The ICAS Foundation Trustees have a range of professional backgrounds and personal interests. You can find out more about each trustee below.
Norman is a Chartered Accountant and a ICAS Past President. He previously served on the ICAS Research Committee and was chair of the ICAS Ethics Board until 2020. He was Chairman of premium international spirits company The Edrington Group, as well as Chairman of FTSE 100 companies Petrofac Limited and Cairn Energy plc. Norman is a graduate of both Heriot-Watt University, where he was an Honorary Professor, and of the Harvard Business School, and was elected as a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh in 2015.
Norman’s interest in the arts led to his being appointed Chairman of Scottish Ballet and a director of Scottish Ballet Endowment Fund from 2013 - 2020, receiving a CBE for his services to the Arts in January 2022, and he is a current patron of National Museums Scotland and Pitlochry Festival Theatre.
Norman was delighted to be invited to become a Trustee following many other ICAS involvements. He saw this as an opportunity to bring his business and personal experience from a long international career to helping able and ambitious young people from disadvantaged communities pursue university studies in accountancy or finance. The ability to help make a positive difference to deserving people’s lives has always been high on Norman’s personal agenda - the Foundation’s record of successful outcomes and its future plans are a key motivator for Norman’s ongoing commitment.
Read Norman's interview in the April 2022 ICAS CA Magazine.
Jann Brown is a Chartered Accountant and spent the first ten years of her career in the profession, working for both KPMG and Deloitte. Jann moved into industry in 1998 and was CFO and Managing Director of Cairn Energy when she stepped down in 2014. She was co-founder and CFO of Private Equity backed Magna Energy Limited until 2017, when she joined Pharos Energy where she is now CEO.
Jann also has extensive Non Executive Director experience with fund management, manufacturing , engineering and not for profit companies. She is a Past President of ICAS, the third woman to hold that role.
"My own career in accountancy was only made possible by a grant from the Carnegie Foundation to pay the university fees for a Masters Diploma, a qualification which was essential at that time to be taken on as a CA trainee. My CA qualification has opened up opportunities for me that would never have been possible without the generosity of that grant. I know first hand what a difference can be made with help and support at the right point in time, and I am delighted that I am now in a position to support the ICAS Foundation in doing exactly that."
Colin is a qualified Chartered Accountant and Lawyer, who has spent the major part of his career in Financial Services including as CEO of a regulated company. Since 2009, Colin has pursued various non executive director and chairmanship roles across a wide range of Scottish organisations in the public and private sectors, including economic development, education and tourism. He has broad financial and audit committee experience, and until 2020 was a member of the ICAS Council and ICAS Audit Committee.
Throughout his career, Colin has remained active in the third sector, and he was awarded an OBE for services to social housing and for his service on the McFadden committee, which acted as a precursor to OSCR, the Scottish charity regulator.
Colin believes strongly in equality of opportunity and that ICAS Foundation helps achieve this for able young people keen to have a career in finance and accountancy.
David spent his career with Deloitte, serving mostly international corporate clients – having started in 1979 and qualified in 1982, he became a partner in 1988 and led the Tax practice from 1998-2006, then serving as UK Chair between 2007 and 2015 and Global Chair from 2015 - 2019. He retired from the firm in the summer of 2020, and joined the Board of Jupiter Fund Management plc in June 2021. In May 2022 , he was also appointed as Non-Executive Chair of McInroy & Wood Ltd.
For over 12 years David has been a trustee and is currently Chair of Education & Employers, a charity providing opportunities for thousands of school students every year, to see and experience different jobs and roles. In the US, he chairs the Board of Directors of the Social Progress Imperative, a not for profit that produces the country-by-country Social Progress Index. He also serves as an ICAS Council Member.
David supports the ICAS Foundation because a career in accountancy and finance leads to all sorts of opportunities that many school students don’t believe are available to them - Foundation support can open so many doors which otherwise might be closed. During his career at Deloitte, developing young talent was always a passion for him.
Sir Andrew practiced as a solicitor in Edinburgh for most of his career, specialising in corporate law. He has taught at the University of Edinburgh and has held, throughout his career, non-executive directorships in public and private companies. Sir Andrew was Chairman of the CBI in Scotland, and in consequence chaired the Cubie Committee into student finance in Scotland which led to the abolition of tuition fees in Scottish universities. In 2001, he was awarded a CBE for services to business and education in Scotland; he has subsequently participated in a range of public reviews and remains involved in higher education issues and third sector governance. He was knighted in 2009 for public service.
He currently chairs the Housing First Advisory Board for Scotland, sparqs, which promotes student involvement in university and college governance, the Leith Trust which brings the diverse communities of Leith together and the Campaign Board of Edinburgh Napier University.
His work in regard to student finance made abundantly clear to him the inequalities in access to further and higher education and the consequent loss of opportunity both to individuals and society. The Foundation addresses these issues.
Chris qualified as a Chartered Accountant in 2011, and is currently the Audit Director for RSM UK, a leading provider of audit, tax and consulting services to middle market leaders, globally. Based in the Glasgow office, he manages a portfolio of clients including Corporate, Registered Social Landlords and Pension Schemes.
Chris is passionate about the work of the ICAS Foundation and has mentored a number of Foundation students during their university studies, ensuring that he has an excellent understanding of the challenges faced by current university students.
As a Trustee, Chris is keen to share his experience of navigating the leap from university to professional CA - he admits to making a lot of unnecessary mistakes along the way, but quickly learned from these. He feels incredibly lucky to have found an employer which has provided him with every opportunity to learn, to be challenged and to progress, and hopes that by sharing his experience, he can help others in similar circumstances to achieve positive outcomes too.
Find out more about why Chris supports the ICAS Foundation in his Trustee and Mentor profile.
Shonagh is a Chartered Accountant and one of two ICAS nominated trustees of the ICAS Foundation. Having originally qualified with ICAS whilst working in practice with KPMG, Shonagh has over 15 years’ experience in the Education sector. She is now a Principal Lecturer for Academic Development and Student Experience at Aberdeen Business School at the Robert Gordon University. Within this role, she continues to teach undergraduate accounting students and will bring these experiences and expertise to the ICAS Foundation. Shonagh is also a trustee for the Association for Learning Technology, the leading body for learning technology in the UK.
“As someone who works regularly with undergraduate accountancy students, I can really understand the positive impact both financial support and mentoring can make to those from disadvantaged backgrounds who want to pursue a career as an accountant. I am delighted to be part of the ICAS Foundation which makes a real contribution in this area.”
Geraldine is a Chartered Accountant and previous member of the ICAS Ethics Committee. She was formerly the Director of The Prince’s Trust in Scotland and a Partner in Springfords Chartered Accountants.
Geraldine is now a Trustee of the Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo (Charities) Limited and an non executive Director of its trading company, a Trustee of the Golden Charter Trust and a non executive Director of its investment company, Deputy Chair and Governor of Kilgraston School and a non executive Director of Reform Scotland (Scotland’s independent think tank).
"Doors opened in my life and my life choices increased, thanks to my accountancy studies and qualification. This was possible because I received a non-repayable grant to attend university. Being a trustee lets me play my part in helping open doors and increase life choices for others; able, hard-working young people who, with the support of the Foundation, can study accountancy and finance. I firmly believe that recruiting young people from diverse backgrounds makes the sector more reflective of our society, stronger and much more fun to be part of."
Ryan graduated from Glasgow Caledonian University in 2019, with a First Class Honours degree in Accountancy. He joined the ICAS Foundation programme in 2016 as a second-year student and benefited from the Foundation’s mentoring and bursary support while completing his studies. On graduation, he accepted a CA graduate training contract with Grant Thornton and he is currently based in their Glasgow office working with a wide range of Audit clients. He is passionate about removing barriers to social mobility and increasing diversity in the accounting profession.
"I was fortunate enough to receive help and support from the ICAS Foundation whilst at university. As a Trustee, I can share first hand experience of the challenges that students like myself face on a daily basis. There is a risk that the accountancy profession could lose out on key talent moving forward and to me, this is where the work of the ICAS Foundation becomes ever more important. The opportunity to work with a fantastic board of trustees on tackling modern day issues is one that hugely motivates me."
Jonathan began his career as a BBC news and current affairs journalist before working in senior communications, public affairs and corporate affairs roles for listed and private equity backed businesses in the industrials and energy sectors, as well as working for a number of years as Executive Director of Membership & Marketing at ICAS.
“I worked at ICAS at the time when the idea to launch the ICAS Foundation was taking shape, but was not yet a reality. To now have the opportunity to join as a Trustee, it’s an incredible privilege to be involved with an organisation that is developing and nurturing future leaders. The work, and the message of the Foundation, is incredibly important as we continue to ensure that we support the breadth and diversity of talent that business and the profession needs now and in the future.”
Eleanor is Head of Outreach at Glasgow Caledonian University where she has worked since 2000. Her work in Outreach involves a number of projects, such as the multi-award winning Caledonian Club which works with pupils and families in nursery, primary and secondary schools across five Glasgow communities, the Advanced Higher Hub which offers a bridging and transition programme to sixth year pupils across all Glasgow secondary schools and support for the recruitment and transition of college students, care experienced students and estranged students to university.
She is a former teacher of Business Studies and Economics with 10 years teaching experience in sixth form colleges and secondary schools in London. In 2015, Eleanor was awarded a MBE for her services to Community Education in Glasgow.
Having worked in Widening Participation and Outreach for over 20 years, and a firm believer in social justice and that everyone should be able to access the same educational opportunities regardless of their background, Eleanor was absolutely thrilled to become a Trustee of the ICAS Foundation in 2018. The work of the Foundation in granting bursaries and providing access to industry mentors is a winning formula to help achieve equality of opportunity to Accountancy and Finance applicants. Eleanor is very proud both to be a Trustee and of the work of the ICAS Foundation.