Members of the Board

Ashok Ahir (President)

Ashok grew up in Wolverhampton and his home language was Punjabi. He graduated from Cardiff University in 1992 and did a postgraduate diploma in broadcast journalism at Westminster University, London. He learned Welsh in 2005. Between 1994 and 1998 he was a reporter and producer with BBC Wales. He moved to London and worked on major BBC news programmes, before moving back to Cardiff in 2002 to become Head of Politics at BBC Wales. Between 2012 and 2018 he was a director with Mela communications company. In July 2018 he was appointed Director of Communications with the Wales Office and subsequently became Deputy Director of Communications with the United Kingdom Government. He now works for Qualifications Wales. In October 2016, he was appointed Chairman of the Executive Committee of the Cardiff National Eisteddfod of Wales 2018. He was elected President of the Eisteddfod Court and Chairman of the Eisteddfod Management Board in August 2019.

Andrew Evans (Vice President)

Andrew Evans is a consultant specialising in fundraising and business development for startups, charities and not-for-profits, particularly in the cultural sector. He was formerly Director of Development for National Museums Liverpool and Head of Fundraising and Communications at Liverpool's Bluecoat arts centre. When he isn't working Andrew is an avid reader and enjoys making a mess in the kitchen. He finds it hard to walk past a museum, gallery or library without going in and loves to run the streets and hills around his home in Flintshire.

Lee Yale-Helms (Treasurer)

Lee was born in North East Wales and currently lives in Pantasaph in West Flintshire.  He was educated in Mold, and went to university in Liverpool, studying economics, public taxation and accountancy.  Lee is a qualified accountant and has spent the last 5 years as a Director of Finance working for children’s trusts, and has worked for over 30 years in finance roles in the public sector including a number of years supporting libraries, culture and tourism.  He has been a trustee previously on a national charity for nearly 8 years and is currently Regional President of the Chartered Institute of Public Finance & Accountancy within the area he works.  He is also a trustee on the NLW Pensions Board and an ex-officio member of the NLW Audit & Risk Committee.

Michael Cavanagh

Mike has lived and worked in Pembrokeshire since 2012 after moving from Lincolnshire where he was involved in large heritage and library projects, including the multi million pound project to renovate Lincoln Castle.  Originally from Bolton in Lancashire, Mike has worked hard to improve his Welsh language skills since moving to Wales and he was honoured to win the Pembrokeshire Welsh Learner of the Year award in 2015. Mike is currently Head of Culture, Leisure, Tourism and Registration Services with Pembokeshire County Council. He’s also a Trustee of PATCH, a local food bank and hardship charity, and a Trustee of Pembrokeshire Historical Trust.

Quentin Howard

Quentin is a broadcast engineer, award winning radio presenter and and experienced media executive.  He is recognised as the driving force behind DAB in the UK and led the development of DAB overseas. As Programme Director for the country’s largest radio group, he managed the output of 30 radio stations and was responsible for building Classic FM where he was a presenter. He modernised the Ministry of Defence’s worldwide TV and radio systems, delivering TV via internet and Wi-Fi for British Forces serving overseas.  He created digital video archive services for the Ministry of Defence and is a Trustee for the British Wireless for the Blind Fund. Quentin is a Fellow of the Institution of Engineering and Technology.

Dr Carl Williams

Carl is a senior officer with the police, and is originally from Caerphilly. He studied Welsh at Aberystwyth University, and following a brief period as a secondary school teacher, joined Dyfed Powys Police in 2006. Carl has worked in numerous roles with the police from Strategic Firearms Command to Staff Officer to the Policing Minister in the Home Office and is currently Chief of Staff to Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector of Constabulary. Carl has an MSc in Criminology and Criminal Justice and a doctorate in Criminal Justice.

Dr Anwen Jones

Dr Anwen Jones was brought up in Lledrod, Ceredigion, and still lives locally on a farm in Llanon. She was educated at Tregaron High School and studied for an undergraduate degree in English Comparative Literature and French at Bristol University. After graduating in 1992 she returned home to marry and raise three girls. Anwen has a PhD in the field of European national theatres and has published books and scholarly articles including edited volumes on Wil Sam, the dramatist from Cricieth and Hywel Teifi Edwards, the well known cultural historian from Ceredigion. She is a Justice of the Peace, and Pro Vice Chancellor for the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences in Aberystwyth University and an editor of the Welsh multidisciplinary e-journal Gwerddon.

Dr Elin Royles

Dr Elin Royles is a Senior Lecturer and Director of Learning and Teaching at the International Politics Department, Aberystwyth University where she has worked since 2003. She’s a member of the Centre for Welsh Politics and Society multidisciplinary centre – WISERD@Aberystywth.  Among her main research interests are territorial politics and devolution in the UK, sub-state diplomacy, civil society and language planning and policy. She is part of research projects funded by ESRC and Horizon 2020 and is developing a research agenda which contributes to policy development in Wales. She has undertaken key leadership roles on Welsh matters within the department, and also as the Chair of the university branch of Coleg Cymraeg Cenedlaethol. Originally from Flintshire, Elin is married, a mother to two children, and lives in Aberystwyth.

Dr Gwenllian Lansdown Davies

Dr Gwenllian Lansdown Davies is originally from Bangor but now lives with her husband and four children in Llanerfyl, Montgomeryshire. She studied French and Spanish at Oxford and worked for a while in Galicia and Brussels before completing a MScEcon and PhD in Political Theory at Cardiff University where she also taught as a politics tutor. After being elected to represent Riverside on Cardiff County Council in 2004, she worked as Office Manager for Leanne Wood AM in the Rhondda before being appointed Plaid Cymru’s Chief Executive in 2007. In 2011, she was appointed as a Publications Officer for the Coleg Cymraeg Cenedlaethol at Aberystwyth University where she was also responsible for its research journal, ‘Gwerddon’. She became Chief Executive of Mudiad Meithrin in 2014.


Elaine Treharne

Elaine Treharne, MArAd, FSA, FRHistS, FEA, FLSW, is Roberta Bowman Denning Professor of Humanities and Professor of English at Stanford University in California, where she is also the Robert K. Packard University Fellow in Undergraduate Education and Director of Stanford Text Technologies. A native of Aberystwyth, she specialises in Early British Literatures, Manuscript and Archival Histories broadly, and Digital Humanities. She has published over thirty books and seventy articles on textual culture. Elaine regularly works on manuscripts and writers whose papers are at the National Library of Wales, including Geoffrey Chaucer’s Hengwrt Manuscript, and the work of David Jones, John Gwenogvryn Evans, and T. H. Parry-Williams.

Susan Davies

Sue studied in the National Library as an Aberystwyth English degree undergraduate. She has over twenty years’ heritage sector experience to senior level, specialising in learning, audience development, community engagement and exhibitions after a first career in teaching. Her Pembrokeshire-based cultural consultancy has operated since 2016. Sue’s museum career took her to large museum services in the north of England: Tyne and Wear Museums, Harewood House Trust, Leeds Museums and Galleries. She has an MA in Museum Studies, a PGCE, is an enthusiastic Welsh learner, a Fellow of the Institute of Leadership and Management, has been a Museums Association Wales and is a Group for Education in Museums Wales representative.

David Hay

David is a career archivist, records manager and heritage professional with over 35 years’ experience in the public and business sectors. Until retirement he led BT Heritage and Archives, developing the function into a leading business archive recognised by UNESCO as a significant part of the UK’s cultural heritage, and one of the few corporate archives to be awarded Designated Collection status by Arts Council England and Archives Service Accreditation by The National Archives. He has worked with many museum and university partners on numerous heritage projects, often with external funding, and is experienced in generating commercial income from archive collections. David is also a trustee director of the Sainsbury Archive.

Lydia Rumsey

Having completed a degree in Accounting and Entrepreneurial Management at the Wharton Business School Lydia worked for PricewaterhouseCoopers as a chartered accountant. Emigrating to the United Kingdom she pursued a MSc in Computation at Oxford University and began working with digital technology in the cultural heritage sector. For the last 25 years her career has focused on technological innovation, increasing the availability and accessibility of collections and building good governance. She has worked with universities and major museums including The British Museum, The Royal Collection Trust and the Ashmolean. Now living in mid-Wales, she is an independent steering group member with The Royal National Institute of Blind People.

Dr. Janet Wademan

An alumna of Cardiff University, Janet studied for a BA in Pure Mathematics and following original research was awarded a PhD in Group Theory.  Janet enjoyed a corporate R&D career in the systems engineering, programme management, marketing and international bid directorship of safety critical applications.  In 1995, she founded her advisory practice specialising in technology and innovation. She has been an advisor to consortia of international corporates which resulted in the creation of many 100s of STEM jobs.  She was, from 2006 to 2009, a Member of the Ministerial Advisory Group for the then Department of the Economy and Transport. She also served as a Member of the First Minister's Economic Research Advisory Panel between 2002 and 2012.  Since 1998, Janet has contributed to the common good by her non-executive positions.

Hannah Lindsay

Hannah was born and raised in Newcastle Emlyn, south Ceredigion and now lives in Cardiff. She studied for an undergraduate degree in Modern History and Political Science at the University of Birmingham. After graduating in 2012, she went on to complete a Graduate Diploma in Law, from The College of Law in London. After beginning her career in marketing and communications in London, Hannah’s career took her to Beirut, before returning to Wales where she has since worked primarily in public sector communications. In her current role for NHS Wales, she has worked on the COVID-19 pandemic response and vaccination campaign, with a focus on reducing inequities through engagement with seldom-heard groups.