Support Team

Supporting the industry to improve safety

Step Change in Safety has a small support team that is dedicated to supporting the oil and gas industry to improve safety. Our team exists to assist our members, facilitate Workgroups, collate good practice, develop learning materials, communicate factual information and deliver learning opportunities through events and roadshows.

The team is on hand to address any queries you have. Read the profiles below to discover more about the individuals who make up our team.


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Support Team

  1. Steve Rae
    Steve Rae
    Executive Director

    Steve joined Step Change in Safety in July 2019 having spent over 35 years working in the oil and gas industry. He entered the energy industry in the early 1980s as an offshore technician and has held a variety of roles in the sector, including several senior positions overseas.

    After working on a series of North Sea platforms in the early years of his career, Steve was assigned to Piper Alpha. His escape and survival from the platform on the night of July, 06 1988 left him with a strong desire to make a positive change to the safety culture across the oil and gas industry, both onshore and offshore.

    In 2007, he became a member of Step Change in Safety’s Leadership Team, which is involved in shaping and planning the organisation’s activities. He has also been a director of energy industry skills body OPITO and chairman of the North Sea Chapter of the International Association of Drilling Contractors. Steve is currently chair of the Pound for Piper charity trust.

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  2. Gillian Simpson
    Gillian Simpson
    Programme Delivery Manager

    A former research scientist, Gillian joined Step Change in Safety in February 2012 after working with Oil & Gas UK on the Well Life Cycle Practices forum.

    Gillian holds a PhD in molecular biology and her career has included spells as an assistant editor for an international scientific journal and as a school teacher.

    At Step Change in Safety, she coordinates a number of projects that aim to reduce hydrocarbon releases and improve offshore safety. Gillian manages the production of our Joined-up Thinking engagement and education packs, oversees the Major Accident Hazard Understanding workgroup and the compiles our Safety Alerts & Moments.

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  3. Emma Gracie
    Emma Gracie
    Support team Co-ordinator

    Emma has been an integral part of the Step Change in Safety team since April 2012, overseeing the organisation’s administrative functions and providing invaluable support to the whole team and its members. Prior to joining Step Change in Safety, she worked in the accounts and administration departments at companies in the energy and occupational health sectors.

    Along with managing the clerical functions, Emma is the first point of contact for enquiries relating to membership of Step Change in Safety and the portfolio of events we organise.

  4. Kirstin Gove
    Kirstin Gove
    Head of Communications

    An experienced communications professional and former anchor of STV News, Kirstin took up her role as Head of Communications in 2018. For 15 years, she reported on some of the biggest stories in Scotland and presented one of the country’s main evening news programmes. She also chaired a number of studio discussion and debate programmes alongside other regional and Westminster shows.

    The past decade has seen Kirstin transfer her journalistic skills into the corporate communications industry. At Step Change in Safety she is responsible for managing all internal, external and stakeholder communications, producing regular newsletters and organising our membership engagement events.

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  5. Carolyn Smith
    Carolyn Smith
    Health & Safety Programme Delivery Manager

    Carolyn joined Step Change in Safety in 2020 from Sodexo, where she held the role of HSEQ Manager. Her career started in the food manufacturing industry where she managed compliance in a factory setting. She has also worked as an Environmental Health Officer, enforcing health and safety law at onshore sites and doing proactive and reactive inspections.
    More recently Carolyn worked as an HSEQ Manager for catering companies offshore, gaining an excellent understanding of health and welfare issues affecting the offshore workforce, including mental health and the importance of fatigue, nutrition and communication.
    Carolyn facilitates the Human Factors, Lifting Forum and Competence workgroups

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  6. Aimie Clark
    Aimie Clark
    Programme Delivery Co-ordinator

    Aimie was previously an HSSE Advisor at Aker Solution, which she joined in 2010 and was the company’s Step Change in Safety Focal Point for more than four years.

    Most recently, Aimie was the site HSSE Advisor for Aker’s manufacture and test workshops, warehouse and yard. She’s was also responsible for the co-ordination and drive of HSSE Plan actions; the review and development of HSSE procedures; and the undertaking of inspections, audits, and incident investigations.

    Aimie joined Step Change in Safety in 2019.


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