Helen was born in Liverpool and brought up in North Wales and studied Politics and Parliamentary Studies at Leeds University. She has worked in public policy, communications and social entrepreneurship at director level for over three decades internationally, nationally and at the community level.
"I am delighted and honoured to be joining the Wales Committee. I have great admiration and respect for the work of The National Lottery Community Fund, and the many organisations and individuals benefitting from the funding, advice and support the Fund provides. I look forward to contributing to the organisation's vision of putting People in the Lead and to acting as an ambassador for the Fund's work in Wales, to highlighting the great work being done by organisations and community groups and doing everything I can to spread the message about how important the National Lottery is to communities across Wales. "
Helen has worked in a wide range of organisations including: Parliament and Congress, BBC News and Current Affairs, the National Consumer Council, UK based charities 4Children and DrugScope, the think tank Demos and the New York based Families and Work Institute and was awarded the prestigious Harkness Fellowship by the Commonwealth Fund. Helen has authored a number of publications across a diverse policy portfolio, and has worked as a columnist and commentator for national newspapers and magazines, and as a broadcaster.
In 2010, Helen returned to Wales to live, and joined the Wales Council for Voluntary Action leading the organisation’s policy and influencing work on anti-poverty and European Cohesion Policy for five years. Helen became Chief Executive of Denbighshire Voluntary Services Council in 2016 and will be finishing this role in February 2021.
Helen has been a member of key Welsh Government strategic forums reporting to Welsh Government Ministers including its Budget Advisory Group on Equality, Strategic Equality Plan Board, Human Rights Stakeholder Group, and National Regeneration Panel. Helen was appointed by the Minister of Health and Social Services to serve as an Independent Member (Third Sector) of the Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board from September 2018. Helen stepped down from this role on 23 November in line with the conditions of that public appointment being related to ongoing employment with a third sector organisation in the region in anticipation of her departure as Chief Executive of DVSC in February 2021.
Helen is starting her own social impact consultancy, Wilkinson Bytes Consulting in February 2021.