Inaugural Board of Directors announcement

Women in Bus and Coach Initiative Appoints Inaugural Board of Directors

The Women in Bus and Coach Initiative (WiBC) is pleased to announce the appointment of its inaugural Board of Directors, representing a diverse array of talent from across the transport industry. This milestone marks a significant step forward in the organisation’s mission to promote gender diversity and inclusion within the bus, coach, and community transport sector.

The newly appointed board comprises esteemed women professionals, and male allies, renowned for their leadership, expertise, and commitment to advancing gender equality within the transport industry. Among the appointed directors are individuals with extensive experience in operations, safety, policy, advocacy, finance, people, marketing, and technology, reflecting the multifaceted nature of the sector.

“I’m thrilled to welcome such a distinguished group of leaders to our board,” said Louise Cheeseman, Chair of the Women in Bus and Coach Initiative. “Their collective expertise and passion for fostering diversity and inclusion will undoubtedly drive meaningful progress in our industry.”

The board’s composition underscores WiBC’ s commitment to amplifying the voices of women within the bus, coach, and community transport sector. By leveraging their collective insights and networks, the board aims to implement initiatives that empower women, break down barriers to entry, and promote equal opportunities for all professionals in the field.

“Women in Bus and Coach will also work with bus and coach companies to challenge and eliminate barriers currently faced by women in the profession, creating a more inclusive service that is representative of our customers.” commented Kerri Cheek, founding Director of the Women in Bus and Coach initiative. “We want women, whatever their background, to have equal access to a career in the industry and a workplace designed around their needs. ”

As part of its mandate, the board will oversee the strategic direction of WiBC, spearhead initiatives to address gender disparities and serve as ambassadors for diversity and inclusion within the transport community.

Women in Bus and Coach extends its sincere gratitude to all the esteemed professionals who have agreed to serve on the board, as well as its supporters and founding corporate supporters who have made the initiative possible – we are #better together.

Meet the Women in Bus and Coach inaugural Board of Directors:

Louise Cheeseman, FCILT, CIRO – Chair

As the former Director of Bus at Transport for London (TfL), and founder and Chair of the Women in Bus and Coach, Louise has recognised that the transition of buses away from the grime of conventional diesel to the ultra-clean zero-emission technologies of electric lithium batteries and hydrogen fuel-cells cannot happen without a resource of skilled professionals that not only drive the vehicles’ but also have the skills to track and evaluate performance by artificial intelligence and diagnostic data. There is a recognised resource and skills shortage that she believes could be addressed by creating a working environment within the bus and coach industry that attracts women, as we know that there are less than 20% of women work in the industry.

Kerri Cheek

Kerri is the Senior Bus Safety Development Manager at Transport for London, leading the bus safety development strategic change programme. The innovative and world-leading Bus Safety Programme delivers effective and measurable safety change in London and is successfully challenging the inertia across the bus industry both in the UK and internationally. Kerri has led the development and delivery of the multi award-winning Bus Safety Standard, London’s bus driver fatigue programme, and recently the publication of TfL’s Bus Safety Strategy. Kerri has worked at TfL since 2006. In 2023, Kerri was instrumental in launching Women in Bus and Coach. Kerri is a founding Director, the strategic lead and also the London Region Chair.

Lorna Murphy

Lorna is the Operations & HR Director at Transport UK London Bus, where she is responsible for 6 depots and nearly 3000 employees, and a Director for Women in Bus and Coach.  Having started as a graduate trainee with National Express, she has spent over 18 years in the transport sector across bus, rail, and coach, covering many roles in operations, comms, HR, customer services, and route performance.  Lorna now leads the operations and HR teams on service delivery, recruitment and training, employee relations, engagement and spearheads various projects.

Candice Mason

Candice is owner of Masons Coaches of Tring, Hertfordshire. Masons operates a fleet of 25 vehicles, providing school transport, contract services, private hires and a programme of day trips and holidays.

Candice entered the industry 10 years ago. The business has tripled in size since her appointment.

Candice had a pivotal role within the coach industry during the pandemic, campaigning hard for the industry, and engaging the contribution of trade bodies and government figures to support the industry. Candice rallied to get a national survey completed showing the value of the industry and coordinated the whole industry to get involved in a national marketing campaign.

With a background in education and apprenticeships the training and development of staff within the business has been one of her proudest achievements.

Caroline Whitney

As Director for community transport, Caroline leads on all work that impacts the community transport sector within England.  She is the technical lead at CTA for membership and Permits ensuring CTA fulfils its role as a Designated Body.

Prior to her current role she was the Chief Executive for CVS Cheshire East, a local infrastructure organisation representing and supporting the not-for-profit sector. Her strengths lie in the creation and management of sustainable voluntary/charitable organisations.  Caroline has a deep understanding of not-for-profit organisations, volunteering, charity development, as well as relationship building with statutory organisations.

Laurence Jenkins

Laurence started his career in transport at the age of 16 working for National Express Coaches, starting as a sales advisor at Birmingham Coach Station and working up to Customer Experience Manager in Yorkshire following completion of his degree in Management and Transport Studies.  Laurence then moved to Transport for London (TfL), joining the Finance Graduate scheme where he worked across the business whist gaining his Chartered Management Accountant qualification.  He progressed through various Finance roles into Senior Management supporting London Underground’s Chief Operating Officer a number of the TfL Professional Services Managing Directors.

After 11 years at TfL, Laurence joined the construction industry providing finance support for a number of large rail and property projects and then joined Reading Buses as Finance Director, a position he has held for almost 5 years.  Laurence is passionate about equality and diversity in the workplace and beyond and sat on the committee of OUTBound, TfL’s award-winning LGBT staff network group, for several years and is now excited to be a part of the Women in Bus & Coach Board.  He is also a Trustee of SupportU, Berkshire’s LGBT charity.

Paul Sainthouse, FCILT

Paul is Managing Director of Dawsongroup bus and coach, a position that he has held since 2002, is a member of the Dawson Group plc Advisory Board and has a career in transport spanning almost 40 years. From an operational background in distribution and logistics, Paul joined Dawson Group Truck and Trailer as a management trainee in 1987, was appointed a director in 1997 and held a variety of leadership positions with the company, finally moving permanently into passenger vehicles in 1998. He is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport and a member of the Institute of Directors.

Paul has just concluded his term as Global President of The Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport and is a past president, and still a Vice-President, of The Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport (UK). He is a Board member of the Confederation of Passenger Transport, Chair of their Suppliers Commission, and member of their Governance Committee. Paul is both Secretary and Advisory Board member of the ‘All-Party Parliamentary Group for the Road Passenger Transport Industry’, and a Board Director of ‘The Institute of Couriers’.

Tom Cunnington, FCILT

Tom is Head of Bus Business Development, at Transport for London. His role covers a variety of areas including the strategic Bus Action Plan, decarbonisation and air quality, the bus safety programme, and customer offer. He has worked in the Buses team at TfL for over 20 years in a number of positions, and previously worked for a bus operator.

Stephen Lynn

Stephen is Marketing Director for TRL, the world’s leading transport innovation and research social enterprise. Stephen has over 25 years of strategic marketing and communications experience gained within the transport, technology, innovation, and multisite entertainment sectors. Before TRL, Stephen led the Marketing team for the NHS COVID Pass, which he joined from the Connected Places/Transport Systems Catapult. With the Catapult, as Marketing Director, Stephen oversaw numerous high-profile projects including the first public demonstration of a driverless vehicle in the UK. In addition, Stephen has led the marketing function for the video retailer ‘Game’, where he won numerous marketing awards, he also ran the marketing team for the UK’s largest nightclub operator and spent 9 years in various marketing roles at Virgin.


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