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Candace Thomas

Program Coordinator

Candace G. Thomas is Program Coordinator with EPIC Assist Scotland and delivers all ongoing and newly developed projects.

Candace has an MPhil in Sociology from the University of Cambridge and is currently undertaking a PhD in Sociology at University College Dublin in 2021. She has extensive experience designing and implementing various integration/ community education projects both in the UK, and internationally. Candace has worked with children of various ages, with particular insight into the experiences of refugee and ethnic minority children (providing psychosocial support to residents of the Serres refugee camp, in Northern Greece).

Candace is also a Team Coordinator at the United Nations House Scotland and therefore benefits from an up-to-date understanding of international development and contemporary human rights issues. She has undergone trauma and recovery training with Rape Crisis Glasgow and Clyde, in cooperation with the University of Glasgow, which included an induction and triage sessions on childhood trauma, ACE’s, and domestic violence. Candace is knowledgeable in universal safeguard training and is therefore well equipped to handle any upsets or unforeseeable circumstances which may arise with respectful ease.


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Venerable Donald Campbell

Chairperson

Venerable Donald is an Anglican priest and Franciscan brother who has been president of the EPIC Board in Australia since 1999. Venerable Donald has over ten years of experience in rehabilitation coordination and counselling, working alongside people injured in accidents. Prior to this he was involved with community development work in a state housing suburb and has helped set up a food co-op and a credit union.

Venerable Donald has extensive experience in education, governance, and management. This has been at a tertiary and school level. He was a governor of a renowned secondary and primary boarding school. He was part of the re-establishment of secondary school at a management level and was a director of a degree-granting tertiary institution within an Australian University. He is presently an Archdeacon in the Anglican Diocese of Brisbane with oversight of 11 parishes and two large schools. 

Venerable Donald’s passion for seeing people and communities develop and thrive underpins everything he does, and it is this drive that has seen him remain in the role of president for over two decades.


Prem stands in a button down blue shirt in front of a glass building.

Prem Nair

Treasurer

Prem has over 30 years’ experience as a senior financial executive across industries including construction, resources and the not-for-profit sector. For the past 20+ years, Prem has been Honorary Treasurer of a local St Vincent de Paul Conference, and has volunteered his time settling and supporting refugees as they adjust to life in Australia. 4 years ago, Prem was appointed to the Board Audit Committee of Southern Cross Care where he serves in an honorary capacity.

Prem started with EPIC in 2014 and now leads the team responsible for finance, information communication technologies, human resources, workplace health and safety, property and vehicle fleet. He has found the role to be a great fit which combines his passions of commercial sustainability, leadership and contributing to an organisation with a strong social conscience.

In 2020, Prem was awarded a scholarship to undertake an Executive Leadership Program at the McKinsey Academy.


Rick sits at a table in a high rise building at night.

Rick Staveley

Executive Director

After 24 years in the automotive industry where he held various leadership roles, Rick embarked upon a new career in Disability Services. Following his passion for helping people with disability obtain and maintain full inclusion in their community, Rick successfully launched and managed EPIC’s first international operation in New Zealand, and was instrumental in establishing EPIC’s European presence.

An accomplished presenter at local, national and international levels, Rick enjoys sharing EPIC’s messages while continuing to advocate for people with disability.


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Robert Wilson

Trustee

Robert has been an advocate his whole life. In his early teenage years, he was placed in care. At sixteen, he left the care system, which meant he was unable to finish school or gain any qualifications. He was forced to become very proactive in navigating life and accessing services, support, and resources.

In his twenties, Robert returned to education and studied Sociology and Public Policy at Glasgow University. He is a keen reader and has always had an intense interest in politics and current affairs. Robert passionately believes in social justice for all; he has spent time campaigning for his political party and advocating for causes he believes in.

Through his own disability and role as a carer, Robert has first-hand personal experience navigating the barriers people with disability and disadvantages face in every aspect of life, including gaining and maintaining employment.

He has 25 years of personal experience being a ‘service user’ and an advocate for others to access the support, services, and resources they are entitled to. Robert believes this equips him with a unique insight and understanding of the barriers people face.


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Robin Strang

Trustee

Robin was Chief Executive of West Lothian Leisure for ten years, a charity that operates sport, leisure, and cultural services on behalf of West Lothian Council. Prior to that, he was Chief Executive of Manchester Sport and Leisure Trust which manages a wide range of services for Manchester City Council, including the legacy facilities from the 2002 Commonwealth Games.

Robin is now Chair of Community Leisure Scotland, the association that represents Scotland’s Culture and Leisure Trusts. He is also a Trustee of sportscotland’s Trust company and on the board of Scottish Canals and OSCR, Scotland’s Charity Regulator. A former international athlete and triathlete, Robin has a keen interest in sport, health, and fitness.


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Eva Havelkova

Trustee

Since May 2017 Eva has been serving as a Central European Coordinator of EPIC Assist, responsible for two EPIC offices in Bratislava Slovakia and in Prague, Czech Republic.

Eva Havelkova graduated from Sociology at Comenius University in Slovakia where she later obtained her PhD. In 2016 she coordinated the Slovak Presidency of the Council of the European Union within the Slovak Ministry of Labour, Social Affairs and Family of the Slovak Republic.

During her career, Eva has done extensive work at the United Nations as a Programme Analyst of the United Nations Fund for Women for 17 countries in Central and Eastern Europe. Eva also served as Diplomat at the Permanent Mission of the Slovak Republic to the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland. Since 2006 she has been providing lectures on sociological topics, social issues and gender in various universities/colleges in the United States of America.  In 2012 she served as a Loaned Executive at United Way for Greater Chattanooga, TN in the U.S.

Eva Havelkova provides analyses on gender and social issues as a national expert for Slovakia/Czech Republic to the European Commission.


Headshot of Alastair Keatinge

Alastair Keatinge

Founding Trustee and life member

Alastair was Trustee of EPIC Assist Charity (EPIC) from its creation in 2013 and a Life Member of EPIC Assist (Australia).

Alastair was a solicitor, with an LLB (Hons) from the University of Edinburgh. He worked as a Partner in the Scottish legal firm, Lindsay’s and headed Lindsays’ Charity and Social Enterprise Group.

Alastair was accredited as a specialist in charity law by the Law Society of Scotland and Convened the Law Society of Scotland‘s Charity Accreditation Panel.  He was also a Notary Public and member of the Society of Writers to her Majesty’s Signet.

Alastair advised charity and not for profit clients, including some of Scotland’s largest charities for more than 25 years, focusing particularly on the corporate aspects of charity law including corporate governance, constitutional issues and charity reorganisation. Alastair was a regular speaker and chair of charity conferences and events and is regularly published in newspapers and the charity press.

Alastair made a considerable contribution to EPIC during his 9 years as trustee, interviewing prospective employees, raising income from charitable trusts and providing supervision for programs when required.

Alastair passed away in October 2022. We thank him for his support, guidance and passion to enable us to deliver EPIC’s mission in Scotland. He is sadly missed. He was not only a Trustee but became a friend to the wider EPIC Community.