Heather Keates: CMA’s founder and Chief Executive Officer.


Heather has spent 20 years working in the field of debt advice. As well as running CMA she continues to volunteer at her local CMA centre. She lives in rural Shropshire with her family and happily spends her free time sewing, knitting, strimming down brambles and cheering on her beloved Brighton and Hove Albion football team.

Meet the CMA Team: Heather Keates

Heather Keates

John Franks: Chief Operating Officer.


John had a career as a retail director and project manager before joining CMA in 2007. He is responsible for CMA services, projects and planning, along with the management of the CMA staff team. He became a Christian at the age of nineteen and is now a member of the Third Order of the Society of St. Francis. When not working for CMA, John enjoys creative pursuits. He is a published author, musician and actor, and holds a degree in Fine Art sculpture. Married with one (grown) son, John and his wife endeavour to be good stewards of a smallholding in West Wales along with their dog, cat, chickens and horses.

Meet the CMA Team: John Franks

John Franks

Rory Sanders: Operations Support Manager (North West & North Wales), Training Programme Manager.


Rory has been involved in debt advice since 2004 and has opened 3 debt advice centres. He currently runs a debt centre in his home town of Congleton. Rory has been a foster carer for 14 years and currently has two long term placements at home which, together with 4 children and 4 grandchildren makes for a busy household! He is a trustee at his local church. Sorbet making has recently featured prominently in his life with kiwi, pineapple, apple and mango being the favoured flavours! When he has time he enjoys chilling out in the attic with his model railway and going away with the family in the caravan.

Meet the CMA Team: Rory Sanders

Rory Sanders

Steve Bolton: Operations Support Manager (London SE).


Steve joined CMA in 2012, coming from a background in regulated financial services, and bringing experience of advice and management. In the first few years with CMA, he also worked in foodbank development with The Trussell Trust. With a heart to serve and support others, Steve is active in various roles within his local community, including overseeing the Watford CMA centre.

Meet the CMA Team: Steve Bolton

Steve Bolton

Duncan Harkness: Operations Support Manager (South West & South Wales).


Duncan is a huge motorsport fan and a keen photographer and cyclist (though not at the same time!). He is married with two children and a menagerie of pets, is a member of Institute of Money Advisers and gained a BA (Hons) degree in Advice in 2013. 

Duncan worked for many years in the banking industry before jumping ship and training as a debt adviser in 2003.  He has worked for several charities providing money advice to clients experiencing personal debt as well as specialist advice to those who are self-employed. He has established and managed money advice services and remains a front-line adviser in his home town of Cheltenham. Duncan became OSM for the South West and South Wales in 2015, and particularly enjoys supporting Centre Managers and seeing them develop their own vision for money advice in their communities.

Meet the CMA Team: Duncan Harkness

Duncan Harkness

Kate Downward: Head Office Administrator.


Kate manages administration, treasury, website, conference and data management work from our Head Office in Shrewsbury. She has a wide range of administrative and financial experience from her work as an external auditor with the Audit Commission. She is also a debt adviser at her local debt advice centre in Shrewsbury. Kate is married with two primary aged children and enjoys overseeing the youth work at her local church, and playing bass guitar.

Meet the CMA Team: Kate Downward

Kate Downward

Jenny Spence: OSM South.

Jenny wears many hats.  She variously trained as accountant and garden designer, and has sold children's clothes and plants.  She joined CMA as OSM for the South in February 2019 having been a volunteer at Money Lifeline Basingstoke since 2010.

She is musical, leading the band at her church, and playing viola for the Basingstoke Symphony Orchestra, but she is happiest when treading the boards taking on roles in a local Gilbert and Sullivan society.  In her free time she enjoys playing with her plants, and doing jigsaws.

Jenny Spence

Mark Johansson: OSM North East.

Mark was appointed as the OSM for the North East Region in February 2019 - he also works as a volunteer debt adviser (since 2017) at his local CMA office in Hull. Previously to this, Mark served as a Police Officer for 30 years in his local Force, enjoying a varied and rewarding career before retiring in 2017.

Mark is married, and has 3 children & 6 grandchildren, and in his free-time enjoys walking, cycling, and DIY as well as following the fortunes of Leeds United FC!

Mark Johansson

Isla Biggs: Specialist Support.

Isla is the Specialist Support Manager, responsible for the telephone and e-mail advicelines for CMA centres as well as the Catalyst Support system. She also co-ordinates the CMA Debt Relief Order service for centres who do not have their own Approved Intermediaries (AI), acting as the AI in many cases or passing them on to other qualified and experienced AIs.

Isla trained in retail and corporate banking before taking a career break. She started her own property rental business whilst she brought up her two (now adult) sons. During this period, she volunteered in a debt advice service for some years, before founding a CMA centre in her local church in 2010. She helped found the local Foodbank under the banner of Durham Christian Partnership (DCP) and oversaw the transfer of the CMA centre to DCP. CMA County Durham now runs in conjunction with the County Durham Foodbank and Isla is the Lead Debt Advisor with five other paid staff as well as volunteers. 

Isla is active in her local church and is a Triathlon groupie, following her husband to events around the world.

Isla Biggs

Claire Daniels: Hub Debt Advice Coordinator.

Claire has managed our CMA debt advice centre in Scarborough for over 10 years and has both the Certificate in Money Advice Practice and an MA in Social Welfare Law and Advice Practice.

She has also been a CMA trainer for 6 years and helps to work on developing Catalyst. Claire is also a musician, loves writing devotional materials and has two fabulous teenagers.

Claire Daniels