Our structure

Girlguiding Scotland is a Scottish charity supporting almost 40,000 girls and young women and just under 9,000 amazing volunteers. We’re part of the UK-wide charity, Girlguiding, with members across Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and the English regions. Through Girlguiding we belong to the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS), a huge movement of ten million girls and young women across the globe.

Local guiding

Girlguiding Scotland has six regions – Ayrshire & South West, Central, Grampian, Highlands & Islands, Lothian & Borders and Strathclyde.

Each region is divided into local areas known as counties, for example Perth & Kinross, Glasgow and Moray.

Each county has its own lead volunteer known as a county commissioner who runs guiding in the area, supported by Girlguiding Scotland and a team of local volunteers.

Some counties are formed of several divisions, for example Stirling and Elphinstone.

Counties or divisions are broken down into districts, for example Stenhouse and North Lorn.

Last but not least, each local guiding area is made up of units – groups of Rainbows, Brownies, Guides and Rangers – for example the 53rd Glasgow Guides and the 1st Dingwall Rainbows.

Get more info

Find out more about how Girlguiding Scotland is structured by downloading a map of our counties, have a look at who’s part of our trustee board and our staff team.

If you’d like to contact a county commissioner or a Scottish adviser about a particular topic, for example accessibility, then please get in touch.

If you’d like to raise something at trustee level speak to your district or division commissioner, or your county commissioner. They can raise issues with your area’s regional representative on our trustee board, which meets four times a year.

Our Trustees

Girlguiding Scotland’s work is overseen by our trustee board, a group of trustees appointed for their skills, expertise and commitment to our vision. Led by the Scottish chief commissioner, our most senior volunteer, Girlguiding Scotland’s trustees make sure everything we do helps us achieve our mission to inspire and empower girls in every community in Scotland. The Scottish Chief Commissioner is supported by the chief executive and her team of staff.

Elaine Rough

Chair of Trustee Board (and Scottish Chief Commissioner)

Sarah MacNeil

Chair of Operational Board (and Deputy Scottish Chief Commissioner)

Emily Young

Honorary treasurer

Linda Holden

Chair of business management & finance committee

Mike Winter

External member

Evelyn McWhinnie


Helen Welsh


Eleanor Swift

Member (18-30)

Kate McGrath

Member (18-30)

Scottish chief commissioner team

Meet our new Scottish chief commissioner team and find out a little more about their roles…

Elaine Rough

Scottish Chief Commissioner

Elaine is our lead volunteer in Scotland with overall responsibility of making sure we continue to empower and inspire girls across the country.

Sarah MacNeil

Deputy Scottish Chief Commissioner

Sarah supports the Scottish chief commissioner, along with with the rest of the chief commissioner team.

Lyndsay Strang

Assistant Scottish Chief Commissioner

Lyndsay supports the chief commissioner, their team, as well as individual counties.

Alison McLaughlin

Assistant Scottish Chief Commissioner

Alison supports the chief commissioner and will consider our environmental impact, as well as improving our appointments processes.

Our staff team

We also have a team of staff who work at our Scottish Headquarters and shop in Edinburgh – they support the work of the trustee board. Find out who our Chief Executive is and who our senior management team are below.

Denise Spence CBE

Chief Executive

Denise is responsible for delivering Girlguiding Scotland’s strategy and managing our staff and finances. She works closely with the Scottish Chief Commissioner to ensure Girlguiding Scotland provides the best possible support for our members.

Carolyn Fox McKay

Head of Operations

Carolyn is our Head of Operations.

Carolyn oversees the Operations Team which includes communications, policy, press, volunteer and girl experience work.

Louise Henderson

Head of Membership Development and Growth

Louise oversees the work of the membership development and growth team, including managing our internal grants and our funded programmes which support local development work. Louise also leads on ensuring we’re using membership data and evidence to plan our work.

Janine Rennie

Finance Manager

Janine is responsible for delivering Girlguiding Scotland’s financial management and strategy. She is a member of the senior management team and works closely with volunteers across Scotland.