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Our Trustees

Simon Forest
Dr. Simon Forrest
Joined: 1998
Chair of the Board of Trustees

Professor Simon Forrest was appointed to the Board of Trustees in 1998 and became Chair in 2012. Simon is an academic with a career long interest in HIV and AIDS, sexual health, gender and sexualities, with a particular focus on the role of education in prevention. He has written for both academic and general audiences on all these issues including contributing to some of Avert's leaflets and website. Simon is committed to ensuring that people can access independent, expert and accurate information about HIV and AIDS. He prizes Avert’s reputation as a leader and champion of the interests and needs of those affected by HIV, and people working with them. He works fulltime as an academic and has been the Head of the School of Medicine, Pharmacy and Health at Durham University and is currently a Professor in the Sociology Department and the Principal of the College of St Hild & St Bede.

Emily Hughes
Emily Hughes
Joined: 2011
Trustee

Emily Hughes has worked in the voluntary sector for 10 years, with a particular interest in supporting volunteers. She is currently Head of Volunteering at Parkinson's UK and studying for a Master’s Degree in Voluntary Sector Management at Cass Business School. In 2010, she spent a year in Zambia with Voluntary Service Overseas (VSO) to support peer education of young people regarding sexual health. Keen to continue to make a contribution to education to reduce the stigma of HIV & AIDS and the number of new infections, she became a trustee of Avert in 2011.

Trustee, Andrew Walker
Andrew Walker
Joined: 2019
Trustee

Andrew is a partner at Irwin Mitchell Solicitors specializing in corporate restructuring and insolvency matters.

Carole Leach-Lemens
Carole Leach-Lemens
Joined: 2019
Trustee

Carole is an editor and writer with over 30 years’ experience in the field of HIV/AIDS at the planning, management and direct service levels with substantive experience in sub-Saharan Africa and a specialism in maternal and child health. She has consulted for a wide variety of organisations including Comic Relief, John Snow Inc. and UNICEF. Carole holds an MPH (Master of Public Health) and has been writing news for Aidsmap since 2009. She is particularly interested in supporting Avert advance the health and wellbeing of adolescent girls and young women.

Beryl Mutonono-Watkiss
Beryl Mutonono-Watkiss
Joined: 2019
Trustee

Beryl is an international development specialist with over 20 years’ experience in creating and delivering strategies, policies and campaigns for a range of global public health, education, social development, environmental and zoonotic disease programmes including HIV and AIDS. She has worked with national governments, civil society groups, international non-profits, youth organisations, and donors, and as a consultant for United Nations initiatives and programmes funded by the UK Department for International Development (DFID), United States AID (USAID), the European Union (EU), and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Through her senior organisational leadership roles Beryl brings to the Avert Board extensive international experience of governance, risk assessment, compliance, finance, fundraising and human resources.

Anna Becker
Anna Becker
Joined: 2020
Trustee

Anna has over 15 years’ experience developing donor engagement strategies, successful funding proposals, and managing strategic relationships with institutional funders. She is currently the Director of Institutional Funding at Sightsavers and plays a role in overall organisational management through membership of the Management Team. She has previously worked with Frontline AIDS and is excited about joining the Avert board and continuing to support the HIV/AIDS response.

 Max Cuvellier
Max Cuvellier
Joined: 2022
Trustee

Max is passionate about the contribution digital technology and local innovation can make to address the challenges faced by our societies, our economies and our planet. He currently leads Mobile for Development (M4D) at GSMA, a team partnering with bilateral donors and private foundations, mobile operators, entrepreneurs, investors, governments and international NGOs active in Africa, Asia-Pacific and beyond, to improve access to basic services for local populations through technology. Max is particularly keen to help Avert leverage digital tools to make accurate sexual health and HIV/AIDS information available to the widest audience.

Carol Sherman
Carol Sherman
Joined: 2022
Trustee

Carol Sherman has over 25 years of experience as a senior director working for international non-government organizations. As a Country Director for large scale programs and operations in complex emergencies and developing countries, she worked across MENA, Asia, Africa, Pacific and the Balkans as well as co-founding a local lobbying NGO in Australia. She undertook numerous leadership roles with extensive hands-on strategic management, leading strategic planning and organizational transition exercises with vision for sustainability in changing environments. Carol has always ensured that gender analysis, child protection and safeguarding, quality local partnerships and local ownership, are central to all initiatives. She now works as a coach and independent international development consultant.

Sam Avrett
Sam Avrett
Joined: 2022
Trustee

Based in New York, Sam has more than 30 years of experience in public health, starting in the HIV response in the United States in the late 1980s. Sam was the first director of the AIDS Vaccine Advocacy Coalition (AVAC) and has worked as a consultant for more than 30 charitable organizations around the world.  Sam holds a Master’s degree in Public Health (MPH) focused on health systems management and administration, and volunteers with his county’s local Medical Reserve Corps (MRC). Sam currently works with the International Treatment Preparedness Coalition (ITPC) to support community-led advocacy. 

Last updated:
08 February 2022