Staff

Meet Jay Jay Bhadricha
Jay BhadrichaNational Poetry Day Manager
Lucy Macnab

Lucy Macnab Co-Executive Director

Lucy joins Forward from Arts Council, England, where she developed strategy and programmes to support the creative and cultural lives of children.

Previously, she was Director of the Ministry of Stories, which she co-founded in 2010 with Nick Hornby and Ben Payne. She built the charity from scratch with a group of volunteers into an award winning centre of creativity and writing with children. She’s convened an evaluation think tank to demonstrate the impact of this work and established a family of organisations in the UK and internationally. Lucy’s career in participation, writer development and education includes trustee and advisory roles, including being a mentor and coach to emerging leaders. She is currently trustee and former Chair at Smart School Councils.

Mónica Parle

Mónica Parle Co-Executive Director

Mónica joined Forward Arts Foundation as National Poetry Day Manager in 2020, and was appointed Executive Director in 2021. She was previously Executive Director at First Story, and before that worked for the journal Feminist Economics and Arte Público Press. She is Associate Director of Nuevo Sol British Latinx Writers and her fiction has been short-listed for the Wasafiri Queen Mary Prize 2021, short-listed for the Bridport Peggy Champman First Novel Award 2021, the Longlist Winner of the 2020 Bath Novel Award, and Highly Commended in Faber’s 2018 FAB Prize. She completed an MFA in Creative Writing at the University of Houston.

Jay Bhadricha

Jay Bhadricha National Poetry Day Manager

Jay joined us from First Story, where he was their Editorial and Content Manager, responsible for publishing all their anthologies and overseeing their digital content. He has held a variety of roles including Regional Programme Officer, working in Operations, and Project Management for Granta Books.

Omar Fadhil

Omar Fadhil Operations Manager

Omar joins us from GlobalGiving UK, where he was their Grants Manager, responsible for the effective governance on public-funded grants for overseas development projects.

Hristina Velikova

Hristina Velikova Project & Operations Administrator

Hristina joined us in July 2022 as part of our placement programme. She is currently a student at the University of Portsmouth, pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Criminology and Forensic Studies.

Trustees

Jamie Andrews

Jamie Andrews Chair

Jamie Andrews leads the British Library’s Cultural and Learning Programming, and previously led the development of the Library’s literature collections. He has curated several exhibitions on literature and theatre, led major international culture and research collaborative projects, and worked on a number of digital arts programmes. Jamie is a Fellow of the Clore Leadership Programme, Deputy Chair of Oxford House, a Trustee of the Brangwyn Trust for the William Morris Gallery, and was a Judge of the 2019 Forward Prizes for Poetry.

William Sieghart CBE

William Sieghart CBE Trustee & Founder

William founded the Forward Prizes in 1992 and National Poetry Day in 1994. He was responsible for the 2013 Sieghart Report on libraries and e-books. He prescribes poetry for various ailments of the spirit on BBC Radio Four and at festivals across the nation: his best-selling anthologies include The Poetry Pharmacy and Poems of the Decade: an Anthology of the Forward Books of Poetry

Mary Amanuel

Mary Amanuel Trustee

I’m the Co-founder of the NHS Python Community and work across the data engineering, economics, and analytics teams at the NHSX Analytics Unit to help drive the digital transformation of health and social care. I join the Forward Arts Foundation with a great passion for improving collaboration, equality of opportunity and diversity of thought in tech and the arts.

Kim Evans

Kim Evans Trustee

Kim’s career is shaped by her passion to help bring art to the widest possible audience.  She was an award-winning documentary maker and a senior executive at the BBC and Arts Council England.  She now works as an arts consultant and is Chair of Clean Break, the women’s theatre company that commissions and produces new writing on stage, in prisons and in the community.

Aoife O’Connor

Aoife O’Connor Trustee

Aoife is a Poet and Producer based in Derby. She is an experienced Slam and Spoken Word performer and co-founded an intersectional female led performance night to tackle the lack of diverse spaces. Aoife works for In Good Company and is passionate about artist development as well as facilitating, coaching and producing live performance events.

Maya Ophelia

Maya Ophelia Trustee

Maya started her career in the arts in 2014 as a marketing apprentice and has since worked for organisations such as the National Theatre and Punchdrunk Enrichment. She currently volunteers at Now You’re Talking Network, a global female community focused on supporting women personally and professionally.

Amelia Richards

Amelia Richards Trustee

Amelia has held leadership roles in the creative industries at Bristol Old Vic, Letters Live and the Creative Industries Federation as well as at local and national government on behalf of arts and culture. She has a background in communications, marketing and business development, sits on the Bauer Academy Advisory Board and belongs to the Creative Mentor Network.

Giles Spackman

Giles Spackman Trustee

Giles is Group Finance Director of Oxford University Press. After degrees from Oxford and Harvard and a stint at McKinsey, he has worked for media and technology companies such as Time Warner, Pearson and Google.