BBFA Book and Gavel Plinth

Board of Directors

Meet the Board

Our Board

As the Governing body of football covering Berkshire, Buckinghamshire and South Oxfordshire our role is to lead, protect and support everyone’s journey in the football.

Our Board of Directors are responsible for overseeng this work and are responsible for the overall governance of the organisation including strategy, oversight and accountability.

If you are interested in getting involved, or have any questions for the Board, please get in touch.

Get in Touch

By Phone: 01235 544890

By Email:
Liz.Verrall@Berks-BucksFA.com

Meet the Board



BBFA Board of Directors

 

Who We Are

As CEO, Liz is responsible for leading and managing the overall operations and resources of the organisation, responsible for the overall success of the company vision and aspirations for grassroots football across Berks & Bucks.

Contact Liz on 01235 558457 or via Liz.Verrall@Berks-BucksFA.com

David Grainge
Chairman

Contact David via Davidgrainge@hotmail.com

 

I was born in Oxford and moved to Milton Keynes at the age of 18 due to work commitments. I have been married 41 years and we have had 3 children and 3 very special grandchildren aged 3, 6 & 10 and 2 lovely step granddaughters.

I cannot write this profile without mentioning my love for Everton FC. They are my boyhood team and I have fond memories of my Dad taking me to watch them in London and also to Goodison Park. My own family are also true blues and until recently we regularly saw the team 3 times per season. My eldest granddaughter has also made the trip and is a confirmed blue nose. Other sports I enjoy are Horse Racing, Cricket & Golf (although I am not as good at Golf as I would like to be).   

I was able to take an early retirement and currently I child care 2 days per week. In addition I work as an Invigilator at a school in Milton Keynes and act as a presiding officer for Milton Keynes Council at Election time. As well as holding the office of Deputy Chairman, I am the ‘Board Champion’ for Safeguarding in our County and I act as an FA accredited Discipline Chairman.  

My Football life began at the age of 9 when playing for my local cub group. As a young boy I played for Marston Saints FC who were a very successful team at that time. My whole life has been football and at this age I only ever wanted to be a professional footballer. At the age of 16/17 I played for Reading FC in their ‘A’ Team (Would be known as an academy team today). My highlight being selected for a Reserve Team fixture at Elm Park. Despite making a good start to my career at Reading, unfortunately my form dropped and I received a very nice letter saying ‘No thank you’. I then played for Oxford City in their Youth, Reserve and 1st Teams in the then Isthmian League. My 1st appearance in the first team was away to Dagenham in front of over 1000 people where we lost 3-0 but I enjoyed every minute of it including fish & Chips on the way home in the coach. My work commitments took me to Milton Keynes so after a short break in playing I then played briefly for Buckingham Athletic, then moved to Milton Keynes City (who played in the Southern League). I then played for Wolverton Town & Newport Pagnell Town in the United Counties League ending up my playing career at Bicester Town in the Hellenic League. The highlight being an Oxford Senior Cup Final played against Oxford Utd FC at the Manor Ground which we lost after extra time 1-0.

I then turned my hand to Football Management where I started off at Stony Stratford FC, followed by Buckingham Athletic (League & Cup Wnrs), Wolverton Town, Newport Pagnell, Wootton Blue Cross, Potton Utd & finally Buckingham Town in the Southern League (with my dear friend Steve Curley). Unfortunately we were relegated that season and were subsequently dismissed from our role!

I am also a Level 5 Referee and continue to Referee today for MK Dons Academy Teams, MK Dons SET, MK College & MK Dons Ladies. Until recently I also refereed in the United Counties League where I was an appointed official in a Reserve Cup Final. My refereeing career commenced whilst ‘running the line’ for my sons teams. It was often that we had no appointed referee and I would do the job (much to my son’s disgust!). I decided to complete the Referee’s course so at least I could do the job in a proper kit. It was here that my passion and enjoyment of refereeing started and I moved forward from level 7 to 5 and was The MKRA Referee of the Year in 2007. I have been fortunate enough to officiate many youth and adult cup finals.       

My association with the Berks & Bucks FA started when I became manager of the County’s U18 Youth Team. A position I held for 7 years (Winning the South West Counties Championship and Cup) before work commitments ended my association with the team. During this period I had made strong friendships with the late Mr Dick Custance (Youth Chairman) and David Grainge (Youth Secretary at that time). I had an insight into the organisation which I had really enjoyed. A few years later an opportunity arose and I became a member of Council for the association in 2007. I became Deputy Chairman in 2010. In addition I served as Chairman of The Rules Revision Committee. I did not realise how many Rules I did not know until I held this position. I shall be forever in debt to Robin Woolman for his guidance throughout this period. During this time together with David Grainge (Now Chairman) we have overseen many changes to the organisation and I believe we have moved considerably forward to keep up with today’s ever changing society. Looking to the future we need to continue to develop the Board and our Council. We have a great team of staff who have a willingness to help and assist football in our community which I am very proud of.

I am also the Safeguarding Champion for the Board of Directors. It is a responsibility that I take very seriously, and I am very proud of our approach to Safeguarding as a Board.

Contact John via 
harryhors15@hotmail.co.uk

Geoff is our Finance Director and his ‘day job’ is owner of Financial Advice firm Lewis Christopher Ltd.

The business specialises in investment management, pre and post-retirement planning, mortgages and protection and as well as being a Director of this business, he also owns Limestone Residential Sales & Lettings.

Geoff lives in Newport Pagnell and is a keen cyclist and tries to get to the Gym at least a couple of times a week… although he doesn’t need much of an excuse not to! In his spare time he is Treasurer at Newport Pagnell Town Football Club where he has been involved on the committee for 20 years.

Contact Geoff via Geoff@LewisChristopher.co.uk

Director of Inclusion at Berks & Bucks FA, Grace is a fluent French speaker who has used her skills effectively and efficiently in HR recruitment, Customs and Excise, Law Enforcement and numerous volunteering opportunities.

She has been volunteering for several years and most notably at both the Olympics and Paralympics 2012. Enlisted as Team Liaison and Attaché for the French women’s basketball teams. Other events include The Commonwealth Games, Glasgow and Ryder Cup, Gleneagles both held in 2014 plus the two Americas Cup events held in Portsmouth.

Previously Vice-Chair of the Executive Board of Directors for Basketball England, a sport she has been involved in for over 30 years. Focused on developing inclusive opportunities and giving a voice to all, Grace is a keen advocate of ‘Sport for all’ regardless of ability or background. She is a champion of diversity, equality and inclusion.
  
She is a seasoned leader, with strong board experience, which includes engaging with and representing communities and working in the public spotlight. Using her extensive background in mediation and specialism in arbitration and tribunals, Grace has been involved in developing best practices and policies which have been used to form the legal basis of several initiatives in her community. This is always done with drive, commitment and impartiality especially when sitting on disciplinary panels. Likewise Grace has worked closely with Risk, Compliance and Governance Officers in order to maintain the integrity of the cases she regularly works on.

In 2019 FIFA piloted and promoted a safeguarding service at the Women’s World Cup in France (FWWC2019) and was equally committed to a ‘zero-tolerance’ policy. Grace worked alongside Safe Sport International to assist with the provision of such a valuable service. This enabled all players and participants to be able to take part in a major sporting event with a safe environment free from any violence, abuse, and harassment or bullying. 

Grace’s strong interpersonal flair often sees her appreciate working with different people from various backgrounds, creating special bonds and helping those who are new to volunteering make the best of what they are good at. Making connections and friendships and being able to 'give back'.

Grace has a Goddaughter who has secured a USA scholarship as a proficient Goal keeper and a younger niece who is an equally bright footballer.

Going forward, Grace is fully involved in the IAG which is exploring all the amazing ways we can work together to ensure that Berks and Bucks FA delivers the best opportunities from grassroots, volunteers, clubs, officials and actively supporting those who wish to be part of this wonderful game in our communities.

Contact Grace via Grace.Jacca@Berks-BucksFA.com

Kulbir has been involved with the Berks & Bucks Football Association (BBFA) since 2016, when he joined the BBFA Inclusion Advisory Group (IAG). As a member of the IAG he has advised on, and contributed to, initiatives that encourage participation in grassroots football from underrepresented groups.

In January 2019 Kulbir joined the Board of the BBFA as a Non-Executive Director for Inclusion, a role which he was keen to take on. One of the first tasks that he embarked upon was to create a Diversity & Inclusion (D&I) Plan for the organisation to work from. 

In addition to the role of Non-Executive Director for Inclusion, Kulbir is also the Chair of the BBFA Inclusion Advisory Group.

Kulbir is committed to ensuring that everyone who is involved in football at a grass roots, county level, has a great experience, regardless of gender, sexuality, ethnicity, ability or disability, faith or age. 

He has extensive experience of working in both private and public sector organisations, delivering on D&I initiatives and targets. Specific areas of work have included the recruitment and retention of BAME personnel. Designing and delivering diversity and cultural awareness training. Chairing workplace diversity boards to address issues of discrimination and to support staff with career development. Management training of unconscious bias and the negative impact on individuals and teams within an organisation. Collaborating with community organisations to tackle discrimination and hate crime through education and awareness. Coaching and mentoring marginalised young people who lack aspiration, confidence and often self-esteem.

Having worked in the airline industry, retail management and executive coaching in the USA and the UK, Kulbir has spent the last fifteen years working in the public sector with underrepresented, hard to reach communities. In 2018 Kulbir was recognised by Her Majesty the Queen in The New Year’s Honours List for this work. He was awarded the British Empire Medal (BEM) for services to Community Cohesion and is now a proud member of The Order of The British Empire. Also in 2018, Kulbir was the recipient of a British Community Honours Award presented at The House of Lords. This was also for services to community cohesion and his work on equality, diversity and inclusion in the community. 

As a member of the Board, Kulbir will draw upon his vast experience to ensure that as the County FA, we provide everyone an opportunity to be part of the game. He will support and advise on our inclusion priorities over the coming years. These are underpinned by three principles of change which are:

Ensuring governance and leadership is diverse and modern;
Removing any obstacles to access and progression in coaching, talent development or personal development pathways; and
Enshrining equality, diversity and inclusion in our day to day operations.

Contact Kulbir via Kulbir.Brar@Berks-BucksFA.com

I started my football journey at 13 in High Wycombe playing in U/14, after moving down from Glasgow for a better life. This was the start of a very enjoyable sporting life. I then played in local junior football and then senior football. After a few years I played for Stokenchurch in the Hellenic Football league.  After my playing days I became a Referee because football had given me so much enjoyment I wanted to stay in the game. I was fortunate to offociate to Southern League level on my travels. I referred the Berks and Bucks Sunday Junior Cup Final in 1984.

Another of my sporting achievements was amateur boxing. I had over 120 bouts winning 105 and loosing 15. The highlight of my career was being picked to represent England vs America.

I moved to Faringdon in 1974 and started playing again for Faringdon Town and then became the manager of the "A" team and then the "Reserves"for 3 years and first team for one year. In 1980 with a few friends we started The Upper Thames Valley Sunday Football League and I was the Referee Secretary for 25 years and then Chairman for 6 years.

In 2003 I was approached by Mr Gosling and Mr Custance, who both knew of my football love, to become a member of the Berks & Bucks FA Council which I happily accepted as long as I could be an active member. 

I have been a Board Member for 12 years which I enjoy. I am also on the committee of The Faringdon Thursday Cup for over 10 years.

I was Chairman of The Football Operations for 14 years until the reorganisation in 2019. I am actively involved in Under 16 and Under 18 B and B representative teams and support them at all matches.

In 1980 I started my own business manufacturing furniture and re-upholstery until I retired 4 years ago. Now you can usually find me on the golf course at Wrag Barn Golf Club where I was Club Captain in 2003.  

My aspirations for Berks & Bucks FA

I would like to see more finance support to our clubs throughout the county to help them survive and prosper with more teams We need to find good sponsors to support local football.

I would like better commitment from Council Members by giving them suitable jobs to take pressure off Staff Members.We need to find a way to support 11-a-side football before it declines any further so that everyone can have the enjoyment of sport.

Contact Bill via faruphol@aol.com

I was born in Charvil in 1952, the third of 6 children. I attended Twyford Infant School, Twyford Junior School and then Wargrave Secondary Modern School, leaving at the age of 15 to become an apprentice Carpenter and Joiner. Having served a 5 year apprentership I went to evening classes for 2 years to study for an ONC in site management. My work life has taken me along many different pathways having worked on many different projects including the refit of QE2 when she returned from the Falklands war, to the renovation of Windsor Castle after the fire in 1992 where I along with many others was honored to meet several members of the Royal family. Having been sole trader in the construction industry for over 40 years I am now semi-retired and like to spend time tending my allotment and garden but most of all spending time with my grand children.

I married my wife Sue in 1973 we have 2 sons and 2 grand daughters.

I first became involved with football when my eldest son started to play, having taken him to a club presentation and having had one to many glasses of lemonade I was challenged about becoming a referee, a challenge which I accepted. I qualified as a class 3 referee in 1986 and joined Bracknell Referees’ Society and am still a member having served as a committee member, society representative on the Berks and Bucks RA management committee, Secretary, assistant treasurer, vice chairman, Chairman and Training officer a position I still hold. In was persuaded to apply for promotion in 1898 and was promoted to class 2 that same season, 2 years later following a season dogged by injury I was promoted to a class 1 referee, the equivalent of a level 5 today. In 1990 I was invited to join the referee training team at Bracknell Referee's Society and was then encouraged to apply to the FA to become a Licensed Referee Instructor. Having attended the 1st year of the course in Lincoln 1998 and the 2nd year at Staverton Park in 1999 I qualified a Referee Instructor, a position I held until 2015 when family health commitments forced me to retire from the position. I am also a mentor for new referees and am an observer for referee promotion candidates.

After having been asked on several previous occasions in 2009 I stood for election to the B&B FA Council and was duly elected. I served on the Rules and Revisions and Football Development committee's for three years before moving from Rules and Revisions to the Referee's Committee. In 2013 I became Chairman of the Football Development Committee. When the formation of Council was changed in 2014 I remained on the Referee's Committee until 2015 when I moved over to the Cup Competitions Committee. I have been a member of the Grounds person of the Year award committee since joining council. I sit on County Disciplinary Commissions am a Disciplinary Commission Chairman I also sit on FA Discrimination Commissions.

In 2016 I was honored to be asked to stand for election as a Council Representative on the board of the County FA and much to my surprise I was duly elected, a position which I am proud to hold.

Over the last season we have a new look council giving all Leagues the opportunity to become a voice on how football in the county should be structured and would encourage all leagues that have not taken this opportunity to do so to join us in taking our great game into the future. We all know the Health benefits of football both Physical and mental so I would like to see us as a County strive to make Football more inclusive in all areas not just for players but for managers, coaches, referee's and club officials. Also to carry on the good works we are doing in promoting Women’s, girls’ and Disability football and give everyone the opportunity to share in this great game.

Contact Ron via bennett.50Norton@btinternet.com