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Our board of trustees

Amanda Ellingworth Lady Amanda Ellingworth

Chair of Plan UK Board since March 2016
Lady Amanda Ellingworth has recently taken the position of chair of Plan UK. Prior to Plan UK, Amanda was chair of social care and housing providers The Guinness Partnership. Amanda is also the deputy chair and senior independent director of Barnardo’s and has served on the board of Yeovil Hospital Foundation Trust for nine years. She began her career in social services and has extensive experience in child protection and children’s services. Amanda has dedicated her career to working for organisations that support the most vulnerable. Amanda is a mother of three and has sponsored children through Plan UK for 27 years in Zimbabwe and Sudan. She is passionate about children’s rights and has reaffirmed Plan’s pledge to help some of the world’s most vulnerable children, especially girls.
Find out what motivates Amanda as a trustee.

Richard Street

RichardStreet2Board member since June 2015
After 20 years in the security print industry and the FCO Richard became CEO of the Prince’s Youth Business Trust in 1996.   He later founded PYBI (Prince’s Youth Business International) to take this programme of entrepreneurship and employability for marginalised youth abroad.   He has since worked with youth programmes in more than 40 countries.  Most recently he was a Trustee of CARE UK and Chair of Street Kids International UK.  

Richard Laing

Board member since March 2010
Richard LaingRichard Laing retired as the Chief Executive of CDC Group (Commonwealth Development Corporation) in 2012. CDC, 100% owned by the UK government, is the UK’s bi-lateral development finance institution. It typically invests around £400m per annum in private sector enterprises in developing countries with a focus on Africa and South Asia. He is now a non-executive director at a number of commercial and charitable organisations including the Overseas Development Institute (ODI), the leading development think tank, and Miro Forestry, a sustainable forestry company operating in Ghana and Sierra Leone.
Find out what motivates Richard as a trustee.

Javaid Khan

Board member since July 2004
Javaid is a qualified Finance Director with an MBA from Manchester Business School. His early career developed within UK Industry, working in broader financial, corporate and general management roles. Between 1991 and 2001 he worked as an Executive Director with three NHS Health Authority Boards including a period as Acting Chief Executive. From October 2001 to September 2007 Javaid was Executive Director of NCH, the largest children’s charity in the UK, in a strategic, planning and governance role.
Find out what motivates Javaid as a trustee.

Spencer McHugh

Spencer McHughBoard member since October 2012
Spencer McHugh is Brand Marketing Director at EE, responsible for all marketing communications activity across the Orange, T-Mobile and EE brands. He is responsible for brand strategy as well as digital marketing, advertising, retail marketing and sponsorship activity. Spencer was previously Marketing Director at Orange and prior to that spent 12 years working for advertising agencies in a variety of strategic and planning roles.
Find out what motivates Spencer as a trustee.

Amanda Phillips

Amanda PhillipsBoard member since October 2012
Amanda is Sales and Marketing Director at Milward Brown. Prior to that she was Managing Director at digital agency Volume. With an academic background in behavioural psychology and an early career working client-side in financial services, Amanda has subsequently held senior roles at marketing agencies, including Chief Executive of Proximity and co-founding the behaviour change agency An Abundance where clients included Barnardo’s and Royal Mail.
Find out what motivates Amanda as a trustee.

Jane French

Jane FrenchBoard member since November 2012 (also on Plan UK Audit and Finance Committee)
Jane is a Managing Director at Citi, where over a 20-year career she has played a variety of roles in investment, corporate and private banking across global and emerging markets. Jane is also a long-standing member and trustee of Pilotlight, a UK based charity providing business mentoring and coaching to other UK charities to help them become more effective in alleviating social disadvantage. She recently joined the board of New College (Oxford) Development Fund.

Hanah Burgess

Hanah BurgessBoard member since January 2014 (also on Plan UK Audit and Finance Committee)
Hanah is a chartered accountant with nearly 20 years' experience working in both the commercial and not-for-profit sectors. After qualifying from PwC, Hanah then went on to work in the financial services sector before taking on a senior finance role at ITV. She has spent the last five years working for large UK charities in both financial and strategic planning roles and is currently the Finance and Resources Director at Anthony Nolan. Before that, she was Finance Director at the Health Foundation, an independent charitable foundation that works to improve the quality of healthcare.

Lara Oyesanya

Lara Oyesanya, Plan UK trusteeBoard member since October 2014
Lara is a VP, Legal Counsel in the Personal and Corporate banking arm of Barclays. Prior to this role, she has held senior positions both in private practice (Hammonds and McKinnells) and in-house (British Rail, RAC and BAE Systems), including a role as the head of legal at Lex, then part of HBOS. Lara is also a contributing editor for Lexis Nexis Encyclopaedia of Banking Law and a member of Lexis®PSL Financial Services Consulting Editorial Board. She is a law graduate of the University of Lagos who is dual qualified as a Barrister of the Supreme Court of Nigeria and a solicitor in England & Wales. At Barclays, in addition to advising Corporate Banking, she is a Trainee Supervisor and the Secretary to the Global Legal Diversity & Inclusion Committee.

Gillian Smith

Gillian Smith, Plan UK trustee Board member since October 2014
Gillian is of Counsel in the London office of Orrick Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP, an American law firm.  Previously she was a partner for many years at, and head of the Finance Department of, S.J. Berwin LLP, a City law firm. Her career has also included periods of time working in private practice in New York (for Wachtell Lipton Rosen & Katz) and in-house for a Scandinavian bank. Gillian advises on domestic and international structured finance transactions including syndicated lending, real estate investment and development, cross-border leveraged finance and project finance. She is currently Secretary to KidsOut, a national charity which works with disadvantaged children, and was also previously the legal adviser to EMERGENCY UK. Gillian is a law graduate of the University of Cambridge and is qualified as a solicitor in England and Wales.

Olivia BeechamOlivia Beecham

Board member
Olivia is currently working with the British Government’s Department for International Development focusing on social protection and social development policy work. Prior to joining DFID, Olivia worked at Palladium, an international development consultancy, where she was part of the Governance and Accountability division, and has previously worked for a number of charities including Action Against Hunger and International Service.
Olivia has a background in youth leadership and teaching, both in the UK and in Peru and is particularly passionate that everyone has the right to an education.

Eve, YAP member

Eve, 14, is a member of Plan's Youth Advisory Panel and also acts as a Youth Observer on the Board of Directors.Youth Observer since June 2014
Eve, 14, joined Plan UK's Youth Advisory Panel (YAP) in February 2014 and is passionate about all things concerning children’s, especially girls', rights across the globe. Through participation in YAP, Eve sits on the Board to ensure that young people’s voices are heard throughout Plan UK as an organisation. She is experienced in public speaking, specifically through involvement in competitions run by the English Speaking Union. Eve has also organised numerous fundraising events for Plan, including arranging for seven girls to do the Worldwide Walk for the Day of the Girl last October, which raised over £700.

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  • Young people are finding their voice and educating their parents and peers on the risks of teen pregnancy. Four girls talk about reducing the risk of teenage pregnancy through the Girl Power project, in Nicaragua.
  • Young people are finding their voice and educating their parents and peers on the risks of teen pregnancy. Four girls talk about reducing the risk of teenage pregnancy through the Girl Power project, in Nicaragua.

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