Board Members

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Ann Ferguson

Chairwoman

“I have been exceptionally fortunate in being able to spend most of my working life doing what I love doing – making a difference to people’s lives. Initially this was as a community development officer working at local level, helping communities respond to challenges around them. This involved setting up new organisations as well as supporting existing ones. This led to becoming a development officer for Age Concern Scotland (now Age Scotland).

During my 30 years with them I had a number of roles, ultimately Head of Policy and Public Affairs. My more gratifying achievement in that role was to campaign for and secure the Adult Support & Protection (Scotland) Act 2007. Something which is still protecting vulnerable people across Scotland. The last 5 years of my working life were with Prostate Cancer UK, initially as Head of Scotland Operations and then Associate Director Community Services for the whole of the UK. I was drawn to that role through personal interest in the disease which affects my family. Likewise I have had a long term interest in hearing loss having suffered hearing loss initially in my 30’s.

I served for three years on the Action on Hearing Loss Advisory Committee before joining Dumfries & Galloway Hard of Hearing Group a couple of years ago.  I am honoured to have been elected as Chairman of this wonderful organisation and am committed to bring any knowledge and experience I have to that role.”

Brian Monnier

Treasurer

“I have been involved with the group for a couple of years as a volunteer maintaining hearing aids in 3 clinics. I have recently joined the board as I believe this is a great group and I wanted to get involved with the mechanics of running such a group. I find it very satisfying on a personal level and also on a level that I am able to help support people in my local community with hearing loss.”

John Gillan

Trustee

As a retired teacher I was looking for something to occupy my time when Ann Ferguson entered my life courtesy of my wife’s yoga class. Ann told me of the work of the Hard of Hearing Group and suggested I come along to a Board of Trustees meeting to see if it was something I was interested in joining. I enjoyed the meeting and felt I could contribute and so I joined in October 23. Joining the group has increased my awareness of difficulties of being hard of hearing and how isolating that can be.

Jon Joy

Secretary

Having just turned 60, though still feel and sometimes act like I’m in my 20s, and being forced to semi retire for health reasons, I unexpectedly found myself with that rare precious commodity – time.

After visiting and using the services of my local drop in to get a tube for an aid, and after chatting to the volunteer, I signed up. It was clear I could be useful here!

I have had hearing related issues since birth and now wear a BAHA (bone anchored hearing aid) so am well acquainted with the whole world of hearing loss.

It’s now been over 12 months and it’s just become so much clearer how valuable the service that we offer is. For someone to come to a centre feeling frustrated because their aid “isn’t working”, to go out with a smile on their face for the sake of a new tube – priceless!

I also have other skills learnt over the years that can be utilised to help keep the DGHHG going and expanding so accepted a request for me to join the board. And I’m honoured to do so.

Hugh Donaghy

Trustee

“Hi there, I am Hugh!
I work for RNID and have done for the past 12 years. Historically I was the Scotland Volunteering
Projects manager, which involved me in managing projects which utilised volunteers in their
delivery, including the Hear to Help projects which RNID had in Scotland. My current job role is
Development Office for Scotland.
I was born with hearing loss (single sided deafness) and with the hearing in my other ear
deteriorating I have been a hearing aid wearer for 15 years. Initially I had a single aid in my one
functioning ear. However, I switched to bi-cross aids about 7 years ago and believe that they have
had a transformative impact on my life.
I have been a Community Development worker in and around the Greater Glasgow area for 30 years
in various roles in both the local authority and 3rd sector.
I have an historical link with the D&G HoHG in that I worked with Martin and Denis about 2010
supporting you guys with volunteer development and other functions which we were piloting as part
of the RNID Hear to Help model. So, to an extent, being a trustee is a natural progression in my eyes,
and one I am delighted about.
I hope that my lived experience of deafness and associated challenges, and my professional
experience in the sector are of benefit to the HoHG going forward.”

Jacquie Tosh

Trustee

I am Jacquie Tosh, a retired teacher, latterly as a teacher of pupils with severe and complex learning difficulties. I have worked in several spheres, with Adult Basic Education, with speakers of other languages who wish to learn English, with Young Offenders within the Prison system, with young people looking for help.
I have a hearing problem dating back several decades and wear 2 hearing aids, recently upgraded to Bluetooth enabled ones, which has changed my life! From avoiding telephone conversations, I’m now enjoying them again.
I hope my input will help pupils in schools, young people at college and others in the workplace with hearing loss be heard and noticed by those around them. The pandemic highlighted how isolated many of those with hearing loss are or have become and we need to advocate for them.
What I hope to bring to the group is my wide experience in education of all types, with people who have had difficulties in different areas of their lives and to assist the group in widening out their remit to be of as much help as possible to those with hearing loss.

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