Meet the National Awards Advisory Group
Find out what the National Awards Advisory Group do and how you can get in touch
The National Awards Advisory Group (NAAG) provides support and guidance to local Scouting with awards and recognitions of service, as well as considering the nominations for specific awards and making recommendations to the Chief Scout.
They also monitor the rules and procedures concerning awards and recognition.
You can find out more about each NAAG member on this page, but please note that they each support different Countries and Regions (England):
- Alan Alexander – South East England
- Alan Seeley – Wales and North West England
- Catherine Lawrence – West Midlands and East Midlands (England)
- Graeme Popay – Overseas and North East England
- Graham Haddock – Scotland and Northern Ireland
- Luke Cashin – Greater London (England)
- Megan Thompson – South West England
- Cat Carrington – East of England
Graham has been a member of the Scout Association since the age of 8. He graduated in Medicine in 1982 and trained in Paediatric Surgery in Glasgow, Edinburgh and Toronto, Canada.
Graham retired as a Consultant Neonatal and Paediatric Surgeon in 2019. He is an Honorary Clinical Associate Professor at the University of Glasgow Medical School and chairs the Surgical and Endoscopy Training Programme Boards for Scotland.
Graham was Chief Commissioner of Scotland for seven years until July 2018. He was elected as a UK Trustee in September 2019 and is now in his second three-year term. Graham was awarded an OBE in the Queen’s Platinum Birthday Honours list for services to young people.
‘I find the work that the NAAG does to be inspirational and very rewarding. Some of the citations that the NAAG must consider speak volumes about the character and qualities of our members.
‘Many are very humbling. Recognising quality service to the Scouts is critically important and I feel very honoured to be part of this process.’
Alan is currently Chair of the County Appointments and Awards Committee and a Vice president of Merseyside Scouts.
‘Being a member of the NAAG is not only a privilege but extremely enjoyable. Working alongside a fantastic staff support team and some amazing volunteers in order to ensure that all of our adults and young people receive the recognition they deserve is very rewarding and satisfying.
‘In addition, I get to support and take part in some unique national events such as Windsor when we celebrate achievement for King Scout’s and others in receipt of significant awards. Being part of this team really feels like I am making a difference to how our volunteers feel about themselves.’
Graeme joined as a Cub Scout and has never left, he still enjoys Scouting as much today as he did then and is an Explorer Scout Leader in rural Northumberland.
Graeme has a passion for International Scouting and has attended several World Scout Jamboree’s.
‘I find that the time I give to the role fits in well with my busy lifestyle, I often read citations during my lunch time or in the evening when I get 10 mins. Every citation is different and I never get tired of reading about the amazing achievements, acts of heroism and bravery that make me so proud to be part of the Scouts.
‘Being a member of the NAAG has to be one of the most rewarding things I have ever done in the Scouts.’
Luke has been involved with the Scouts since joining as a Beaver, working his way up through all the sections until becoming an adult volunteer. Luke is currently a DNC, ESL and ASL. He also serves on both his County and District Trustee Boards, with a key interest in supporting under 25s into governance and trustee roles. He also delivers external award recognition programmes locally and is a member of his District Awards Advisory Group.
In his spare time, he enjoys many sports and volunteers at a range of charities. Professionally, Luke works in community development and the charity sector and has worked as a professional fundraiser and in community engagement to improve social well-being across South East England.
‘I’ve been a member of the NAAG for around two years. It’s been a brilliant experience to play a part in recognising those in Scouting that have given so much to young people.
‘No one volunteers for the awards but it is a privilege to be involved in celebrating the achievements of many throughout the UK from all walks of life.’
Megan joined the Scouts as a Beaver in 2007 at age 6. She progressed through all the sections before becoming an adult volunteer at 18. Megan holds a number of roles which currently includes; Cub Scout Leader, District Youth Commissioner and County Training Advisor.
Professionally, Megan has recently completed a History degree at the University of Winchester and is currently completing School-Centred Initial Teacher Training in order to become a primary school teacher.
‘Being a member of the NAAG has given me the opportunity to meet some amazing people in scouting from all over the country as well as attend some brilliant events.’
Cat started in the Scouts as a Beaver in 1996 and worked her way through all the sections, becoming a Cub Leader in 2008 and achieving her Queen’s Scout Award in 2015. She currently holds roles in Lincolnshire and West Lothian, Scotland, as well as being a member of the King’s Scout Working Party.
Professionally Cat works as a freelance stage manager in theatre, a job which sometimes takes her all around the country and occasionally abroad too, working across plays, musicals, panto and opera.
A crazy cat lady in training, Cat likes to make friends with cats wherever she goes, and enjoys curling up with a good book or film.
‘Reading about the incredible dedication of fellow volunteers, as well as those who have shown devotion to duty, courage and bravery in their lives at the Scouts, and knowing that I can be a part of recognising them for it, is a wonderful feeling.
‘Seeing surprised smiles spread across faces of award recipients reminds me that what the NAAG do is so important, and hopefully inspires others to deliver that extra special level of service to the Scouts.’
Alan joined Scouts as a Beaver and has been a member of Scouts ever since. He's held roles across Group, District, County and National levels over the last 15 years, including roles as DESC and Trustee, and is currently a Scout Leader in Greater London South East.
Alan is a keen traveller and through International Scouting has attended four Jamborees in different roles and led expeditions across four continents.
Professionally, Alan is Managing Director of a training company in the Utilities sector and is CIPD qualified in Learning and Development.
‘Being able to read and review the citations submitted to NAAG is hugely inspirational. To see the number of volunteers who live the Scouting Values and have subsequently delivered amazing and distinguished service in their roles, is incredible.
‘To be able to read about the amazing acts of bravery, honour and courage across our membership and to be able to recognise and reward these people is hugely important.
‘I'm grateful to be part of the team that does this. It's one of the most enjoyable roles I have had in Scouting.’
Catherine joined Girlguiding aged five and progressed through the sections to become an adult volunteer, before joining Scouts in 2014. Catherine currently holds a role as Cub Scout Leader and also helps to support Duke of Edinburgh and King's Scout Award at District level.
Catherine gained her medical degree in 2017, and is now working as a GP in Derbyshire.
Catherine’s hobbies including gardening, well dressing (a traditional Derbyshire craft) and hiking, but is also always planning her next adventure.
‘I joined the NAAG to have a chance to meet new people and see Scouts from a different perspective.
‘Being a member of the NAAG is really humbling, as it gives a glimpse into the dedication and courage shown by our volunteers.’