Who's who

The Samworth Foundation Trustees and Staff

Our Trustees and staff members are actively involved and highly engaged in the work of the Foundation and give a significant amount of their time to review applications, visit charities and to meet people across the voluntary sector.

They also have additional philanthropic interests and Executive and Non-Executive roles independent of their work with the Foundation. They bring a broad range of knowledge and experience across the charity sector.

Neil Gorman

Professor Gorman has stepped up as the Chair of the Samworth Foundation.  He was Vice-Chancellor of Nottingham Trent University (NTU) for eleven years from 2003 to 2014, during which time he oversaw the transformation of the university to become one of the most popular in the UK. Currently he is Chairman of Oakham School and was appointed as a Trustee of the Samworth Foundation in 2015.  He is an international authority in veterinary science with a particular emphasis on comparative immunology and oncology.

Gemma Juma

Gemma Juma has been a Trustee of the Samworth Foundation since 2014. She is Operations Director at the Jack Petchey Foundation, which exists to raise the aspirations of young people, to help them take advantage of opportunities and play a full part in society. She is also an Adviser to the Paul Hamlyn Foundation on Youth and Migration issues. Her career spans 20 years working on local, national and international issues in the voluntary sector in the UK, East Africa and beyond.  Gemma has two noisy young children who also keep her busy.

Stephen Hale OBE

Stephen is Chief Executive of Refugee Action, a charity that supports asylum seekers and refugees to rebuild their lives in the UK. Prior to joining Refugee Action in 2015 Stephen worked for Oxfam International as Deputy Advocacy and Campaigns Director. He has been the Director of the UK charity Green Alliance, and a special advisor to government ministers. Stephen has been a trustee of Friends of the Earth, and prior to that of Christian Aid.

I’m delighted to be a Trustee of the Samworth Foundation, and to help make the best possible use of the funds generously donated by the Samworth family.

Climate change is rightly one of our strategic priorities. All our futures depend on achieving a rapid transition to a low carbon economy. We’re proud to support a number of organisations that are tackling the root causes of the climate crisis.

Stephen Hale OBE

For almost ten years, the Foundation has supported invaluable work which tackles violence against women and girls, with a particular focus on ending sexual exploitation. We have been able to fund a range of impressive organisations doing important work.

As Trustees, we continue to be committed to prevent and tackle the issue and to address the root causes of abuse that is so damaging. We want to ensure that women and girls are able to thrive and fulfill their potential, free from the threat of violence and exploitation.

Gemma Juma

Our new strategy marks an exciting period for the Samworth Foundation. We have reflected on some of the wonderful grants and relationships we have supported over the past five years in order to strengthen our focus and grant making impact.

I am honoured to be part of the Foundation, as we move forward in our efforts to support such valuable work.

Felicity Mallam

Felicity Mallam
Foundation Director

Felicity has worked in international development for over twenty years. Employment with VSO, Save the Children Fund, CAFOD as well as smaller NGOs took her to live and work overseas for nearly ten years in Romania, Somalia, Pakistan, Afghanistan, India, Kenya and South Africa. Felicity is the main assessor for Comic Relief’s International Education Programme and has regularly provided consultancy support to UNICEF UK, Children in Need and others in the UK.

Alex Wilson
Grants, Research and Policy Manager

Alex has over twenty years’ experience in the voluntary sector working in the UK and internationally. She was a Major Donor Fundraiser for a number of years, and then moved to setting up fundraising offices internationally; helping charities develop their own organisational and fundraising strategies.  She has worked with Oxfam Campaigns, CAFOD and Sightsavers International.  Alex lived in Nepal working with local communities and has been a Trustee for a homeless charity in London.

Tessa Durham
Grants Research Manager

Tessa joined the Samworth Foundation in March 2018 and has worked across the charitable, private and public sectors in a variety of roles supporting children and young people to achieve their potential. Tessa is a Trustee of an early years setting, supporting children in her local community to have an enriched learning environment to help them become school ready; she is also a Trustee of a community first responders charity, supporting local community members in times of need and is a school governor at a primary school.

Sarah Wellstead
Assistant to the Director

Sarah has been working for the Foundation since August 2017 and has worked for various Charity and Public Sector organisations in Leicestershire, supporting programmes such as National Citizen Service, Troubled Families and the Personalisation Agenda.