UK Deaf Sport Board Trustees

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Craig Crowley MBE

Honorary President

Appointed as Honorary President in April 2014, Craig is Chief Executive of Action Deafness, a national voluntary organisation based in Leicester, East Midlands. He is first Deaflympic medalist to have served as President of the International Committee of Sport for the Deaf (Deaflympics) 2009-2013. A qualified sports coach and key strategist, Craig was also instrumental in co-founding UK Deaf Sport in 2003 and served as its Chair until 2009. A keen advocate of visibility and recognition of Deaf athletes, Craig is also heading a team of international Associates at Efficere Sports International. He was awarded an MBE for services to sport at The Queen’s 80th Birthday Honours in 2006.

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Piers A. R. Martin MTPL MBA MIOD

Executive Chair

Piers Martin is a performance specialist working across sport and business. He is currently The Managing Director of the Podium Group, which includes Podium Performance, Podium Events and Podium Digital. He is also an Associate Lecturer in Sport Strategy and Performance and is studying for a PhD in Psychology. Piers has worked with a range of Olympic and Paralympic Federations, such as British Swimming, Fencing, Bobsleigh, Takewondo, Wheelchair Fencing, Wheelchair Rugby as well as UK Sport, the Saudi Arabian Olympic Committee and a range of businesses. He is currently a Board Director of British Disability Fencing and UK Deaf Sport, is a member of the Performance Advisory Group for British Wheelchair Basketball and Chairs the Performance Pathway Management Group for British Para-Swimming. Previously, Piers was the CEO of British Fencing for the Beijing and London Olympic Games and a National Olympic Committee member. He was responsible for transforming Fencing into a successful business which significantly increased income from partners and sponsors, grew the sport and performed internationally. Prior to this, Piers worked for Manchester Business School’s World Academy of Sport and for British Swimming, following on from a career as an international swimmer and water polo player. He has a Masters degree and MBA from Manchester University.

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Philip Gerrard

Trustee

Philip is Chief Executive within the third sector, with over 20 years experience. He currently heads up Deaf Direct, overseeing all strategic and operational work of this charitable company with a turnover of £800k. As one of the founding members of UKDS, he has served as a trustee since its inception in 2003, being Vice Chair and Chair of UKDS. Philip has represented Great Britain Deaf Sport on the global platform, attending every international deaf sport congress since 2005, he has lead GB Deaflympics teams competing at Deaflympics, and has been a member of European Deaf Sport Organisation Legal Commission Group since it was set up in 2011. He has served on various local and national committees including the national complaints panel for BSL/English Interpreters. Philip joined Midland Deaf Sport Association Committee as Secretary in 1990 and remains so. He is an active member of his local community, playing football regularly with a Deaf team and supporting his deaf sons’ sporting endeavours. He is passionate about access to opportunities in sport, and particularly keen to see that the elite deaf athletes receives the recognition they deserves, on a par with the Olympics and Paralympics.

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Graeme Knight

Trustee

Graeme has spent over 15 years practising law as a barrister in the UK. He is an accomplished negotiator and advocate representing individuals in the civil and criminal courts for a broad range of proceedings. During the early part of his career he was instructed to challenge human rights violations under the European Convention. Nowadays his work includes disciplinary hearings before sports and other professional tribunals, advising on regulatory law and appearances in the criminal courts and Court of Appeal. Graeme is also a CEDR accredited commercial mediator and an advocacy trainer at the Middle Temple Inn of Court. As the son of a professional cricketer, Graeme has been actively involved in sport his whole life. He played rugby for Wasps RFC and Rosslyn Park FC in his twenties and regular cricket for a number of Kent clubs since leaving school. These days he enjoys playing a competitive standard of tennis and golf.

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Vincent Dickson

Trustee

Vincent was born Hearing until an illness of meningitis at the age of 5 years caused his profound deafness. He has been involved in Deaf Sport for over 60 years. Starting as the Football Secretary of Manchester Deaf Club in the 1950/60’s moving to become the Indoor Games Convenor for Southern Deaf Sports Association in1983 where he served for approximately 10 years. During this time the association remained unbeaten in the Regional Indoor Games Championships for 5 years, Vincent was part of the British Deaf Sports Council’s Financial & General Purpose committee and later became a Trustee. He undertook further positions with hearing swimming Club before take over the role of

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Lara Lill

Trustee

Lara Lill is a leading expert in health, wellbeing and physical activity. She is a respected senior manager with extensive experience in building effective partnerships. Lara trained as a secondary school PE teacher at Liverpool University, she taught for a while in the North East before being appointed to the Amateur Swimming Association. Lara is Head of Health and Wellbeing, responsible for developing strategy and building influential partnerships to improve the quality of life for people with health conditions and contribute to the public health of the population. Lara is also a member of the European Women and Sport Board responsible for promoting leadership and gender equality for women in sport. Lara is  delighted to be appointed as a trustee to UK Deaf Sport.

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Gareth Hunt

Trustee

Gareth Hunt is Head of Corporate Broking at KBW, the specialist investment bank focused on financial services providers. Prior to joining KBW. Gareth was an equity research analyst covering UK banking shares. Prior to working in the City. Gareth studied Politics, Philosophy and Economics at Oxford University. He is married with two children and is a keen marathon runner.

Reaching Potential

UK Deaf Sport aims to enable Deaf people to reach their full potential in sport. We work to increase opportunities by working in partnerships with key organisations to create a sporting future that is DEAFinitely Inclusive from grassroots through to Elite level Sport.