Each Citizens Advice office is an independent charity with its own board of trustees. Our trustees are volunteers who use their skills, knowledge and experience to guide and govern what we do, working with our Chief Executive and other staff to shape strategy, give direction and provide oversight of operational delivery.
Farah Rachlin – Chair
I am a qualified solicitor (currently non practicing) and spent my career in an international law firm in the city of London specialising in Mergers & Acquisitions and Corporate Law. I retired from my firm in 2019.
I was a Governor of St Richards School in Ham for almost 10 years and also a Governor of Richmond & Hillcroft Adult Community College between 2016 and 2022.
I joined CAR as a trustee in 2016 and took over as Chair in 2021. I also volunteer as a nature guide with a local mental health charity, Dose of Nature. I am a long time Richmond resident and am committed to assisting the underprivileged in our community.
Tom Hetherington – Treasurer
I am a retired Chartered Accountant with more than 30 years professional experience. I trained with Coopers and Lybrand in Leeds and worked for some years for Yorkshire Television. I moved to Twickenham in London in the late nineties to take on senior finance roles at London Weekend Television and ITV. In the later years of my career, I undertook senior interim finance roles at large Charities including Creative Skillset, Breast Cancer Now and the National Centre for Social Research. I am a volunteer walk leader with HF holidays and a member of Richmond Bridge Club where I play regularly at an intermediate Level.
I am a Chartered Accountant and Fellow of the Securities and Investment Institute whose working career was spent in financial services, primarily in financial regulation. I have lived in Richmond Borough for more than 25 years. I am also a trustee of two other local charities: the Friends of Richmond Park, where I am Chairman, and The Holly Lodge Centre, which is an educational centre in Richmond Park which specialises in activities for people with disabilities.
After a brief start in retail, I worked in a variety of facilities maintenance and contracted services roles, first in the LB of Hammersmith and Fulham and then in LB of Camden. I then worked in Her Majesty’s Courts and Tribunals Service (HMCTS) in criminal court administration and the enforcement of financial penalties. I currently work The Insolvency Service leading a number of services supporting people in financial distress. I also have a weakness for Queens Park Rangers football club.
Over the last thirty years I have built a career in the IT industry specialising in the media sector. My most recent role is a Director at an Italian consultancy where I have responsibility for the UK and Ireland media business unit. I am also a lead volunteer at Kingston Food Bank and the homeless charity Crisis at Christmas. I have been a resident of Kingston upon Thames since 2004. I have a passion to help the most vulnerable in society.
I’ve been a trustee with Citizens Advice Richmond since 2020. My background is in organisational change management, learning and development and project management. I’m the trustee lead for human resources, helping advise the CEO and board on matters such as recruitment, performance, training and other HR topics. When I’m not doing work for CAR I spend time running a book club for local older and vulnerable people, walking two recalcitrant collies and attempting, with limited success, to grow my own vegetables.
I am a qualified project manager with over fifteen years experience in the public sector. Currently I am the Company Secretary and Head of the Project Management Office at UK Government Investments – government’s centre of excellence for corporate governance.
I joined CAR as a Trustee in November 2022. As a local Richmond resident I am passionate about helping others and improving effective governance.
I am a solicitor, working part-time as a consultant with a law firm in the City and specialising in Construction Law: I also have many years’ experience as a property lawyer. I live in East Sheen and have done so since 1986. I am currently a trustee of Hampton Pool Trust in the borough and have previously been a governor of a primary school in Richmond. I am a member of the nearby Roehampton Club and have served on various committees at the Club.
I joined Citizens Advice Richmond as a Trustee in 2023.
I have lived in various parts of the Richmond borough for most of my life and as someone who has benefitted from Citizens Advice services in the past, I wanted to do something to help the organisation to reach everybody who needs their services.
My professional background is in property management, with a specialism in project management and consultancy services. I am also a keen advocate for decarbonisation and sit on various working groups organised by BEIS, which are working to achieve Net Zero targets in the property sector.
I joined CAR as Vice Chair in December 2023.
My professional career is characterized by two distinct phases: initially in the field of marketing and later, following the completion of a postgraduate diploma in Psychology, I set up and lead a company for two decades. My exceptional team, was focused on providing leadership training and business coaching.
Living in Tokyo and Hong Kong for a decade, I worked in the media industry. During this time, I also undertook voluntary roles, chairing school fundraising committees and groups dedicated to awarding scholarship programmes for Japanese students
Outside my corporate life, I have been a Trustee for National Family Mediation over the past five years. Additionally, on a pro bono basis, I have offered executive coaching to several CEOs within the charitable sector and NHS frontline workers.