Quick exit

Meet the team

Our friendly and experienced team at Behind Closed Doors are here to help.  Our service is confidential, we will listen to you and support you to make the right decisions for you and your family.  We will never tell you what to do, we will be guided by you.

Based in Leeds, our team deliver a range of projects to build lives free from domestic abuse.  Here is an overview of our team roles.  You can read more from the team in our News page, My Working Day: Sanctuary Support Worker

At the bottom of the page, there is information about our Board of Trustees who provide help, guidance and support to the team and ensure we are delivering all that we say we do!

Our CEO and Trustees

Ruth Davany

Chief Executive Officer

I joined Behind Closed Doors in January 2021 having worked in the Refugee and Migrant sector for ten years. My experience of developing services for people who have been trafficked, survived abuse and are recovering from trauma is supporting the development of Behind Closed Doors.  Partnership and collaboration is important to me; I Chair the Domestic Abuse voice & Accountability Forum in Leeds and am the independent co-Chair of they West Yorkshire Police Scrutiny Panel into Violent Crimes Against Women and Girls.  The Domestic Abuse Act (May 2021) brought in opportunities and challenges for the sector, I’m enjoying working closely with the team, our partners and our service-users to respond appropriately and take the development of Behind Closed Doors to where people who have experienced domestic abuse need us to go – with courage and creativity!

Michelle Lewis


Michelle Lewis has over 20 years’ experience in holding Director-level and senior management roles in the utility and charity sector. She brings experience of good Board governance, effective partnership working, strong service delivery and impactful communications and engagement to the role.

From Leeds, she is proud to have been invited to become a Trustee at Behind Closed Doors in July 2020. She values the opportunity to play a part in creating an organisation where the team know they are valued and can excel in helping people throughout Leeds whose lives are affected by domestic violence and abuse.

Karen Milner


I am a Director of balancetogether Ltd and am passionate about supporting organisations to improve their gender-balance, making changes that allow women to succeed and businesses to benefit. I am also an Investors in People Practitioner, helping organisations across Yorkshire and Humber and into the North-East to achieve their ambitions through effective people management practices.  Behind Closed Doors strives to support all victims, regardless of gender, to build their lives free of domestic abuse. As a Trustee, I am fully behind the team’s efforts to create a fairer and more equal society.

Carl Harrison


Carl joins the board of Behind Closed Doors as an experienced business leader from the charity and education sector. A diverse professional background that includes time spent serving in the military, working in professional and grassroots sports before moving into the 3rd sector.  Carl adds depth in our safeguarding and training and development structure.

Carl is delighted to join the BCD board having lived experience of growing up in an environment that was impacted by domestic violence and wanting to support such a valuable charity.

Personally Carl is married with 2 young boys and believes its important to manage a positive work life balance, making the most of time with his family.

Gill Brook


Gill Crofton


Alison Puente