DYW DG Regional Group Board

Iain SteeleChair of DYW DG Board

Iain Steele, Chair of Dumfries and Galloway Developing Young Workforce, started his working life as a 16 year old apprentice electrical fitter, continuing with further education and progressing through IET recognised training programmes. He has worked as an operational project engineer across all disciplines in SPEnergy Networks including power network design, repair and maintenance of high voltage equipment. He has also worked on project management of major network connections such as New Hairmyres Hospital in East Kilbride, Coca-Cola Schweppes factory expansion in East Kilbride and the power network design and build development within Strathclyde Business Park near Bellshill.

For the last 15 years Iain has been involved in people management, and he fully understands the commitment all parties in the workplace must have to the development of the workforce.

As someone who left school to join an apprenticeship scheme in parallel with further education and now manage people development through similar routes, he firmly believes in the core principle of closing the gap between the education system and place of work.

Iain Steele


Mel McGillBoard Member

Mel McGill is the Chair of the Dumfries & Galloway Parent/Carer Forum and is committed to encouraging and promoting communication between parents and employers and schools to ensure all young people are aware of and have access to all learning and career pathways available to them.

With 9 years’ experience of chairing Parent Councils in the primary and secondary schools her two children attend, she is excited to work with parents, DYW DG and D&G Council to make sure young people are supported to reach their full potential.

Mel McGill


Andrea GlassBoard Member

Since 2015, Andrea Glass has been the Regional Skills Planning Lead for the South West of Scotland and Forth Valley at Skills Development Scotland (SDS).   

For the twenty years prior to this she worked in the Training and Employment Research Unit at the University of Glasgow, a multi-disciplinary centre for applied, economic and social research where she was appointed Depute Director in 1995.  Much of her work fed directly into informing the policy development and implementation processes for making more effective links between jobless individuals and employment opportunities.

Andrea was also a Director of Govanhill Community Development Trust (a subsidiary of Govanhill Housing Association) that works to facilitate economic development in a disadvantaged area of Glasgow from 2002 to 2015.

Andrea Glass


Douglas RussellBoard Member

Douglas joined Armstrong Watson in January 2012 to take up the Dumfries office leadership role while also focussing on the audit, corporate and professional practice clients in Dumfries & Galloway. He has further developed new client business in the region and helped to build Armstrong Watson’s profile in Scotland, having led the integration plan for the newly acquired Glasgow Office.

Having previously worked at Partner level in Edinburgh with Scott & Paterson and then Baker Tilly, Douglas has over 33 years experience in the profession, typically working with owner managed family businesses, providing advisory and compliance needs. His clients have the benefit of his breadth and depth of expertise over a broad range of business sectors and size and shape of businesses.

Douglas is also a Director of D & G Chamber of Commerce and is proud to be involved with DYW Dumfries & Galloway in his capacity as an Advisory Board member. He is keen to see clearer paths for young people to enter the professions from school or as graduates, and having trained, mentored and advised dozens of young people over his career, he takes great pride in seeing trainees achieve profession qualifications and progress their careers.

Douglas is a keen Golfer, enjoys running, foreign travel and is a keen Hearts Supporter (with Queen of the South a strong second team!)

 

Douglas Russell


Tom ArmstrongBoard Member

Tom Armstrong is President of Dumfries and Galloway Chamber of Commerce. He recently retired from banking after 41 years. He is Chair of the Princes Trust for Dumfries and Galloway. He is passionate about helping young people achieve their full potential and ensuring that they have access to all the opportunities that are available to help them do this. He represents the Chamber of Commerce (who are the host employer for the DYW project) on the DYW board.

Tom Armstrong


Dr Gillian BrydsonBoard Member

Dr Gillian Brydson has worked within Education Management since 1995, firstly within the University sector as a senior lecturer and since 2002 with Dumfries and Galloway Council. Her chief role since 2015 has been Head of Education and Chief Education Officer.  

"It is a great privilege to be accountable for the quality of our schools and the learning of our children aged 2 to 18. All leadership roles in education and in public services bring challenges but the rewards of working for our school communities are great.

"Every day at work I am motivated by working alongside other lead learners – our skilled, professional teachers and headteachers across Dumfries and Galloway who are committed to providing the best experiences and outcomes for all our young people."

 

Dr Gillian Brydson


Drew EastonBoard Member

Drew Easton taught at Barony College for thirty-two years and was Head of Engineering for over twenty, at one point during an expansion phase he was Head of Engineering and Agriculture. Barony was one of the Colleges which merged to become SRUC and post-merger Drew was Senior Tutor and Dean of Campus with responsibility for all academic issues, staff support and campus facilities – his role was to maintain quality of teaching and learning and to ensure the smooth running of the campus on a day to day basis. Before setting up his own company Drew Easton Consulting, Drew was Head of Faculty for Engineering and Construction at Dumfries and Galloway College with responsibility for over fifty staff and the curriculum for each respective area.

Drew is married and enjoys travel and walking, he has a passion for motorcycles and restoration, where he is able to maintain and develop his engineering skills – he considers every day to be a school day!

Drew Easton


Stephen MontgomeryBoard Member

Originally from Enniskillen in Northern Ireland, Stephen Montgomery joined the Army at the age of 16, and left in December 1991 due to the amalgamations of Regiments within the Army, having served in the 1st Gulf War and tours of N Ireland. He started his first business in 2002 in road haulage, later moving into the hospitality trade.

He is currently Vice President of the Scottish Licensed Trade Association, who are an association who represent the licensed on-trade in various roles from debating legislation in Holyrood with MSPs to fighting the rates issues and implementing the Minimum Unit Pricing, and also working along side colleagues in the rest of the UK with issues within the trade, and taking these issues to either local government or Westminster for debate.

He is the a former President of the SW Scotland Licensed Trade Association, and also Dumfriesshire LVA, and a qualified trainer in World Host Principles of Customer Service. This gives him opportunities throughout the hospitality sector in a consultancy role to develop and train staff in the clients premises and also give the client a platform to increase business and retain staff.

"Recruiting and retention of staff is a passion of mine, and through being an ambassador for Springboard Scotland, this gives me the ideal platform to communicate with schools and other areas to develop future staff for our region within the hospitality sector."

Stephen Montgomery


Douglas SmallBoard Member

DYW board member Douglas Small lives in Dumfries with his wife and three children. He has been with Ashleigh since its inception in 2001 and has played a key role in the company’s development over the intervening years. As one of the founder directors of the company, Douglas has been involved in the majority of the successful projects completed over the years. He initially led the Estimating team before the role of Business Director.  He is responsible for the securing of contract workload, tender procurement, project negotiations, and leading the design evolution on a number of strategic frameworks and projects undertaken.
With over 30 years building industry experience, Douglas specialises in the commercial aspects of the construction. Over the years he has developed a broad knowledge of procurement from traditional to bespoke design & build approaches, together with the ability of finding positive solutions from his in-depth knowledge of construction industry methods and costs.

Together with the company model of organic growth and career progression, Douglas is a keen advocate of promoting opportunities for young persons and committed to the delivery of projects with community involvement, added value and local supply chain companies. He has been in a number of schemes enhancing the companies involvement within the construction projects.

Douglas Small


Brian JohnstoneBoard Member

Brian Johnstone is Regional College Chair for Dumfries and Galloway, and a member of the DYW National Advisory Group. He is a board member of a number of companies, and is a Chartered Accountant. He studied production engineering and accountancy at The University of Strathclyde, and since graduating around 35 years ago, has been assisting businesses and other organisations in the areas of strategy, finance, and restructuring.

Brian is passionate about education, and is particularly enthusiastic about the importance of bringing schools, colleges, universities and employers around the one table.

 

Brian Johnstone


Lee GodfreyBoard Member

As a child, Lee’s family owned a hotel and butchery operation in Blackpool. Growing up in the hospitality industry and spending time amazed by the machinery in his father’s meat operation, a working and socialising/hospitality ethic was instilled in Lee from an early age. He and his brothers were encouraged to learn the trade, from understanding meat cuts to making sausages to the importance of hygiene and technical requirements and more.

After high school and after a short period working for Royal Dutch Shell as a navigating cadet, qualifying as the youngest 3rd officer in the fleet with a Higher National Diploma in Nautical Science, Lee joined the family business, now based in Kelloholm, as a trainee manager working across all aspects of the business.

Lee says, “Seeing Brown Brothers in Kelloholm grow over the last 25 years makes me immensely proud and the 600 team members on site are, in my opinion, second to none in the food industry.

Employing over 1200 people throughout the group and well over one hundred 16 to 24 year olds, I am delighted to be part of the DYW DG Regional Board, representing the food industry in Dumfries and Galloway."

Lee Godfrey

WE ARE VERY PROUD TO WORK WITH:

DYW DG has helped Morrisons to make Stranraer's young workforce in aware of the good career options in supermarket retail, as well as opportunities for career progression. With DYW’s help, we created a schools' presentation to highlight the opportunities available within Morrisons to school leavers and the young workforce, which gave local pupils a better understanding of how the food retail sector operates. I would definitely recommend a partnership with DYW DG and I look forward to working on other projects with the DYW D&G team.

Eleanor, People Manager, Morrisons, Stranraer

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At Forest Enterprise Scotland (FES), we are committed to advancing equality of opportunity. The partnership we have established with DWY DG will allow us to reach out to more young people, including young women. We want to highlight the variety of roles and careers in the industry and encourage young people to consider an apprenticeship with FES as a pathway into a career in forestry, and DYW DG are important and valued partners in this process.

Ashley Woodhouse, Forest Enterprise Scotland

Working in partnership with DYW DG, we have had great success in targeting potential future candidates in areas to suit our operational activities within Dumfries and Galloway. Since our involvement with DYW D&G, we have successfully recruited 11 trainees within Dumfries Galloway over the last 18 months and discussed our various training programmes with around 2,500 of our young people at a number of events.

Kenny Bowie, Head of Planning and Design, SPEN, Dumfries.

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SRUC’s Barony Campus students were given a unique entrepreneur opportunity thanks to DYW DG and Chamber of Commerce partnership working and support for the introduction of the ‘Entrepreneur Aspire’ Award. SRUC looks forward to offering this entrepreneur opportunity next academic year, with a possible option to include other regions within Scotland. It is a pleasure to work with DYW DG, who are so enthusiastic and supportive of our students and their business aspirations for the future.

Julie Parker, Senior Tutor, SRUC Barony Campus

When recruiting our new trainees, DYW DG's input and co-ordination between agencies helped invaluably in guiding us through what assistance was available and the processes therein. We would certainly use DYW’s contacts and again, especially accessing young talent.

Susan Sutherland, Crichton Executive Officer