Who we are

About Charm and its History

At Charm we have a group of Trustees who are fiercely committed to seeing the charity grow, and who bring levels of expertise to help Charm succeed in its goals.

Charm began life in 1998 as “Save the Baby” (STB), and was dedicated to funding pioneering research into infertility, miscarriage, pregnancy and new born complications. Since its foundation the charity has raised over £600,000. In 2006 the St Mary’s Recurrent Miscarriage Unit came under threat of closure, averted only by a campaign that raised over £1 million to rebuild the facilities. STB’s research focus always tended to be highly pioneering, supporting ideas that would not in the first instance achieve independent or government support. Much of that research led to advances in treatment subsequently accepted as the gold standard by health services. Several of the research areas originally covered by STB are now being more than adequately served by other organisations.

As a result, Charm will have a sharper focus – providing funds for research and practice improvement exclusively for recurrent miscarriage.

The Team

Natasha Kaplinsky
Natasha Kaplinsky

Natasha Kaplinsky is one of television's best-loved broadcasters. She joined FIVE News in January 2008, after five highly successful years at the BBC. There Natasha co-presented the corporation’s daily ‘Breakfast’ programme, gaining a reputation for incisive interviewing complemented when necessary with a gentler touch.

Sandra Dennis
Sandra Dennis

Sandra is a graduate of the Miscarriage Clinic at St Mary’s. She joined the charity in 2002 as a member of the Fundraising Committee and is now Secretary to the Trustees. Sandra’s background is business, marketing and PR. She has worked extensively within the entertainment industry in publishing, feature film and record companies.

Nick Denniston
Nick Denniston

Nick Denniston works as a consultant and Interim Finance Director. He was Finance Director at Argo International (formerly Heritage Underwriting Agency plc) until end 2009. A chartered accountant, he worked between 1982 and 1995 at SG Warburg, latterly as an Executive Director. In 1995 he was appointed Finance Director of CDC Capital Partners, and in 2000 he moved to Securitas Capital as a Managing Director, before joining Heritage in June 2004.

Simon Kroll
Simon Kroll

Simon Kroll is Professor of Paediatrics and Molecular Infectious Diseases at Imperial College London, working at the St Mary’s Hospital campus.

Bertie Leigh
Bertie Leigh

Bertie Leigh is the Senior Partner of Hempsons, the UK’s leading law firm to the Health sector. A former President of the Medico Legal Society, he has specialised in medical law for over 30 years. He is also the Chair of NCEPOD and the Clinical Disputes Forum, a Governor of the City Literary Institute and a Trustee of Core, a gastroenterological fund-raising charity.

Helen Orssich
Helen Orssich

Helen Orssich is co-owner of Bare Films and has worked as a producer for over 20 years, creating advertising for cinema, TV and internet.. The happy arrival of her daughter Esme Scarlett was wholly due to combined willpower and the exceptional work achieved by Lesley Regan and her team at the Recurrent Miscarriage Unit.

Lesley
Lesley Regan
Department head

Lesley Regan took up her first consultant post in Obstetrics & Gynaecology at St Mary’s Hospital London in 1990 and was appointed as the Chair and Head of Department in 1996. Lesley established the Recurrent Miscarriage Clinic at St Mary’s which is the largest such clinic in the world receiving 1000 new referrals every year and continue to look after thousands more women in their next pregnancies. Professor Regan is a member of RCOG Council and International Executive Board, she chairs the RCOG Advocacy and FIGO Women’s Sexual and Reproductive Rights Committees, is the President of the Association of Early Pregnancy Units and is a trustee of NCEPOD, The Genesis Trust and Wellbeing of Women.

Emma Collins
Emma Collins

Emma Collins is a partner at Platina Partners, one of the leading private equity firms in the renewable energy sector. Emma began fund raising for the renovation works in 2007 and is now pleased to join Charm as a Trustee.

Lynne Pacanowski
Lynne Pacanowski

Lynne Pacanowski is the Director of Midwifery at Guy's and St Thomas', one of the busiest maternity units in London. She trained initially as a nurse, and then a midwife. Her midwifery career has included clinical practice, management, research and teaching. Lynne's role as Trustee is to give a midwifery perspective on research funding applications.