacturing Industry.
Before moving to the Third Sector David’s career was in the design and manufacturing of electronic equipment where he developed a personal interest in how technology could be used to assist day to day living.
After changing career in 2000 David joined Arthritis Care as the Regional Manager for North England and developed his skills in contract negotiation and Branch development within the Third Sector.
Now as General Manager for the William Merritt Centre David was influential in moving the Centre from the NHS to be an independent Charity and Social Enterprise, in 2013. In 2017 he was also responsible for overseeing the move to their new premises in Rodley, Leeds.
With his personal experience and career knowledge he is able to provide informed leadership to assist the team in providing an extensive range of assistive living services.
David has contributed to changes in Health Care provision across the region, initially working with PCT’s to develop initiatives to implement the original White paper – Our Health Our Care our Say and more recently working with colleagues to develop Local Care Partnership links.
David is passionate about independent living and works closely with Leeds University as a Patient Mentor sharing lived experience to inform future NHS Doctors what it is like living with a long-term condition.