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Staff

The Board

Simon Wales, Chair

Simon Wales is General Manager of Waddesdon Manor, the historic National Trust property based in Buckinghamshire which is managed by a Rothschild charitable foundation. With a background in music and the performing arts, Simon previously held the position of General Manager of Town Hall Birmingham. He was the founding Centre Director of LSO St Luke’s, the London Symphony Orchestra’s music education centre and he was also a Clore Fellow in the second year of the Clore Leadership Programme. Simon joined the Motionhouse board in 2014 and became chair in 2018.

Caroline Davis

Caroline was Strategic Projects Manager at Birmingham Hippodrome from 2010-2016 and is now a freelance producer, based in Birmingham. During her time at the Hippodrome, she was involved in the Southside Business Improvement District and 4 Squares Weekender.

Sarah Gee

Sarah is co-founder and Managing Partner of Indigo Ltd, a leading arts marketing, fundraising and organisational development consultancy. She works across the UK, and regularly speaks at and chairs conferences in Japan, in the Middle East and across Europe. She is a Fellow of both the Royal Society for the Arts and the British-American Project.  Outside of work, Sarah is a hornplayer, and an experienced trustee/NED.

Naveen Gupta, CHAIR: FINANCE & GOVERNANCE COMMITTEE

Naveen Gupta is a qualified accountant and has undertaken senior level finance roles for over 15 years. Naveen’s professional finance experiences are across various sectors including live theatre, concert hall management, estates management, higher education, conferencing, utilities and financial services.

Chris Lillington

Chris Lillington is a journalist with more than 20 years’ experience in the industry. He worked on papers in the West Country and London before moving to the West Midlands 14 years ago. He is currently with BBC Digital News, and was previously editor of the Leamington Spa Courier Series – Motionhouse’s local paper – as well as other titles in Warwickshire, Oxfordshire and Leicestershire.

Rachael Magson

Rachael is the Head of Fundraising at Birmingham Hippodrome. She leads a team of fundraisers with the mission to deliver One Million Hippodrome Moments – ensuring the charity delivers a broad cultural programme to those with the least access. Prior to this she was Managing Director of Pentabus Theatre Company, working jointly with Artistic Director Elizabeth Freestone on a new mission to become the nation’s rural theatre company. She has also worked in a variety of roles at Arts Council England, including Relationship Manager for Combined Arts and Touring for the West Midlands region.

Rakhi Rajani

Rakhi Rajani is an Innovation Consultant with a background in engineering, design and psychology. She helps organisations think forward to identify white space and determine what they can do next. She has worked in a variety of sectors across the world and for organisations spanning the arts, hospitality, emerging tech, sports, retail, automotive and smart cities. Rakhi is a Chartered Psychologist and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts.

Toby Smith

Currently with Greenwich+Docklands International Festival, Toby Smith has over 20 years’ experience of programming, commissioning and producing in venues of different scales, multi-arts and music-focused festivals. He was Festival Director at the Salisbury International Arts Festival between 2014 and 2017, and has previously worked at the Royal Northern College of Music (RNCM) as Director of Performance and Programming, at Cheltenham Arts Festivals and at the Barbican Centre.

Josie Stevens

Josie Stevens is a brand marketing and communications consultant with 25 years in the arts, sport and entertainment industries both in the UK and overseas. She began her career in the arts spending three years with Birmingham Royal Ballet as its first Press Officer. She has held senior positions in house and in agencies globally including: Board Director, Sports Marketing & Sponsorship at Hill & Knowlton UK and Director of Global PR for adidas Group’s Reebok brand in the US. Most recently, she campaign managed Sport England’s multi-award winning, behaviour change campaign, This Girl Can.