Senior Management

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Our Senior Management Team make all our operations run smoothly and ensure that the different departments that make up Challengers work together and communicate clearly.

  • Laura Sercombe
    Laura Sercombe: Chief Executive Officer

    I have worked with Challengers since September 2011 after spending the last 20 years in the voluntary sector. The staff team is central to the development of the organisation as we work towards offering the services that families and young people want. I love Challengers because the team has a sense of energy and spirit that makes every day real fun. My guilty pleasure is biscuits at meetings…and lots of really good coffee!

  • Laura Baxter
    Laura Baxter: Head of Quality

    I started working for Challengers as a volunteer Playworker in 1996, since then I managed both play and youth schemes gaining a huge amount of hands on experience. More recently I have been concentrating on developing good quality practice for the whole organisation. Working at Challengers keeps me busy and challenged at all times, surrounded by a fabulous team of people I enjoy it immensely! My guilty pleasure is fabulous pieces of jewellery, I could spend… no I lie, I have spent a fortune on it!

  • Jonathan Dobson
    Jonathan Dobson: Head of Operations

    I started working at Challengers as a Playworker in 1999 at Guildford Playcentre then joined the ‘Leisure Development Project’ starting up new Challengers schemes to meet demand across Surrey. Before that I worked at an IT company and Mencap. Once upon a time I did a degree and a Masters in Politics, Philosophy and Sociology. I do bit of bike racing, play tennis, frisbee and go for walks with my family and friends. I love working at Challengers – the children and teams I work with are wonderful. And there’s still so much more to do. My guilty pleasure is lots of lovely bike components

  • Amanda Matthews
    Amanda Matthews: Head of Finance

    I joined Challengers as Head of Finance in January 2013 and have a commercial and not for profit background.

    Upon joining I was struck by the enthusiasm and commitment of the Challengers team to make a difference and change the lives of young people challenging disability.

    I passionately believe that a finance department should be an enabling department supporting the whole organisation, producing timely management information giving non-financial managers the confidence to make proactive financial decisions. Equally as important are our external stakeholders for whom we endeavor to provide transparent, accurate and uncomplicated information. My Guilty pleasure is: Sharing bags of crisps to myself!

  • Duncan Wilbur
    Duncan Wilbur: Head of Fundraising Development

    I joined Challengers in the summer of 2016 and before this I worked for 15 years in senior fundraising and communication roles for a mixture of international and national charities. As the Head of Fundraising Development a big part of my role is focused on increasing the amount of money we raise to ensure the long term financial security of our services. On a daily basis I’m inspired by the truly amazing feats that people undertake to support Challengers and then seeing first-hand the difference this support makes to people’s lives. Guilty pleasures for me are mostly food based and usually in cake form.

  • Sophie Colwell
    Sophie Colwell: Head of Events & Communications

    I started with Challengers as a play worker at the Guildford Play centre in 2010 and have never looked back. As soon as I started working at Challengers I knew I just wanted to be more involved. After a couple of years on the play floor working with a fantastic group of people I was lucky enough to get a part time role in the Fundraising & Communications Team as an Events Assistant. Since them my role has developed and changed and I now head up the Communications Team which is great fun. My Guilty Pleasure is definitely all Bill Murray movies.