With over 30 years leisure industry experience, initially within the local government sector, he is currently Head of Sport & Wellbeing at Teesside University. A role which has contributed to major developments in the sports offer at the University over recent years, for students, staff and local communities.
An early supporter of the Partnership from its inception, he was instrumental in brokering the current hosting arrangements with Teesside University.
Acknowledging the current and future challenges, he firmly believes the Partnership has a proven track record, strong leadership and governance, to maintain its position as a leading CSP and contribute to improving the life of Tees Valley residents.
Geoff Brown is a chartered engineer of over 30 years standing with extensive experience as an executive and non-executive director in the civil infrastructure sector throughout the UK and internationally.
A former global managing director of an international transportation consultancy business, he currently holds a number of non-executive director roles including positions on the board of the Port of Tyne, Mersey Gateway Crossings Board and serves on the board of Tees Valley Sport as Senior Independent Director/Vice Chair.
A passionate advocate of the benefits that participation in sport can bring to an individual’s wellbeing and life skills, he also has a keen interest in the mutual benefits that sport and business can derive from shared learning across their respective sectors.
Claire Tennyson has over 15 years experience of working in School Sport. Claire currently manages the Redcar & Eston School Sport Partnership which aims to increase the opportunities for young people aged 5-16 years in PE, Physical Activity and School Sport. Claire is currently seconded two days per week from this role into the role of Regional Development Manager for the Youth Sport Trust. The Youth Sport Trust is a national charity that aspires to change young people’s lives through play and sport. Claire has been a Director of the Tees Valley Sport board for 4 years and joined because she believes in the power of sport and wants to make a real difference to the residents of Tees Valley.
Steven Chaytor has had a 35 year career in sport and leisure management in Teesside, the last fourteen spent as Managing Director of the successful Leisure Trust, Tees Active. For many years he was a national executive member of SPORTA, the industry body for leisure trusts, and chair of the northern region. He was also chair of the national board of Make Your Move, a funding collaboration between Sport England and Sporta, aimed at recruiting the ‘hard to reach’. He has been a Director of Tees Valley Sport since 2011 and is committed to the positive impact of sport and physical activity and the crucial role played by TVS. He remains enthusiastically active at football, running, golf and hill walking.
Dr Tanya Gray of TCG Advisory has over 20 years of experience developing initiatives focused on sports participation, voluntary sector capacity building and economic regeneration.
Tanya was the North East’s DCMS Coordinator for the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, working to maximise the benefits of the Games to the regional economy. This involved extensive engagement with over 400 local, regional and national stakeholders often representing culturally diverse, economically distinct and politically sensitive communities and individuals.
After setting up her own local consultancy business, Tanya is currently committed to supporting locally based sports clubs and voluntary associations, particularly those in economically deprived areas who face multiple social and community challenges. She works with these groups providing practical advice and assistance to help them move to a more professional and sustainable basis. Such support includes strategic planning, business plan development, fund raising, bid writing and project evaluation.
Sara McIntyre is a consultant in sport, leisure and community business sectors, primarily focussed on economics and financial sustainability. She has been involved in ‘making things work’ for a wide range of organisations from local sports clubs through to large-scale events such as the 2002 Manchester Commonwealth Games. She served for a number of years as a committee member at her local sports club and initiated fundraising for a much needed upgrade to the facilities, which brought first-hand experience of the very best aspects of grass-roots sports management alongside some the challenges which are common to many clubs.
Sara originally trained as a scientist and held a number of research and commercial roles in science and technology before setting up her own business to follow her passion for sports. Since being taken as a very young baby to swim in the sea she has always been involved in sport and has taken part in a wide range of team and individual activities, all with considerably more enthusiasm than aptitude. A career list of injuries has amply demonstrated the need for good coaching, good support and good facilities to help prevent and to recover from them!
Having lived in the beautiful surroundings of the Tees Valley for nearly 30 years she is delighted to support Tees Valley Sports Partnership to provide opportunities for everyone – talented or not – to access the benefits and the joy of taking part in sport and exercise.
Georgie Rutherford is a World Champion triathlete and open water swimmer who was born and raised in Darlington.
Alongside being a passionate athlete, Georgie fell in love with the ‘behind the scenes’ aspect of sport event management and development at the age of 15 when she volunteered with Nova International to help deliver the Great North Run and went on to volunteer as a team member at the 2000 Manchester Commonwealth Games. This led to a sports degree from the University of Bath and then a career in the industry. Georgie loves helping others achieve their goals and has worked for the Commonwealth Games Federation for the 2004 Games in Australia and 2014 Games in Glasgow and was a part of the triathlon delivery team for the London 2012 Olympic Games.
Georgie has also worked for British Triathlon as the Northern Development Manager. This role enabled the creation of the annual Corus Kids of Steel triathlon which allowed hundreds of children to access triathlon in the Tees Valley area along with numerous other development projects to make sport & fitness accessible to all.
In 2015 Georgie left her full time job in London to focus on being a full time triathlete, competing on the Global Ironman circuit where she went on to win & podium in a range of events around the world. Now retired from professional competing Georgie has set up her own coaching & events business ‘The Long Run Collective’ with her sister Susie (also a retired GB runner) and is excited to be back based in the area she grew up; sharing everything she has learnt & supporting others.
Leon Jones is Managing Director at Tees Active and has 20 years’ experience in strategic roles within the private, public and third sector in leisure, culture and tourism across the Tees Valley.
Leon’s focus is on inspiring healthy lifestyles and thus increasing participation in physical activity across the region. He is innovative, creative and works collaboratively to increase and strengthen business to reinvest and improve services and opportunities for people to access sport and other physical activities.
You can reach him at uk.linkedin.com/in/LeonRJones
Sarah Williams-King has been working in education for over 20 years. She currently works within Macmillan Academy in Middlesbrough as a Physical Education teacher and has a whole school role as Community Partnership Director. This role involves the development of a community programme for facility use beyond the school day for sport and outdoor learning as well as establishing community activities and events.
Sarah recently joined the Board of Directors of Tees Valley Sport as she is passionate about providing inclusive opportunities for all young people to participate in sport and physical activity. Having grown up in the Tees Valley area she is committed to promoting the benefits of sport and physical activity to all those who live in the area.