The Research Team

A combination of experience from academia and probation practice.

Kerry Ellis-Devitt

Probation Practice Researcher

Kerry has 10 years’ experience in criminal justice research. Kerry joined KSS CRC’s research unit in summer 2018 from the University of Portsmouth where she was a senior lecturer, teaching units relating to criminological and psychological theory and criminal justice practice. Her PhD thesis – The life-stories of young adult men in the criminal justice system: a critical narrative analysis – is in the final stage of corrections. Kerry has published work on the data and trends of young people in the criminal justice system and on new practice to support disadvantaged and vulnerable young adults. 

Kerry has also held roles in the charity sector.


David Coley

Probation Practice Researcher

David joined KSS CRC’s research unit in April 2018 from a role in the National Probation Service training and mentoring frontline probation staff. David’s interests lie in continuous professional development and he has conducted several research studies into adult learning within a work-based criminal justice context - Reflective Practice and Questions of Identity (Probation Quarterly, June 2018). David has supervised professional practice learning at BA and MA levels and continues to support colleagues to do academic research studies while in work. David was awarded his PhD in 2014 on research working.  

David originally trained in social work with a focus on mental health and disability. He was a frontline probation officer for eight years and went on to spend a decade as a practice tutor assessor.  


Graham Wines

Deputy Chief Officer for Excellence and Effectiveness

Graham has worked in the public and private sectors, shaping organisational approach to change and people management. As a previous Head of HR for a variety of companies, he understands an organisation’s strategic needs and how to deliver solutions to bring success. Graham is studying for an MST in criminology at the University of Cambridge. . 


Debbie Piggott

Assistant Chief Probation Officer for Policy and Development

Debbie has extensive experience within probation practice, including designing and implementing multi-agency offender management models and probation court services. Debbie is now responsible for policy development and our research unit ensuring that policy and practice is responding to emerging and evolving trends in probation, crime and criminal justice. 

Debbie qualified as a probation officer in 2003.