Prison Reform Trust Staff

Director and Company Secretary - Peter Dawson

Peter Dawson is Director of the Prison Reform Trust. Peter spent the first 15 years of his career working in the Home Office in a variety of policy and managerial roles. This included two spells in the then Prison Department, culminating in a period on the Prisons Board.  He left Whitehall in 1999 to pursue a career within the operational arm of the Prison Service, working as a prison officer in HMP Brixton before returning there as Deputy Governor in 2002, and subsequently governing both HMP Downview (then a prison for women) and HMP High Down between 2005 and 2012. While at High Down, he oversaw the opening of the first “Clink” restaurant, and the prison became a centre for innovation, hosting new projects such as the Restore programme run by The Forgiveness Project.

In 2012, Peter left the public sector to join Sodexo Justice Services, and led the operational design and mobilisation of the company’s successful bids to run new community rehabilitation companies in 6 different regions. Peter spent 7 years as a Trustee for the Kenward Trust, a Kent based charity dedicated to the care of people with substance misuse problems, and is Patron of the Michael Varah Memorial Fund, a small grant giving charity. He also acted as an adviser to the Correctional Services of South Africa for a short period in 2003.

Administrator Zoe Burton

Head of Finance & Human Resources - Sam O'Sullivan

Head of Policy & Communications - Mark Day

Mark Day is head of policy and communications at the Prison Reform Trust. Previously he was deputy director of Progress and also deputy editor of Progress Magazine. Before that he was head of communications at the international thinktank Policy Network. Mark has worked in Parliament as a researcher for a Labour MP and also in the parliamentary office of the lobby group Stonewall.

Policy & Communications Officer - Alex Hewson

Publishing Manager (web editor) - Tony Callaghan

Tony Callaghan joined the Prison Reform Trust in 2005 as publishing manager. He took on the IT responsibilities in 2007. Previously he was promotions manager at Index on Censorship a small organisation campaigning against censorship and promoting free expression. Tony holds qualifications in editing and proofreading, design and digital marketing.

Development Manager - Charlotte Story

Charlotte Story MInstF (Cert) is finance and development officer at the Prison Reform Trust. Her main role is fundraising from Trusts, Foundations and individuals and managing the Friends scheme. Prior to this role Charlotte worked on the advice and information service at PRT, responding to queries from and advocating on behalf of prisoners. Charlotte has over 11 years experience of working in the voluntary sector with a focus on criminal justice, with previous roles at Prisoners’ Families and Friends Service, managing volunteers supporting families at courts and running the Witness Service in a magistrates’ court for Victim Support. Charlotte volunteered as an appropriate adult for seven years.

Head of Research - Dr Kimmett Edgar

Dr Kimmett Edgar is head of research, having previously been senior research officer at the Oxford Centre for Criminological Research. His major work, Prison Violence: the dynamics of conflict, fear and power, explored the roots of prison violence in conflicts among prisoners. He is also co-author, with Tim Newell, of Restorative Justice in Prisons (2006). At the Prison Reform Trust, Kimmett has managed studies on race equality, mental health, financial exclusion, resettlement, prison councils, and active citizenship. He is a member of the Northern Ireland Ministerial Forum on Safer Custody; Quaker Representative to the UN Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice; on the Perrie Lectures Committee; and a former chair of the Alternatives to Violence Project. He plays for Cuxham Cricket Club and sings in the LSO St Luke’s Community Choir.

Head of Prisoner Engagement - Paula Harriott

Paula was previously Head of Involvement at Revolving Doors Agency 2015-2107, where she provided consultancy to two Big Lottery programmes on service user involvement, as well as supporting the active involvement of the Lived Experience Team in the national Liaison and Diversion service. As Head of Programmes at User Voice 2010-2015 she led on development of  service user involvement in prison and probation, as well as forensic mental health services. She is a steering group member of Agenda, the coalition that seeks to support women and girls at risk and is a passionate advocate for highlighting the inequalities that affect vulnerable people in the criminal justice system and a trustee of the Community Chaplaincy Association

Her passion for working with excluded members of the community stems from personal experiences as a prisoner 2004-2012. Her personal experiences and associated research – The experience of being a female prisoner Listener, a qualitative study submitted as part of a post graduate diploma in integrative psychotherapy, and The Health Needs of Women Offenders in Resettlement, commissioned by HOB PCT – sharpened her commitment to raising awareness of the issues faced by prisoners and to campaign and proactively deliver services which support both prisoners and ex-offenders to progress personally and strategically past the stigma of imprisonment and multiple exclusion.



Advice & Information Service Manager - Ryan Harman

Ryan manages the Prison Reform Trust’s Advice and Information team, which is a small service for prisoners to access information on prison rules, prison conditions and life in prison. Prior to joining PRT in 2015 Ryan managed the delivery of resettlement services in prisons for St Giles Trust, including the Housing Information and Advice Service (HIAS) in HMP Wandsworth as well as some services implemented under the Transforming Rehabilitation agenda. Ryan also spent about 5 years working for frontline homeless services in London, offering advice and support for vulnerable people looking for accommodation and employment.

Advice & Information Officer - Lynn Beckwith

Advice & Information Officer - Rain Newel Lewis

Director, Care not Custody programme - Jenny Talbot OBE

Jenny Talbot joined the Prison Reform Trust in 2006 to manage the No One Knows programme, which explored the prevalence and experiences of adult offenders with learning disabilities and difficulties. A series of research reports were published during this three year programme, together with recommendations for policy and practice – a number of which have been adopted. Jenny is director of the Prison Reform Trust’s Care not Custody programme, which is concerned with people with mental health problems and learning disabilities in contact with criminal justice services as suspects, defendants and offenders. The programme, which is chaired by Lord Bradley, has a particular interest in the development of liaison and diversion services, and the government’s commitment for all police custody suites and criminal courts in England to have access to such services. Jenny is a member of the NICE Guidelines Development Group on the mental health of adults in the criminal justice system, and a member of the PACE Vulnerable Adults Working Group. For three years Jenny chaired the National Appropriate Adult Network, stepping down in November 2015.  In June 2011 Jenny received an OBE in recognition of her work on behalf of offenders with special needs in the criminal justice system.

Director, Reducing Women's Imprisonment - Jenny Earle

Jenny Earle leads the programme to reduce women’s imprisonment, which is supported by the Big Lottery Fund. Before joining the Prison Reform Trust in September 2012, she was senior legal policy analyst at the Equality and Human Rights Commission, where she specialised in gender equality, led the Commission’s work on CEDAW and prepared codes and guidance under the Equality Act 2010.

Jenny has led on equality and justice issues in both government and community organisations in the UK and Australia, where early in her career she served on a Women in Prison Taskforce. She has been a senior research officer in the Women’s Equality Unit, Cabinet Office, and director of the Work and Family Unit in the Australian Government’s Department of Employment and Workplace Relations. In March 2018 Jenny was awarded an honorary doctorate by the Open University for public service, particularly services to women’s rights. Her article about the programme she leads, Why focus on reducing women’s imprisonment, is published in Women and the Criminal Justice System: failing Victims and Offenders? edited by Milne E, et al, Palgrave Macmillan (2018).

Senior Project Officer, Reducing Women's Imprisonment - Katy Swaine-Williams

Katy started her career as a solicitor in private practice specialising in commercial litigation and employment law.  Since moving to the voluntary sector in 2003 she has held a number of senior roles in the fields of criminal justice and social policy, human rights and equality, with a particular emphasis on children and women.  These include: Head of Legal Services at the drugs charity Release (2003-2007) and Legal Director at the Children's Rights Alliance for England (2007-2010).  Katy has recently worked in a number of roles for the Prison Reform Trust, including Head of Outreach (2010-13) and Care Review Co-ordinator (2015-16), in which she assisted Lord Laming with his independent review of looked after children in the criminal justice system.  Katy is married with two children.

Programme Manager, Reducing Women's Imprisonment - Scotland & Northern Ireland - Anne Pinkman

Senior Associate - John Drew CBE

John Drew is a senior associate of the Prison Reform Trust, a director of the Standing Committee for Youth Justice (a membership body representing nearly 50 organisations campaigning for better youth justice system), and chair of the Criminal Justice Alliance, which fulfills a similar function principally in respect of adult criminal justice. John is also independent chair of Medway Local Safeguarding Children Board, where responsibilities include the oversight of safeguarding at both HMPYOI Cookham Wood and Medway STC.

A social worker by origins, John Drew was Chief Executive of the Youth Justice Board for England and Wales from 2009 to 2013 and prior to that worked for a decade as a Director of Social Services in east London. 

 

Executive Officer - Justin Elder

Justin joined the Prison Reform Trust in 2015 as the Executive Assistant to Juliet Lyon and the Board of PRT. He is originally from Dunedin, New Zealand. He previously worked at the Parliament of Victoria in Melbourne, Australia, supporting the Law Reform, Drugs and Crime Prevention Committee. Prior to that he was an Executive Assistant for a Member of Parliament in New Zealand for a number of years. He is also a keen runner and cyclist.