The cdfa / About Us / Governance


Board of Directors

The CDFA’s Board of Directors bring a wealth of skills and experience to the organisation. They are:

Michael Brown

Chief Executive, Robert Owen Community Banking Fund

Michael has worked nationally within the UK community finance sector for 20 years as a trainer, consultant, innovator and entrepreneur. He has published numerous reports on community finance and publications for the new economics foundation.  He strongly believes in the need to evolve a different kind of economy based on equality and social justice, and is keen to grow the CDFI sector in Wales.  He has a strong background in campaigning and as a negotiator.

Presently he is CEO for a Welsh CDFI providing consumer and business loans.  He has been evolving a specialism within renewable energy, building a loan book mainly around domestic installations.  He is a founder member of Community Energy Wales. He presently serves on a Welsh Government panel to design new financial support programmes for the sector.

Patrick Crawford

Chief Executive, Charity Bank

Patrick is Chief Executive and Board member of The Charity Bank Limited, a deposit-taking bank with a social purpose. It was founded in 2002, is authorised by the PRA and regulated by the FCA and the PRA, and a Certified B Corporation. Patrick is a trustee of The Caxton Trust which, operating under the working name of Catchup, provides interventions to improve literacy and numeracy for struggling learners in schools, predominantly in the UK. Between 2004 and November 2012 Patrick was Chief Executive and Accounting Officer of UK Export Finance, the operating name of the Export Credits Guarantee Department, the UK Government’s export credit agency. He has been a non-executive director of UK Trade and Investment (2011-12) and Crossrail Limited (2008-11). He was Managing Director of Emerging Africa Advisers at Standard Bank London between 2002 and 2004, as the manager of the Emerging Africa Infrastructure Fund.

These roles followed a twenty-six year career in international trade finance and limited recourse project finance at Morgan Grenfell & Co. Limited/Deutsche Bank AG London where Patrick was a managing director and global head of project finance between 1998 and 2002 in New York and London.

Shiona Crichton

Chief Financial Officer, Moneyline

 Shiona was appointed as CFO of Moneyline in December 2013, bringing over 15 years experience in Finance Services, 10 of which were spent in RBS.  She has had a broad range of roles including Decision Support Manager for RBS mortgages, Financial Controller for RBS Invoice Finance and a variety of project roles. Before joining Moneyline Shiona took a year out to work as a volunteer consultant to NGO’s in Cambodia which greatly broadened her experience and challenged the way of thinking.

Alastair Davis

Chief Executive, Social Investment Scotland

Alastair Davis has been Chief Executive of Social Investment Scotland since September 2011; he has completed the Strategic Perspectives in Non Profit Management executive course at Harvard, and has been the BSC nominated director of North East Social Investment Company since 2013. Alastair demonstrates drive, energy and imagination in expanding the SIS role and influencing the third sector in Scotland; SIS has grown from 6 to 16 people since 2013 and has become self-financing with 2014/15 revenues of c £1.2m and a £100k surplus and is the pre-eminent Scottish CDFI.

The SIS Framework for Growth 2013-2018 is ahead of schedule, Big Society Capital matched funding of £8m has been successfully introduced and the new partnership business model including Robertson and Esmée Fairbairn Trusts, Big Lottery, Firstport, Foundation Scotland, Asda, four national banks and Scottish Government demonstrates both skill in negotiation and commitment to delivery.

Jonathan Diggines (CDFA Chair)

Chief Executive, EV Group

Jonathan DigginesJonathan is CEO of Enterprise Ventures Group, and brings a wealth of business and finance experience to the CDFA. He has spent over  twenty years in public and private sector co-investment and managing of venture capital funds. At Enterprise Ventures he has taken funds under management from £20m to £130m by successfully investing in regional SME’s, for the most part in the North of England. Jonathan spent 11 years as a Managing Director at Murray Johnstone Private Equity where he managed around £360 million in private equity and venture funds.  A solicitor, Jonathan is a highly experienced company director; he sits on the British Venture Capital Association (BVCA) Member Services Committee and is a former Member of the Council of the BVCA.

Stephen Edwards

Financial Controller Enterprise Northern Ireland Limited (ENI)

Stephen EdwardsStephen joined Enterprise Northern Ireland in 2006 as Financial Controller and has significant experience in dealing with the management and delivery of community finance programmes.  He has been responsible for overseeing both the strategic and operational management of Aspire Micro Loans for Business, the ENI Loan Fund and the Northern Ireland Small Business Loan Fund. Stephen was previously Financial Analysis and Planning Manager at GE Capital TLS Vehicle Rental, which had a turnover in excess of $200m. Following a 2 year spell as Financial Controller for a group of start-up businesses which grew to turnover in excess of £2m within two years he relocated with his family to Ireland. Stephen is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Acco

Katy Ford

Chief Executive, Foundation East

Katy FordKaty is the Chief Executive of Foundation East,  a small business lender based in Suffolk and lending across the eastern England. She joined Foundation East in February 2004 at its inception initially taking on the role of Finance and Investment Manager and became Chief Executive in March 2009. Her primary role is to lead the strong staff team  to deliver the vision and mission of the CDFI, and to ensure the values of the company are embedded at every level. She is also responsible for fundraising, building and maintaining relationships with all stakeholders, including  members, funders, bankers and auditors.  Prior to joining Foundation East, Katy managed the treasury department for insurance broking firm Marsh Inc in Guernsey for 14 years.

 Arthur Foreman

Managing Director, Finance for Enterprise

Arthur ForemanArthur joined Finance for Enterprise (formerly Donbac) in 2009 when it was re-launched to meet increasing gaps in finance created by the credit crunch. Finance for Enterprise is based in Doncaster and offers business loans across South Yorkshire and the north Midlands.  Arthur comes from a banking background (is ACIB qualified) and enjoyed 23 years in Willaims & Glyn’s / RBS Head Office roles as well as portfolio and branch management. He subsequently worked for 12 years in Business Link (Sheffield & South Yorkshire) intially in an advisory role and subsequently as a Contract and Development Manager, before spending 2 years as a self employed adviser. Arthur has held a number of other board positions, including at Sheffield Business Club and Sheffield Young Enterprise.

Nicholas Nicolaou

Managing Director – GLE oneLondon

Nicholas has over 15 years’ experience lending to SMEs and is a Prince2 Practitioner. Since his arrival, GLE has won contracts for 4 local authority, 2 pan-London, 1 UK-wide charity and 1 national DWP fund – with a total capital value of almost £18m. In addition, Nicholas leads GLE’s Enterprise Agency, which is integrated with its CDFI activity. Nicholas has a keen interest in and understanding of the CDFI sector, its strengths and opportunities for the future through regular meetings with peers both within and outside of the CDFI Business Lending Networking group. .

Hugh Rolo

Director of Innovation, Locality

Hugh RoloHugh  is Director of Innovation at Locality, which has  over 600 members from across the UK.  Current members have a combined turnover of £430mn and own assets valued at £750mn.  Hugh is a founder partner and Director of the Key Fund, which is investing in social enterprises across Yorkshire and the Midlands. Hugh was also a founder partner of the Adventure Capital Fund and an advisor to Communitybuilders Investment Panel.  He  lead on an action learning research programme into Community Shares and Bonds backed by Communities and Local Government and the Office of Civil Society. Hugh is very active in his local community and is a director of ACCENT Regeneration, a leading housing association, and   Manningham Mills Community Association.

Steve Walker

Chief Executive, ART Business Loans

Dr Steve Walker is a founder shareholder and has been Chief Executive of Art Business Loans (Aston Reinvestment Trust) since launch in 1997, raising funds by way of grant, equity and loan to support growth. From 2000- 2006 he was a member of the Small Business Investment Taskforce, advising the Government on all matters relating to finance for businesses and has become one of the leading UK practitioners in the Social Finance sector. He has been since inception a member of the West Midlands Regional Finance Forum and is a member of the Access to Finance sub group of the GB and Solihull LEP.   He is the current Chair of Fair Finance Consortium, a group of CDFIs working in the West Midlands.

Stephen Waud

Executive Director, Business Enterprise Fund

Steve has established grown and developed Business Enterprise Fund (BEF) since 2004 and has seen its asset base grow 10 fold in that time, lending to SMEs across West and North Yorkshire. Steve is regularly consulted by different agencies on the CDFI sector and has contributed to a number of programs to see the growth and development of the sector, especially in the Yorkshire and Humber region. Steve is an Engineer and a qualified Barrister and has been involved in the running of SME’s at board level for many years. His strong financial, legal and technical skills put him in an ideal position to understand the needs of business and support them. He has worked within a number of market sectors, including plastics, automotives and marketing.