We are incredibly grateful for all of the support we receive from our trustees.

Andy Seferta

Chair of Trustees and Business Development 

Tonia BallI joined as a non-exec trustee in 2013, then as full trustee from 2014 and am now very proud to be the Chair of Trustees at The Joshua Tree.  I feel privileged to be able help the charity achieve even more, as we grow and evolve.

Since graduating with BSc and MSc degrees from Leeds University in the 1990s, I have held a variety of senior business roles in the IT sector with Fujitsu.

I am married with three children, love watching and playing snooker, and am an avid Aston Villa fan.

Tonia Ball

Deputy Chair of Trustees & Legal

Tonia BallI was introduced to Lynda and Dai in 2012 when my eldest son was recovering from a bone marrow transplant to treat a rare blood disorder.

I could see immediately that The Joshua Tree’s support service for families affected by childhood cancer was invaluable. From my own experience, I know what it is like to receive a diagnosis and have your world turned upside down, to feel isolated from “normal” life, to watch your child endure chemotherapy and all its side effects, to see years of what should be their carefree childhood taken from them by the disease and to see the effect, not just on them, but also on their siblings and other family members. Whilst the medical profession do an amazing job taking care of the patient, The Joshua Tree take care of the whole family, both during and after treatment.

Before having children, I worked as a corporate lawyer and now I’m delighted to be able to use that legal background in my role as one of the trustees of The Joshua Tree.

Dai Hill

Founder and Trustee

Tonia BallHaving graduated from Southampton University with a PhD in Chemistry back in 1990, I have undertaken a variety of roles within the Health and Safety Executive in Buxton ever since. My current role is in the field of risk assessment and computer programming, but I have also had experience of project management.

Lynda and I got married in 1990, moving to Northwich and settling here, we brought up our three children, now young adults. Josh’s diagnosis in 1999 was a huge shock for us all. His illness changed the direction of our lives. As a consequence of our experiences as a family, we put all our efforts into developing The Joshua Tree, and it has been wonderful to see it grow and flourish. We have had the privilege of helping many families through their own cancer journey over the years and we will strive to enable this work to continue.

I have varied interests and love to try new hobbies. Over the years I have dabbled with photography, close up card magic, and spray paint art (but not really mastered any of them!!). I really enjoy playing board games and solving puzzles. I would love to develop and run an ‘escape room’ or ‘board game’ café.

Dr Susan Gilby

Clinical & Strategy

Tonia BallHaving graduated in both music and medicine at Manchester University, I then completed my postgraduate medical training in Manchester and Liverpool.

I first worked at The Countess of Chester during my specialist training, having previously worked as Medical Director at Wirral University Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust and Wye Valley NHS Trust and as Associate Medical Director at Mid Cheshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. I was a consultant in anaesthesia and intensive care medicine at Mid Cheshire NHS Foundation Trust and at the Liverpool heart and Chest NHS Foundation Trust.

I joined The Countess of Countess in August, 2018 as Medical Director before becoming Acting Chief Executive in October 2018 and then the substantive Chief Executive in April 2019.

I have lived with my husband and three children in Mid Cheshire for 28 years.

Follow Susan on Twitter: @GilbySusan

Paula Byrne

Legal & HR

Tonia BallI am a solicitor with over 35 years experience in employment law working with employers in both the public and private sectors across a range of industries.

I am now retired from legal practice and I joined the Joshua Tree as a Trustee in March 2022.  I am delighted to have the opportunity to  use my legal  knowledge and experience to help and support the team at The Joshua Tree.

Dr John Archer


Tonia BallI was recently appointed the Head of Radiotherapy Services at The Christie NHS Foundation Trust, after helping to setup the UK’s first high energy proton beam therapy (PBT) service over the last three years.

For much of my career I have been a Medical Physicist, completing a PhD at the University of Liverpool in 2008, before going on to work across a range of healthcare settings.  Through my work within the PBT service, I have not only been at the heart of developments in paediatric radiotherapy, but has witnessed first-hand the wider impact childhood cancer can have on a family.

Judith Malley


Tonia BallI joined the trustees as a Non-Executive Trustee in April 2018. Having graduated from Liverpool University with a degree in Economics I have worked in accountancy and taxation with several large practices. I currently work with the Finance Manager to help ensure the financial policies and procedures are practical and robust and to ensure that the Charity continues to operate from a sound financial footing.

Kate Dobb

Marketing, Communications and Research

Tonia BallI was delighted to join The Joshua Tree as a Non-Executive Trustee in 2018.

From my first meeting with Lyn and Dai I was impressed with their drive to support families in the region affected by childhood cancer. As a long-term childhood cancer survivor myself, I understand how the diagnosis of this disease affects not just the child themselves, but their parents and siblings too.

I currently work in external communications, so I hope to use my knowledge and experience of the media to help spread the word about the wonderful work of The Joshua Tree. It is a privilege to be working with the team at such a critical time.

My career started in medical research and I hold a PhD in Molecular Biology. Using this background, I plan to assist with research projects at The Joshua Tree to benefit the childhood cancer community.

Tracey Harrison

Oncology Lead

Tonia BallI qualified as a Registered General Nurse in 1991 and on completion of my training I worked on a general medical ward with children.

In 1993 I qualified as a registered children’s nurse and continued to work in general medicine.

In 1995 I began to work on the children’s home care team and in 1991 took a Children’s Community Specialist Practitioner BSc degree. During this time I worked extensively with families who have children with oncological conditions, this has included children both during and at end of life care.

In 2017 I became the lead nurse for the local hospital for children who have an oncology diagnosis which involves working in conjunction with the Primary Treatment Centres to deliver continuity in care for these families.

My involvement with The Joshua Tree began when I was fortunate enough to be one of the team of nurses who cared for Josh and his family at home. I hope that my experience and knowledge enable me to be able to support the staff working at The Joshua Tree.

Diane Halsey ACIS

Governance and Compliance

Tonia BallA Chartered Secretary with over 35 years experience as Company Secretary and Director in both the public and private sector across a range of industries including construction, manufacturing, supply chain management, higher education and the NHS.

Now retired, I am enjoying spending time with my three young grandchildren but good governance remains my passion and I continue to provide some professional coaching and mentoring in this area.

David Perrin


Tonia BallI joined the charity as a Non-Executive Trustee in 2019 and a Trustee in 2021 having held positions on several Senior Leadership Teams.

My professional background is in both Business Development and Operations in the property and asset management markets where I have been responsible for multimillion £ business areas.

I am especially excited to assist the charity progress further now that the Support Centre is built and operational.

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