MacKay Hannah

12th Annual Conference and Award for Executive Secretaries and PAs in Scotland (ACES 2020): A New Decade - It's all about the cloud...


Carolyn Currie

Chief Executive, Women's Enterprise Scotland

Carolyn has enjoyed an extensive career at a senior level in financial services working with a variety of clients from large corporates to the SME and not for profit sector. Roles undertaken include Head of Business Lending at RBS where she developed and grew the multi-billion-pound lending book. An advocate of continuous improvement, she achieved industry recognition and awards for lending products and a personal award for Outstanding Excellence in SME delivery.

While working in Strategy & Business Management Carolyn led the delivery of new tech sales support systems and digital communications programmes. She also co-founded the Women in Business programme in NatWest and RBS. A global leading programme which developed staff talent, in addition to better meeting the needs of the growing women’s sector of the SME community. 

​Carolyn has addressed the Global Banking Alliance conference in Sydney, Australia, contributed policy papers to the World Economic Forum in Davos, is a member of the UK Women’s Enterprise Policy Group and the Chartered Institute of Bankers.

As Chief Operating Officer Carolyn manages the day-to-day operation and sets the strategic direction. Carolyn participates in the T20, the think-tank body of the G20 and is an advocate of women’s economic empowerment, business growth, leadership and boardroom diversity.




Steve McPherson

IT Learning Consultant, Appetite for Business

Steve is a Learning Consultant with a Training & Productivity Coaching background in all Microsoft Office products within industries such as Oil & Gas, Legal, Financial, Media and Pharmaceutical.

Steve’s motto is work smarter not longer and his mission is to help people not just be more productive in their digital workspace but to own it and get them excited about IT!

Appetite for Business is an award winning technology consultancy that has been working with clients to build digital solutions and provide training on Microsoft technology for over 17 years.

Dave Stokes

IT Learning Consultant, Appetite for Business

Dave is a Microsoft & Adobe Learning Consultant, digital marketer, content creator and eLearning specialist, with project experience across Government, Health, Energy, Military and Education sectors.

Dave’s approach to learning design & delivery is to make it as engaging and memorable as possible by use of creative content and rich media.

John Cowie

Director and Chief Consultant

JEMCO Associates was formed in 1991 out of a growing demand for consultancy and training in the specialist field of project management.

Our approach is best described as providing knowledge through better understanding of both the problem to be solved and of the package itself.

I realised early on that the instructor makes all the difference in any learning experience and have never forgotten the problems I had when learning the in’s and out’s of the various software packages we train on.

I can still relate to those experiences and my course attendees can see that and gain confidence from it.

I developed a bunch of “Golden Rules” for Excel that are the basis for truly understanding the package.

At JEMCO we are dedicated to solving your problems as efficiently as possible.

We pride ourselves on having a business solution-oriented approach and in-depth of experience we can bring to bear.

I love making people not just better at Excel but more efficient in their business lives.
That is why I still enjoy the Foundation courses as much as the advanced consultancy work I do for clients.

Lynda Towers

Director of Public Law, Morton Fraser Lawyers

Lynda is Director of Public Law within our Litigation Division based in Edinburgh.

She has spent most of her career with the Scottish Government, advising on public law issues. She has been involved in instructing and drafting legislation and has had considerable experience in public sector litigation in courts in Scotland and across the UK. She specialised in judicial review challenges, planning and other statutory appeals and in general reparation.

Lynda spent 8 years as Solicitor to the Scottish Parliament where she advised the Presiding Officer, the Chief Executive and the Committees of the Parliament on matters of legislative competence and on wider issues of public law. Lynda has a significant breadth of understanding of public and constitutional law issues in Scotland, of related litigation and of the policy and process surrounding law and decision making.

Lynda’s areas of expertise lie in litigation and dispute resolution, public procurement and state aid, personal injury, government, local government, public sector partners, data protection and GDPR.



Alan Hughes

CRM Manager, University of Edinburgh

A change and innovation manager who has worked in the voluntary, public and private sector in the UK and Ireland, Alan’s areas of expertise are Education and Business Improvement. A skilled facilitator and trainer Alan has developed a programme of training and development in Lean business improvement. His Lean implementation skills were developed managing Business Improvement Techniques in the engineering sector for Scottish Enterprise and enhanced with acknowledged global leaders McKinsey in the challenging environment of the RBS group.

Alan worked for the Scottish Funding Council and was responsible for setting up the joint skills committee with Skills Development Scotland. While at the Funding council he managed the Skills Utilisation Pilot projects roll out for the council on behalf of the Scottish Government Skills Utilisation Leadership group. As a consultant he has led business change initiatives in diverse sectors including financial services, further education and Health.


Anna Finlayson

Relationship Coach, CMP Solutions

Anna is a Non-violent communication expert, and has been working with the UK’s market leader in interpersonal skills development CMP, as a mediator and trainer since 2005. And her
key strength is her genuine belief in the work she does; she is committed to the principles and values of non-violent communication and mediation, and this enthusiasm and expertise comes across in her training as well as her practice.

Gail Welsh

Retired Executive PA

Gail Welsh, founder of ESPA (Education Sector PAs network) was winner of the ACES Scottish PA of the Year award in 2014.  Heriot-Watt University is where Gail’s career started, after being awarded Best Commerce Student at college.  The rest of Gail’s secretarial/PA time in Edinburgh was spent at The Scotsman newspaper, a market research company and an environmental design company.  

Gail moved to Stirling just before the Millennium and for the next 15 years worked in Colleges Scotland.  After a sabbatical, in March 2015 Gail took up a 4-week temporary assignment as PA/Administrator in the School of Social Sciences at Stirling University where she remained until her retiral in early 2019. 

In her spare time, Gail is continually networking.  She is also known for her passion of foreign travel and living the good life with her husband.

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I can't wait until next year so I can come back, what a wonderful conference. I left Edinburgh zoo buzzing, what a wonderful way to start the weekend.

Sheena Stewart - Argyll and Bute Council,
Delegate at ACES 2016