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Meet the Team

Our Senior Leadership team are responsible to our Board of Trustees. They lead the various departments and services within the organisation with a strategic overview of their areas.

Jude McKee, CEO

Jude became CEO of Strides in April 2023, following 3 years as Deputy CEO and a previous 3 years as Director of Operations. Jude has worked in the sector for over 20 years, previously managing homelessness services at St Mungos. She has a background in business in both the fashion and hospitality sectors, and has a Masters in Law and is working towards a Masters in psychology.

Lisa Kamiende, Head of Justice

Lisa joins us from the National Probation Service where she trained and qualified as a Senior Probation Officer. Heading up our Justice Services, including our approved premise for men leaving prison, Lisa will help us develop our services supporting people who’ve been through the justice system.

Jamie Hickling, Head of Community

Jamie Hickling is Head of Community for Strides and joined the organisation in 2016. He has over 15 years’ experience of leading services designed to move people through tough times. His experience covers equality, diversity and inclusion; complex trauma, coaching and engaging communities through arts and sports.

Laura Deakin, Head of Fundraising

Laura has worked in fundraising for national and local charities since 2009, raising millions of pounds and supporting hundreds of individual fundraisers as well as managing large scale fundraising events. In 2017 – 2020 she led the fundraising and communications strategy and team at homelessness charity Evolve, and now heads up all of our communication and fundraising work.

Dr Kalli Nikolopoulou, Head of Counselling

Kalli has worked for Strides for 8 years, as a lead for Strides Highbury Counselling Centre (HCC). Kalli is a Chartered Counselling Psychologist, undertaking further postgraduate training in Psychoanalysis. She worked for the NHS and other charity counselling services prior to her role at Strides HCC.

Martin Grundy, Finance Director

Martin, who joined Strides at the start in 2024, is an experienced Finance Director and has provided Board level advice and leadership to the Finance function in several organisations operating in housing and charities sector. He was previously a partner in two top 20 accounting practices and has comprehensive knowledge of the regulatory and compliance regimes operating in these sectors. He is a qualified accountant and a member of both the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Scotland (ICAS) and the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA).