Leadership and governance

Image: Our executive team

Our residents are at the heart of everything we do. This includes having a leading role in the governance and leadership of Optivo.

We pride ourselves on being different to a lot of other organisations. Residents are at the heart of what we do and resident involvement is central to our culture. At each level of our governance structure, from residents sitting on the Board, down to local repairs panels, our residents work side by side with staff and board members to improve our services.

Read about Optivo’s leading role in developing the National Housing Federation’s Together with Tenants Initiative

Our Board:

Our Board sets the overall strategy for us and makes sure our Executive Team, responsible for the day to day management of Optivo, is working effectively.

The main responsibilities of our Board include:
  • Setting our overall strategy and business plan
  • Making sure our Executive Team is working effectively and has access to the resources it needs
  • Ensuring any risks to the organisation are identified and controlled
  • Monitoring our performance, service delivery and financial viability.

Sir Peter Dixon (Chair)

  • Image: Peter dixonFormer Chair of Housing Corporation

  • Chair of Diabetes UK

  • Former Vice Chair Norfolk Broads Authority

  • Former Chair UCL NHS Foundation Trust


David Clifford (Chair of Audit and Risk Committee)

  • image: Dave CliffordNon- Executive Director at Carpetright Plc

  • Former Audit Partner at KPMG


Nick Stephenson

  • Image: Nick StephensonExperienced economic development consultant

  • Former member of AmicusHorizon London Area Panel


Samantha Herelle

  • Image: Samantha HerelleDirector of Operations at Mount Green HA

  • Formerly worked at Circle and Peabody


Andrew Wiseman (Chair of Growth Committee)

  • image: Andrew WisemanFounded Telford Homes Plc (now Chairman)

  • Experienced developer of mixed tenure housing


Paul Crouch

  • Image: Paul CrouchFormer Chair of the Vegan Society

  • Former Co-Chair AmicusHorizon’s Residents’ Council

  • Chair of Hedgehog Housing Cooperative


Howard Cresswell (Chair of People, Governance, Remuneration Committee)

  • IMAGE: Howard CresswellFormer senior executive at Circle

  • Former Interim Chief Executive of Hornsey Housing Trust

  • Former board member at Ascham Homes


Eugenie Turton

imagine: Eugenie Turton
  • Former Director General for Housing and Planning (central government)

  • Non-Executive Director for Genesis then Notting Hill Genesis (NHG) Housing Group between 2009 and 2018 (Chair of People Committee and Customer Services Committees at Genesis and Chair of Resident Services Committee at NHG)

  • Board Associate and Mentor of Critical Eye network for business leaders

  • Lay member of Salisbury Cathedral Chapter from 2007 to date and Chair of HR Committee

  • Member of the Advisory Council on the Disposal of Nuclear Waste from December 2017 to date.

Geanna Bray (Co-optee)

image: Geanna Bray
  • Gemma has over 20 years’ experience working in the social housing sector
  • Currently Director of Housing, Support & Customer Services with Salvation Army Housing Association


Michelle Dovey (Co-optee)

Image: Michelle Dovey


  • Experienced financial risk management executive

  • Director of MJD Treasury Solutions Ltd

  • Non-executive director at The Riverside Group

  • Board Trustee at Kairos Women Working Together.‚Äč


Candice McCausland (Co-optee)

  • Currently a Delivery Team Manager Image: Candice McCausland

  • Previous Social Sciences Teacher 

  • Accredited trainer (ILM)

  • Qualified Careers Adviser 


Executive Team:

The Board delegate day-to-day management of the organisation to the Executive Team. Find out more about our Executive Team below:

image: involved residents at an Optivo eventResident Governance

We have over 60 residents in our Resident Governance Structure.

They help influence decisions and scrutinise our services. 

The structure also has links with our Board ensuring our residents’ voices are heard throughout the organisation.

Find out more about our resident governance structure.