Sarah Finnegan-Dehn - Chair

Sarah is a freelance executive coach, mentor and consultant. Like many of PRIME Cymru’s clients, she forged a new path in her 50s after a varied and successful time in the career guidance sector.

She has contributed to the careers profession throughout her professional life. During her time at Careers Wales, Sarah was Chief Executive of Careers Wales North West and then went on to become Director for North Wales. Most recently she led on strategic development and digital transformation. She has also been past President of the UK Institute for Career Guidance and Director for the Career Development Institute. Sarah believes that the role of the older worker is crucial going forward and is particularly interested in the future of work and how the labour market is changing.

In recent years, she has become interested in health and now supports the Community Health Council as one of two independent members on their Board.

Originally from Brighton, she has lived in Anglesey for over 30 years and has learnt to speak Welsh. She has two grown up children. As Trustee of PRIME Cymru, she is a member of the Finance and Audit Committee and looks forward to continuing to spread the word about everything PRIME Cymru achieves.

Brian Birtles

Trustee & PRIME Cymru Mentor

From 2004 to 2011, as Founder, Executive Chairman and Commercial Director of Bluefish, Brian successfully guided it from start up to over £10m turnover and trade sale. The business was sold to Vodafone.

Brian also has more than 20 years' experience in utilities, telecoms and IT. He has been Sales and Marketing Director at Alcatel and East Midland’s Electricity; set up and ran Powergen's £45m turnover, 650 people metering business which was sold to Siemens; Operations Director for a business serving 2.3m customers; and CEO at Cambridge Network Ltd. Brian is also a PRIME Cymru Mentor and has been since early 2015.

Sian Phillips

Siân is Consultant Radiologist and Clinical Director of Imaging and Cancer Services. She has an active role in medical postgraduate and undergraduate education and is currently Associate Dean for Radiology at the newly formed Health Education and Improvement Wales. As an active member of Royal College of Radiologists, she has contributed as a member of the Professional Support and Standards Board and as an examiner for the Fellowship of the College of Radiologists. Siân is a trained Coach/Mentor, actively supporting those in senior roles.  

For several years, Siân has been a active patron of Prime Cymru and is pleased to become a trustee to the charity and support its future development, projects and plans.

Vanessa Leyshon

Vanessa is currently the Chief Customer Experience Officer for the global Junior Adventures Group, the leading provider of enrichment services for children trusted by hundreds of schools and leisure providers.

In the past, Vanessa created and ran her own successful recruitment agency and was responsible for generating, negotiating, and managing clients, including national customers such as Brains Brewery, and various large local council contracts. Her company was responsible for employing over 200 people weekly, with an annual turnover of £1.5 million.

Vanessa’s involvement in commercial, charitable, and educational sectors spans 25 years and her expertise is in general recruitment, marketing, development, and senior leadership within education.

In addition to her employed role, Vanessa is an active trustee of Ty Hapus, a charity supporting Early Onset Alzheimer’s. She is thrilled to be undertaking the trustee role with Prime Cymru to support its exciting future development, projects, and plans.

Eleanor Marks

Eleanor is the Director for Wales at Ofcom, the regulator and competition authority for the UK communications industries. She joined Ofcom in 2018 from the Welsh Government’s Environment Planning and Rural Affairs Department and before that she supported a panel of experts in their parliamentary review of health and social care in Wales.

Her previous roles include Director of Communities & Tackling Poverty, and Regional Director of Economic Development at Welsh Government and Programme Director at the Welsh European Funding Office. Eleanor has also worked at HM Revenue and Customs in Bath, South Wales and London.

A resident of Carmarthenshire, Eleanor is Welsh-speaking, a member of the Institute of Directors and a Fellow of the Royal Society for the Encouragement of Arts, Manufacturers and Commerce (RSA). She loves walking, is Ladies Vice Captain at Ashburham Golf Club, a Scarlets season ticket holder and a bit of a foodie.

Stephen Pegge - Advisor for the Board

Stephen is Managing Director of Commercial Finance and Banking for UK Finance, the financial sector's trade association that represents the UK on business finance in Europe. He is also Director of UK Business Angels Association. He has worked in the financial sector for 35 years and for 10 years, he chaired the SME advisory board of the British Bankers' Association.

Stephen read Economics at UCL and has professional qualifications in banking and marketing. He lives in North Somerset with his wife Cordelia and divides his time between London, Wales and the South West.

Stephen led the establishment of the UK's framework for volunteer enterprise mentoring and was Chairman of PRIME Cymru's Board of Trustees for 9 years.