Key Contacts

STEP's executive team and operational directors

Mark Walley Mark Walley

 Chief Executive


 Mark joined STEP as Chief Executive in January 2019. Prior to joining STEP, Mark worked as Managing Director, EMEA at the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) where he was responsible for ensuring growth in the EMEA region and led on the organisation's development of global sales, marketing and customer service strategies. Prior to this, Mark was Director of Corporate Development for the ifs School of Finance, responsible for the take-up of its professional qualifications and executive education programmes and before that he was Regional Director EMEA for Cohen Brown Management Group. He started his career with Barclays where he spent 25 years, the latter part as Sales Director and then Chief Operating Officer of Barclays Wealth’s International Personal and Premier Banking Division. He holds a BSc (Hons) in Banking and Finance and is a Fellow of the Institute of Directors.

Elaine CrehanElaine Crehan

Chief Operating Officer Member Services


Elaine is a senior marketing professional within the B2B markets. Elaine started at STEP in 2005 as Marketing Manager and is now COO Member Services. Several departments sit within Member Services, including Membership, Marketing, Special Interest Groups and Branch Development. Elaine is a member of Chartered Institute of Marketing and The Institute of Direct and Digital Marketing.

Jim WilkinshawJim Walkinshaw

Chief Operating Officer Finance and Resources


Jim is a Fellow of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants. Jim has worked in many finance functions over the last 25 years from financial accountant to director of finance. 

Jim’s main responsibilities as COO for Finance and Resources are finance, HR, governance, contracts, IT and office infrastructure. 

Simon HodgesSimon Hodges

Director of Policy


Simon and his team work closely with members to develop STEP’s approach to policy and to represent STEP’s agreed positions to a range of senior internal and external stakeholders. Simon has extensive experience in policy development, having been Head of Public Policy at Citigate Dewe Rogerson, a Senior Manager in HSBC’s Public Policy team and having spent ten years at HM Treasury in various policy roles, including as Head of the Special Advisers Unit between 2008 and 2010.

Louise PolcaroLouise Polcaro

Director of Communications


Louise leads the Communications Team. The team looks after all press and media activity, and all of STEP's communications channels and content across print and digital platforms, including the STEP Journal andTrust Quarterly Review, the website, enewsletters (including the Industry News Digests and Membership Newsletter), and social media channels. Louise has extensive experience across publishing and communications and is a member of the Chartered Institute of Public Relations.

Nigel RaceNigel Race

Director Professional Development


Nigel leads the Professional Development Team. The team oversee the STEP qualifications and liaise closely with Central Law Training, who deliver many of the qualifications. They work closely with the Professional Development Committee and are responsible for the development of new qualifications; Continuing Professional Development (CPD), including CPD Policy and resources; and the STEP Employer Partnership Programme, through which STEP builds closer relationships with employers of STEP members via endorsement of employer training.