Dr Cathryn Charnell-White is Head of Department of Welsh and Celtic Studies at Aberystwyth University. Her research focuses on Welsh identity, women and poetry in Early Modern Wales. She was the departmental Equality and Diversity Champion (2018–20) and sat on the central committee for equality and diversity. She is an advocate for ensuring that students see themselves reflected in the curriculum and has developed a new module in partnership with the Department of Theatre Film and Television called ‘Testunau’r Enfys’ (Rainbow Texts), which will be the first LGBT+ module of its kind in a Welsh Department. Cathryn was elected as a Literature Wales Board Member in November 2019.
Natalie Jerome has worked as a Publisher and Acquiring Editor for some of the UK’s most prominent publishing houses including Penguin Random House, Pan Macmillan, Bonnier Books and HarperCollins where she was a commissioner for ten years before making the move across to literary agenting for Aevitas Creative Management, a leading transatlantic independent literary agency. Included in the 2018 publishing trade magazine The Bookseller’s Industry top 100, she was described as a ‘brand publishing wizard’ having acquired and published books that have sold, during the course of her career to date, six million copies driving revenue of £30m. Natalie specialises in commercial Non-Fiction and has commissioned and published books by a host of high-profile names.
As one of the few black Publishers in the UK, Natalie has worked to improve diversity within the industry. She is a founding trustee and board member for Creative Access, a mentoring and graduate trainee scheme for black and minority ethnic candidates looking for paid internships across the media sector. In her first 12 months as an agent she was shortlisted as Literary Agent of the Year at the 2021 British Book Awards and in 2016 Natalie was highly commended for her work at the National Business in the Community Race Equality Awards.
Craig Austin is a London-based writer and arts critic and a long-standing associate editor of Wales Arts Review, for whom he continues to be a senior contributor. He is also a highly experienced HR professional with a functional specialism in employee relations and employment law which has been gained across a range of major companies and sectors. Aside from the arts, Craig pursues a passion for modernist and post-war architecture, the latter having been influenced at an early age by his brutalist concrete hometown of Cwmbran.
Eric Ngalle Charles is a poet, dramatist and novelist, originally from Buea in Cameroon. He runs Black Entertainment Wales, an arts organisation that provides a platform for artists in BME communities to showcase their work. His work explores the links between literature and trauma to look at how creativity can be used as a means of overcoming trauma.
Jacob Dafydd Ellis is the Public Affairs Advisor at the Office of the Future Generations Commissioner for Wales. He is a former BBC Cymru Wales journalist and has worked with several cultural and educational organisations. Jacob has served as Chair of the Trustee Board at Aberystwyth University Students’ Union and Trustee at Cardiff Third Sector Council.
Before joining Gambit Corporate Finance as Partner in 2016, Annie Finlayson headed up PHS Group’s programme of mergers, acquisitions and divestments as Director of Corporate Development. In 2012 Annie was named the Insider Dealmaker of the Year in Wales, the first woman and first in-house advisor to win the award. She has also been acknowledged by the Leading Wales Award Programme and Welsh Woman of the Year Awards.
Elizabeth George is Head of Business and Development at GISDA, a charity which provides shelter and support for vulnerable young people in Gwynedd. She is a law graduate from Aberystwyth University and has extensive volunteering and governance experience in the arts in Wales including Cricieth Memorial Hall, Cricieth Arts Festival, OPRA Cymru and The Lloyd George Museum Trust.
John O’Shea studied politics at Swansea University and worked in a variety of educational settings. His most recent appointment is Principal of the College Merthyr Tydfil. John brings experience in Board and Charity governance, as well enthusiasm for enabling all of the people of Wales, no matter what their background, education or outlook, to prosper and develop their creativity – especially through participation in literature in all its forms. John is a past Chair of Grow Enterprise Wales, a Member of the Royal Shakespeare Company and Chapter, and has a passion for overcoming deprivation.
Originally from Rhoslan in Eifionydd, Delyth Roberts has recently retired from her role as General Education Program Area Manager with responsibility for A Level at Coleg Meirion-Dwyfor, Llandrillo Menai Group. She taught A Level Welsh on site in Pwllheli since 1997, and before then in secondary schools in Gwynedd. She has been a peer assessor for ESTYN and is a Senior A Level Welsh Examiner for WJEC. She is the Chair for the Park-Jones trust and is interested in the world of literature, music and drama.
Cathryn re-joined Curtis Brown in September 2016 having started her literary agency career there as an intern in 2004. She established an eclectic list of clients at WME, where she worked for ten years. Prior to that she worked at a number of other British literary agencies and at Colman Getty PR – where she worked on a number of high profile book events including the Man Booker Prize and Samuel Johnson Prize.
She also works in the production office at Port Eliot Literary Festival and is actively involved in both Hay and Edinburgh International Festivals. She was shortlisted for The British Book Awards’ Agent of the Year in 2016 and her clients include Dr Adam Kay, Mark Watson, Naomi Wood, Kirsty Logan, Susan Fletcher, Johanna Basford, Sir Ranulph Fiennes, Lucy Foley, Polpo’s Russell Norman, Mark Hix and Clemmie Hooper.
Owain Taylor-Shaw was raised on the Llŷn Peninsula before moving to Cardiff to study Business Management at Cardiff University. He co-founded the magazine publishing company Conroy Media Ltd shortly after graduating, where he launched lifestyle publication RedHanded Magazine. He has since gained a broad experience of the arts, culture, media and third sector. He works at Wales Millennium Centre where he heads-up the Business Development department – leading on strategic partnerships, growing commercial income, commercialising IP and new product development.
Christina Thatcher is a writer and a lecturer at Cardiff Metropolitan University. Her current research explores how creative writing can impact the lives of people bereaved by addiction. Christina is also a Poetry Editor for The Cardiff Review and a freelance workshop facilitator. Her poetry and short stories have featured in over 40 publications including The London Magazine, Planet Magazine and The Interpreter’s House. Her first collection, More than you were, was shortlisted in Bare Fiction's Debut Poetry Collection Competition in 2015 and published by Parthian Books in 2017.