Meet the team

Jack Walsh

Chair


Hailing from Ireland, Jack is a Government and Politics student at University College Cork. Previously serving as regional officer for Ireland and Northern Ireland, Jack is currently the SPA’s chair and will lead the charity over the 2024/25 period.

He has been involved in student journalism since secondary school. Most recently he served as Deputy-Editor of Polity, the SPA award nominated societal publication of the UCC Government and Politics Society. He has also been a current affairs reporter for the University Express and hosted a radio show on UCC98.3FM.

His tenure as SPA Chair will focus on fostering deeper connections between the SPA’s 200+ member publications, securing the long-term financial position of the charity, and continuing to extend supports to student journalists across the UK and Ireland.

Joe McFadden

Training & Opportunities Officer


Joe is a trainee journalist at BBC News, where he is completing a journalism post-graduate apprenticeship as part of his training.

He was previously The Mancunion's Managing Editor, graduating from the University of Manchester in 2023 with a First Class degree in Politics and Modern History, and was the SPA's Regional Officer for the North in 2023/24. He is passionate about holding institutions to account and breaking down boundaries in journalism. In his spare time, Joe can be found tweeting about pop culture or watching films and TV

Matthew Stothard

Communications Officer


Matthew is the outgoing Co-Editor-in-Chief of Concrete and is currently completing an MA in Early Modern History at the University of East Anglia.

He has been involved in student journalism for almost four years, writing across a wide range of sections and holding multiple editorial roles, as well as working closely with UEA’s student radio station. He is passionate about creating welcoming and supportive environments in student media.

Rory Buccheri

Membership Officer


Rory is the Membership Officer, former Arts Editor and Head of Food and Drink at The Gaudie. They work as a freelance journalist covering food, entertainment, and travel, and are passionate about non-binary and queer representation in the media. Alongside SPA duties, Rory spends time obsessing over birds, reading, and writing their substack 'Travel Outside the Binary.'

Libby Elliot

Sponsorship Officer


Libby is the Editor-in-Chief of The Mancunion, who also supports Manchester's student radio and television stations in her role. Helping to organise this year's NaSTA conference, she is passionate about making conferences and awards accessible. Formerly, she was the Investigations editor at The Mancunion and Chair of Manchester's Students for Sensible Drug Policy. She has also worked as a freelance journalist, investigating poor hospitality conditions in Manchester and covering local elections.

Talia Andrea

Conference & Events Officer


Talia is an award-winning events coordinator and host with a background in music journalism, which all began with her time at KCL’s Strand Magazine. In addition to founding her own music festival and concert series (FEMMESTIVAL), she has worked on conferences, panels, receptions, and networking events of all scales.

Her work in events has been commended both regionally and nationally over the past year, including at SPANC23, where she was Highly Commended for ‘Best Project or Initiative’ for her work on the Strand Magazine’s live music showcases. Now, she is excited to join the SPA’s dynamic team as their Conference and Events Officer for 2024-25.

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