This guy… What can we say about this guy? He loves a selfie (who doesn’t?!), he enjoys the occasional half-marathon and OH, yeah he runs the UK’s only germ cell cancer awareness charity!
Toby does just about everything around here day-to-day (our awesome trustees do the rest!) and we think he’s the BALLS! Toby has dedicated himself to raising awareness of the disease that took his brother – and we’re rather proud of him for that. He’s self-taught himself all the skills he needs to run The Robin Cancer Trust – he takes on events, volunteering, fundraising, marketing, social media, design, content and so much more. He puts in as many hours as his amazingly understanding wife will allow (shout-out to Mrs. Freeman!) and has recently been awarded the British Citizen Award for services to healthcare for his dedication.
Outside of charity-life, Toby enjoys spending time with his beautiful daughter, wife and pooch Pip – and is a proud comic-book nerd.
“To be able to say that our work has saved lives – and to be able to measure the impact that we are having on young men and women’s lives is more that we could have ever imagined. I am so thankful to everyone for supporting me, my family and The Robin Cancer Trust from an idea to a national charity with a global reach”
AKA Pappa Freeman, AKA Grand-Pappa Freeman, AKA Toby’s slightly older-looking twin…
Mark is literally the most efficient person ever… Maybe it’s all the years he’s spent as Managing Director of his own Project Management company? Maybe it’s because he has decades of experience being involved in local schools, clubs, charities and organisations? Maybe it has something to do with the fact that he hasn’t seemed to age for about 15 years… Who knows? We just know that we’re lucky to have him!
Mark enjoys watching as much rugby as possible, taking breaks with Lorna and their dogs in their caravan and of course attending as many RCT events as possible (oh, and don’t let him convince you he doesn’t enjoy taking minutes – he LOVES taking minutes)
“Knowing that we have saved lives makes all the hard-work worthwhile – but now it’s onto the next one, and the next one after that”
AKA Mumma Freeman – the heart and soul of The Robin Cancer Trust.
How do you describe a lady that gives so much? Mum? Wife? Caregiver? Trustee? None of them seem to do justice to the awesomeness that is Lorna. She raised 3 boys in Adam, Robin & Toby – nursing Robin through his teenage years when he was diagnosed with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, and spending every waking second by Rob’s side throughout his treatment in London and being by his side when he passed away. She continued to look after the family through their grief and help the charity grow from an idea to a reality. Lorna has recently taken a step-back from her duties as a Trustee to focus on herself for the first time ever and we’re super proud of her for that – she bloody deserves it. Lorna will continue to support the charity and will still be dishing-out her infamous had-written thank you cards to our volunteers and fundraisers! Rob called Lorna his Guardian Angel, and we can’t think of a more beautiful way to describe this amazing lady.
Her outside interests include a range of holistic healing, floristry; walking the two family dogs Meg & Pepper and is currently writing Robin’s autobiography leading up to the Trust’s beginnings.
“It is important to have hope in this life and my hope is that we can show by example that positivity can arise out of negativity by setting up our charity. The ultimate hope is that in doing so, we can help save other families from going through the awful tragedy that our family has had to deal with.”
Paul is the Chair of The Robin Cancer Trust – and no, that doesn’t mean he’s wooden, rigid and comfy to sit on (we haven’t actually tested this) – what is means is that he leads the way for all things germ cell cancer awareness in the UK! Paul has a vast experience not only as a trustee but also as a Chair of other local charities – taking on the role for the board of governors of a special needs school for over 20 years.
Paul’s first engagement with the charity was through an event he founded – the Super Heroes Walk in 2016. Since getting to know Toby and the RCT more Paul became a regular volunteer, before becoming a Trustee and then the role of Chair. This experience of working with the charity on all-levels helps him understand all aspects of the charities aims and objectives. Paul loves nothing more than sitting down and working with Toby (bromance alert!), from organising event to strategic planning – Paul is passionate about making sure we deliver the best outcomes for the charity, our campaigns and our supporters!
Paul has a daughter and a son who both follow in their dad’s footsteps in volunteering. When he’s not busy trying to control Toby he enjoys playing golf badly, watching live bands and attending comedy nights with the odd pint of real ale!
“I am immensely honoured and proud to be the new Chair of the Robin Cancer Trust. I am dedicated to this truly outstanding charity grow as we continue to move forwards“
Jack is an incredibly inspirational young man – not that he’d let you know it because he’s also incredibly humble, so we’ll do it for him! At 21, he found himself in the position of being given the news no man wants to hear – “I’m afraid that you have testicular cancer”…
Following his treatment, he has dedicated himself to being an advocate and campaigner – to raise awareness of the disease that almost took his life; he wants to use his experience to inspire others – so he decided to found his own charity in Greater Manchester called BaggyTrousersUK.
Being a founder of charity and a fellow CEO (it’s a lonely job sometimes!), Jack has worked closely with Toby over the years to share knowledge and experience to better both organisations, so when he was asked to join as a Trustee he jumped at the chance to work alongside Toby to help the charity achieve its aims & objectives.
“I really enjoy working with Toby, his passion and drive are similar if not higher than mine and he’s just the type of person I like to surround myself around… It’s a real honour to be part of such an amazing team and I hope to bring plenty of ideas and value to The Robin Cancer Trust in my time as a trustee.”
In her own words, Paula’s ‘career has been the most fantastic journey’ – and it’s easy to see why:
Her journey began when she entered the legal profession in 1983 as an office junior – moving on to create her own firm of legal accounts teams operating nationwide, developing and training on accounts and case management software, maintaining a payroll bureau. Her first Practice Manager role was for a London firm 28 years ago and was a steep learning curve…
The profession has gone through monumental changes over the last 15 years enabling non-lawyers such herself to be owners of law firms – and she is now proudly the first non-lawyer to be appointed Managing Partner at Fisher Jones Greenwood LLP, and brings with her a wealth of business and financial management experience. Paula holds a Masters of Business Administration, and is also a Chartered Fellow of the Chartered Management Institute and has a post-graduate certificate in Legal Practice Management. She is also an Associate member of CIPD, a member of the Institute of Directors.
As if that doesn’t keep her busy enough – Paula also loves to travel… A LOT. The year alone her plans include France, Austria, Croatia, Thailand, Cambodia, Slovenia… and anything else she can pack in!
Also, despite what she says – we know she’s desperate to run another half-marathon for The Robin Cancer Trust, having so thoroughly enjoyed it last time!
‘Easy to get hold of and straight talking, if I can’t help you I’ll know someone that can’ – yep, that pretty much sums Chris up nicely! He’s passionate, driven and may be the most well-connected man we’ve ever met…
Chris likes helping people – whether that’s in his role as Local Director for Metro Bank, as a Colchester Ambassador, Director of the Our Colchester BID, or in his role as Trustee for The Robin Cancer Trust, Chris feels ‘it is my responsibility to give back where I can have taken positions that allow me to do this on a bigger scale’.
Chris has over 13 years of experience in client facing and leadership roles in 3 of the UK’s biggest banks and most recently in the leading UK challenger bank, Metro Bank. He’s been lucky enough to have held roles that enabled him to build long term relationships with many influential and well known HNW individuals and large corporates. As a result, he has grown a good reputation with a large and diverse client and introducer book, enabling me to work with his networks as the trusted banker.
Outside of work, Chris enjoys spending time with his young family, running and playing football (when he’s not injured!) and taking on fundraising challenges and he’s looking forward to getting involved with the many amazing events The Robin Cancer Trust hosts every year.