Our Board

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Up to 12 Board Members from varying professions and backgrounds are responsible for the strategic direction of Arc and for the continuance of our purpose in a changing environment.


Our Interim Chair of Trustees is Karen Ayling
Initially a History teacher, I have worked in the social Housing sector since the mid 1980’s.Firstly for Local Authorities and from 1992 for Housing Associations. I qualified as a member of the Chartered Institute of Housing in 1992 becoming a fellow in 2000. From 2004-2008 I was Director of Housing at Thames Valley HA based in London and the SE and from 2008-2014 Managing Director of Westcountry based in Devon and Cornwall. I have been a freelance interim Executive since 2014.
I have been a board member in the SW in the past and enjoy seeing the work carried out in the sector from “the other side of the table “.

I firmly believe that everyone should have a place that they can call home and I look forward to being part of Arc on its journey to supporting individuals into secure and permanent accommodation with the support they need to thrive.

JH-pic.jpg    Jo Hake
Jo Hake is an experienced Director of Marketing and Communications and accredited member of the Chartered Institute of Marketing. Skilled in creating and implementing integrated marketing across multiple channels, Jo has 20 years’ experience working both as a Marketing Consultant and as the Director of Marketing in two British boarding schools. 

Prior to her career in education, Jo was a Sales Operations Manager for BT, leading a successful team of sales and administrative staff. During her service she was selected to represent the company and sail on one leg of The BT Global Challenge Around the World Yacht Race. 

Jo really enjoys the challenges of her current position at Great Western Railway, a role with a strong focus on campaign creation, digital and direct response marketing, transport integration, community projects and destination inspiration. Working alongside world-class agencies (and Enid Blyton’s Famous Five characters!) on both revenue generation and social value campaigns. 

Jo has worked within the food and drink, and charitable sectors. She also assisted with the rebrand of Taunton Association for the Homeless to Arc in 2018. The experience gave her a deep appreciation of how Arc helps individuals to go on to lead positive and fulfilling lives and she is keen to support the organisation in its future ambitions. 

SB-pic.jpg      Susan Bennett
Susan is a Director of Operations for a Law Firm established in 2022.  She brings a wealth of management and organisational skills from her years of running teams who have to deliver an exceptional client service and facilities management.  She has been an avid supporter of Arc for a number of years, and is keen to continue working with the Board and team at Arc.  

Susan enjoys spending time with her friends and family – including her two crazy dogs.  She also volunteers for Avon & Somerset Police Force, as a victim support chaperone. 

Simon-Cornelius.jpg      Simon Cornelius 

 With over 30 years’ experience working for the Probation Service, Simon brings a wealth of knowledge and skills in working with people . Most recently Simon has been leading on developing better mental health services for residents in Approved Premises and introducing new rehabilitative activities for residents designed to play a key part in their resettlement.

Outside of work , Simon is a keen reader of fiction, enjoys watching sport and going to the gym.

If you are interested in joining our Board, please contact Andy:  [email protected]

SC-pic.jpeg  Sean Canavan

I am a charted town planner who has worked in the public sector for over 30 years ranging from local authorities to my current role as Director of Strategy at the Planning Inspectorate based in Bristol. I have experience in a range of areas including performance improvement, change management, strategic delivery, governance as well as programme and project management.  

I am passionate about the need for basic safe accommodation for everyone.  I want to help change the perception about housing to being seen as a basic human right, where with the right support people can thrive. Living close to Taunton, I am delighted to be able to provide some help to this incredibly important local organisation. 

ML-pic.png     Martin Lyne

Martin is a business leader and chartered accountant with a successful 30-year career developed in visionary, values defined organisations across the Retail, Telecommunications and Healthcare sectors. He is experienced in business strategy, financial management and organisational leadership. In 1998 he and his family relocated to Somerset attracted by the quality of family life and the opportunity to join Orange. Over a 13-year tenure he played a leading role establishing the commercial culture of the business during a period of unprecedented growth to market leadership and integration into EE. 

In the last decade he led the transformation of Alexandra supplying the health and social services sector, witnessing the inspiring work that front line workers carry out to improve the quality of lives. Martin is a champion of health and well-being and believes that everyone has the right to have a roof over their head and the opportunity to lead an independent life. He is a board member of the Avon Wildlife Trust and a community volunteer at Dorothy House. 

Jo Reece

I am a Fellow of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants and have worked in both public and commercial sectors including the energy industry, facilities management and healthcare. 

I have worked in social housing for 25 years and have been the Chief Executive of a housing association in Devon for the last 5 years.  

I believe that good housing is fundamental to well-being and I am keen to support Arc in its work to achieve this. 


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© 2024  ARC, 7 The Crescent, Taunton, Somerset TA14EA     Telephone 01823 271326     www.arcinspire.co.uk
Registered as a Community Benefit Society No. 23680R.  Arc is the trading name for Taunton Association for the Homeless.