Meet our staff team members!
Ren Renwick started as the new CEO early in 2022.
Ren brings with her a wealth of experience in the charitable and not for profit sector. Most recently she led a national membership organization and has a background in building and supporting communities, managing helplines for users and campaigning on behalf of community groups.
Patient & Family Services
- Pat McBride - Head of Patient & Family Services
Pat began her link with The Foundation back in 1995, as a Volunteer Area Co-ordinator, launching Liverpool Support Group in 1996. Pat's pituitary condition of pituitary abscess, DI and high prolactin was diagnosed in 1986 resulting in craniotomy surgery and Pat takes all replacement hormones to this day. Pat started as a Regional Co-ordinator working with Local Support Groups and on the Early Awareness Project (EAP). In August 2006, Pat became the Patient Support Manager (and likely, those of you who have been around for a while will have noticed her making her mark) with responsibilities including the National Helpline, Pituitary Life editor and our Telephone Buddy service.
- Pauline Whittingham - Endocrine Specialist Nurse
Pauline joined the Foundation in 2018 as our Endocrine Specialist Nurse with her main responsibilities being to run the Nurse telephone helpline. She also answers any e-mail helpline that may have medical content and helps review and devise the Foundation information leaflets/booklets. Before working for the Foundation Pauline worked at a large NHS Trust in North West England and has over 25 years experience of working with patients with pituitary and endocrine disorders, both as a specialist nurse and as a team member of a Programmed Investigation Unit. During that time she added to her Registered General Nurse training by undertaking Nurse Prescriber, DipHSM and BSc (Hons) qualifications. She also ran independent nurse led clinics for patients with a variety of endocrine problems and managed the growth hormone service, training and monitoring patients receiving growth hormone replacement.
- Darshna Patel - Endocrine Specialist Nurse
Darshna has been an Endocrine Specialist Nurse for 7 years at a local district general hospital and a Thyroid Specialist Nurse at a tertiary centre for 5 years before that.
"I love Endocrinology and everything that comes with it. It’s a complicated system which impacts on the person fully, so I feel it is essential to offer a support and help system for those patients and their families affected by these disorders.
The Pituitary Foundation encompasses everything a patient needs. It has been my ‘go to’ for many years and my patients and their families have benefitted tremendously with their support.
When I’m not at work I love walking and spending time at home."
- Lottie Storey - Communications & Projects Officer
Lottie joined the charity in January 2022, after completing a masters in Science Communication at UWE Bristol. Lottie has previously worked for a charity in the environmental education sector back in her home county of Shropshire. She is the person behind our social media and other digital communications, and she is looking forward to improving our digital offering to those impacted by pituitary conditions.
- Jay Sheppard - Head of Fundraising
Jay joined The Foundation in January 2013. Jay himself had a rare brain condition when he was just 15, having just a 10% chance of survival. It is this experience of living with a rare condition that makes him so passionate about his work. Jay has a burning desire to increase public awareness of The Foundation so that no patient need suffer in isolation. After his illness Jay dedicated his life towards fundraising through volunteering and fundraising on a personal level before finally realising his dream of working within the sector. He brings with him a wealth of experience and is always willing to take on any challenge, endurance challenges have always been favourites and highlights include 5 marathons and a triathlon. Jay is always receptive to new ideas or suggestions and would welcome your call!
- James Charlick - Administrator
James joined The Foundation in October of
2019 as an Assistant Administrator, later becoming our main Administrator. He graduated from the University of Bristol with a degree in Pharmacology and has completed a Master’s by Research in Physiology and Pharmacology. James is keen to work for the patients, relatives and loved ones affected by conditions that might not get as much public attention, but that are still life-altering. In pursuit of this goal, James will be responsible for administrative tasks across all of our departments.
Finance & Resources
- Martin Cookson - IT & Systems Manager
Martin was born and raised in Lancashire before studying Applied Biology at Bradford University. After gaining a Masters degree in Computing, he spent twenty five years working in the IT industry, most recently as a freelance database developer working in the insurance and defence sectors. Martin joined The Foundation in October 2012 and works four days a week at our National Support Office in Bristol. He is mainly responsible for keeping our membership database up-to-date and processing the orders we get for our merchandise, alongside IT support and other admin duties.
- Gabrielle Welland - Office & Finance Manager