The Hi Kent Team

We are a small, but dedicated team here at Hi Kent. What we lack in numbers, we make up for in passion and our dedication to support the D/deaf and people living with hearing loss across Kent.

A group of 16 people, smartly dressed, in front of a Christmas tree, mainly looking happy

Each employee, whether full or part-time, office based or working from home, takes on multiple roles within the organisation. Let us introduce ourselves and the main areas we cover:

Maxine Lucas: Chief Operating Officer

Finance, Tinnitus Support, Equipment Demonstration & Advice

'I started working for Hi Kent part time in 2002, juggling work and my young family. I was really interested in working for a charity helping people with hearing loss after seeing how my mother in law struggled. I found my colleagues, and the clients with hearing loss, so inspiring and soon knew that this was more than just a job. I have been here ever since and still love it, even though being the Chief Operating Officer now comes with its challenges!'

Maria Cardoso:

West Kent Clinic Volunteer Coordinator, Tinnitus Support

'Having a profoundly Deaf son, I know how hard life can be living with Deafness. I decided to join Hi Kent to help others. I work with an amazing band of volunteers managing the West Kent Hearing Aid Maintenance Clinics. I also facilitate our Tinnitus Support Groups and meetings. Having has Tinnitus all my life, I like to be able to assist those who are suffering with it. Hi Kent is a great place to work and I'm very lucky to have the best job ever!'

Donna Chadwick:

North Kent Clinic Volunteer Coordinator

'I started at Hi Kent as a BSL student, and then got more involved with the charity as a volunteer. I was taken on as a member of staff as a Fundraising Assistant, which led to my current role, arranging Hearing Aid Maintenance Clinics. I really enjoy my job, and I especially enjoy helping the NHS Hearing Aid users of North Kent. I couldn't do my job without my hard-working, dedicated, and amazing volunteers, who I love working with.'

John Clayton:

Management Support Officer, Social Groups

'I was appointed Chief Executive of Hi Kent in 2004 after completing a first career in local government and a second one in the European Parliament. 17 fulfilling years later I stood down and accepted my current role as Management Support Officer. The sheer variety of the work, as the charity continues to grow and take on new challenges, never ceases to be stimulating.'

Liz Clayton:

Grants Manager, HR Officer

'I joined Hi Kent in 2005, and very much enjoyed the busy role of Head of Fundraising before becoming Grants Manager in 2021. On behalf of Hi Kent, I have Chaired the Kent Charities Group for the past 14 years and organise the Group’s annual Christmas Draw. Working for Hi Kent is immensely rewarding, and my current role applying for grants to fund our charitable services is a great privilege.'

Kathryn Excell:

Senior Assessment Officer

'I carry out assessments on behalf of Kent Adult Social Services. I help people who have a hearing loss to hear what they need to hear, in order to remain independent and safe in their home. My job is extremely rewarding and I feel great satisfaction in knowing that I have made a difference in their lives.'

Bethany Harris:

Technical Support Officer, Gateway Coordinator, Client Services

Beth Hendy:

Fundraising Officer, Website Management, BSL Coordinator

'I came across Hi Kent when I wanted to learn BSL, and now I help people on their journey to learning. I love organising the fundraising events, especially meeting our friends, supporters, volunteers, trustees and quizzers.'

Zoe Holder:

Ear Care Services, Client Services

'I first started working with Hi Kent in 2010 and have gained lots of experience in a wide variety of Hi Kent's services including; client services, carrying out assessments, working with our amazing volunteers, hearing aid maintenance, giving talks, and carrying out home visits. Following training at audiology, I qualified in ear care and wax removal services, so I could offer this service on behalf of Hi Kent.'

Debra Jones:

Press Officer, Secretary to the Trustees, Lipreading Coordinator, HAM Clinic Manager

'I came to Hi Kent in 2009 'just for two weeks to answer the phones' and am still here now!  This is the best job I've ever had and I am so lucky to work with the most amazing team, all working together to help people living with hearing loss.'

Niamh Jordan:

Client Services

Vicky Kirk:

Social Groups, Client Services

'My best friend is Deaf and I have seen first hand how hard it can be to get the right support. I joined Hi Kent as part of the Client Services Team, being the first point of contact for people coming to us for help; that friendly support. Since then I have helped set up our Social Groups, supporting people to combat isolation and loneliness, across the county. Working for Hi Kent is the most rewarding job, the work is so varied, everyone helps out and works as part of a great team.'

Jon Lambert:

Services Manager, Assessment Officer, Client Services, Tinnitus Support, Deaf Awareness Training, Well-Being Walks

'I started as a volunteer at Hi Kent many years ago and have not looked back. I am extremely proud of the work Hi Kent does and am constantly surprised by the dedication shown by staff and volunteers.'

Emma Lambert:

East Kent Clinic Volunteer Coordinator, Client Services 

"Working for Hi Kent is very gratifying. We have a wonderful supportive team of volunteers who help people every day to get the most out of their hearing aids and not become isolated." 

Ian Mc Walter:


'I started as a volunteer in the shop at Hi Kent a few years ago and attended all the fun quizzes! I started working at Hi Kent after being made redundant and a vacancy in finance became available. I enjoy my job and have not looked back. I am humbled by the work carried out by Hi Kent across the county.'

Leigh Thompsett:

Assessment Officer

'I have a severe hearing loss myself and understand first hand what it is like living with a hearing impairment. My clients know I can relate and understand how frustrating it is living with hearing loss and the impact it has on their daily lives. I am able to help and support with assistive equipment that helps them live independently in their own homes.'

This gives an idea of which areas staff are mainly involved in. But each of us does much more. Everyone is involved in the day to day running of Hi Kent and also: giving talks and demonstrations, attending fundraising events, running stalls to promote our Charity, running fundraising stalls at Christmas at fairs and markets, and many, many other things.

And of course, we couldn't do without all of our amazing volunteers. They outnumber us by far, and are the backbone of our clinic network.