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Senior Leadership Team

Steve Hoy (Chief Executive Officer) 

Steve Hoy
(Chief Executive Officer)

Steve is a highly experienced CEO with over twenty years’ experience of leading organisations who work for the most disadvantaged and vulnerable people and our society

He brings vision, passion and energy to lead and inspire a workforce and stakeholders and thrives on developing a positive ‘can do’ approach. Over the years and in different roles he has developed a strong blend of strategic and operational leadership

Steve began work as a Careers Adviser supporting young people to make informed career decisions and focussing on those with additional needs.  In later years he became the Chief Executive of a successful Connexions service providing a wide range of innovative support services for young people and adults.

He later led a large children’s hospice in the south east of England before moving to run an adult hospice in the North West.

He is passionate about making the lives of people more rewarding and fulfilling and constantly seeks ways to involve them in the development and delivery of services to meet their needs.

He is excited by the opportunity to further grow and develop Options for Life into an innovative and responsive organisation providing excellent services.


Nicola Thomson (Business Support Manager)

Nicola Thomson (Head of Operations)

Nicola joined Options for Life in October 2017, she comes to Options for Life with previous experience in Further Education and Business Support, Private Sector Schools and the NHS. Nicola has had several different roles over the years and has always worked with young people/adults and local communities. Nicola’s previous role was “Safeguarding and Student Liaison Manager”, she had across college and campus responsibilities for over 10,000 students. Her role was to ensure that student support and extra-curricular activities for students was at the foremost of importance. She managed several areas over the years, including Cross College Enrichment, Sport Makers, Chaplaincy, Welfare, Mentors, Student Liaison Officers, Students’ Union and Student Council to name a few.

Nicola is a dedicated individual and will work hard towards creating positive changes for people with learning disabilities and /or Autism. By ensuring that our opportunities for participants are person-centred, we can focus on the needs of the individual, taking into consideration participant’s preferences, needs and values to guide their Support Plans and Person Centred Learning Plans. In turn this will provide empowerment, development and opportunities in the local community and beyond.



Helen Marshall (Head of Quality)

Helen started her career as an Outdoor Instructor which is where she discovered a passion for supporting vulnerable children and adults. This passion led her to work in a diverse range of roles from working with gangs in London, managing national youth programmes, training and developing staff and clients, all with the aim to support people to discover their potential. Helen believes in enabling and inspiring everyone to achieve and through support to live a good quality of life. Helen is an enthusiastic advocate for change and is committed to help individuals and teams to remove barriers and achieve results. Helen is looking forward to working with Options for Life and supporting its growth and development.