Alun Thomas is an employment lawyer who has worked in the field for over 30 years. In the last 10 years he has come to realise that mediation is very often a better route to resolving workplace and employment difficulties than following formal grievance or complaints processes. A partner at Anderson Strathern he leads their Employment and Pensions Unit, is a founder member of the Scottish Discrimination Law Association and in 2018 was elected as Chair of Scottish Mediation.
Fiona is a Partner in Gillespie Macandrew’s Dispute Resolution team. She covers a broad range of civil litigation but has particular expertise in employment and property disputes. Fiona is a strong proponent of alternative dispute resolution methods including specifically mediation. She has been co-chair of the Young Mediators’ Group since November 2013 and regularly delivers CPD on ADR and mediation in her firm. Fiona joined the SM Board in December 2017.
Rosanne is Head of Practice for Family Mediation at Relationships Scotland, having worked for the organisation since 2003. She oversees the training, professional development and practice of the 80+ family mediators on the Relationships Scotland Register and working in the 13 Member Services in the network that offer family mediation. Rosanne leads on initiatives to bring about an increase in the uptake of family mediation in Scotland. She is also the National Development Manager for Parenting Apart, information sessions for separating and divorcing parents to find out how best to help their children through the process of splitting up.
Rosanne is keen to encourage mediation and mediating ways to become embedded across all sectors of society in Scotland.
Alastair Fraser has spent over 30 years as a management coach, consultant, and author, in that time, he has helped more than 250 organisations and over 4000 individuals across many sectors including: – retail, manufacturing, charity, finance, automotive, service, utilities, education, and brewing.
He is delighted to become a Board member for Scottish Mediation.
Alastair is a Fellow of the Chartered Management Institute, a Graduate of the Open University and an Approved Mentor for CMI.
He has written the best-selling “Can I Help you?” a practical guide to working with ‘experts’ and is co-author of “A Practical Guide to Teambuilding”.
Colin retired for Police Scotland in December 2019, having completed over 30 years’ service and now provides coaching and advice on negotiating/communication skills.
Prior to retiring, he was the Operational Lead for the Police Scotland Hostage & Crisis Negotiation Unit. As well as overseeing all negotiator deployments and training, he was the Force Lead for Protest/Police Liaison. This role was introduced as part of the policing plan for Commonwealth Games in 2014. The positive relationships developed with numerous protests groups led to this approach being seen as best practice and is now imbedded in policing in Scotland.
His skills within the negotiator operational and training environment led to Colin working with specialist negotiators from across the UK, Europe, Canada and the US, to collaborate on business change with regards to negotiator tactics and training.
Colin’s commitment to negotiator development was recognised at the Police Scotland Excellence Awards in 2019.
He is a strong advocate in the power of negotiation and mediation to help build strong relationships and reach positive outcomes.
Sarah has been involved in rural development in the Highlands and Islands for over 25 years. She has worked mainly in, or with, the public sector providing practical advice on farms and crofts, actively engaging stakeholders with multiple interests in developing policy, and advocating culture change in ways that are fair and reasonable to all parties. She is currently supporting the work of the Tenant Farming Commissioner at the Scottish Land Commission – promoting and encouraging good relations between landlords and farm tenants. The Land Commission’s ethos is to influence behaviour, culture and practice by providing advice and guidance on what is seen as expected and reasonable, and supporting people to come to their own decisions and outcomes in a spirit of mutual respect. She has recently set up a pilot mediation scheme for the tenant farming sector.
She is a previous board member of the Crofting Commission and chaired the Scottish Government’s review of the Bull Hire Scheme.
She is looking forward to working with SM’s Committee for Promotion of Mediation
Liz Leonard has over 30 years’ experience in communications and broadcast media, including at the BBC where she was an executive producer. In 2009, she left the BBC to set up her own media consultancy, during which time she also served as both member & then chair of Ofcom’s Advisory Committee for Scotland, the latter at a time when digital convergence required significant changes to broadcasting policy and regulation.
Throughout her career, Liz has been a passionate advocate of justice & human rights & was previously vice chair & trustee at the Scottish Refugee Council between 2012 – 2019. Liz officially retired from her communications consultancy in 2022 but remains a non-executive director on the Board of Crown Estate Scotland.
In these days of increased global & societal crises, Liz believes effective mediation is a vital tool in “turning disagreement into opportunity” both across Scotland and beyond.
Githa’s early career was in legal practice, with an LLM from University of Cambridge. For the last 20 years she has worked primarily with ethnic minority communities and vulnerable groups in Scotland, delivering services that increase capacity for positive relationships and conflict handling skills.
Githa also completed a PhD in the field of conflict resolution, at the Richardson Institute, Lancaster University. She is passionate about improving access to mediation and mediation skills to hard-to-reach and vulnerable community groups.
Ruth Unsworth is the Head of Mediation and Wellbeing at the University of St Andrews. She has provided therapy, mediation and coaching to individuals and groups and has developed services at the University. Ruth is a Mediator registered with Scottish Mediation. Ruth is also accredited as a Psychotherapist by the BACBP, and a Church of Scotland Minister.
Ruth developed services for young homeless people in and around Glasgow. As a minister of the Church of Scotland, Ruth developed different support groups for people impacted by domestic violence and drug abuse. She has also helped congregations to unite. In her work at the University, Ruth developed the Wellbeing, Counselling and Mental Health service for students that received accreditation from APPTS (an accreditation network for services providing psychological therapy run by the Royal College of Psychiatrists and the British Psychological Society). Ruth has many years’ experience of managing staff and working with students; providing coaching, therapy and helping to resolve disagreement or conflict situations. More recently, Ruth developed the Mediation Service that has been awarded accreditation for its training.
Ruth has been the Chair of the University Mental Health Taskforce, Co- Chair of the Equally Safe Group and lead the pilot for the Emily Test. She is a member of the Scottish Government Student Mental Health and Wellbeing Group and is honoured to serve as a trustee for Scottish Mediation. Ruth has been an Student Minds MH Charter and The Emily Test. To visit Ruth’s website please click HERE
Originally a commercial planning lawyer, Tamsin Bailey moved to Brussels in the mid 1990s to focus on environmental policy and public affairs. A central part of her work in various roles in Brussels, London, Edinburgh and now Orkney has been developing partnerships with government and non-governmental organisations, charities and other stakeholders.
Tamsin became an independent consultant based in Orkney in 2007, specialising in project development and evaluation, and in July 2020 took up her current role as Service Director at Relationships Scotland Orkney, where she also practices as a registered family mediator and workplace mediator.
Tamsin has a long-standing interest in alternative dispute resolution. In a world where both public and private discourse is increasingly polarised, Tamsin is committed to developing and promoting mediation approaches to resolving conflict across Scottish society.