Executive Recruitment

Our Board

Carl Brazier

Carl is the director of housing and customer services at Stoke-on-Trent City Council, with responsibility for all housing functions including the management of 18,500 homes and customer services such as IT, libraries, museums, culture, local centres and the council contact centre.

A key role he is leading is housing growth across the city through a unique housing offer of various forms of development and regeneration, with support from Homes England, Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government, developers and financial institutions. 

Carl has led on the formation of the council development company – Fortior Homes and its repair company – Unitas.

The council has also been awarded housing zone status by the Government and became the first council to be assessed by the Housing and Finance Institute (HFI) as Housing Business Ready

Carl is a non-executive director of First Choice Homes Oldham (FCHO), sits on the LGA Housing Officer Finance Group, the MHCLG Housing Technical Group, HFI Housing Accelerators' Forum and was also an expert advisor for the Government’s Elphicke/House Report.

Carl was recently listed in Inside Housing in the Who's Who in local authority housing development for a second year in succession.

Councillor Ann James

Councillor James was first elected as a councillor in 1999 (representing the ward of Great Chell and Packmoor) and served on the city council until 2010, with a four-term break before being re-elected in 2011. For the period May 2018 to May 2019, she was Leader of the city council. Following the local elections in May 2019, and the formation of a new Conservative/City Independent Coalition, she became Deputy Leader. During her time as an elected member, she has been involved in both children and adult social care services, and is currently Cabinet Member for Health and Social Care. She is very community-focussed and active in her ward, regularly meeting with Local Residents Associations and communities in her ward. 

Councillor Joanne Powell-Beckett

Cllr Joanne Powell-Beckett was first elected as a Stoke-on-Trent City Councillor in 2008. In 2015 she was elected to represent the ward of Sneyd Green and, following the local elections in May 2019, Cllr Powell-Beckett became the Cabinet Member for Housing in the newly formed Conservative/City Independent coalition. 

Cllr Joanne Powell-Beckett has previously been Chair of the city council’s Audit Committee, Cabinet Support to the previous two city council leaders as well as a member of the Fire Authority. She is community focused, meeting regularly with resident and community groups as well as being Vice Chair of the board of Governors at her local primary school. 

Cllr Joanne Powell-Beckett is passionate about her role as a councillor, about her new role as Cabinet member for Housing and about the City of Stoke-on-Trent.

Doctor Simon Cupples

Simon is an accomplished senior executive director with 30 years of International experience, primarily in the downstream oil and chemical sectors.

Simon has a doctorate in applied chemistry and mechanical and production engineering from De Montfort University, Leicester and has also studied at Kellogg Business School in the USA. 

Simon has executive board experience in the UK, Ireland and Germany and has led the strategic and operational development of businesses from €40 million to $1.5 billion, leading diverse international teams of up to 400 people.

During his career Simon has been responsible for the development of commercial, technical and marketing partnerships between some of the world’s biggest brands including Castrol, BP, BMW, Ford Europe, Jaguar Land Rover, Volvo, Aston Martin and Triumph Motorcycles. 

Simon was born in Birmingham and has lived in several UK and international locations throughout his career before moving to Stoke-on-Trent in 2014.