Our team consists of a diverse group of dedicated individuals who contribute their knowledge, experience and world view to make sure our values are reflected in the work that we deliver.  

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Sado Jirde


Sado is the Director of BSWN.

Born to parents of Somali origin, Sado Jirde moved to the UK in 1999. After obtaining a BA in financial management and business information technology at Gloucestershire University, Sado started working at BSWN in 2007.

Just five years later, Sado took over as the Director of the organisation and has worked tirelessly to raise the profile of racial inequality at strategic and policy levels regionally and nationally, as well locally in Bristol. Sado has over 10 experience working in the Civil Society sector in the UK & Internal. She was awarded The African Achievers Award in 2015. Sado has also been leading on the discussion around inclusive growth and the role social investment could play in addressing economic inequality in Bristol.

Sado sits on a number of Boards of local and national charitable organisations; Ashley Community Housing, Voice4Change England, Babbasa and Somali Resource Centre. She is also a member of a number of partnerships/networks; member of Coalition of Race Equality Organisations (CORE) .


Dr. Nicole Truesdell

Policy & Research

Nicole’s general interests are in radical pedagogy, academic hustling, and social justice. Her research focuses on the intersections of race, racism, gender, class, citizenship and belonging, nationalism and the nation-state, community organising and activism, social movements, and radical black thought. She has worked with BSWN since 2009 and helped develop and write 3 of the 4 Heritage Lottery Funded projects BSWN has completed, including the current project.


Alexandra MacRae

Company Secretary

Alexandra was previously an immigration and discrimination lawyer but since 1999 has moved more into the area of advising on equality and diversity matters, especially in the area of race equality and cultural awareness. She has worked with BSWN since 2012.


Martina (Mina) Drobná

Operations Coordinator

Originally from Slovakia, Mina moved to the UK in 2009 for an exchange year during her A Levels and decided to stay in the country to finish her studies.

Mina started as a volunteer with BSWN in 2014, and following the conclusion of her Masters studies in Criminology at the University of Gloucestershire in 2016 joined BSWN part time as a Project Coordinator. Since April 2019, Mina has taken on the role of Operations Coordinator, assisting the Director in delivery of BSWN operations, projects and events.

As the LGBTQ+ champion of the team, Mina believes in the necessity of intersectional thinking and consideration when implementing policies and practices within the organisation and in BSWN’s work.

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Mark Hitchins

Finance Manager

Co-founder and Director of Co-opportunity Limited incorporated April 1997 to provide business advice and a wide range of accounting and professional services to charities, commercial businesses, social economy, and voluntary sector organisations.

Chiara Lodi, Policy and Research
Angelique Retief, Research Associate
Dr. Malu Villela Garcia, Research Associate
Sibusiso Tshabalala, Research Associate
Kuba Jablonowski, Research Associate
Jendayi Serwah, Research Associate