Meet Our Senior Team

Meet Our Senior Team

Just Imagine the rewards
of fostering a child

Find out more about fostering here

Just imagine a rewarding
career with progress

From our cruise loving Residential Operations Manager to our fitness loving Marketing and Development Manager you can read more about our inspirational leadership team here. With years of experience both at Progress and in the wider Care Industry they really are an interesting bunch. If you would like to know more about our team you can get in touch with us here.

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Bal Dhanoa

Chief Executive Officer

Bal is the heart of Progress Care Solutions as the CEO and Founder. She has dedicated 35 years to working within Health and Social Care, managing front-line services for Local Authorities and both the Voluntary and Private sectors. Her exceptional entrepreneurial career has helped shape standards of care.

Sparked by treatment towards a family member, she has achieved outstanding outcomes for the most vulnerable within communities, creating Progress; an industry leader in the Midlands.

Having passed day-to-day operations over to MD Claire, Bal’s responsibilities now lie in overseeing investments, project management and delivery of new services. She is passionate about researching and investing in cutting edge technologies that transform the quality of lives of vulnerable young people. She has a crystal clear vision of where she would like to take Progress and she leads her management team to ensure this happens to the best of their abilities.

As a family woman, outside of running the business, Bal enjoys spending time with her children and grandchildren. She is an avid gardener who loves to explore the world when she can, trying new delicious delicacies on the way.

A girl blowing bubbles

Raj Dhanoa

Chief Financial Officer

After establishing Progress in June 2000 with Bal, Rajinder handled Finance, Payroll and HR. Thanks to having a competent team in place and excellent growth, Raj has been able to step back from operational work. He now sits on the Progress board and focuses on project management of the new properties. He handles all aspects of development pre-completion. As well as asset management, he manages the overall company finance and legal compliance.

Since a young boy, Rajinder has loved playing percussion music everywhere he could; on doors, the school desk and even on metal dustbins. He had the opportunity to join a band with some older locals and was able to travel; playing at a variety of locations, from temples in the Midlands to cultural shows all over the world. Meeting his old band mates is his favourite way to let off steam.

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Claire Rogers

Managing Director

Claire’s career began as a trainer in the fitness industry before going on to compete as a bodybuilder. After a painful back injury, Claire moved into various retail management roles. Feeling unsatisfied, she took a career leap into care and started working at a school for children with special needs. She found the industry to be the right fit for her; somewhere she could make a difference.

In 2002 Claire applied for a Senior Support Worker role at Progress and quickly progressed to Deputy Manager. After helping set up the second residential home, she became Registered Manager over two services. Having progressed throughout the company and then grown into Interim MD role, Claire became Managing Director in 2015; leading day-to-day operations and helping shape Progress into the business it is today.

Her responsibilities include upholding the values of the company; care, trust, respect and progress. Claire ensures Progress as an organisation doesn’t drift from its original purpose; to never compromise on the quality of care and always be a listening and evolving business.

Claire is very family orientated. She has two large dogs which she enjoys walking with her husband and her little girl. As a family, they enjoy pulse-raising experiences on holidays, such as riding a zip wire or braving a hot air balloon.

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Phil Owen

Head of Quality and Compliance

With over 40 years’ experience working alongside individuals with mental health and complex care needs, Phil is a qualified Social Worker who is HCPC registered and has held posts at a senior level in both Local Authorities and the private sector. He joined the Progress team in 2013 and provides senior management of operations including over-seeing the three operations managers. Within this, his responsibilities include compliance with regulations, the quality of care provided and the overall safeguarding responsibility for the organisation.

Phil is passionate about the rights of children, young people and adults who may be vulnerable or have special needs, as well as being passionate about the high aspirations Progress has for them.

Outside of work, Phil, who is married with a daughter, is also a huge rugby fan. When not at his old rugby club supporting the team, he enjoys water sports, gardening and walking with his wife and dog. Phil is incredibly musically gifted with an eclectic taste; he plays the piano, double bass, drums and also the church organ.

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Emma Ruffinato

HR Manager

With two decades of HR experience, Emma joined the Progress team in 2014. Before Social Care, her experience covered the Legal, Finance, Retail and Education sectors. After studying for an Archaeology Degree, she decided this wasn’t for her and pursued an office based role. She started in Stockbroking, followed by a number of administrative positions and worked her way into Human Resources, collecting her Masters along the way.

Before joining Progress, Emma started as HR Advisor. Thanks to the changes and business growth, she grew through the ranks. First moving into management, followed by taking on corporate services responsibilities; adding another string to her bow.

As HR Manager, Emma heads up all HR functions, as well as handling health and safety throughout the business, information governance, compliance and training across the organisation.

Outside of work, Emma has two children and loves spending time in the gym.

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Angeline Westley

Head of Corporate and Commercial Services

Angeline’s business career spans over 30 years across the financial services, education, health and social care sectors. This has included every size and stage of organisation, from start-up (including her own) right through to global corporations.

Angeline moved into the social care sector in 2011 and was then thrilled to take the opportunity to join Progress in 2015, leading on business development, marketing, contracts and capacity building. She is now delighted to be leading the broader corporate and commercial teams in their support of our operational colleagues and therefore the young people we support, in addition to exploring new, creative models for business sustainability.

During her recent MBA with the University of Leicester, Angeline completed a dissertation in the recruitment of foster carers, implementing the resulting strategy. Her other professional qualifications include CIPD Training Practice, Prince2 Project Management and CMI Level 7 Strategic Management and Leadership.

A member of a nearby spa, she likes to swim several times a week, in addition to focusing as much time as she can on her daughter who is in her final year of A Levels.

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Margaret Hopkins

Operations Manager – Residential

Margaret has over 20 years’ experience of looking after children. She has worked for Progress for over 16 years, 11 of which have been in the management team. Margaret also has significant experience in working with looked after children during her long career as a Foster Carer.

Margaret finds working with individuals with complex and challenging behaviour rewarding and enjoys helping empower them to live a full life.

As Operations Manager, Margaret’s role covers all aspects of residential and community delivery; ensuring the highest quality of care is provided and ensuring her team have the support they need.

Outside of work Margaret likes to spend time with her family and has the pleasure of having seven amazing grandchildren who keep herself and her husband busy. She also likes to travel and enjoy lovely relaxing holidays in the UK and abroad.

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Tina Bhardwaj

Operations Manager – Fostering

With over a decade’s worth of fostering experience, Tina is the Fostering Manager here at Progress. Her overall responsibilities are to ensure the smooth running of the Fostering service. By providing her team ongoing training and support, she enables them to operate to the best of their abilities. Her hard work ensures children and young people are kept safe within their foster placements. She does this by being an integral part of the entire process. She monitors the inbound referrals of children and matches them to suitable Foster Carers, as well as collaborating with the Business Development Team to recruit the right people.

To wind down, Tina enjoys cooking, going to the theatre and working out at the gym. She loves experiencing new cultures, making an effort to travel when she can.

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Harjinder Deo

Finance Manager

After completing a Management Degree covering aspects of IT, Finance and HR, Harjinder, who likes to be known as Harry, decided to pursue a Finance career. Setting his eye on working for a big corporate company, he was fortunate in securing a role at Barclays Bank. After ten years in banking, he spent four years in insurance before he and his family decided to relocate above the M25 corridor to Wolverhampton. It was then in 2012 that Progress came onto his radar.

Harry took a step away from the corporate world where he was just another number, transferring his knowledge and experience to an organisation he could grow with and develop as an individual. As Finance Manager, Harry is responsible for money in and out of the organisation.

As a dad of two very active boys, Harry finds himself spending a lot of time bouncing between various clubs and activities, as well as being an avid football supporter himself. He is a dedicated Liverpool fan who likes to try and make the games when he can.

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Andrew Brooks

Board Advisor

With 24 years’ experience working in the Health and Social care sector, Andy is an important Board Advisor for Progress. In addition to providing accountancy support, he also assists with business strategy. He is able to share his wealth of knowledge and ideas in order to help the company grow; something he hugely enjoys. Andy attends the quarterly board meetings where he is able to brainstorm collaboratively with the rest of the team; discussing concepts and suggestions to push Progress further as an organisation.

Outside of the boardroom, Andy has an incredibly sporty family. In between his joint love of golf with his two teenage children, he is also a keen runner and a loyal Aston Villa fan; despite their league position.

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Phil Mcdonald

Operations Manager – Hub

Phil started out in his working life as a tax man. Unfulfilled, on the recommendation of his sister already working within care, he took a leap of faith to do the same and never looked back. He began in children’s services working alongside young people with autism and behavioural support needs. Wanting to make more of a difference, he took a progressive step towards a senior role and transitioned into adult services. Due to the importance of an early on the positive impact that could be made he decided that his heart lies in helping young people that he could make.

That is when he joined Progress, initially as a Senior Care Worker within Oak Cottage before moving into his first managerial role at Regis House.  This exposure to the fast-paced and varied short breaks care model further caught Phil’s passion, and he took on the development of the Hub Services in the Service Development Manager role.  More recently Phil has moved into a Regional Manager role across the Hub Services.

Outside of work, Phil has three children and enjoys spending time with them.  He is a self-confessed “nerd” and enjoys reading, movies, and gadgets. Phil is a child at heart and can often be found playing at home with his kids, building Lego, or enjoying a relaxing break in Wales to get away with his family. Days on the beach and walks by the river are his favourite.

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David Hannath

Non-Executive Director

With an extensive consulting background, David has advised boards and senior management across various sectors for the last 15 years. In 2008 he joined the Progress team as a Non-Executive Director and helped to establish the board.

As an external Director, David brings a wealth of expertise to the table, including industry knowledge, fresh new ideas and independent judgements to organisational systems. With the best interests of the company at heart, he supports and challenges the senior executives, ensuring well-thought-out decisions are made.

He has helped shape the core values of the organisation which have been the foundation for staff engagement and focused growth. His influence on the structure and systems embedded throughout the company has significantly improved the strategic direction of the business, propelling Progress towards positive growth. As an experienced coach, David has helped mentor various members of senior management to ensure teams and the company fulfil their best potential.

Outside corporate life, David is an avid explorer and a lover of the outdoors. He is a keen trekker and enjoys rambling in the UK’s hills and mountains. His largest international summit was Mt Kilimanjaro in 2015 and he has his eye on Everest for his next expedition.