Our Team

Our Team

The Whiteley Homes Trust is managed by the Leadership Team, composed of the Chief Executive and 4 additional senior managers.

Our Trustees and Leadership Team work collaboratively to sustain Whiteley’s thriving community, to provide outstanding accommodation and care, and to develop and share our success, so more older people can live happy and fulfilling lives.

If you are interested in working or volunteering at Whiteley Village, please visit the ‘Working at Whiteley’ section of our website.


Leadership Team

Chandra McGowan – Chief Executive

ChandraI qualified as an Occupational Therapist in Oxford and worked for many years in services for people with Learning Disabilities. This was through a period of change in the 1980/90s that saw the closure of long stay institutions and new opportunities for integration into community living. What I saw in terms of transformed lives inspired me to study for an MSc in Social Policy. I then took on a variety of roles in strategic planning, development and commissioning for Social Services, the NHS and briefly the Audit Commission.

During this time I was also a trustee on the Board of Surrey Community Action, an infrastructure organisation supporting the voluntary sector.

I moved fully into the Voluntary Sector when appointed Operations Director at Enham Trust, a provider of services to people with disabilities, in August 2010. There I had responsibility for operational service delivery of care, support, housing, employment, learning, information, advice and guidance services, volunteering and business development.

Whilst at Enham I was also appointed the Lay Member for Patient and Public Engagement to the Board of the new Clinical Commisioning Group where I live.

My job a Whiteley allows me to bring my passion for social justice, empowerment and connection, to the lives of the older people of limited means that we support.

Martin Garbett – Director of Community Services

martinI joined the Trust in March 2015 as the Director of Community Services where I lead our integrated care and support services, our CQC regulated activities, our housing functions, chaplaincy, volunteering , hospitality functions and the leisure centre.

I have worked in the provision of services for older people since 1987, starting my career as a Care Assistant in a day centre, working through various roles in local authorities for 24 years and the voluntary sector for the last 4 years where I joined the Trust from a Charity for working age adults where I was the Head of Community & Transitional Support.  I hold the Level 7 Executive Diploma in Management.

In my spare time I am a professional ‘potterer’, enjoying time in my garden as well as travelling and skiing.

Stephen Williams – Director of Finance

steve wI am an experienced finance professional having worked in the commercial, public and most recently in the charitable sector. During my career I have undertaken leadership roles in relation to operational and strategic development in a variety of companies, most relevant was my time at the Nursing and Midwifery Council and the Cystic Fibrosis Trust.
This has given me insight into other areas of business and I have enjoyed developing my knowledge of HR and IT issues especially.

Having initially aspired to be a teacher after leaving university I am very keen to help all staff understand the finances that underpin our organisation and the role they have to play in this important aspect of our work. I also believe firmly that our residents and other stakeholders should have information to assure them that the charity is spending wisely and making financial provision for the future.

I continue to retain links with other organisations, where I sometimes help with recruiting the right people into senior Finance positons.

Katherine Sargent – Director of People and Transformation


Ethna Mertens – Interim Matron

Ethna Mertens for website