About us – RCET Team

We have a great team of Volunteers, Trustees and Staff, find out more about our trustees and staff below.

Our Trustees

Malcolm Noble


Malcolm is a retired Headmaster and has been involved with RCET since November 2011. He Chairs the Service Children Support Group (SCSG) on behalf of RCET and is the author of the Trust’s history book. Raised in Scotland, Malcolm now lives in Essex where he chairs several other community organisations.

Colin Cook

Vice Chair

Colin is the Director of Digital for the Scottish Government. Colin has previously worked for the British Army Recruitment as their Marketing Director. Colin is passionate about Armed Forces young people and supports our digital wellbeing project Your Mind Matters.

Gary Gray


Gary is the former Deputy Chief Executive at Erskine and is currently at Poppyscotland. Before entering the voluntary sector, Gary had a varied career in the Royal Air Force and served for nearly 24 years. He has been a Trustee of the Trust since 2014.

Isla Campbell Lupton


Isla is Head of Fundraising & Communications at Music in Hospitals & Care. She was previously Deputy Head of Fundraising at Poppyscotland where she developed the £2 million learning outreach project #PoppyBud. She has been a committee member of The Institute of Fundraising Scotland since 2008 and currently sits on the Scottish Fundraising Conference committee.

Neil McLennan


Neil is a Senior Lecture and Director of Leadership Programmes at the University of Aberdeen. Previously Neil has been a History Teacher and has worked in Quality Improvement at a national level. He has completed the Senior Leadership Development Programme with our partners (ADES). Neil also sits on the RSA Fellowship Council and is a recipient of the Royal Society of Edinburgh Medal.

James Robertson

Honorary Treasurer

James is from Edinburgh and is a Chartered Accountant (England & Wales) as well as a member of the Insolvency Practitioners Association. Now retired he lives in London but still maintains his connections to Scotland.

Dorothy Strickland


Dorothy is originally from Glasgow. She has held a number of voluntary roles with RCET including Chair of our Grants Programme. Dorothy has 25 years’ experience volunteering in the charitable sector and currently volunteers with Hope & Homes for Children in Wiltshire.

Suzanne Wilson


Suzanne is Senior Legal Counsel at Galliford Try and has practised law for over 25 years. Suzanne was previously a Trustee for The Edinburgh Children’s Hospital Charity for 10 years and she is a Children’s Panel Member. Suzanne also sits on Heriot Watt University’s Audit & Risk Committee.

Clare Hayward


Clare has over 30 years experience as a General Practitioner, in both the R.A.F and  civilian life whilst supporting her husband in his service career. She has been a GP in Lothian for 21 years.

Clare was a service child, serving officer, wife of a serving officer  and mother of 2 service children ,the younger of whom now serves in the Army reserve in Edinburgh.

She has also twice served as a school governor.

Our Team

Colin Flinn

Chief Executive Officer

Colin is a social worker by trade working for a range of organisations including Barnardo’s and Action for Children in a variety of roles including as a Children’s Rights Officer and Assistant Director of Children’s Services. He then moved into Fundraising & Marketing latterly with Poppyscotland. Colin joined RCET in 2016.

Phone: +44 (0)131 322 7350

Email Colin

Tash MacKinnon

Fundraising Development Manager

Tash has worked in the charity sector for over 10 years for charities such as Breast Cancer Care, Samaritans and Alzheimer Scotland. She is also a Trustee of Play Midlothian another children’s charity, a trainee Children’s Panel Member and a qualified TEFL Teacher. She is passionate about children’s rights and ensuring Armed Forces children can reach their full potential.

Phone: +44 (0)131 322 7350

Email Tash

Francesca Penny

Fundraising & Communications Assistant

Francesca has worked with young people since 2017 firstly as a Language Teacher in Japan and then as a SkillForce Instructor in Scottish Schools. This sparked her interest in the wellbeing and rights of young people. In her spare time, Francesca volunteers with the Citadel Youth Centre Inters Club.

Phone: 0131 322 7350

Email Francesca

Karen Smith

Office Manager

Karen has worked in the charitable sector for over 12 years including with Macmillan Cancer Support and MS Society. Karen is passionate about supporting Armed Forces young people and is soon to be a military mum herself as her son starts his basic training in the Royal Engineers.

Phone: 0131 322 7350

Email Karen

Nina Collins

Youth Participation Manager

Nina previously worked with Fife Young Carers for the last 10 years initially as their Development Worker and subsequently as their Manager. Nina has a SVQ in Community Development Work and a Diploma in Leadership and Management. She is passionate about empowering children and young people to shape services to meet their needs.

Phone: +44 (0)131 322 7350

Email Nina

Scott Sangster

Regional Youth Participation Officer for the Highlands & Moray

Scott has worked for over 20 years as a coach, facilitator and instructor throughout the UK and overseas with children, young people and adults. He is passionate about using arts, sports and the outdoors as tools to empower young people to build confidence and engage them in important discussions. Recently, he has worked on youth voice projects with organisations such as Action for Children.

Phone: 0131 322 7350

Email Scott

Sarah Rogers

Policy and Research Officer

Sarah studied at the University of Edinburgh where she obtained an Honours Degree in Law and an MSc, and PHD in Social Policy. Her PHD explored child wellbeing in non-resident father households. Previously Sarah has worked with Enquire, the additional support for learning advice service at Children in Scotland. Sarah is passionate about children’s rights and supporting all young people to reach their potential.

Phone: +44 (0)131 322 7350

Email Sarah

Moira Leslie

Education Manager, Scotland

Moira was the Head Teacher at Raigmore Primary School in Inverness for 22 years which has many children from Armed Forces children. Much of her career has been dedicated to supporting Armed Forces learners particularly during transitions and deployments. She is passionate about emotional literacy and the importance in supporting children to reach their full potential.

Phone: +44 (0)131 322 7350

Email Moira

Carolyn MacLeod

National Transitions Officer (Seconded to ADES)

Carolyn is seconded to the Association of Directors of Education in Scotland and her role ensures best practice at a national level in supporting Armed Forces children in education. Carolyn was previously a teacher for over 35 years in Canada, America, England and Scotland.

Phone: +44 (0)131 322 7350

Email Carolyn
Grants officer, Karen Stock at the 2017 Practitioner's Conference

Karen Stock

Children and Family Support Co-ordinator

Karen spent most of her working life serving in the Royal Navy and on retirement she embarked on a second career working predominantly with Armed Forces charities supporting families with their education, employment and support needs.

Phone: +44 (0)131 322 7350

Email Karen