MacKay Hannah

ONLINE CONFERENCE Tackling poverty and attainment in Scotland: The challenge beyond pandemic


Jim McCormick

Chief Executive, Robertson Trust

Jim McCormick is Chief Executive of The Robertson Trust.

Previously he was Associate Director Scotland with the Joseph Rowntree Foundation (2017-20), ran an independent research consultancy and was Director of the Scottish Council Foundation think-tank (2002-07).

He is Chair of the independent Disability and Carers Benefits Advisory Group reporting to the Cabinet Secretary for Social Security and a member of the Scottish Government’s Social Renewal Advisory Board. He was Chair of the Edinburgh Poverty Commission (2018-20) and a member of the Social Security Advisory Committee (SSAC, 2014-20) scrutinizing DWP regulations. He was also an Advisory Board member of Business in the Community Scotland.

In 2018 he was a travelling Churchill Fellow looking at the impact of mentoring programmes for children and young people facing disadvantage in the USA, Canada and New Zealand. 

Interests include music, languages and Greenock Morton FC.


Martin Dorchester

Chief Executive, includem

Martin Dorchester became Chief Executive of includem in March 2018. Previously Martin was the Group Chief Executive of the David MacBrayne Group, including CALMAC Ferries, Argyll Ferries Ltd and Solent Gateway.

In a career spanning 30 years Martin has operated nationally and internationally with organisations covering logistics, technology and finance. As CEO of Dixon's B2B operation Martin built up the largest Apple reseller business in the UK as well as developing a £100m public sector business. Martin was part of the team that brought the 5 radio authorities together to create Ofcom and worked with the London Borough of Hackney on developing its infrastructure for the 2012 Olympics. Martin is also a keen lecturer and academic and has written a number of papers covering areas as diverse as CSR and Emotional Intelligence in Management Development and more recently on children and young people.

Martin is a Co-chair of the Independent Care Review and a Non-executive Director of CCPS. He has held a number of non-executive roles including: Non-executive Director of Traveline Scotland, The Sailors' Orphan Society of Scotland and most recently Transport for Wales. He is a supporter of Social and Community Business and Chaired Firstport Ltd, a start-up funding organisation for social enterprises.
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Meg Thomas

Head of Research, Policy & Participation, includem

Meg is head of Research, Policy & Participation with includem. Meg is a qualified Social Worker with 30 years of experience working with children, young people and families in a wide range of settings in both her homeland of Australia and her adopted home of Scotland.

Meg joined includem seven years ago as a Services Manager. She now uses her professional experience to influence includem’s policy and practice to ensure that the experiences and voices of those we support are at the heart of all we do and are amplified with policy makers and implementers.

When she is not at work, Meg likes to run and knit – thankfully not at the same time as is not that co-ordinated.


Claire Barton

Head of Services, includem

Claire has been with includem for 18 years, working her way up from a Mentor to her current role as Head of Services. Previously, she volunteered for Richmond Fellowship Scotland and with experience working for the NHS. She is passionate in ensuring children and young people get the support that is right and makes a difference for them, understanding that children and young people are the experts in their own life. She is registered as a manager with SSSC and a qualified SVQ Assessor.

Away from work, Claire has a genuine interest in mindfulness and wellbeing – finding time to meditate every day. She can also be found with a cup of tea, a good book or a new lego set.


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Not much in-house for PA's re training so thought this would be worth attending as it seemed a good "itinerary" for the day. I feel I will go away with some pointers for sure. All speakers were excellent Highlight to see baby monkey and panda viewing - Thank you for that and an enjoyable day.

Angela Gibson - Scottish Government,
Delegate at ACES 2016