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Conference 2017 Speaker Profiles

Colin Church - CEO - CIWM

Colin Church - CIWM - SquareColin Church is the Chief Executive of CIWM, the professional body for resources and waste management. He is a member of the Newcastle Waste Commission and Chair of the Circular Economy Task Force, a business led group convened by Green Alliance that aims to lead policy discussions with ambitious business thinking. He is also a Trustee of CHEM Trust.

Previously, Colin was Director, Environmental Quality in the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra). His responsibilities there included the Government’s policies on adaptation to a changing climate, air quality, industrial pesticides, industrial pollution prevention, local environment quality, nanomaterials, noise, ozone depleting substances, pesticides, resource efficiency/waste and sustainable procurement. He was responsible for the Government’s support for waste infrastructure development, and led for Defra on climate change mitigation. He was also a non-executive director of WRAP, the waste reduction and resource efficiency body. Across his 21-year Civil Service career Colin worked on a range of other issues too, including readiness for and reaction to exotic animal disease outbreaks; two stints working in the Cabinet Office on better regulation; developing an EU network of telecommunications regulatory agencies whilst posted to Oftel; and a period in the Secretariat to the Council of Ministers of the EU.

You can follow Colin on twitter: @DrColinChurch



Dominic Hogg- Founder & Chairman - Eunomia

Dominic Hogg Headshot MED

Dominic is the Founder and Chairman of Eunomia Research & Consulting. He has worked in the environmental field for over 25 years as a campaigner, researcher and consultant during which time he has developed a reputation for pushing the boundaries of what can be done for the environment within the bounds of economic viability. With an honours degree in physics from the University of Oxford, and a PhD on the economics of technological change from the University of Cambridge, he has undertaken a wide range of cross-disciplinary projects related to waste and resources policy for (amongst others) UK Government departments, Scottish Government, Natural Resources Wales, Environment Agency, Overseas Governments, OECD, European Commission and European Environment Agency.

His expertise spans:

  • strategic, market and policy analysis with regard to waste;
  • incentives in the waste management sector (landfill / incineration taxes, pay-as-you-throw / variable charging schemes, producer responsibility, deposit refunds);
  • development of waste management strategies and plans;
  • market-based instruments for environmental policy (including emissions trading);
  • environmental fiscal reform (ecological tax reform);
  • circular economy business models;
  • the economics of air pollution;
  • cost-benefit analysis;
  • ex-ante and ex-post evaluation of policies;
  • agri-environmental schemes / payments for ecosystem services;
  • competitiveness analysis;
  • and analysis of commodity markets.

He is most at home working on projects which demand a critical perspective, and application of novel approaches to pressing environmental issues. He works closely with Eunomia’s team of modelling experts to bring new insights and understanding to complex issues of high policy relevance. Follow Dominic on Twitter: @Dom_Hogg


Robin Osterley - CEO - Charity Retail Association

RobinOsterley - CRA - SquareRobin Osterley is Chief Executive of the Charity Retail Association, the UK’s only trade organisation representing the interests of charity shops and their parent charities. He has extensive experience in membership associations, having previously spent 16 years as Chief Executive of Making Music, the UK’s leading association for amateur musical organisations, as well as a short time as Chief Executive of sports umbrella Supporters Direct. Alongside this management experience Robin has a longstanding background in lobbying and advocacy work, and he has been a representative on numerous Government and industry forums including the Music Business Forum and the board of ACEVO. He was also, with others, responsible for setting up the sector skills council for the creative and cultural industries, CCSkills.  

Robin’s 20 years in the third sector were preceded by a number of years in senior marketing positions in the computer industry, from which he escaped in 1993 to move into the arts. He also maintains a healthy extra-curricular interest in music, and thus has a slightly unusual combination of third sector management experience, commercial marketing acumen, and the ability to conduct a choir! He is married with two sons and two grown-up daughters, and lives in a cute village just outside Ware in Hertfordshire. Follow Robin on Twitter @ROsterley



Claire Astbury - External Affairs Manager - National Housing Federation 

claire ashridge photo SquareClaire Astbury has represented the work of housing associations in the East of England since 2004.  Her main focus is to build relationships with housing associations and strategic decision makers across the region and she regularly acts as a spokesperson on housing, economic, health and welfare issues.

Claire worked for housing associations and local authorities before coming to the Federation, starting out on the front line in allocations and housing advice and subsequently moving to housing policy roles.

Claire was a founder of the EDGE Forward mentoring programme, which is now delivered nationally by the Housing Diversity Network and has supported hundreds of mentees. Follow Claire on Twitter @ClaireJAstbury

When asked about speaking at the FRN Annual Conference Conference 2017, Claire explained: 

“I’m proud to represent housing associations who work with and for communities across the country to improve lives, as well as provide good quality, affordable homes. Homes and furniture go together which is why many associations work with reuse networks to help people access affordable furniture and white goods. I hope that being involved in the FRN conference can build new partnerships between these two types of community organisations.”




Alan Wheeler - Director - Textile Recycling AssociationAlan Wheeler - TRA NEW

Alan’s cut his teeth in the recycling sector by working for a voluntary group in West Midlands in the 1990s before establishing himself in the local authority sector.   As a recycling officer he was part of a team that was only the third local authority in the UK to introduce alternate weekly collections.  When the scheme was introduced it was very successful and hugely popular with the vast majority of residents.

He was then appointed to the Textile Recycling Association as National Liaison Manager in 2003 and became Director in 2013, the same year that he was appointed as General Delegate of the Textiles Division at the Bureau of International Recycling.  The global trade association for recycling industries.

His work has taken him as far afield as China and the USA and many places in-between.  Alan has written numerous articles on the used clothing and textile recycling industry and is regularly interviewed by the trade press and national media. 

He was also recently appointed onto the Advisory Group of the European Clothing Action Plan and I sit on the steering group of the Sustainable Clothing Action Plan.



Michal Len - Director - RREUSEMichal Len, Director, RREUSE

Michal Len is Director of RREUSE, a European representative body for social enterprises active in the field of re-use, repair and recycling. He has been with the organisation since 2011 and specialises in EU waste and product policy.  He is also EU policy advisor to the UK's Resource Association representing the UK's reprocessing and recycling industries in Brussels. Previously Michal has held a number of different roles relating to environment policy and environmental management, which included independent consultancy work on a transport related project for the Greens/EFA Group in the European Parliament. Michal holds a Master's Degree in Environmental Policy and Regulation. You can follow Michal and RREUSE on Twitter: @Mik_Len and @RREUSE_Brussels




Ben Thomas - Sustainability Manager for Reuse & Recycling - John LewisJohn Lewis

Ben is responsible for ensuring the successful development and delivery of a robust circular economy strategy for John Lewis. Working closely with internal and external stakeholders to explore opportunities for John Lewis to close the loop on waste, and drive the transition towards a more sustainable retail sector. Ben has extensive experience working with the UK retail sector, WRAP and ZWS.

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