An International Network: We are One St John

Whilst we globally all come together under one banner, one eight-pointed white cross, the heart of St John lies in local communities – St John’s shared mission to be a global leader in first aid and medical responses to community healthcare needs starts with neighbours; it starts in village halls and community centres; it starts in streets, schools, and youth clubs.

Consider our International Office your international Town Hall. Our Trustees are your Town Council. We’re here to help you be the best St John establishment possible. Please never hesitate to get in touch.

St John International Office (London, UK)

  • Susan le Jeune d’Allegeershecque

    Susan le Jeune d’Allegeershecque

    Secretary General of The Order

    Susan joined St John in December 2021. She leads the London team, providing strategic direction, and oversight of the Order’s global activity. She heads the team’s work with the Order’s governing bodies on risks and opportunities. The Secretary General is also responsible for the safeguarding the work of the Order’s Honours and Awards system.

    Before joining St John International, Susan was a British diplomat, ending her career as High Commissioner in Canada. In her 36 year foreign service career, she served as Ambassador to Austria and concurrently Permanent Representative to the UN organisations in Vienna, Human Resources director, deputy Ambassador in Colombia and Venezuela, and also worked in the USA, Singapore, France and the UK representation to the EU. 

  • Jenny Wilcox

    Jenny Wilcox

    Chief of Staff

    Jenny joined the St John International Office in January 2023, after 19 years at the UK Foreign Office in London and overseas—in Burundi, Japan, Rwanda, and Canada.

    Her responsibilities include supporting strategy delivery and business planning, liaising with Trustees and other senior members of the Order on the management of our global governance systems and events, reviewing our office administration systems and policies, and being the focal point for the International Youth and Women’s networks.

  • Steven Wilson

    Steven Wilson

    Head of Chancery

    Steven joined the International Office in January 2018. Steven’s role is to manage the Order as a Crown Order of Chivalry. He has responsibility for all aspects of the honours and awards system, including admission to and promotion within the Order, other awards, ceremonial events, and relations with other orders of chivalry.

    Formerly a military diplomat in Beijing with a 35-year career as an officer in the Royal Air Force with experience with defence relations with China and as a fast jet fighter navigator.

  • Gareth Walker

    Gareth Walker

    Head of Programmes

    Gareth joined the St John International Office in September 2018. Gareth’s work focuses on developing ways for the international family of St John establishments to work together, learn together, and ultimately deliver better and more effective services all around the world.

    Gareth has over 20 years of experience working with international humanitarian and development organisations to address the rapid onset and chronic population needs developing from conflict, floods, cyclones, droughts, and epidemics such as cholera and Ebola.

  • David Tarbun

    David Tarbun

    Digital Officer

    David joined the St John International Office in January 2023. His role is to manage the existing IT solutions and contracts within St John International to ensure we have the appropriate solutions and are getting value from them. David provides a first point of contact for St John International for any technology issues and is available to offer advice and assistance from a technology perspective for any ongoing projects staff may have.

    Prior to joining St John International, David had over 15 years of experience with IT support and project management in both the charity and private sectors.

  • Tracy Frederic

    Tracy Frederic

    Communications Officer

    Tracy joined the St John International Office in September 2021. Tracy’s role is to create original content for St John online platforms (website and social media platforms), contribute to the creation and delivery of the annual communications plan, and support all overseas St John establishments with communications activities.

    Tracy has nearly 15 years of extensive knowledge and experience working within the charity sector; some of her roles include working in direct marketing, communications, and fundraising.

  • Chris Smith

    Chris Smith

    Finance Director

    Chris joined the St John International Office in February 2023. Chris’ responsibilities are to look after all thing’s ‘finance’ for St John International, be it producing the Order’s statutory accounts and managing the external audit process, strategic financial planning and putting together the annual budgets for approval by the Board of Trustees, managing the day-to-day operational activities including payroll and much more.

    Chris has accumulated nearly 20 years of charity finance experience and is thrilled to be working with such a wonderful organisation.

  • Jessica Smith

    Jessica Smith

    Head of Communications

    Jess joined the St John International Office in May 2023. In her role, Jess works in collaboration with St John Communications Teams around the world to develop and deliver the story of St John International and increase awareness of our shared global impact and value.

    Through the development of our Global Image Library, our Communications Community of Practice and our shared Canva space, Jess oversees the continued development of our high-quality communications for international audiences. As the point of contact for any central branding and visual identity queries, Jess supports our consistent brand look and feel around the world, facilitating the sharing of expertise and resources in our Establishments.

    Jess has a strong background in communications, raising awareness of student mental health, suicide prevention, and children’s human rights.

  • Sylvia Chopamba

    Sylvia Chopamba

    Programme Manager

    Sylvia joined the St John International Office in November 2014. Sylvia is responsible and accountable for providing broader maternal and child health-focused strategic and technical direction, coordination, and management across sub-Saharan Africa (St Johns in Malawi, Uganda, Zambia, and Zimbabwe).

    Before joining St John International, Sylvia worked at Afya Mzuri in Zambia, providing oversight to the design of monitoring, evaluation, learning systems, programme implementation, and the production of quality, innovative, and impactful reports.

  • Nada Abdelghany Awaga

    Nada Abdelghany Awaga

    Programme Manager

    Nada joined the St John International Office in November 2022. Nada’s role involves managing the development of the best practises management guidelines for delivering First Aid as a Social Enterprise, in addition to designing and implementing the St John global leadership development programme to prepare St John future senior leaders.

    Nada is an Egyptian international development professional with 8 years’ experience, working on different projects in the MENA region to promote enterprise development and the empowerment of women and youth.

  • Laila

    Laila Hussain 

    Office Manager

    • Laila joined the St John International Office in April 2024. Laila’s role is to ensure the running of the St John International office and oversee building administration, event management, dealing with routine correspondence, providing support to the Finance Director, and providing ad hoc assistance.
    • Laila has nearly 6 years of office management experience working in a non-profit sector; some of her other roles include working in healthcare, travel, and retail.

A Crown Order of Chivalry

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    His Majesty King Charles III

    The Sovereign Head

    His Majesty The King Charles III is the Sovereign Head of the Order. The Sovereign Head makes such appointments within the Order as he in his absolute discretion shall think fit. The King graciously sanctions all lists for admission to and promotion within the Order by his signature except in the case of Canada and Australia where the sanction is of the Governor-General acting on his behalf. Furthermore His Majesty signs the Sovereign’s Award certificates awarded to St John people between the ages of sixteen and twenty-five for outstanding achievement in personal development and benefit to the community through the work of St John. His Majesty The King’s Heirs and Successors shall be the Sovereign Head of the Order.

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    His Royal Highness Prince Richard, Duke of Gloucester

    The Grand Prior

    The Grand Prior of the Order is appointed by the Sovereign Head after consultation with the Grand Council and hold’s office during the pleasure of the Sovereign Head or until resignation. His Royal Highness Prince Richard, Duke of Gloucester is the Grand Prior of the Order and was Installed at a ceremony on 12 June 1975. The Grand Prior has supreme direction and administrative and executive control over the Order, its Establishments, its other subordinate organisations, and its Members. His Royal Highness Prince Richard, Duke of Gloucester personally signs Warrants of Appointment, approves the honours and awards, and other matters which require his attention, such as senior appointments and regulation documentation, and regularly officiates in St John ceremonies, and attends Grand Council meetings.

The Great Officers

Our Great Officers play a central role in shaping the Order’s strategy and values and in fostering co-operation between the Order’s Establishments – Priories, Commanderies and St John Associations – throughout the world.

The Great Officers are members of the Order’s Executive Committee and have a central role in the Order’s governance. Together with the other members of the Executive Committee, they are charity trustees for the purposes of the Charities Act 2011 of England and Wales, under which the Order is registered.

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    Lord Prior

    Professor Mark Compton AM GCStJ 

    Mark is an experienced Non-Executive Director, Chairman and CEO, predominantly in healthcare and life sciences organisations and including charitable organisations.
    He joined St John Ambulance in Australia as a Cadet in 1974. In June 2019 he was appointed Lord Prior of the Order. Before this appointment Mark was Chancellor of the Order of St John in Australia.
    Mark is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors; Fellow Australasian College of Health Services Management; Fellow Australian Institute of Management, Fellow of the Royal Society and Adjunct Professor in Healthcare Leadership at Macquarie University, Sydney.
    He is an active volunteer firefighter with the NSW Rural Fire Service in the Southern Highlands of NSW.
    Mark has been awarded the Centenary Medal of the Commonwealth of Australia; appointed a Member in the Order of Australia (AM) in January 2010 for services to health, hospitals, medical research and promoted to Bailiff Grand Cross in the Order of St John in 2017. 


    Photo credit: Julian Calder


    What is the role of the Lord Prior?
    The Lord Prior is the most senior non-Royal member of the Order. As the Lieutenant and Deputy of the Grand Prior he or she is authorised to exercise any powers and authorities which the Grand Prior may delegate to him or her pursuant to the Order’s Statutes, is the principal advisor to the Grand Prior and represents the Grand Prior.
    The Lord Prior acts as the chair of the Order’s Grand Council and Executive Committee and works closely with the Order’s Secretary-General and International Office.
    The Lord Prior is appointed for a period of up to three years, with the possibility of re-appointment for a further period of up to three years. 

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    Tim Stevens CBE GCStJ 

    Tim has been the  Prelate of our Order since 2016. He was Bishop of Leicester from 1999- 2015; he was Convenor of the House of Lords Bishops from 2009  to 2015; Chair of the Children’s Society 2004 to 2010; Board member of Norfolk and Suffolk NHS mental health trust 2015 to 2019 and is now chair of the Woolf Institute In Cambridge. He was appointed CBE in 2016.  


    What is the role of the Prelate? The Prelate is a bishop of a church which is a full member of the Anglican Communion. He or she is adviser to the Grand Prior and the Lord Prior on matters relating to the Order’s relationships with Christian churches and other faiths around the world. 

    The Prelate advises on the forms of religious services and Order prayers to be used on special occasions. He or she convenes the College of Deans, which comprises all the Sub Prelates and Deans of the Order’s Priories and offers advice and support on the appointment of Deans and Sub Prelates. In recent years the Prelate has chaired the Order’s Nominations  and Appointments Committee.
    The Prelate is appointed for a period of up to three years, with the possibility of re-appointment for two further periods of up to three years. 

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    Tom Budd GCStJ

    Tom was born in Australia. He has lived most of his adult life in the UK, working as a finance partner in an international law firm in London, where he co-chaired the firm’s global finance practice group and managed its London office.
    Tom’s involvement in St John began with his appointment as Deputy Honorary Legal Counsel in 2016. He worked with a former Chancellor, Patrick Burgess, on a comprehensive review of the Order’s governance, culminating in the drafting of a revised Royal Charter and a new set of Statutes and Regulations.
    In addition to his role as Chancellor of the Order, Tom acts as trustee of the British Society of Gastroenterology and Foothold (the Institution of Engineering and Technology Benevolent Fund). 


    What is the role of the Chancellor? 

    The Chancellor has overall responsibility for the Order’s status as an order of chivalry of the British Crown, monitoring and ensuring the efficient development and operation of the Order’s system of honours and awards, ensuring the highest ceremonial standards, and fostering relations with the other Johannine Orders of St John and other orders of chivalry or knighthood.
    The Chancellor also chairs the Order’s Honours and Awards Committee.
    The Chancellor is appointed for a period of up to three years, with the possibility of re-appointment for a further period of up to three years. 

  • Steve Evans 1


    Steve Evans GCStJ

    Steve joined Hato Hone St John in 1985, and was appointed an Area Chair (for 16years) and during that time also held the role of Regional Chair. Steve was appointed Chancellor for the St John Priory in New Zealand in 2014 – a role he held until 2020. He is a current member of his local St John Area Committee and is still active as a health shuttle team member. He has been our Sub-Prior since June 2022. 

    Steve held the position of Consultant Maxillo Facial Surgeon to Waikato Hospital in New Zealand from 1984 until 2022. During his tenure, he spent three years as the Director of Specialty Surgery, and four years as a member of the Hospital Management Committee. 

    In his spare time, Steve enjoys fishing, cycling and spending time with his wife Maree, their children, grandchildren – and the dog!

    What is the role of the Subprior? 

    The role of the Sub Prior is to support Priories as they roll out a programme of support to the Associations, to offer advice and expertise, to identify and to implement regional projects and to enhance the effectiveness of St John operations. Furthermore, the Sub Prior encourages the development of regional capacity, supports the Order’s regional leaders and ensures that the global nature of the Order is understood and communicated globally.
    The Sub-Prior is appointed for a period of up to three years, with the possibility of re-appointment for a further period of up to three years. 

Our Governance Bodies

Grand Council

The Grand Council is the Order’s governing body. It is responsible for strategy, policy, and constitutional issues, including appointments to TEC and OHAC. The Council also has ultimate responsibility for the Order’s budget. All other committees report to the Grand Council and it must meet at least once a year. Its members are the Great Officers, the Prior or Chancellor of each Priory, the Eye Hospital Chair, the Hospitaller.

Trustee Executive Committee (TEC)

TEC is responsible for the management and administration of the Order.  A standing committee of Grand Council, its members are the trustees of the charity. Ensuring that that Order meets the requirements of UK charity law is at the heart of its responsibilities. They are the Great Officers, and Chair of the Eye Hospital, between three and six Priors or Chancellors. The Priory representatives are not there to represent their own interests but the interests of the Oder as a whole. The committee overseas the work of the International Office and the everyday operation (financial, administrative, and regulatory) of the Order. It meets at least three times a year.

Trustees (The Order’s Executive Committee)

  • Ss 2

    Stuart Shilson

    Prior, England and the Islands

    Stuart has served as Prior of St John (and Chair of St John Ambulance) in England since 2022 where he is undertaking a comprehensive review of strategy, governance and operations.  He has over 25 years of service within St John, including helping develop flagship programmes such as the Disaster Preparedness Training in the Caribbean and the Mother & Baby Programme in Sub-Saharan Africa. He has worked as a barrister and then strategy consultant, in the UK Government’s Cabinet Office (on performance and innovation), and as an Assistant Private Secretary to Queen Elizabeth II.  A committed volunteer with a track record of innovation, he is President of Goodenough College, and has served as Vice-Chair of the British Red Cross, Chair of Bridges to Prosperity UK, a Board Member of Whiteley Homes (where he helped set up the Whiteley Foundation for Ageing Well), and at Westminster Abbey (where he has supported its digital development).  In 2020 Stuart volunteered to support the UK authorities in their response to the Covid-19 pandemic and subsequently received a formal Commendation for his role in the military’s support to the NHS.


    Photo credit: Julian Calder

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    TEC Member

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    Paul Ndungu

    Prior, Kenya

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    TEC Member

  • John Whitehead 1 Scaled E1716215080641

    John Whitehead

    Chancellor, New Zealand

    John is Chancellor of St John Hato Hone (New Zealand) and chairs the Priory Board, the Nominations and Appointment Panel and the Priory Honours Committee. He is an ex officio member of all the Committees of Priory Chapter and the Priory Board. 
    John has wide-ranging public sector experience and was Secretary to the Treasury from 2003 to 2011. He has extensive governance experience, including as Executive Director on the Board of the World Bank Group, where he also chaired the Budget Committee and was a member of the Audit and Ethics committees. He is currently a director/trustee of a range of other charitable boards and has carried out a number of reviews for Government. John also sits on the on the (NZ) Royal Commission into Covid-19 Lessons. 
    He and Eileen have six children/stepchildren and six grandchildren

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    Dr Chung Chin-Hung

    Prior, Hong Kong

    Dr. Chung is a medical specialist in general surgery and emergency medicine.  He was the founding President of the Hong Kong College of Emergency Medicine from 1996-2002.  Dr. Chung officially joined Hong Kong St John Ambulance Brigade in 1991.  He has been elected Council Chairman and Prior of Hong Kong St John Ambulance since 2017.  He has introduced Automated External Defibrillation, Prehospital Trauma Life Support, Advanced Medical Life Support, Pet First Aid, Basic Life Support in Obstetrics, and All Hazard Disaster Response courses into Hong Kong St John Ambulance.  First Aid training has been put online and certified in ISO 9001:2015. He served as Member of the Trustees Executive Committee from 2021-2024. 


  • Sir Andrew Cash Scaled E1716214598793

    Sir Andrew Cash OBE

    Chairman, SJEHG

    Andrew is the Chair of the St. John of Jerusalem Eye Hospital Group (SJEHG), a Trustee of the Executive Committee and is Chair of the Europe, Middle East, and Africa (EMEA) region. 
    Prior to joining SJEHG, Andrew worked in the UK’s National Health Service (NHS) at local, regional, and national level. He was a Chief Executive for many years, including at one of the largest Trusts in the country. He has also been non-executive Chair of one of the country’s Integrated Care Boards, was the founder Chair of the NHS Foundation Trust Network and Deputy Chair of the NHS Confederation which represents all employers in the NHS.  
    Andrew has worked nationally on a number of occasions, most recently as a Director General particularly with the DH, NHS and MOD. He was knighted for services to health care in 2009. Andrew has an active family life, enjoys all sport and the outdoor life. 

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    Dr Rima Nasser-Ferris

    Independent Member

    Rima’s executive career was spent with PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), where she held a number of senior leadership positions in addition to acting as adviser to the boards of numerous leading UK and international organisations.

    Rima has held non-executive appointments for over 10 years, operating across the arts and education sectors.

    Rima is a former Director of Finance of Shakespeare’s Globe, the world-renowned theatre, education centre and cultural landmark. Until recently she was also Trustee of the Primary Science Teaching Trust, the UK’s leading educational charity, with focus on improving science teaching amongst non-specialist primary school teachers. 

    Rima joined the St John board in 2020 as an independent trustee.  She is a long-standing supporter of the St John family, having served as auditor of the St John Eye Hospital in Jerusalem, Finance Director of the International Office, and member of the Guild of St John Eye Hospital.

Other Committees:

Nominations and Appointments Committee (NAC)

The NAC is a standing committee of the Grand Council and is responsible for managing the recruitment and appointment of the Great Officers and the Secretary General. It also evaluates candidates recommended for appointment as Chair of the Eye Hospital. At the conclusion of the recruitment process, NAC makes a recommendation to the Grand Council.

The Committee is made up of at least two members, appointed by the Grand Council. Its chair is a member of the Grand Council (currently the Prelate). The Statutes make it clear that as well as managing recruitment, NAC should be looking to identify candidate well in advance of vacancies to allow for effective succession planning.

Order Honours and Awards Committee (OHAC)

The OHAC, currently made up of the Great Officers, not less than one independent members and the other members of TEC as observers. It customarily meets after each meeting of TEC. It considers recommendations for honours and awards and is responsible for the fair and consistent operation of the honours and awards system across all the Order’s establishments.

Pro Fide Committee

This committee is responsible for providing guidance and advice to the Great Officers and TEC to ensure the maintenance and enhancement of the Christian nature of the Order.  Its remit covers pastoral, spiritual and religious matters relevant to the Order. The College of Deans may submit reports to the committee, and it may also consider matters passed to it by Establishments and (when appropriate) members of the Order.

Its members are the Great Officers , seconded members of the TEC (where appointed) and additional members as co-opted by the committee. Seconded and co-opted members serve for a term of three years, extendable by a second 3 year term. They must be members of the Order, and make a declaration of faith.  The Committee is chaired by the Prelate, and it is responsible for devising its own rules and procedures.     

In practice, the majority of recent work falling to the Pro Fide Committee has been taken on by the College of Deans.