Our Senior Leadership Team guides our organisation.

Armed with the knowledge, experience and expertise of their fields, our directors have the vision and perspective to drive our organisation forward, stopping the vicious circle of fear and harm that destroys childhood and wrecks community living.

Senior Leadership Team members are:


Matthew Reed, Chief Executive

Matthew Reed

As Chief Executive, Matthew is responsible for the leadership and management of our charity.

Matthew joined The Children’s Society as Chief Executive in May 2012 after two years as Chief Executive for The Cystic Fibrosis Trust. Prior to this Matthew was Marketing Director at Christian Aid.

Matthew is passionate about social justice, opportunity and inclusion. He is now leading The Children’s Society to develop its work with many of the most disadvantaged children in the UK through further tackling the effects and causes of child poverty and neglect.

Matthew has a degree in Theology from the University of Oxford, a degree in Engineering and Management from the University of Nottingham, and a Masters in Management from the University of Surrey.

He is a Member of the Chartered Institute of Marketing, a Fellow of the RSA, and a trustee of Children England. He lives in Buckinghamshire with his wife Jennifer and two teenaged children.

Links: Read Matthew's media statements and Meeting Matthew Reed, a blog story by Aaron Thomas Rowles.



Lily Caprani, Director of Strategy and Policy

Lily Caprani Photograph © The Children's Society

Lily oversees strategy, communications and advocacy leading on campaigns, research and policy, church and community participation and evidence and impact at the national children’s charity.

Lily is a passionate and committed advocate for young people, with a particular interest in children’s rights to full participation, protection and provision of support

She campaigns for better protections for young people facing the greatest challenges to their physical and emotional well-being – those who suffer abuse and exploitation, trafficking, and poor treatment in the care system.

Recent activities include: securing legally-empowered advocates for trafficked children through lobbying on the Modern Slavery Bill, campaigning for better protections for 16 and 17 year olds in the Serious Crime Bill, campaigning to end to forced destitution of asylum seeking families and supporting a major parliamentary inquiry into the risks faced by children who run away from care. 

Career highlightsLily was Head of Communications at Rethink Mental Illness and played a key role in launching the major anti-stigma social marketing campaign Time to Change, which has changed attitudes to mental health.

Prior to this, she represented clients through her community legal practice in social welfare cases and social care support issues.

Before that she worked in a number of frontline community support roles, particularly in youth participation and inclusion, child protection, services for Looked After Children and in mental health settings. 


Val Floy, Chief Operating Officer

Val Floy Photograph © The Children's Society

Val leads our directorates that drive new business development and deliver direct services to children and young people.

This area of work includes product development, commercial processes, delivering direct services, and identifying new partnerships and business opportunities. Her teams drive restricted income generation and work across the country to develop and deliver innovative solutions to directly change the lives of children and young people. 

Career highlights: Val has worked in the voluntary children's sector for over 20 years, starting her career by developing a family centre in inner-city Birmingham. She has experience in operational delivery at regional and national levels. At Spurgeons, she led the quality and service improvement function; Her last role at the charity involved setting up a new business development department, and overseeing the marketing and fundraising teams.

Personal: Val has direct experience of working in Africa and Eastern Europe with street children. She is a trustee of Retrak, an international charity working with street children in Africa.


Steve Porter, Finance and Corporate Services Director

Steve Porter

Steve is responsible for our professional services activities, including finance, IT, estates, legal affairs and business planning.

Career highlights: Chief Executive of PRS for Music and Group Finance Director of Tring International PLC; 25 years in the private sector and management consultancy; trained with PricewaterhouseCoopers and is a qualified chartered accountant (ACA). 


Heather Rutherford, Director for Human Resources and Organisational Development

Heather Rutherford

As our interim director, Heather leads our teams of human resources business partners, shared services, payroll, reward, volunteering, diversity, and learning and development.

Career Highlights: Heather has worked across a variety of not-for-profit, charity and voluntary sector organisations. She has previously been responsible for a number of supported housing projects, providing accommodation and support for mothers and children, young homeless people and young people leaving care. 

Heather is a Chartered Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development. She is passionate about making a positive difference for our employees and beneficiaries, in the firm belief that motivated staff provide great services.

Personal: Heather lives in Leicester with her Husband Brian.