Meet Our Board

Image of Paul Grifffiths, Prior for Wales

Paul Griffiths OBE KStJ DL
Prior for Wales (Chair)

For six years, Paul Griffiths chaired the Gwent Council for St John Ambulance Cymru, whilst also serving as a National Officer for the Police Superintendents’ Association, having previously served as an active senior police officer. Paul has a long history of commitment to voluntary and charitable causes including serving as a trustee for Police Care UK and the Police Arboretum Memorial Trust, and volunteering as a Telephone Friend with the Royal Voluntary Service. Paul was awarded an OBE for ‘services to policing’ in 2021.


Image of Caryn Cox

Caryn Cox CStJ

Chancellor (Vice Chair of the Board) and Chair of People Committee

Caryn has over 30 years’ experience in health care and social care across the NHS, local government, World Health Organisation, the EU and within the private sector. In her current role as a consultant in public health in the NHS in Wales and England,with a specialism in communicable diseases/health protection, she played a key part in the COVID-19 pandemic response in Wales and England. She has been involved with St John for over 40 years, starting as a member of St John Ambulance in England in childhood. She has been a trustee of St John Ambulance Cymru since 2017, Chancellor since June 2023 and currently chairs the People Committee.


Rev David Morris CStJ
Priory Dean and Chair of Pro Fide Committee

Originally from the Rhondda Valley, David has been an Anglican priest in Wales for thirteen years. He was once the youngest priest in the Church in Wales and in 2024 became its youngest ever bishop, being appointed Assistant Bishop of Bangor, adopting the title of Bishop of Bardsey. A senior member of staff in the Diocese of Bangor, David has served as Diocesan Director of Ministry for the past two years. He is also a Residentiary Canon of Saint Deiniol’s Cathedral in Bangor. David has been a chaplain within St John Ambulance Cymru for over ten years and currently serves as Dean of the Welsh Priory. As Priory Dean, he is responsible for nurturing and sustaining the Christian ethos of the organisation and providing pastoral care to all staff and volunteers through chaplaincy provision. David joined the Board in 2020.


Image of Emily Bristow

Emily Bristow OStJ
Chair of Digital and Data Committee

As Head of Customer Success for UK multinational software corporation Blue Prism, Emily has worked with many major customers to help make the most of their digital workforce. Previously, Emily was the UK Head of Intelligent Automation at the global IT consulting firm CGI before joining Blue Prism in June 2018. An MSc graduate, Emily has more than 10 years’ experience across a variety of IT and operational roles. Emily’s first encounter with St John Ambulance Cymru was when she joined the charity as a Badger in Gwent in the 90s. Her involvement with the charity has now come full circle as she became a trustee in February 2021 and is the board lead on digital and data development and compliance.


Gillian Knight RGN, DipISM

Gill registered as a general nurse in 1994  and has held a varied range of senior nursing positions across care sectors and in the NHS primarily in cancer care including clinical practice, education, Cancer Services Coordinating Group, the Wales Cancer Network and was appointed as a Nursing Officer for Welsh Government  in January 2018. Gill had worked within the Welsh NHS for over 27 years since moving to Wales from her native Ireland. She now supports the Chief Nursing Officer as a nursing officer in the Welsh Government, providing professional advice for various policy areas. Gill has worked with a number of third sector organisations as a nurse adviser to support nursing workforce developments in Uganda. In her spare time, Gill enjoys running, cycling and deep sea diving.


Image of Helen Wilson
Helen Willson
Chair of Impact and Fundraising Committee

Helen spent 15 years running the Museums and Heritage Service at Caerphilly County Borough Council where she was Principal Museums & Heritage Officer between 2007 and 2017. There, she was responsible for the successful management, development and delivery of the Museums & Heritage Service, its sites, staff and volunteers. With a passion for volunteering, Helen has given her time to support several charitable causes including the Cub Scouts and her local PTA. In her current role, Helen is responsible for leading on volunteering and participation for the National Trust in Wales and has brought her third sector expertise of volunteer-based charities to the St John Ambulance Cymru board since February 2021.


Image of James O'Connor
James O'Connor OStJ FCA CEnv MRSC
Chair of Financial Resource Committee

James joined the not-for-profit sector in 2016 after over a decade with PwC, the world’s largest firm of professional advisors. A Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants, James brings his experience of governance, risk management and stakeholder alignment to St John Ambulance Cymru where he has served as a trustee since early 2021. James is currently Director of Corporate Finance at Pobl Group, Wales’ largest housing association, where he oversees the strategic treasury approach for the loan and capital markets portfolio to fund the development of more homes for people in need. He is also a non-executive board member for other organisations supporting vulnerable people, collaborative development of energy-efficient new homes and effective use of heritage assets.


our board member jean white

Professor Jean White CBE MStJ, RN, PhD, DSc, MSc, BN, RNT

Professor Jean White was born and brought up on the Gower Peninsula but has spent nearly 40 years living with her husband Andy, in the county of Mid Glamorgan. Jean trained as a general nurse in Swansea and originally practised as a theatre nurse in Wales and London. Jean has held positions in nurse education, at the Welsh National Board for Nursing, Midwifery and Health Visiting, Health Professions Wales and Welsh Government and was Chief Nursing Officer for Wales and senior adviser to Welsh Government between October 2010 – April 2021. She has worked with the ministries of several European countries and is an adviser to the World Health Organisation. Now retired from the civil service, Jean is a Visiting Professor of Nursing at University of South Wales; Independent Council Member at Bangor University; Panel Judge for the national St David Awards; Trustee of the South Wales Police Youth Awards; and in March 2023 she began a 12 months role as High Sheriff of Mid Glamorgan.


our board rhys jenkins

Rhys Jenkins LLM

Rhys has practiced as Barrister at Colleton Chambers since 2019, focusing on Family Law and Civil Law across the South West. Beyond a busy practice and family life, Rhys enjoys giving his time to organisations close to heart. Rhys has experience being a Trustee at Cardiff University and the Cardiff University Students’ Union from 2014-2015. He also took on the role of Vice President Education during this time. Between 2015-2017 Rhys was an Institutional Reviewer at the Quality Assurance Agency (QAA), reviewing user experience, academic rigour, and good governance. In his free time, Rhys is a Cymru Councillor for MS Society. Rhys works with staff and volunteers to assist and support the delivery of the aims of the Society and promote its work. With a background in Higher Education, Quality, and students, Rhys is hoping to assist with the development of a learning culture and embracing diversity at St John Ambulance Cymru.

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