Tell us a bit about yourself
I live in Chichester with my family and our pet dog. We moved to West Sussex after I retired from being a partner in a global professional services company. For most of my career, I worked in London and had a brief stint in New York. Initially after retiring from the company, I did executive coaching, and then became interested in helping charities and social enterprises. I'm now a trustee of three charities, supporting conservation through Sussex Wildlife Trust and helping children with the other two.
I'm a keen hiker and like wide, open spaces and being out in the open air. My wife and my 17 year old son love being outdoors as well. We try to live lightly, in terms of our impact on the environment. We've designed our garden to be wildlife friendly including a pond with lots of creatures thriving in it.
I became a trustee of Sussex Wildlife Trust in spring 2019, after wondering what I could do to help protect the natural environment. It's good to use my skills in finance and strategy for the benefit of the Trust.
How has lockdown been?
It's not too bad. We live on a friendly street, our house and garden are of a reasonable size, and we planted the garden from scratch last year, so we keep ourselves busy. Living where we do, you can get out and avoid the crowds. I've got the South Downs Way on my doorstep, on and around Levin Down is delightful, then there's the beaches around us.
What are your favourite places to visit?
I only discovered West Dean Woods relatively recently, and was able to see the remarkable wild daffodils there earlier in the year.
What do you see your role with the Trust as being?
It's about getting people to be engaged and wanting to protect wildlife. The greatest threat is people and how we live, and the greatest challenge is to get people to change their behaviour. It's such a massive issue. I feel my role is to help the Trust to stand back and think about what is the best way to reach that objective and have the best impact.
What do you enjoy about being a trustee?
Learning. I am a novice when it comes to conservation and the knowledge and expertise of Sussex Wildlife Trust staff and the other trustees is remarkable. I was reading Fran Southgate's report about her work, and found it interesting and instructive [see Fran's Wilder Landscapes/Sussex Flow Initiative summary infographic below].
And the biggest challenges?
You are a non-exec. Some of the stuff our people do, I'd love to get more involved, but it's not possible because I don't know enough. It's slightly frustrating. I wish I could do more.