Chairman of the Governors
Roger was educated at Woodbridge School, Mansfield College Oxford (MA Law) and the College of Law.
He joined Ashurst Morris Crisp (now Ashurst LLP) as a trainee in 1975 and became a partner in 1985, specialising in Corporate and Competition Law. He retired from the partnership in 2009 but remained an adviser to the firm until 2017. Between 1989 and 2004 he was responsible for the recruitment into the firm of trainee solicitors. He is the author of UK Merger Control: Law and Practice.
He was a member of the Competition and Markets Authority (formerly the Competition Commission) between 2009 and 2017 and is currently a Trustee of the Legal Education Foundation, Chairman of the City Solicitors Educational Trust, Chairman of Ipswich Town plc and a vice president of Ipswich Town Football Club, Chairman of the Disciplinary Committee of British Universities and Colleges Sport, a member of the Mansfield College Development Board and chair of its Remuneration Committee and he has a number of other non executive roles.
To contact the Chair of Governors, please email firstname.lastname@example.org, or to write, please use the following address; Seckford Foundation, Marryott House, Burkitt Road, Woodbridge, Suffolk IP12 4JJ.
In 2012 he joined Lintstock, a corporate advisory firm based in London, where he is responsible for the scoping and delivery of Board performance review mandates. He has experience of facilitating reviews for Boards within a broad range of markets and sectors, including at listed, private and not-for-profit organisations.
Jude has a degree in Biochemistry from Bristol University and is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales. He has extensive commercial and international experience gained from a 30-year career with KPMG. His experience includes auditing and advising on mergers, acquisitions and stock exchange listings, for public and private companies. He is a governor of the City Academy, Hackney, and the City of London Academy, Southwark. Jude is chair of SSAT (The Schools Network) Ltd, an education services provider and a non-executive director of Colchester Hospital University NHS Foundation Trust where he chairs the audit and risk committee.
Wendy holds a BA(Hons) degree from London University in Town Planning. After spending a short period as a town planner she moved into the field of housing association development, first in Norfolk and latterly in Suffolk. She is now CEO of Orwell Housing Association, having been its Director of Development and Property Services since 1995 and also acts as the Director of Development for the e2 development consortium working on behalf of three other housing associations operating across East Anglia.
Jill holds a degree in Geography from University College London and is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Housing.
She has over 40 years of experience of the not for profit sector particularly in social housing, including housing care and support, in the East Midlands, London and East Anglia and the charitable sector. She has served as chair and board member of Orwell Housing Association and has been a chair and trustee of World Habitat (formerly BSHF), a charity that transfers knowledge of solutions to global housing problems. She has written for the Chartered Institute of Housing and has served as a Governor of a local Primary school. Jill is also a Trustee of the Seckford Education Trust.
Inga was educated at Gravesend Grammar School and Regent Street Polytechnic (BA Hons Business Studies).
Inga spent fifteen years in commerce with Levi Strauss, Sainsbury and Storehouse, undertaking roles in marketing, brand management and general management. She then moved to the not for profit sector where she ran Ski Club of Great Britain before joining the National Trust, first being responsible for the Trust’s commercial operations and later for the management of one third of the Trust’s properties including those in the East of England. Most recently, until her retirement in 2010, she was Director General of the Royal Horticultural Society and in 2016 completed a term as Chair of the Heritage Lottery Fund in the East of England
Inga is currently Chair of the Regional Advisory Board of the National Trust in East of England and in the June 2017 Queen’s Birthday Honours list was awarded an OBE for her services to heritage and the community.
Geoff gained a PhD in Chemistry from Keele University before moving to Suffolk in 1985 to work for BT. Geoff’s career path at BT led him to study further gaining an MBA in Strategic Management from Nottingham University and later a Law degree from London Guildhall University. Geoff finally ended up in BT’s Brightstar business incubator helping to create fledging businesses. After leaving BT Geoff was elected first as a District and then as Town Councillor becoming the Mayor of Woodbridge in 2014/15. He is no longer a District Councillor but represents Woodbridge Riverside Ward on the Town Council. Geoff is a member of Woodbridge and District Lions Club, the Deben Yacht Club, a Trustee of Woodbridge Tide Mill, Chairman of the Woodbridge Regatta Association and a Director of Choose Woodbridge CIC.
Sarah grew up in and around Woodbridge and attended Farlingaye High School. She has an LLB in Law with German from the University of Birmingham and also attended the University of Bayreuth and the College of Law in York.
Sarah joined Birketts LLP as a trainee solicitor in 2008 and is now a senior associate specialising in shipping and international trade disputes. She lives in Woodbridge with her husband and 3 chickens.
Kevan was educated at Southampton University, Chichester Theological College, where he gained a Certificate in Theology.
He was ordained in 1980. After a number of roles as a curate and parish priest in Ross on Wye and Leominster he became the chaplain of Royal Hospital School Holbrook in 1987 before being appointed rector of St Mary’s Parish Church Woodbridge in 2001. He is also honorary chaplain to Ipswich Town Football Club, Suffolk Coastal District Council, Woodbridge Royal British Legion, Seckford Foundation (The Seckford Chapel), Officiating Chaplain to the Military and Chaplain to the Provincial Grand Lodge of Suffolk. He became a Canon in 2009 and in 2014 was appointed Chaplain to Her Majesty the Queen.
Margaret McKenna MA MBA FCMA Chair of School Committee, Member of Finance & Audit Committee and Health and Safety Governor
Margaret read Physics at Somerville College Oxford and qualified as a Management Accountant, subsequently gaining an MBA at London Business School. Following a number of finance positions she spent time as finance director of an FE college before joining Sherborne School, first as deputy bursar and then as bursar. In 2009 she was appointed as bursar of Felsted School, retiring in 2017. She has served as a governor of two prep schools and was Chair of Sherborne Preparatory School. She joined the board of the Independent Schools’ Bursars Association in 2010, becoming its Treasurer between 2013 and 15 and Chairman in 2016. She retired from Felsted in September 2017.
Graham returned a few years ago to the UK with his family (2 of his 4 sons are still at Woodbridge School) after 24 years living abroad. He is Chair of Institute of Directors in Suffolk and a Prince’s Trust mentor. In the past, he was a member of the supervisory board of The British School in The Netherlands and a Trustee of Dulwich College Beijing. He: volunteers; invests in start-ups and scale-ups; and holds board/trustee roles – his ‘third’ career.
His ‘first’ career was a Mining Engineer managing underground operations in coal and gypsum mines in the UK. After his MBA (1993), Graham joined FilmNet in corporate finance and business development – the start of his ‘second career’. He joined Irdeto, a media technology company, in 1995 and was CEO from 1998 until his resignation in 2015. Graham’s qualifications include: BEng (Hons) and MBA degrees; Chartered Engineer and European Engineer; Chartered Director; Member of Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining; and Fellow of the Institute of Directors.
Bryan Laxton Member of Finance & Audit Committee
Bryan has a BSc (Hons) in Land Management from Reading University and is a Fellow of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors. Bryan has over 35 years business experience mainly at Cushman & Wakefield – one of the world’s largest real estate advisory firms. Bryan served on the UK Board for 11 years, including 5 years as CEO and the EMEA Board for 8 years. Bryan has served as Chairman of the Reading Real Estate Foundation charity during his 10 years on the board. Bryan joined the board of Notcutts, a Woodbridge based Garden Centre retailer, in 2015. Bryan is married and has two sons at Woodbridge School.
Emily was educated at Woodbridge School, Gonville & Caius College Cambridge (MA History), and BPP Law School in London (GDL and LPC). After Cambridge she lived, studied and worked in Tokyo for two years as a Daiwa Scholar before pursuing a legal career and joining Hogan Lovells as a trainee solicitor in 2014.
Emily is now an Associate in Hogan Lovells’ employment law team in London. She advises multinational employers on all aspects of the employment relationship, corporate transactions and complex Employment Tribunal claims. She also does pro bono legal work for survivors of human trafficking and modern day slavery.
Martin’s career has been spent in the property sector where, since 1990, he has been an executive director of Churchmanor Estates plc, an Ipswich based property development and investment company.
He has been a member of Woodbridge Town Council since 2003, serving as town Mayor on three occasions and as the chair or vice chair of a number of its committees. He has a breadth of local experience gained from board membership of Suffolk Heritage Housing Association, Woodbridge Round Table, Deben Yacht Club, Deben Valley Young Farmers Club and as a school governor.
James graduated from Cambridge University (MA Economics). He started his career at Morgan Guaranty as a banker and then moved to Granville, a private UK investment bank where he specialised in corporate finance. When Granville was taken over by Robert W Baird, a private US investment bank, James was appointed head of Baird’s UK equities and investment banking operations.
Since 2007 James has set up or acquired a number of companies including Edenhouse Solutions, an SAP consultancy, and Harris Hill, a recruitment company specialising in the charity sector.
Co-opted Committee Members
Sarah Hill embarked upon a career in media planning with BMP following her English degree from Exeter, subsequently becoming media director of DMB&B in Hong Kong. Returning to London she became a board director of Young & Rubicam . During her family’s five year stint in Moscow she was trustee and chair of the British registered charity Action for Russia’s Children.
Sarah has four children at Woodbridge School. She is a Citizens Advice Bureau volunteer and is a member of Ipswich Orchestral Society. She also enjoys running, cycling and sailing.
Chris Staley has been a teacher and involved in education for 25 years. Having graduated from the University of Portsmouth, he then went onto London University for his PGCE and so began a relationship with the Institute of Education that still exists today. He started working in the state sector but after two years moved to Cranleigh School in Surrey. There he gained experience as Geography teacher, CCF officer, Rugby, Hockey, Tennis and Cricket coach, Deputy Housemaster, Head of Department, Housemaster and lastly, Senior Housemaster. After 15 years at Cranleigh he became Deputy Head at Milton Abbey School and having completed four years in Dorset then moved to become Headmaster at Wisbech Grammar in 2014, an HMC co-educational day school.
In 2010, he has completed an MBA with the University of London and also currently lectures to two cohorts of MBA students in Marketing, Resource Management, Strategic Leadership, Finances and most recently Human Resources. He is also currently training to be an ISI inspector.
Chris is a classic all-rounder who loves, in equal measure, his sport, art, music and drama. He enjoys the outdoors (alongside his Rhodesian Ridgeback Albie), taking part in Crossfit at the gym, Marvel films and spending time with his wife (a Governor at Sherborne School) and three children: Charlie 17 years old, Tilly 15 years old and Octavia 13 years old.