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Our board of trustees

Our Board of Trustees oversees the activity of the charity, helping ensure we follow our stated aims and objectives in both fundraising and awarding research grants.  

David Sole OBE

David Sole established his own company in June 2007 after 6½ years with the Change Partnership and Whitehead Mann, where his focus is on executive coaching, team development and Board facilitation.   In 2011 he co-founded the School for CEOs with Patrick Macdonald – a business which runs development programmes for aspiring business leaders, taught by an experienced faculty of current and recent CEOs, Chairmen and Non-executive Directors.   Prior to that, he spent 11 years working for United Distillers and Diageo in global operations where he was ultimately responsible for the procurement of commodities and neutral spirit across the globe.   He played international rugby for Scotland from 1986 to 1992 and was captain a record 25 times, including the famous victory over England in 1990 to win Scotland’s third Grand Slam.  He also played for the British Lions in 1989 and the Barbarians.  He was awarded an OBE for services to rugby football in 1993.   He served on the Board of sportscotland for 8 years as well as the Board of Quality Meat Scotland.  In the past he has been one of three external trustees of the HBOS Foundation, a trustee of the charity Missing People, Chairman of the Board of Governors of Cargilfield School, he has chaired committees of the Prince’s Trust – Action and has been a non-executive director of the Kilchoman Distillery Company.   David has a number of other interests outside of work including being a Roving Brand Ambassador for The Balvenie Malt Whisky.   He has worked extensively with the media and has regularly written newspaper columns for both daily and Sunday papers; he has worked with the BBC, ITV, BSkyB and Eurosport, commentating on 4 Rugby World Cups.

Jane Brydon

Jane is the Human Resources Director for HEINEKEN UK, joining the business in early 2014 and as part of the Management Team is responsible for the People Agenda. Jane’s previous roles include Sainsbury's Bank where she was the People and Communications Director part of the management team responsible for creating the new bank now owned by Sainsburys plc.; HR and Communications Director for Scottish Widows from January 2009 to August 2010 driving the integration with Clerical Medical insurance business as part of the Lloyds Banking Group purchase of HBOS; Group Functions HR Director for HBOS between 2004 and 2009 and previous to that various oversees programme and change management roles with the Scottish Qualifications Authority. Jane is also on the Board of Investors in People Scotland, has a BA (Hons) Economic History and MBA from Strathclyde Business School.

Julia Porter
Julia Porter is an experienced leader, advisor, mentor and board director. Her non-executive career includes sitting on the Boards of DMA, Origin Housing (Housing Association) and Freeview (UK’s largest free to air digital TV platform). Her consulting roles include strategic advice for business starts ups as well as marketing and CRM/data strategy consulting and accessible practitioner led GDPR advice. Her executive experience includes stints at Guardian News & Media, Getty Images, ITV and IPC Magazines. She holds an MBA from London Business School.

Roz Cuschieri 

With nearly three decades of experience, Roz has extensive brand building experience gained though working with some of the UK’s biggest food and drink brands. After graduating from Aberdeen University with a Pure Science degree, Roz started her career in the graduate programme at United Biscuits. Her extensive experience since includes positions at Scottish and Newcastle and Warburton’s. Most recently, she served as CEO of the Genius Gluten Free brand for five years; growing the brand to be the leading gluten free player in the UK, overseeing the acquisition of three bakeries and undertaking rapid international expansion. She has held a number of non-executive positions and currently sits on the board of Scottish Golf Ltd, Lightbody Ventures Ltd and is Chairwoman of Emily Crisps Ltd. Roz is married with two children and lives in Edinburgh.

Ian Adam

Ian is a retired Chartered Accountant. After qualifying with a small firm in Dundee he moved to Price Waterhouse Peat in Rio de Janeiro where he spent over two years before returning to the UK. He joined the Bristol office of Price Waterhouse before being invited to move to Edinburgh in 1976 and open an office of the firm in the city.  During his period as a partner and latterly senior partner of the firm north of the border he provided professional services to a wide range of organisations both in the public and private sectors. In 1995 he was invited to join one of his clients, Christian Salvesen plc, as Group Finance Director and he continued in this role until the completion of the successful demerger of the group and the move of the head office to England. Since retiring from Salvesen he has held a number of non-executive positions including being a director and Chairman of the Britannia Building Society. He was also a member of both the Scottish Higher Education Funding Council and its successor body the Further and Higher Education Funding Council. He is an Old Master of The Merchant Company of the City of Edinburgh and a Past Captain of The Royal burgess golfing Society of Edinburgh. Most recently, he retired as Chairman of St Columba’s Hospice and as a member of the governing council of St Leonards School, Fife.

Professor Kairbaan Hodivala-Dilke

Kairbaan started her scientific career as a technical assistant, first at The Jodrell Laboratories, Kew Gardens, and then in the Wellcome Trust funded Malaria Research team at Imperial College, London.  These experiences fueled her enthusiasm to embark on a career in research. A Biology undergraduate from the University of Southampton, in 1994, she gained a PhD after studying epithelial cell biology with Professor Fiona Watt at The Imperial Cancer Research Fund. Following Postdoctoral work with Professor Richard Hynes at The Massachusetts Institute of Technology, USA, she returned to the UK and was an Imperial Cancer Research Fund tenure-track fellow with Professor Ian Hart, first at St. Thomas’ Hospital and then at The Barts Cancer Institute, Bart’s and The London School of Medicine and Dentistry. She was awarded tenure in 2004 and became Professor of Angiogenesis in 2009. In 2012 she was appointed Deputy Director of the Bart’s Cancer Institute. Her research is dedicated to investigating the molecular basis of angiogenesis (the development of new blood vessels) and tumour growth.

Professor Kevin Hiom

Kevin Hiom is Professor of Cancer Biology and Head of the Division of Cellular Medicine in the School of Medicine at the University of Dundee. He is a graduate of the University of Liverpool and undertook his PhD at the Medical Research Council National Institute for Medical Research in London. After post-doctoral positions at the Cancer Research UK laboratories in South Mimms and the National Institutes for Health in Bethesda USA, Kevin started his own laboratory at the Medical Research Council Laboratory for Molecular Biology in Cambridge. He moved to the University of Dundee in 2009. Kevin’s research focuses on how cells repair damage to their genetic material, DNA, and how when this goes wrong it can lead to cancer. He also looks at how these defects in DNA repair can be exploited to kill cancer cells as treatments for cancer patients. Since 1999 Kevin has been awarded several grants from Worldwide Cancer Research and has also been a member of their Science Advisory committee.

Sue Hunter

Sue Hunter is a partner at Morton Fraser, Lawyers and has been the head of their Private Client Division for 10 years. She works with individuals, families and trusts, to include charitable trusts. She is qualified as a Scottish lawyer and is a Chartered Financial Planner. She is a member of the Chartered Insurance Institute and the Personal Finance Society. A former member of the Scottish board of the Royal Society of Arts she currently sits as Trustee on a number of grant making charities.

Chief Executive

Dr Helen Rippon Dr Helen Rippon is the Chief Executive of the charity, having previously served as the Head of Research for four years and holding research management positions at Prostate Cancer UK and Age UK. She has over seventeen years’ experience in the field of cancer research including a PhD in Molecular Biology from the University of York and was a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at Imperial College London.

Honorary Vice-Presidents

The Earl of Elgin and Kincardine, Lord Steel of Aikwood and Mrs Maureen Thomson.


The Earl of St. Andrews.