Meet the
NoEE team

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Meet the team

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Andrew Palmer

Chief Executive

Andrew joined NoEE in October 2015. He has previously worked as the CBI's Director for Scotland and also Yorkshire & the Humber. He trained as a biomedical scientist and started his working career with the National Blood Authority before changing direction to become a business journalist on the Yorkshire Post.
Andrew is responsible  for leading NoEE through a transformational period where his role is to focus on the strategic direction, member engagement and developing key strategic partnerships across the North of England. Andrew is also the main link with our partnership with the BQF.
In addition his role is to raise the viability of NoEE and profile through lobbying, and demonstrating how businesses within the Northern Powerhouse can show they are truly effective and efficient delivering first class products and services.

Suzanne House

Director of Operations

Since joining the organisation in 1999, Suzanne has worked across all areas of the business - from office administration to membership, finance, marketing and now operations. She's also the driving force behind our Excellence Awards and takes great pleasure in making sure the annual ceremony is one of the best on the awards circuit.
If you have any questions or need any help in relation to the Excellence Awards process, or you would like to become an Excellence Awards Assessor or Special Category Awards Evaluator, please get in touch with Suzanne.



Jackie Thorpe

Membership and Administration Manager

As a highly motivated and results orientated PA within membership organisations, I have a proven-track record of providing exemplary levels of secretarial/administration duties to a broad range of key people within the North West and high level individuals.
I have a husband, two married sons and two small grandchildren who I enjoy spending time with them. I prefer to swim than go to the gym and enjoy a number of swimming sessions a week I also enjoy gardening, walking.

Tim Akerman

LEAN Six Sigma Expert

Tim is an experienced, focused and committed process improvement, quality, and manufacturing professional with a passion for excellence and innovation. He has experience implementing best practices, teaching lean and six sigma techniques and achieving world class manufacturing performance, allied to 20 years of experience in business management, continuous improvement, research & development, quality, environmental and manufacturing functions.
Tim has taught lean and statistical tools and techniques, whilst working as a senior manager/director in coating and printing, engineering and research and development environments, and whilst working as a consultant at Tamarind Tree Consulting Ltd. He also works as a volunteer business growth mentor with Boost Lancashire.
He has direct experience in all aspects of the manufacture and sale of soft drinks, gravure and flexo print, plain and holographic stamping foil. In these roles, and has worked with both manufacturing and service processes.
Tim has developed a broad range of useful skills and as an educator, coach, and leader and is a certified lean six sigma master black belt, chartered quality professional, chartered chemist, and Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry. 
He is passionate about developing people and businesses through education and creating excellence in processes and products across a variety of industries.




Housing Expert

Martyn is supporting businesses to become the best they can be, helping them to understand themselves and what their customers value. This is with a view to gaining a reputation for excellence, developing a ‘can do’ culture, reaching their goals using their potential and improving their confidence and competence
He feels that the key to continual improvement is ‘To make the complex simple so it’s easy to understand, easy to do and easy to change to get maximum benefit. And, know your strengths, know your weaknesses and know what you need to do about them’. Nothing difficult there, but he insists that the way to do it, is to get involved with his clients at all levels to get to know them, their challenges and their passion for changing things. What’s important?
  • Understand what excellence is and what you need to do to be excellent.
  • Balance customer and business focus.
  • Put your customers first knowing who they are and what they want.
  • Manage quality, cost and service delivery understanding processes and what they achieve in terms of performance and lasting impactt.
  • Involve your people and use their ideas and creativity.
What can Martyn help you with?
  • To challenge yourself to achieve the highest levels oforganisational excellence.
  • Regional, national and international recognition and award for business improvement.
  • Continual improvement at strategic, managerial and operational levels.
  • Improved performance in customer service, partnership working and corporate social responsibility.
  • Satisfying your customers, funders, partners and yourselves.
Martyn’s earlier career spans four decades working in the public and social housing sector reaching Service Director level, with a proven track record of achievement and performance improvement. He now works with and supports organisations of all sizes from the public, private and voluntary sectors bringing with him a wealth of experience, knowledge and practical know how to assist organisations to achieve their ambitions. He has an Advanced Professional Diploma in Management Studies and is corporate member of the Chartered Institute of Housing.
Martyn previously led one of the UK’s largest social housing providers to achieve EFQM (European Foundation for Quality Management) European Business of the Year in 2015 becoming a global role model in good practice, staving off competition from multi-national companies. 

Gareth Bullen

Executive Coach

Gareth spent a number of years as a Senior Manager within Utilities before moving to help set up a consultancy which built an unrivalled reputation in delivering leadership capacity, customer excellence and creative ways of working. 
Gareth has helped to develop senior leaders across all sectors and has worked with clients such as Rolls Royce, NHS, RWE, Astra Zeneca, a number of local authorities and government office.  He is also an executive coach and mentor, working with board level directors in many private and public organisations.
Over the years Gareth has been successful in winning numerous national awards with clients for customer excellence, learning and development and employee engagement reflecting the level of commitment, passion and expertise he brings to all his work.
In 2012 Gareth was asked to go into a public utility in the UK and help transform the culture which he was able to do using techniques such as intrapreneurial leadership and viral change, building the capacity for transformational leadership within the organisation and focusing the business on a very simple ambition.
Gareth is viewed as a thought leader in the area of the intrapreneurial leader mind-set and now works globally with organisations regularly giving key note speeches on how businesses can become more intrapreneurial. Gareth is a contributor to research being carried out at Oxford University and has recently taken up the prestigious position of executive director of the International Diplomat Business Club.  The aim of the club is to bring together Royal Families, Heads of Government and business leaders to increase cultural understanding and tolerance through enhanced commercial activity.
Gareth also has very close ties with Aston Business School, York College, London College of International Business Studies and the Association for Corporate Entrepreneurship.

Christine Froebel

Executive Coach

An experienced executive coach and consultant, specialising in strategic and business planning, and leadership techniques, Christine Froebel has a proven track record in developing future leaders and accelerating team performance.
She is Managing Director of Coachworks, with 15 years’ experience as a coach and consultant following a successful career where she held senior roles in sales, account management and marketing for blue-chip firms in the pharmaceutical and healthcare sectors.
Christine works with a team of associates to provide coaching and consultancy services to major organisations in the pharmaceutical, manufacturing, retail and healthcare sectors, as well as to the NHS and the UK's biggest business lobby group, the CBI.
Her recent focus has been on 1:1 executive coaching to Director Level, but Christine also offers group coaching covering team building, conflict resolution and change management. Her current projects include coaching in organisations to support staff to achieve a better work-life balance by improving mental resilience, behavioural analysis and performance diagnostics, as well as supporting organisations in managing and implementing change.
Her clients describe her as energetic, enthusiastic, disciplined and results-focused and someone who enjoys bringing a sense of fun to the workplace. Many of Christine's clients go on to achieve their career goals following coaching and return to work with her when new challenges arise.
Christine is an accredited coach and a master practitioner in Neuro-Linguistic Programming.  She is a qualified coach supervisor and coach trainer.
She holds memberships of The Association of Neuro-Linguistic Programming (ANLP) and she is a member of The Association of Coaching.

Sean Lippell

Executive Coach

Sean’s combination of experience in business and executive coaching, as a non-executive director of public and private companies and as a former senior corporate partner in one of the UK’s major law firms gives him a deep understanding of what it takes to be a successful and fulfilled executive or professional. Sean’s warmth and natural curiosity, enthusiasm and pragmatism, understanding of strategy and focus on the key issues represents a perfect blend of skills and experience in coaching talented executives and professionals.
Sean has worked in a wide range of business sectors including retail, marketing communications, investment and retail banking, and professional and financial services and is comfortable and used to adapting to different sectors and organisations.

Coaching Specialisms

  • Leadership and management development
  • Creating high performing teams
  • Sales and business development
  • Succession planning and transitional development
  • Developing greater self awareness and emotional intelligence
  • Building personal impact and presence

Commercial Experience

Sean has many years’ business experience.  Following an early career in sales management with Unilever, Sean qualified as a lawyer and spent most of his career as a top corporate lawyer and partner in some of the UK’s largest and most prestigious law firms.  During his career he has had a variety of senior management roles and first started coaching his direct reports whilst performing those roles. Sean has worked extensively for several years with his own executive coach and supervisor. He undertook a Postgraduate Certificate in Executive and Business Coaching 10 years ago and has also more recently completed a Transactional Analysis Coaching and Leadership Practice course.”


Miles Spencer Lloyd

Executive Coach

An experienced CEO, NED, Chair, Strategic Advisor and Business Improvement & Growth Consultant, Miles thrives on making businesses stronger and more profitable by creating positive change environments enabling businesses to achieve their vision. Miles’ key strengths are; developing, implementing and realising effective ‘Business Strategy’, improving ‘Organisational Performance’ through instilling learning and improvement cultures and driving effective ‘Business Development’ from a holistic strategic sales and marketing perspective.
With excellent communication skills, Miles is an approachable and pragmatic person who is driven and ambitious. With 15 years of senior leadership experience coupled with over 32 year’s business acumen, Miles highlight industry experience includes; 14 years in Business/Management Consultancy, 22 years in Recruitment & RPO/BPO environments, 6 years in the intermediary and finance supply chains for the recruitment sector and 11 years in Financial Services within invoice and corporate finance, back office support services and regulated life & investment environments. 
A business leader and transformational expert with an IOD Diploma in Company Direction and Certified by the British Psychological Society in Occupational Testing & Assessment , Miles is a ‘Prince 2 Practitioner’ Project Manager; Green Belt Six Sigma trained Lean consultant who specialises in driving Business & Process Improvements and Continuous Improvement using both Business Balanced Scorecard and EFQM approach to achieve business excellence. Miles is well versed and practiced in using best practice business planning and strategy tools, operational excellence processes and project & process methodologies, along with leading organisations through ISO9001 and EFQM accreditations.
Working with SME business owners, directors and senior management of larger businesses, helping them to realise their organisations potential and achieve its ambitions. Key focus areas are:
  • Business Advisory: Strategy Design & implementation, Sourcing of finance and funding, Critical path design & management, Mergers & Acquisitions support, Exit Strategy & planning
  • Organisational Performance & Capability: Commercial Due Diligence, Business Assessment & Audit, Dashboard Design & Management, Effective Benchmarking, Talent Management, Operational Excellence, Leadership Coaching and Mentoring
  • Business Development & Growth: Sales & marketing strategy, Winning Bids & tender process, Effective Key account methodology, Performance through dynamic sales pipelines
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Jan Brause

Executive Coach

A professional coach, coach supervisor and highly skilled facilitator with many years successful experience of enabling personal growth and performance improvement through a passionate focus on the individual in an organisational context.

Professional Expertise
Jan has experience of working with groups and individuals from a range of backgrounds and cultures with first-hand experience of corporate change.  Her personal style and values are rooted in a collaborative approach to developing high performance cultures and maximising personal and organisational potential. Jan delivers High Performance Coaching and Development Programmes that contribute to business excellence through a focus on individual performance improvement.
Previous Experience
With many years’ experience of senior level individual and organisational development, both in the UK and overseas, Jan brings a valuable perspective into her work with individuals and organisations. Jan believes in working flexibly and collaboratively in an environment of trust, challenge and support.  As a coach, coach trainer and coach supervisor Jan helps people to view their personal and professional issues in a new light and to develop sustainable strategies for their own performance improvement.
Jan has also had the privilege of being a Judge for the Training Journal Best Coaching Programme 2009, 2010 & 2011 and has a range of published articles.

In a voluntary capacity Jan and four colleagues offer services in kind to Third Sector organisations. She also serves on the editorial board of the forthcoming new on-line journal, International Journal of Mindfulness and Compassion at work.


  • Board Level Coaching in Private Sector
  • Leadership & Executive Coaching for 30 Senior and Middle Mangers (NHS)
  • Providing Coaching Supervision to team of internal coaches (local government)
  • Design and delivery of Mental Toughness and Resilience workshops (Public & Private Sector)Management team meeting facilitation (public and private sector)
  • Providing Coaching Supervision, individual and group (public and private sector)
  • Design and Delivery of Coaching and Mentoring Skills workshop for Management Engineers (Telecoms)Design and delivery of Mentoring Skills for Global Client delivery (oil and gas industry)
  • Design and delivery of ILM and Association for Coaching endorsed coaching and Mentoring programmes (public and private sector)
  • Design of workbooks for ILM Accredited programmes (Education sector)
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Marie McKinney

Executive Coach

From the start of her career to the present day, Marie has always enjoyed exploring new ideas and working with people to achieve their goals.  As a Coach, she believes in being supportive but challenging and helping clients to move away from their comfort zones.  Marie does not utilise one standard approach or model as she does not believe in a ‘One size fits all’ approach, and importantly, she likes to encourage her clients to enjoy the journey!

Her career started in High Volume, manufacturing environments where the need to constantly embrace challenge and new methodologies is the norm. Marie’s experience of Large Scale Start-ups, Business expansions, consolidations and downsizing leading and managing High Performing teams and Large Scale Change Programmes, Manufacturing and Service Operations Business Improvement and ultimately delivery of Financial Results. Along the way she has juggled family, career and studying for an MBA and is certified in MBTI (Myers Briggs).


Sonia Saxton

Executive Coach

Sonia is an experienced ‘Corporate Specialist’ who has demonstrated a track record with organisations who want results you can measure.   With over 30 years’ experience of working with corporates and S.M.E’s including Pfizer; Neoss; National Health Service; Commissioning Services; Takeda, Slumberger, Orica; Call Credit, Christeyns; Academy for Chief Executives, and many others. She believes results are achieved by respecting the unique needs of everyone in the team, with a structured plan for achievement.  Her Seminars are both practical and stimulating, with the emphasis on application.  Having designed her own models for coaching on a ‘one to one’ and group work; she also owns her own patented diagnostic tool called CORE®, producing detailed analysis of motivations and inhibiting behaviours; producing results for those who have access to the tool in less than half an hour.  An essential part of her cultural change Programs for making teams more productive.
She qualified early on as a Trainer with the ‘Institute of Personnel and Development’ and then as an International Trainer at the NLP University in California and in Copenhagen as a registered Trainer with the Association of International Trainers. Sonia’s specialism is teaching others how to resolve those behaviours that block use of true potential using advanced linguistics and behaviour analysis.  Her technical ability has resulted in her running exclusive courses for senior management in how to use these tools for themselves; resulting in registered qualifications with the relevant bodies when signed as competent by her company. 
Sonia is a member of ‘Association of Business Psychologist’s’; registered with ‘International Association of Trainers’; ‘Speakers Association’ and ‘Presidents Chamber’. Clients comment that Sonia is intuitive, challenging and will stretch you until you achieve what you want, enabling a strong level of emotional resilience for those who work with her.