We are thrilled to announce the appointment of Shirley Johnson as the new Chair of our Board of Trustees. Shirley joined our board in 2022 and has been a valuable member of our team ever since. She brings with her a genuine passion for YMCA and a deep understanding of the Northumberland Community. We are excited to see the positive impact she will have in her new role.

She has amassed a vast array of expertise over her 40-year career, from effective communication with large audiences to policy advising. She spent much of her career managing press and public affairs for large organisations including Metropolitan Authorities and a University and most recently she spent 10 years providing policy support for both Children’s and Adults’ social services at Leeds City Council.

Shirley Johnson

After she retired, she moved to Northumberland and began to recognize the specific issues encountered by young people in disadvantaged and isolated rural communities.

“When I heard of the work YMCA does, I wanted to help by using my skills to support the organisation.  YMCA is at the forefront of services aimed at transforming young people’s lives and their families’ circumstances.  I’m proud to be part of the organisation.” – Shirley Johnson

With ambitions to expand our youth sessions and link up services in Ashington, it’s set to be an exciting year for YMCA Northumberland:

“We have good work to build on and I’m looking forward to seeing our new staff members bring their talents to the team to extend the services we already offer our young people. If we can improve young people’s lives now, we are laying the foundations for strong and confident communities in years to come.  This fills me with hope, but I am also conscious that it’s a massive responsibility!” – Shirley Johnson

Shirley has a specific interest in extending our services beyond the areas we currently cover and connecting with local people and organisations to ensure we are catering to the various needs of our community. She particularly wants to hear more from young people in the area and find out what they’d like from the YMCA. Leave a comment or email us at [email protected] if you’d like to share your thoughts.

“Shirley is a wonderful asset to the team, contributing her valuable experience and her genuine compassion for Northumberland young people. It’s fantastic to have someone step into the Chair role who already has a strong understanding of our work and values.” – Rob Cox, Chief Executive Officer

Thank you Shirley and all our Trustees for giving up their time to contribute to YMCA Northumberland. The future is looking bright!

And if you’d like to hear the latest updates from YMCA follow us on Facebook @YMCANorthumberlandNE or Instagram @ymca_northumberland

Our previous Chair Avril (left) and current Chair Shirley (right).