The Trustee Board

Why do we have a Trustee Board?


In 2010 the Union set up its first ever charity-law compliant trustee board, in line with our charity status application to the UK Charities Commission.

It is an essential part of becoming a charity, that a Trustee Board is there to help oversee governance and scrutinise performance of the charity to ensure it is compliant with the charitable objectives. There are many types of objective that make a charity - you can more detail around charity objectives here.

Later, in 2015, the Students’ Union incorporated as a Company Limited by Guarantee and became a new charity. The Articles of Association is the governing document of our Trustee Board. This outlines all of our structures and procedures, along with how they should be operating.


What is the Trustee Board?

The Trustee Board is the Students’ Union’s governing body. They must meet no less than four times a year. This brings together a group of people internally and externally that use their experience and expertise to help set the Students’ Union’s strategic direction and ensure the longevity and sustainability of the Students’ Union. Alongside this, the Trustee Board is responsible for holding the senior management team to account on their performance in fulfilling the Students’ Union’s charitable objectives. 


What does the uea(su) Trustee Board look like?

The Trustees shall appoint a Full-time Student Officer to be the Chair of the Trustees. The Chair of the Students’ Union Trustee Board is Hamish Williams, who has held the position since 2021.  The Trustees shall appoint an External Trustee to be Deputy Chair of the Trustees and may at any time remove him or her from office. The role of the Deputy Chair will be to support the Chair. The Deputy Chair is there to support the chair. This year the positions of Deputy Chair is ….

The make-up of the Trustee Board for 20-21 is as follows

Guests or observers can attend meetings of the Trustees at the discretion of the Chair.


Five full time Officers

These students are the democratically elected (and paid) officers that represent students on a full-time basis for the Students’ Union.

  1. Ivo Garnham– Undergraduate Education Officer
  2. Aaron Campbel – Welfare, Community and Diversity Officer
  3. Elizabeth Payne – Activities and Opportunities Officer
  4. Hamish Williams – Campaigns and Democracy Officer
  5. Ayane Hida – Postgraduate Education Officer


Two Part-Time Officers

These Students are the democratically elected officers that represent students on a part-time basis for the Students’ Union.

1. Patrycja Poplawska - Women’s Officer 

2. Serene Shibli Sexton- People of Colour Officer 


Six External Trustees

The External Trustees are experts from outside the Union who are appointed for the skills they can bring to the work of the Board.

  1. Martin Jopp
  2. Jeremy Clayton
  3. Frances Fay
  4. Dev Aditya
  5. Vaccant


5 Student Trustees

The Student Trustees cannot sit on Council or hold major Union Office. They, alongside the External Trustees, provide a voice on the Board that is independent of the Officers. These students are also elected. One of these students is elected a Postgraduate Assembly and three are elected through our normal elections process.

  1. Lucy Hawker  – Student Trustee
  2.  Adrian Ashby – Student Trustee
  3.  – Student Trustee - Vaccant
  4. – Student Trustee- Vaccant
  5. Timothy Barker - Student Trustee (PG place)


     Powers of trustees

The following powers of the Trustees is set out in the Articles of Association. 

  • The Board of Trustees shall be responsible for the management and administration of the Union and (subject to the Education Act, these Articles and the Bye-Laws) may exercise all the powers of the Union. A meeting of the Trustees at which a quorum is present may exercise all powers exercisable by the Trustees.  
  • The Board’s powers under Article 52 shall include but not be limited to responsibility for:
  1. the governance of the Union; 
  2. the budget of the Union;
  3. the strategy of the Union;
  4. monitoring the performance of the Chief Executive.
  • The Board of Trustees shall only have the power to prevent the implementation of Policy or amend or prevent the publication or dissemination of motions, Referenda, or decisions of the Union Council, Student Officer Committee, Returning Officer, Democratic Procedures Committee or any subsidiary committees or bodies on the following grounds:
  1. serious financial risk;
  2. legal requirements; 
  3. and the Trustee Board shall seek appropriate advice before exercising its power to overrule and shall report every exercise of its power to overrule to the Union Council.


The Trustees declare any interests they have that might impact on the work of the Board; these are in the Register of Interests which you can find here