Board of Directors

The Board is ultimately legally responsible for the financial and organisational control and management of FSB and its governance. The Board comprises the National Chair, two National Vice Chairs and up to nine other Directors.

Martin McTague

Martin McTague

National Chair, FSB

Martin McTague was appointed as National Chair of FSB on 8 March 2022. Prior to this, he was FSB National Vice Chair, Policy and Advocacy (from 2021) and FSB Policy and Advocacy Chair, a role he was elected to in March 2016.

Martin has served as a volunteer with FSB for more than 20 years, in a variety of roles including Chairman of the Local Government Policy Unit.

As National Chair, Martin works closely with government and opposition leaders, attending ministerial meetings and representing FSB and its members at the most senior levels. He also works to ensure that members’ views are represented in international institutions. He works to ensure that FSB’s policy reports are used widely to help policy makers, and he champions FSB’s member survey programme, Big Voice.

Martin started his own business 35 years ago and now currently owns and manage three businesses - offering public policy, engineering and IT consultancy services. Running businesses for more than three decades means that Martin has worked with institutional investors; operating sophisticated financial management systems, marketing complex IT systems and managing more than 60 employees.

Martin’s business experience is invaluable to him in his role as FSB National Chair. He believes that the Federation’s unblemished record of integrity and political independence are both vital preconditions for its success and stands firm that there can be no compromise on these principles, which are the strength of FSB. He is determined to protect and advance FSB’s current standing as the UK’s most influential business lobby – one that truly represents its grass roots members.

Email
[email protected]
Telephone
0808 20 20 888
Tina McKenzie

Tina McKenzie

Chair Policy and Advocacy, FSB

Tina McKenzie was appointed as National Vice Chair, Policy and Advocacy in March 2022, having joined FSB’s Board in April 2021 as UK Deputy Chair Policy and Advocacy.

Prior to that, she spent more than three years as Chair of the Policy Unit for FSB Northern Ireland, during which time she took on a pivotal lobbying role through the Brexit negotiations, including meetings with Prime Ministers, the Taoiseach and senior EU officials. Tina has also been a champion of business throughout the COVID-19 pandemic and has had widespread media coverage to call for improved business support packages. 

After graduating from Ulster University, Tina went on to pursue a successful recruitment career, giving her over 25 years’ experience in the recruitment and employment services sector, setting up and running businesses throughout England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. 

Tina established Staffline Recruitment in 2013 as a start-up throughout Ireland, taking the company from a standing start to a turnover of £150 million within five years, while also starting a limited company specialising in property consultancy which she continues to own and run with her husband.

Tina has won a number of awards, including UTV Business Eye’s Business Personality of the Year in 2018 and the Belfast Telegraph Lifetime Achievement Award in 2020.

Tina has previously served as the NI Director of the Recruitment and Employment Confederation, the European Ambassador for Women’s Entrepreneurship Day and is the current Honorary Consul to Finland in Northern Ireland. In June 2021, Tina was appointed as a Visiting Professor to Ulster University’s Business School.

Tina’s extensive experience of running a multitude of companies brings invaluable skills to the FSB Board. Her dedication to improving people’s lives through employment and acting as a firm advocate for business drives her commitment to FSB’s ethos and to its members.

Email
[email protected]
Telephone
0808 20 20 888
Melanie Ulyatt

Melanie Ulyatt

Chair Internal Affairs, FSB

Melanie has been a dedicated member of FSB since 2009, holding several roles including Regional Chair Notts and Derby (from 2012 to 2018) and Policy Representative (from 2017 to 2018). She has also been active with her area’s Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) groups, Sheffield City Region and Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire Region, having secured a seat on the Derbyshire LEP Board in 2015. She was also appointed Chair of the Skills and Employment Commission, Chair of the Growth Hub and Small Business Champion. Her work demonstrates her zeal as an outstanding ambassador for small businesses and this has led to her being honoured with an MBE for services to business and entrepreneurship in 2017.

Melanie has been deeply involved in FSB’s policy work and understands the challenges and wider economic drivers that small businesses face; her activity with the England Policy Unit is informed by this and has led to good working relationships with local MPs, as well as visits to No 10 on behalf of FSB. She believes FSB must be a listening organisation that is dynamic and responsive to what its members say, harnessing a ‘you said, we did’ dialogue.  

Melanie started her own business in 2006, which she has built up to an award-winning organisation today, with more than 130 staff. She has knowledge and experience of working with businesses at both national and SME level, and has been employed by member organisations on major national projects. 

This experience – combined with her first-hand knowledge of the grassroots FSB network - provides her with a unique skillset that she brings to the FSB Board. Her vision is to support FSB’s evolution, making it a more prosperous, better connected, and increasingly resilient and competitive organisation.

Email
[email protected]
Telephone
0808 20 20 888
Stephen Askew

Stephen Askew

Director, FSB

Stephen Askew has been a member of FSB for more than 30 years, and was an active FSB volunteer in the Kent area, including as Area Leader and then National Councillor for the FSB South East region. Stephen was co-opted to the FSB Board in May 2019 and was elected as a director in March 2020 for a three-year term.

Stephen is committed to ensuring that FSB continues to represent the interests of all small businesses and the self-employed. He believes that the strength of FSB stems from its member led ethos and that the Board, as volunteers and as business owners themselves, represent that principle. Stephen has a desire to see FSB maintain its strong position within the UK’s business community.

Stephen Askew has more than 35 years’ experience in running and growing an accountancy practice before selling to a large UK practice, acting largely for owner-managed businesses but also some large international companies. He also mentors and has supported hundreds of businesses of all sizes and from many different sectors. Having retired from the accountancy firm he continues to mentor business owners and develops property.

Email
[email protected]
Telephone
0808 20 20 888
Peter Davys

Peter Davys

Director, FSB

Peter Davys joined FSB’s Board in April 2017 and was re-elected as a director in March 2020 for a three-year term. Peter has held various positions as an FSB volunteer for more than 15 years in both England and Wales, including a position in the FSB Welsh Policy Unit.

As an FSB Board member, Peter is committed to continuing to play a key role in steering the organisation in its mission to help small businesses and the self-employed across the UK achieve their ambitions. He is passionate about contributing to the further growth and evolution of the organisation.

Peter Davys has more than over 40 years technical and senior management experience in industry and over the last 18 years, has run several small enterprises.

Email
[email protected]
Telephone
0808 20 20 888
 Sandra Garlick

Sandra Garlick

Director, FSB

Sandra Garlick was appointed as a Director of FSB on 8 March 2022.  Sandra is a proud member of FSB, having joined in 2010 she is both a long standing member and active volunteer of the FSB, most recently as Area Leader for Warwickshire and Coventry (2019-2021).

As a key member in the Women in Business community, she actively encourages clients and contacts to join the FSB, for support and networking.

Having previously held a number of non-executive directorships in membership organisations and charities, she understands the challenges and financial implications of organisations funded by membership.

Sandra is a qualified employment and business law solicitor (non-practising) and has an understanding of interpreting changing and ever evolving legislation.

Having been self-employed since 2007, Sandra understands the challenges business owners face having first hand experience of the highs and lows of starting and running a business; employing staff; raising finance; merger; and exit.

Sandra is media trained and confident in presenting on stage, on panels, and in various media; and in raising important and topical issues for discussion.

Downtime is also important to Sandra, and outside of work she is a Mum, Grannie, and dog lover. She also loves travel, especially to Italy, and watching live football.

Alexis Lay

Alexis Lay

Director, FSB

Alexis Lay has had a long and successful association with FSB. She and her husband, Norman, joined FSB in 1993 when they owned a fish and chip shop in North Wales. She has been a Branch Officer since joining and was a National Councillor for 15 years and was on the National Conference Committee - for 16 years rising to Conference Coordinator. She has been on the Board of Directors for the past three years.

Alexis brings a wealth of business experience with her to the role of Director. She runs a family business with her husband and two sons based in Liverpool and North Wales called LEK Lubrication Engineering Ltd. The business has been built up over the course of 25 years, supplying, fitting, servicing and repairing lubrication systems for all types of industries. Recently they have grown the business to include Manufacturing, Servicing and Maintenance of Emergency Decontamination showers throughout the UK.    

Alexis’ knowledge of, and passion for, small businesses, as well as her hands on experience of running her own businesses, including import and export means she is a valuable member of FSB’s Board.
Email
[email protected]
Telephone
0808 20 20 888
Gary Lovatt

Gary Lovatt

Director, FSB

Gary Lovatt became a director of FSB in April 2017. In March 2020 he was re-elected for a three-year term. As a member of FSB for more than 20 years, Gary served as a volunteer in many different roles before taking a place on the Board of Directors. He is currently the procedures chair.

Gary’s experience as a volunteer includes branch, regional and national positions. Over his 20+year experience as an FSB member and volunteer, he has seen the organisation evolve and grow, and is committed to playing a role in its ongoing development.

Gary is passionate and committed to the cause of small businesses and promotes them wherever he can. His strapline is “together we are stronger” and being part of a member led organisation is very important.

A long-time promoter of inclusion and diversity, Gary strives to make this happen throughout the FSB.

Having previously been the Chair of the recruitment arm of FSB and a director of FSBIS, he has extensive knowledge of the Organisation.

Gary also sits on a number of committees for the “Cumbria Local Enterprise Partnership”.

Following a successful 18-year career in the Army, leaving as the training officer for an infantry unit, Gary then trained as a financial advisor and had his own advice practise. Gary now runs a 13-bed guest house in the Lake District and is actively involved in the community, sitting as a director on the Keswick Tourism Association and Trustee of Keswick Youth Centre Services.

He is married to Sue and has 2 Labradors, Winston and Sapphire.

Email
[email protected]
Telephone
0808 20 20 888
Alison North

Alison North

Director, FSB

Alison North is passionate about helping small businesses survive and thrive. As a small business owner for more than 35 years, she is well placed to use her knowledge and experience to listen to members and understand their needs on a practical basis for today, and as a future-thinking basis for tomorrow.

Alison’s vision is to bring inspiration, innovation and pragmatism to support FSB as an agile, connected, knowledgeable, diverse organisation, that continues to help small businesses of all sizes to achieve their ambitions, whilst encouraging growth and leadership across the nation and beyond.

Alison has been a member of FSB since 2007. On moving out of London she became more actively involved as a volunteer in her region, becoming the Area Leader for Swindon and Wiltshire. She is active as deputy chair of Swindon and Wiltshire Local Enterprise Partnership and through this role chairs a network of business organisations that provide insight on the economy in the region. Coupled with her international experience working with large multi-national organisations she brings a rounded perspective to business in the UK.

Alison set up her first part-time business at age 19, but it wasn’t until 1986, when in her thirties, that she founded a unique services company focussed on managing information. Understanding that there was to be a huge move from paper to electronic filing, she started down the road that brought us to the world of data we know today.

Alison is patron of the New Information Professionals Award and was the first woman to work on a North Sea oil platform in the 1980s.

Email
[email protected]
Telephone
0808 20 20 888