Re-appointments to the Charity Commission board

30 July 2010

Minister for Civil Society Nick Hurd has today announced the re-appointments of Simon Jones, Sharmila Nebhrajani, Theo Sowa CBE, Simon Wethered and Dr Andrew Purkis OBE as board members of the Charity Commission for England and Wales.

Simon Jones and Theo Sowa CBE have been appointed for second terms of three years.  Sharmila Nebhrajani and Simon Wethered have been appointed for second terms of two years.  Dr Andrew Purkis OBE has been appointed for a second term of just three months to enable him to complete his work for the Commission on case reviews before he stands down from the board.

Mr Hurd said:

I am pleased to announce these re-appointments to the Charity Commission board.  The Government wants to support a Big Society where people have the power to sort out problems and improve life for themselves and their communities. These re-appointments mean that the Charity Commission is directed by a highly skilled and experienced team well placed to help charities meet the challenges and grasp the opportunities ahead.

Chair of the Charity Commission Dame Suzi Leather said:

I am delighted that these board members will be continuing to bring their combined expertise and experience to help steer the Charity Commission. The knowledge and insight they bring is a great asset to us as both we and the sector face challenging times ahead. I look forward to continuing to work closely with them to enable the Commission to provide the best service we can to charities, the public and all those with an interest in maintaining an effective sector.

The Charity Commission for England and Wales is established by law as the independent regulator and registrar of charities in England and Wales. It aims to provide the best possible regulation of charities in order to increase charities’ efficiency and effectiveness and promote public trust and confidence in them.

These re-appointments have been made in accordance with the Office of the Commissioner for Public Appointments (OCPA) Code of Practice, and are remunerated at £350 per day for a minimum of two days work per month.

CAB 135-10

Notes for Editors

  1. Further information on the Charity Commission [external website].
  2. Appointments are made in line with the Office of the Commissioner for Public Appointments Code. See OCPA [external website].
  3. Simon Jones is the Commission’s Board member with knowledge of conditions in Wales.  He is Head of Public Sector, Wales for the executive search company, Odgers Berndtson. Until the end of 2008 he was Chair of Cardiff and Vale NHS Trust. For 10 years he was Chief Executive of the Wales co-operative Centre. He is a former Chair of the Independent Commission to review the National Assembly for Wales’ Voluntary Sector Scheme. He also chaired the Communities First Support Network and has wide media experience, including having been a presenter for Radio Wales.  His re-appointment was made following consultation with the Welsh Assembly Government.
  4. Sharmila Nebhrajani is Director of Finance and Investment at the two East Sussex PCTs - NHS East Sussex Downs and Weald and NHS Hastings and Rother. She has held a range of non-executive positions in health, media and other sectors and is a member of the Audit committee of the Royal Shakespeare Company. She is also a qualified chartered accountant and a member of the ICAEW.
  5. Dr Andrew Purkis OBE was until April 2009 Chief Executive of the Tropical Health and Education Trust and formerly the Chief Executive of the Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Fund, Secretary for Public Affairs for the Archbishop of Canterbury and National Director for the Council for the Protection of Rural England. He is currently Chair of ActionAid UK.
  6. Theo Sowa CBE is an independent advisor working on a wide range of international issues with a focus on social development and children and youth issues. Her work covers evaluation, facilitation, policy and organisational development with a range of international and intergovernmental organizations and grant making foundations, including UNICEF, Stephen Lewis Foundation, African Women’s Development Fund, DFID, UNDP, amongst others.
  7. Simon Wethered is one of the Commission’s two legally-qualified Members. Simon is a legal consultant specialising in charities with Charles Russell LLP and was formerly a partner there. He has 37 years experience as a solicitor, nine specialising in charity work. He is a member of the Charity Law Association, associate member of the Charity Finance Directors' Group and co–editor of Butterworth's Charity Law handbook.
  8. Under OCPA rules all re-appointments are made on merit and political activity plays no part in the selection process. However, in accordance with the original Nolan recommendations, there is a requirement for appointees’ political activity to be made public. All the re-appointed board members above have declared no political activity.
  9. None of the re-appointed board members above holds any other ministerial public appointment.
  10. For Cabinet Office press office contact details, visit the press office page.
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