President, Vice-Presidents and Board

Watch Vice President Pam Rhodes explain why she's committed to helping people affected by leprosy and how you can help too.

Honorary President

Professor Lord Ian McColl

Lord McColl was elected President of The Leprosy Mission England and Wales in 1996.  Having studied medicine at London University, he was Professor of Surgery at Guy’s Hospital from 1971 to 1998. He is also Chairman of Mercy Ships UK, a global hospital ship charity.

Lord McColl was made a Life Peer for his work with disabled people in 1989. He was Parliamentary Private Secretary to Prime Minister John Major from 1994 to 1997 and was a Shadow Minister for Health from 1997 to 2000. He was made a CBE in 1997. In 1998, Lord McColl travelled to India to witness The Leprosy Mission's projects.



Rt Revd Donald Allister

Donald Allister has been Bishop of Peterborough since 2010. In 2011, he was awarded an honorary doctorate in theology by the University of Chester in recognition of his outstanding contribution to the promotion of Christian education. The Bishop has served in parish positions in Hyde, Greater Manchester; Sevenoaks, Kent; Birkenhead, Merseyside and Cheadle, Greater Manchester. While at Sevenoaks he also served as a consultant editor of the Church of England Newspaper and in Birkenhead he was part-time hospital chaplain. He has been a member of the General Synod of the Church of England since 2005 and is chair of the Council for Christian Unity. He is married to Janice, a general practitioner. They have three adult children and two grandchildren.

Pam Rhodes

For thirty years, Pam’s been the familiar face of Songs of Praise. Her experience on the programme has given her the opportunity to recognise the challenges faced by communities and individuals around the world, and her compassion for what she’s seen has fired her wish to contribute in practical ways wherever there’s a need. Pam presents the Premier Christian Radio series Hearts and Hymns and is a contributor on Radio 2’s Pause for Thought.  She is also the author of more than twenty books. She is a Vice President of The Church Army and of Christian disability charity Livability, Patron of MHA (formerly Methodist Homes for the Aged) and Ambassador of Mercy Ships. She is married to Richard and has two adult children.

Baroness Cox

Baroness Cox was a deputy speaker in the House of Lords from 1985 to 2005. She was Founder Chancellor of Bournemouth University; is currently Chancellor of Liverpool Hope University and has been awarded an Honorary Fellowship of the Royal College of Nursing. She was a founder Trustee of MERLIN (Medical Emergency Relief International) and is Chief Executive of HART (Humanitarian Aid Relief Trust).

Her humanitarian work takes her to conflict zones, including Sudan, Nigeria, Uganda, and Myanmar (Burma). She also helped to establish the International Islamic Christian Organisation for Reconciliation and Reconstruction (IICORR) in Indonesia.



Professor Ram Gidoomal CBE

Ram Gidoomal CBE is a successful businessman and entrepreneur who over the last 20 years has used his business acumen to support the work of numerous public and charitable organisations and global and local missions.

In 2011 he was appointed Chairman of Traidcraft. Past roles include UK Chief Executive of the Inlaks Group of companies operating in 15 countries with 7,000 employees, and founder of the Christmas Cracker Charity which has raised over £5 million, engaged upwards of 50,000 young people in the process and mobilised many of them to world mission. He was a candidate for Mayor of London for the Christian People's Alliance in 2000 and 2004.


The Rt Hon. Ann Widdecombe

Ann Widdecombe became Vice-President of The Leprosy Mission England and Wales in 2006.  Elected as the Conservative Member of Parliament for Maidstone in 1987, she became Minister of State for the Department of Employment in 1994 and from 1995 to 1997 was Minister of State at the Home Office. She was appointed Shadow Secretary of State for Health in June 1998 and Shadow Home Secretary from 1999 to 2001.

Miss Widdecombe retired from politics in 2010. She starred on BBC One’s Strictly Come Dancing, has had four novels published, writes a weekly column for the Daily Express and is a regular television and radio broadcaster.




Henry Anstey

Henry joined the Board of The Leprosy Mission England and Wales in 2009, serving as an elected member on both the Personnel & Bursaries and Marketing & Fundraising committees. He is a director and solicitor of a local practice in Peterborough specialising in wills, trusts and probate. He is married with two children and enjoys watching rugby.


Catherine Benbow

Catherine became a Board member of The Leprosy Mission England and Wales in December 2005 having previously worked overseas for The Leprosy Mission in hospitals and village communities. She worked in East Timor, India and Ethiopia as well as undertaking short assignments in other countries, working in staff training and programme development. She worked directly with people affected by leprosy as they developed solutions to their problems. She is an occupational therapist and before going overseas she worked for the NHS in Shropshire, her home county.


Paul Craig

Paul became a Board member in 2013 and was appointed Chair of the Programmes Committee in 2018. He has more than 35 years’ experience in international development – in the design, management and implementation of donor-funded and private sector programmes – mainly in rural development and the promotion of pro-poor sustainable livelihoods. He, together with his wife Marguerite and family, lived in several countries in Africa, Asia and the Pacific for a 17-year period. They are now based in Berkhamsted, Hertfordshire, and worship at Sunnyside Church. Paul is honoured to be part of the Leprosy Mission England and Wales and hopes to contribute his perspective to the growth and development of the Mission and its global partners.

Anne Fendick

Vice Chair

Anne joined The Leprosy Mission England and Wales's Board in 2009 as Chair of the Fundraising committee. She has had extensive experience in marketing management, and has also managed major accounts in top ten advertising agencies Saatchi & Saatchi, and McCann Ericsson & Grey.

Following the birth of her son, Anne set up her own market research services business. A committed Christian, Anne is married to Chris and with their son Michael they live and worship near Leatherhead, Surrey.


Jean Le Maistre MBE

Jean has been a member of the Board since 2000. He is a member of the Personnel & Bursaries committee and member of the Programmes committee. Jean has been a supporter of The Leprosy Mission for more than 50 years. He is a farmer by profession but spent 33 years as an elected member of the Jersey Parliament. From 1972 to 1990 he was responsible for developing the Jersey government’s overseas aid programme and travelled extensively in developing countries during that period. Jean was awarded the MBE in June 2012 for services to the people of Jersey and overseas.


Ralph Turner


Ralph joined the Board of The Leprosy Mission England and Wales in 2010. He is  chair of the Board  and also serves on the Finance & Planning committee and as Chair of the Pension Fund.  Ralph is a pensions and benefits specialist and has worked  for a number of companies including Mars Group, ICI and Lloyds Bank. Ralph has a Masters in Theology and is Team Pastor for Mission24. He has written a number of books and is passionate about connecting the Christian faith to every area of life.  Ralph and his wife, Rohini, regularly travel to India to work with churches there. 


Peter Watson


Peter joined the Board of The Leprosy Mission England and Wales in 2012 and has been the Treasurer since 2017. He is a director of transportation for a consultancy firm specialising in overseas work. Having travelled and lived in developing countries, he is pleased to share the benefits of his experience.

He is married with three grown-upchildren and attends an Anglican church in Bishops Stortford.


Vanessa Halford

Vanessa joined the board in 2016.  She is a junior doctor who first gained experience of The Leprosy Mission's work while on her medical school elective at Anandaban Hospital in Nepal in 2014. She has a keen interest in infectious diseases, international medicine and the social impact of disease.  Vanessa attends a community church in her home city and enjoys singing in choirs whenever she gets the chance.


Andy Lancaster

Andy has more than 25 years’ experience in learning and organisational development. As Head of Learning and Development Content at the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) Andy is responsible for the professional development of learning and HR professionals. He also plays a key role in leading the direction and delivery of CIPD’s vision for workplace learning and digital transformation and regularly speaks and writes on behalf of the Institute. Andy’s family have been supporters of The Leprosy Mission for many years so he is honoured to play a role as the Chair of Personnel & Bursaries Committee and as the Trustee to support the work and effectiveness of the charity. Andy is the designated Trustee responsible on behalf of the TLMEW Board for safeguarding. He is part of the leadership team at Windsor Baptist Church.

Diana White

Diana worked in Brussels for many years as Director of the EU-CORD network of European Christian relief and development agencies, helping them to access EU funding and to advocate for poor and vulnerable people across the developing world. The Leprosy Mission was a member of EU-CORD and Diana visited their projects in Bangladesh and Ethiopia in the course of her work. She felt inspired to continue to support The Leprosy Mission when she returned recently to live in the UK and is honoured to become a Trustee in 2016. She is also a trustee of one other Christian NGO which is active in the field of international development.



Tim Brooks

Tim is an independent management consultant with twenty years’ experience in the internet and telecommunications Industries and another ten working with a wide variety of organisations from start-ups to established multi-nationals across a wide variety of industries. He specialises in organisational change with a focus on processes and systems.  Tim has previous experience as a Trustee and joined the board of TLMEW in September 2016, He is married to Jane, a Family and Children’s Minister in Cambourne near Cambridge, and has two young adult children.



Paul Halliday

Paul and his wife, Marie, have been supporters of the Leprosy Mission for 39 years. Paul joined the Board in September 2018 having helped form the Leprosy Mission Isle of Man, of which he is a Trustee, Chairman and Company Secretary. An experienced Company Secretary and Director specialising in governance, compliance and business risk, Paul took early retirement in 2017 after working 45 years in banking and the finance sector. Paul lives in the Isle of Man where he is a member of the local Baptist Church; is married with three children and two grandchildren; and his other interests include volunteering for Hospice Isle of Man and concern for the environment and nature.

Marieke Jellema

Marieke is an independent management consultant and executive coach, specialising in organisational change and development. Marieke has two assignments as a non-executive board member in the care sector and was previously Chair of TLM Netherlands for 9 years. She played an important role the development of the Leprosy Mission Global Fellowship. As a committed Christian and business woman she is frequently asked by churches to advise and coach them. Marieke is married and has two young adult children and lives in the Netherlands. She joined the board in June 2019.