Senior Leadership Team

Senior Leadership Team

Rachael Bice - Chief Executive Officer

Rachael Bice

Rachael moved to Yorkshire in 2019 from Cornwall to lead the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust team. She brings 20 years of experience across the public sector, mainly focussed on strategic change through partnership and policy development. 

She has a deep passion for personal growth, our relationship with animals and the environment, and seeks out the wild whenever she can, now often in the Dales and North York Moors. These passions are reflected in her academic studies of Land Economy, Equine Science and Anthrozoology, and a desire to create mainstream ideas from eco-psychology and deep-ecology.

She is an RSA Fellow and a member of Homeward Bound, an international leadership network for women seeking to create a more sustainable world.

Amanda Spivack - Director of Fundraising and Engagement

Amanda Spivak

Amanda has worked as a fundraising and marketing specialist within the charity sector for a little over 25 years. Her career began in community fundraising with the NSPCC and Scope, before moving into national events and grants management at Deafblind UK and The Wildlife Trusts, and alumni donor development at Robinson College, Cambridge. More recently, she has enjoyed senior management roles with the RSPB, Environment Agency and The Wildlife Trust for Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Northamptonshire. Amanda was Chair of the Institute of Fundraising East Anglia for four years, and was awarded Fundraiser of the Year for her dedication and success within the sector in 2016.

With significant experience of managing diverse teams, Amanda provides strategic direction and skilled, practical support to enable and empower Yorkshire Wildlife Trust staff to make a greater and lasting impact for Yorkshire’s wildlife and wild places.

“I truly believe that Yorkshire’s communities can make a difference to what we can achieve as a charity. Yorkshire pride, strength and passion attracted me to this magnificent county of rugged, wild landscapes - with its white, chalky cliff tops; serene wildflower meadows; meandering rivers and gritty, urban landscapes, I know that the people who live here are proud and protective of all that is Yorkshire.

By connecting with them and their and communities, and hearing and amplifying their voice, I think there is still a chance that we can protect and save some of Yorkshire’s most precious wildlife and wild places before they disappear forever. We just need to work together.

Yorkshire has some of the most wonderful landscapes, seascapes and people, and I feel privileged to work here and call it my home.”

Martin Slater - Deputy CEO

Martin Slater

Martin has had a varied career with technical and leadership roles in the private, NGO and public sector. He began his career as a contaminated land scientist working for a consultancy engaged in an innovative project to remediate a redundant gas works site in Blackburn, Lancashire using bioremediation techniques. After completing a Masters in Environmental Science he then moved to Lincolnshire where he helped establish an environmental charity specialising in professional regulation for the burgeoning environmental sector. This later became the world renowned Institute of Environmental Management and Assessment. Martin then returned to the consultancy sector where he worked as an environmental scientist for an engineering consultancy based in Glasgow undertaking environmental impacts assessments for a wide range of infrastructure projects across Scotland, Wales and England.

Most recently Martin has worked for the Environment Agency for 23 years in a variety of management roles in Cambridgeshire and Yorkshire. His time in the Cambridgeshire Fens opened his eyes to the potential for reversing biodiversity decline through landscape scale nature restoration through his involvement in the Great Fen project with The Wildlife Trust for Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Northamptonshire, the Wicken Fen expansion with the National Trust and the Ouse Fen Nature Reserve project with the RSPB and Hansons. In Yorkshire he led a number of catchment scale restoration initiatives including ambitious projects to restore wild Atlantic salmon to Yorkshire’s rivers. Working for over a decade with many dedicated organisations and individuals this culminated in the return of salmon to the River Don in south Yorkshire after an absence of around 200 years.

“I am so excited to be joining Yorkshire Wildlife Trust at this pivotal period for nature conservation in Yorkshire and across the globe. It is no exaggeration to say that this decade is the one where we as individuals and as a society must turn the corner on climate change and biodiversity decline. The future will belong to those organisations that not only conserve our wildlife on land and at sea but vigorously restore and expand habitats and natural processes so all of us in town and country can experience wildlife and wilderness at close range. This is what I want Yorkshire Wildlife Trust to do'.

Darren Tiffney - Director of Finance and Central Services

Darren Tiffney

Darren joined Yorkshire Wildlife Trust in 2021 as Director of Finance and Central Services and is responsible for the Trust's finances and central support functions that ensure that the Trust operates smoothly.

A qualified chartered accountant with the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA), Darren has enjoyed a variety of diverse careers to date including managing a group of UK Art Galleries, Head of Finance at a BAME focussed Arts Charity and most recently Head of Finance at UK and International Property Development company.  Alongside this, Darren has contributed to several local charities as Honorary Treasurer.

Darren has extensive experience with change management programmes, financial systems restructuring, risk management and charity governance.  Outside of work, Darren is a reluctant gym attender, occasional half marathon runner, avid Artist and frequently disappointed supporter of Middlesbrough FC.

"I am thrilled to be able to contribute to this important charity at a key moment in its history.  The climate and diminishing species challenge we all face both on a local, National and International level requires participation, enthusiasm, desire and hard work on every level, and I am looking forward to playing a small part on that process

Danny Heptinstall - Director of Policy and Partnerships

Danny Heptinstall

A born and bred Yorkshire lad, Danny couldn’t be happier returning to his homelands to work for the Trust. Previously, Danny has worked as an evidence specialist and policy advisor to Parliaments, Governments and NGOs across the UK, Europe and at the UN. Giving Danny extensive experience in relationship building and in strategic policy development. At the Trust Danny leads on developing our conservation strategy and on developing and maintaining strategic relationships. Do get in touch with Danny to discuss how we could work together for Yorkshire’s nature.

Tracey Davison-Franks - HR and Training Manager

Tracey Davison Franks

Tracey has worked at Yorkshire Wildlife Trust for more than 10 years, having previously worked for another very different charity.  She is passionate that amazing nature conservation can’t happen without dedicated, supported and ambitious staff, and her role on the Senior Leadership Team enables her to input into discussions that look to align our People Strategy with the Trust’s wider business planning and strategic focus.

Her main areas of experience and long term passions are staff engagement and health and wellbeing. We rightly spend time and energy promoting the value of being involved with nature to people outside the Trust, so it is crucial that we also do our utmost to ensure that we look after the health and wellbeing of our staff teams.

Her ambition for the Trust is to achieve the vision of creating a Yorkshire rich in wildlife for everyone, in a organisation that is diverse and inclusive and reflects the communities we work with. Together, we can make a lasting difference to our local wildlife and their habitats in a way which actively demonstrates that we are Wild About Inclusion!

"This role brings together my interest in wildlife which was piqued by a very enthusiastic primary school teacher and professional interest in supporting and developing people as an organisation’s greatest asset.

Every day is a school day at Yorkshire Wildlife Trust and it is a privilege to work for an organisation where you can be involved with people and projects that have so many positive impacts on the wildlife and people of Yorkshire."