Meet the team

Simon Hyacinth: FURD Co-Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and U-Mix Centre Manager

Since 1997, Simon has been integral part of FURD. He has developed and managed a number of projects in various roles on behalf of FURD. In his current position as Co-CEO he manages the functional operations of U-Mix Centre and FURD's football development programmes. 

A native of Sheffield and a proud second generation immigrant from the small Caribbean island of Grenada, he completed his Recreation Management degree at Sheffield Hallam University and post graduate studies at the University of Huddersfield in the area of Youth and Community work. Simon has a wide range of interest including sports, music and arts. He is a die-hard RED DEVILS FAN.

Mehrun Ahmed: FURD Co-Chief Executive Officer (CEO)

Mehrun has been part of the FURD team since December 1999. In her previous role as the Millennium Volunteers Coordinator she played a key role in creating a step change in the direction of FURD's work. She has been a key player in creating partnerships and designing anti-racism education training programmes and developing FURD as a model of good practice in upskilling young people as volunteers and future leaders.

As Co-CEO of FURD, under her leadership FURD has excelled in developing young people’s social capital, implementing employment programmes and youth projects.

Mehrun graduated from the University of Sheffield with an MA in 'Working with Communities’. Her dissertation topic explored the perspectives of professionals working with Muslim young people; the research proved that people working with Muslim young people had little idea of the impact of Islamophobia on the lives of Muslim young people. This helped to support FURD's strategic objectives

She participated in a management course with the Chartered Management Institute, ‘Managing an Integrated Youth Support Service’, and has undertaken an ILM level 4 Management course with Voluntary Action Sheffield.

Howard Holmes: Chair of FURD's Board of Trustees

Howard, one of the founders of FURD and now Chair of Trustees, has been the driving force behind the vision of Football Unites, Racism Divides since 1995.  FURD’s growth as an organisation in tackling racism and its success over the years has been shaped and built under the strong leadership of Howard. In his current role as Chair of Trustees he oversees the smooth functioning of FURD.

Howard is a lifelong Blades fan and a Sheffield United FC season ticket holder. He is a member of the Fare (Football Against Racism in Europe) Network Board having served as Chair for 5 years. Howard has established a strong profile for FURD in South Africa, in particular with the District Six Museum and Welcoming Centre in Cape Town.

Following Howard's retirement as Director in 2011 he has specialised in Black history initiatives, including writing several comic books in the FURD Pioneers series. 

Ruth Johnson: Resources and Information Worker, Women and Girls Football Devlopment Worker and Walking Football Coordinator

Ruth Johnson has been part of the team since 1997.  Ruth brings vast experience in the areas of research & information and women’s football development.  Currently, Ruth leads multiple projects at FURD. As a resources and information worker, Ruth manages FURD’s library, website and social media. In her other role as a football development worker, Ruth coordinates the women’s and girl’s football development programme and walking football for men and women. 

Ruth is a qualified and experienced librarian with an MSc in Information Management from the University of Sheffield. She is also an FA level 1 qualified football coach and a keen footballer.