Chair, Old Ford Housing Association
Stephen and his identical twin brother are the product of the post-war baby boom. Brought up in the East End of London, educated at a local secondary school and, being a ‘late developer’ he gained O-levels and A-levels afterwards by attending ‘night school’. This enabled him to progress to a social policy degree and postgraduate diplomas in community development, and employment and planning.
These qualifications allowed him to occupy a variety of senior positions within housing departments of a number of London Local Authorities, preceded by community work posts in Birmingham and London. He established the largest not-for-profit regeneration company in London, and became the Community Lead in the successful Olympic bid team.
In his spare time, he has been a Local Ward Councillor, chaired a Local Acute Hospital Trust, a Primary Care Trust and two Health Investment companies. He also chaired the Expert Patient Programme.
He, with others, established the One Public Estate Programme based at the Local Government Association and it was from here that he was seconded to create the Neighbourhood Office on the Lancaster West Housing Estate following the tragic fire at Grenfell Tower.
His commitment to co-designing programmes with local communities has been and continues to be a key influence, whether working in an executive or non-executive role. He believes passionately about the collaboration that should exist between communities and professionals to get things done.
He was awarded an OBE in the Millennium Honours list, which he accepted on behalf of the groups with whom he has worked.