Hi, I’m Tracy Sheppard and i’m the founder of TalkFIRST. 

I am passionate about supporting family life through improved communication and the understanding of each other to help resolve and prevent conflict.

I facilitate family mediation and work to help build better relationships. I am accredited with The Family Mediation Council; member of The College of Mediators.

Martine Delaney, Trainee Mediator & Trustee (Chair)

I am a Chartered Legal Executive and an accredited civil and commercial mediator.  After 20 years of representing clients in dispute I considered that encouraging my clients to seek a solution and be part of that process might reach a better outcome than a court decision.

As part of the mediation process disputing parties can drive a resolution that best suits them.  At the end of the day no one knows better than the parties in dispute what will work best for them and people are more inclined to work with a plan they have been a part of.  That applies at work and at home.  A happy and healthy home life is a vital foundation for all of us.

Stacey Keggin, Building Better Relationships Worker

I have recently joined TalkFIRST.

I graduated from UCLAN in 2016 with a 2:1 in Children, Schools and Families. I have experience in Family assessment, supporting children in SEN schools and working alongside vulnerable adults who are at risk of homelessness.

I am passionate in supporting children, young people and their families. I believe in delivering the right support at the right time is crucial to ensure families are listened to, empowered and are equipped with the skills and knowledge to improve family life.

Bev McIntyre, BBR Worker

I am delighted to have recently joined Talk First.

I have a wealth of experience, both personally and professionally, to offer. I`m caring, conscientious and “can do!”.

Having been a working Mum for most of my career I easily connect with parents to listen and offer advice, support and guidance. I have a background in child care ( NNEB) , child protection, parenting assessments, early intervention and family liaison.

My belief is that a loving supporting family unit, in whatever diverse form that may be, enables happy children to mature into happy resilient adults


Christine Boydell, Administrator

I have been a part-time administrator at TalkFIRST since January 2018, and also work as a secretary within the NHS.  I have lots of administrative experience within children’s services and I have some previous administrator experience with local charities.

I am very practical and methodical and try my best to organise the team!

I have two children and a gorgeous grandson. 

Emma Klieve, Trustee

I joined the board as a Trustee in February 2020 after working within the legal industry for several years.

I am currently working as a Private Client Paralegal with a view to commencing my training contract in September 2021. I graduated with a 2:1 degree in Law (LLB) from the University of Liverpool in 2013 and completed the LPC LLM in 2018 at the University of Law, Chester, with a distinction, studying an elective in Family Law and Practice.

 My experience allows me to bring a different perspective to the board. 

Joe Shaw, Trustee

Hi, I’m Joe 🙂 

I wanted to become involved with the charity as I am very passionate about improving outcomes for other people, especially young people who have faced challenges, and saw a great opportunity to grow my own skill set too!

Although I’m still at the beginning of my career, I do have a lot of experience in a few areas, for example day to day I work for a Local Authority as a finance officer, and I am studying towards becoming an accountant alongside working as a young people’s participation officer for another charity, and I volunteer where I can to support children’s services. 


Shirley Martland, Trustee

I am a Chartered Management Accountant and over the last 25 years have been working for the NHS. During this time I have been responsible for the administration and management of a number of NHS charities and I am keen to utilise my skills supporting a local charity.

I believe that good communication is the key to all relationships. Unfortunately when communication breaks down so does the relationship. Having been in situations in the past where the support offered by TalkFIRST would have been invaluable, I am passionate about the services that are being offered and I am keen to support the charity with my skills and knowledge of charity finance.

Brian Rees, Trustee

I am a retired Bank Manager with over 40 years experience primarily working with SME’s and Charities. I am currently a Trustee with Age UK and am delighted to be able to work as a Trustee supporting local charities.

I see a real value that mediation can add in resolving family disputes particularly if it avoids the costly and challenging legal system. I believe that supporting and improving family life can only benefit us all.

Damon Musgrove, Trustee

I am a national bid writer for a Sports Trust and I’m currently in the process of writing my first book to be published next year.

Lee Whalley

Lee Whalley, Trustee

I’m Lee, the guy behind all the social media, website stuff, and anything that looks good at TalkFIRST. I run my own digital marketing business called The Hook Design – you can check it out right over HERE.

Becoming a trustee over at TalkFIRST has genuinely put a smile on my face. I’ve had my fair share of family court drama and a pretty messy breakup, so I’ve got a solid connection with the organisation. They were there for me when things got really tough, offering advice and support that I’ll forever be thankful for. I’m chuffed about giving back and being a part of their team.

Stephanie Grosvenor, HR Consultant

I’m a qualified Human Resources (HR) professional with previous experience working within the charity sector for a major children’s charity, plus 15 years working in education HR.

I have a great interest and passion in ensuring children have the best foundation for their future life, this includes the right support for them when their family life changes. A service like that provided by TalkFIRST is invaluable in supporting children and adults through one of the most challenging times in life, which is why I am donating the support of my professional skills to this fantastic organisation.

John Boumphrey, Legal Consultant

I am a Barrister of 30 years based at Park Square Barristers in Leeds. I have a well-developed practice encompassing contract, tort, employment, copyright, trade marks, passing off, sport and aspects of media law including defamation. I advise across the full range of General Common Law and I am particularly drawn to cases which include a range of issues. I am joint head of the PSQB Commercial and Chancery group. 

I enjoy spending time with my family and our ridiculous dog.  I am passionate about community engagement and I sit on local authority and sporting committees and I also sit on a panel of the General Medical Council.   

I am a keen advocate of Alternative Dispute Resolution and an accredited mediator. 

I am greatly impressed by the power of family mediation and the work that TalkFirst does to reduce conflict and resolve disputes. I am very pleased that I can offer my skills and time to support TalkFIRST’s goals. 

Can you help?

Your Donation no matter what amount can help people in need of the services we provide. Every penny goes back to helping build better relationships.