Our Board

Meet our volunteer board

RYA Scotland relies on a voluntary board and volunteers working on specific areas of boating. From performance sailing, coaching, training, development, Sailability, cruising, environment and marine planning, the activities are diverse. 

We are keen to have representation from across Scotland to provide insights and support from the boating community. The roles are voluntary and are therefore not remunerated, however RYA Scotland will meet your expenses for attending meetings and support your development in your chosen role.

The best way to find out more about any opportunity is to email admin@ryascotland.org.uk


Portrait of the board member Brian Wilson - Chair 

Introduced to sailing through the Scout Association; went on gain level 2 sailing, soon getting his first boat, a mirror dinghy. Progressed his skills to become a Senior Instructor Dinghy and Advanced Powerboat Instructor, taking these skills to become Principal Instructor of Longcraig Scout Centre. He was introduced to yachts with friends, including some fun/successful racing in Turkey. Owned Mirror Dinghy, Magno, Rib-X 575, Dart16 & now Hanse 371, which he sails with his wife. Started with RYAS on Participation and Development Group, becoming its Chair, which led on to being a member of RYAS Council. Went on to join the Management Committee as Council representative before joining the new board.    (Appointed on 29th October 2020) 



Hannah Earl-Payne, standing in a powerboat with hills in background Hannah Earle-Payne - Vice- Chair 

Hannah is an education professional with a varied career in Further and Higher education, international consultancy and skills development. Outwith the day job, Hannah also supports her husband to run their RYA approved training centre in Oban on the beautiful West Coast of Scotland. Hannah has always had a love of the sea, despite being born and raised in one of the UK’s most inland counties, she was fortunate enough to be able to experience sailing as a youngster but most recently has been introduced to the excitement of powerboating.  (Appointed on 28th October 2021


Portrait of the board member   Katy Wedderburn – Hon. Secretary                                                        

Katy is a member of Royal Gourock Yacht Club and has a lifetime of experience racing and cruising in keelboats and dinghies. Growing up, she was a keen cadet at RGYC; a dinghy instructor at Tighnabruaich Sailing School; and overseas moving on to competing as a student while at university. A fan of the Sigma 33 class and now a joint owner of an Etchells, Living on the Etch, Katy and her entire family are regularly active on the water. Professionally Katy is a lawyer who is Head of Employment Law Group at MacRoberts LLP.  (Appointed on 13th January 2020)


 Portrait of Adam Dearnley afloat at North Berwick.  Adam Dearnley – Hon. Treasurer                                                     

Adam grew up sailing on the Norfolk Broads before transitioning to racing within the RYA youth Squads in the Laser Class, taking part in the Weymouth Olympic Trials in 1995. He is now a member of East Lothian Yacht Club in North Berwick and currently still sailing with his family on the Forth.  Professionally Adam has 20+ years of experience working in finance, including 10+ years at Finance Director level.  (Appointed on 5th July 2021)


Portrait of Yasmin Price Yasmin Price – Youth Director                                                    

Yasmin currently works within a commercial RYA training centre as an operations manager and has gained extensive experience afloat with the Ocean Youth Trust as both a volunteer and as a sail trainer. With a variety of RYA qualifications Yasmin brings a new perspective and wealth of experience to the board.  (Appointed on 4th September 2023)


Portrait of the board member Jordan McNeilage – Youth Development Director

Jordan is a part time Chief Instructor at Loch Insh Water Sports and Scout Leader with the 17th Perthshire (Aberfeldy). He is passionate about the life changing effect of sailing on young people taking part and keen to promote the voice of young people in RYA Scotland’s decision making processes. Jordan started out as an assistant instructor at a small centre on the shores of Loch Tay. He moved quickly through the RYA instructor scheme and became a senior instructor at Loch Insh. Now working professionally as and architectural technologist he is using his board position to promote the benefits of sailing and the positive impact it can have on young people.  (Appointed on 9th March 2020)


RYA Scotland Board Portraits Hamish MacKay - Performance Director

Hamish returns to RYAS after a break, following over a 20 year spell volunteering cumulating as Chair between 2008-2011.  Formerly represented RYAS on the Sport Scotland Audit Committee, Sport Scotland Trust Company and the Scottish Sailing Institute so brings a strong understanding of our history back to the board.  Having raced competitively his whole life this continues by remaining active competing successfully across many One Design classes including Etchells, Dragon and Flying 15 whilst also enjoying a slower pace of cruising the Scottish west coast during the summer.  Hamish works in IT sales and is a proud diversity ambassador within his organisation.  A member of Mudhook, Royal Highland and Solway Yacht Club. (Appointed on 15th May 2023)


Portrait Images of RYA Scotland Board Members Peter Robinson - Cruising & General Purpose Director

Peter has been a keen sailor since discovering the sport as a young child having progressed through a variety of dinghies, sailing at locations across Scotland and the UK. He and his wife enjoyed taking a sabbatical to undertake a circumnavigation and exploring some of the best cruising the world can offer having left from Troon Harbour, they returned 2 years later. He currently enjoys racing within the vibrant Hunter 707 fleet as a member of Port Edgar Yacht Club and also at events elsewhere. Professionally, Peter is a Chartered Civil Engineer and a Fellow of the Institution of Civil Engineers. He has a role working for global Consultant AECOM, across the UK & Ireland overseeing work on Waterways and Coasts and is passionate about sustainability, climate mitigation and adaption. (Appointed on 4th March 2024)


RYA Scotland Board Portraits Neil McDonald Participation & Development)

Neil is a lifelong sailor who first learned to sail with the Clyde Cruising Club dinghy section. That ignited a passion that has led to involvement in cruising and racing a wide range of keel boats, multihulls and dinghies. He currently cruises on the West Coast of Scotland and occasionally participates in racing. His career in the drinks industry took him to many countries of the world, but he always found time to seek out a sailing club and get onto the water. As a result, in addition to being a member of the Royal Highland Yacht Club and the Clyde Corinthian Yacht Club, he is a life member of the Lagos Yacht Club, Nigeria and the Royal Varuna Yacht Club Thailand. (Appointed on 15th May 2023)


Stewart Ainslie laughing Stewart Ainslie - Marketing and Communications Director

Stewart has been a keen windsurfer since his teenage years and, for a time, instructed Start Windsurfing in the Mediterranean. His local club is Loch Venachar where many fond memories were made pottering around on the water. These days you're more likely to find him behind a laptop than out at sea—something he is determined to change. Stew brings over twelve years of industry experience to the board, and has spent the last six years running his own design business. (Appointed December 2020)

RYA Scotland Board Portraits Jack Mitchell - Coaching Director               

Jack started afloat as a Sea Cadet in the Midlands, moving in to instructing and coaching roles, supporting his local sailing club and eventually moving to employment in the maritime leisure industry. Jack became a RYA Regional Development Officer, supporting clubs, centres and businesses  and has since then works for the MoD.  Jack's passion to supporting people achieve their potential has been a theme throughout his career across his development and coaching roles. He is a RYA Dinghy Trainer, centre inspector, Level 3 Race Coach and Appointed Race Coach Tutor. (Appointed on 15th May 2023)

RYA Scotland Board Portraits  Ben Kemp - Governance and EDI Director               

Ben was introduced to sailing as a sea scout, dinghy racing while at school and then at University. He now sails a 'vintage' Nicholson 32 with his family, mostly off the west coast of Scotland, as well as further afield. He is a member at East Lothian YC. Professionally, Ben is an experienced lawyer and director, having worked for more than ten years as General Counsel and Executive Director at an international professional body. Before that he worked for a similar period in private practice, including as a Partner at London law firm, Kingsley Napley LLP. (Appointed on 15th May 2023)


Portrait Images of RYA Scotland Board Members  Hannah Ladd-Jones –Independent Director

Hannah is a Project Manager for the UK marine communication and events group Ocean and Coastal Futures and joined the team in November 2023. With a MSc in Conservation and Biodiversity from the University of Exeter, Hannah worked at the University of St Andrews as a marine research project manager before becoming the Communications and Public Engagement Coordinator for the Scottish marine research pools called MASTS. Hannah is a keen climber and mountaineer who will pretty much spend all her available time climbing around the UK and internationally - whatever the weather. As independent director, she is pleased to confirm she is absolutely independent of sailing but as a keen outdoor sportsperson she understands the values of sports clubs and the sense of community and support they can provide. (Appointed on 4th March 2024)