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Board of Trustees

The Board of Trustees is responsible for setting The Crichton Trust’s strategic direction and for monitoring progress to achieve this. Responsibility for the implementation of this strategy and the operation of the Crichton Estate lies with the Trust’s Management Team. The Board and Management Team work closely together, in their different roles, to ensure the Crichton Estate is preserved, maintained and of benefit to the community of Dumfries and Galloway.

Trustees bring a wide range of skills, backgrounds and experience to the Board in business, education and community involvement. Not only bringing experience, but also providing many different perspectives on how the Crichton Trust can best serve the public.

The Crichton Trust can have up to 15 Trustees, who are all appointed by Dumfries & Galloway Council. They are normally appointed for a term of four years and can do two consecutive terms. Trustees are appointed through an open process where posts are advertised and candidates are interviewed

Meet the Trustees

Ian Macmillan

Dr Ian Macmillan was appointed Chair of the Board in December 2016. He is a non-executive director providing strategic direction and supporting initiatives in the private, public and charity sectors. Ian was Managing Director at J.P. Morgan (a large investment bank with over 260,000 employees and operations in over 100 countries).

He has over 28 years financial services experience and has performed a number of management roles in asset management, investment banking and securities broking and spent five years in the Far East. Ian is passionate about bridging the gap between business and education, the skills agenda and preparing young people for the world of work and joined the Board to help the Crichton deliver its vision to make a lasting economic, educational and social impact locally, regionally and nationally.

Ian obtained the degrees of MA, BD and PhD from the universities of Glasgow, St Andrews and Edinburgh respectively.

Janet Brennan

In 2011 Dr Janet Brennan returned to Scotland after 25 years in The Netherlands, latterly as Head of Faculty of Behavioural Sciences at an American University in Leiden. Since returning to Galloway, where she and her husband restored a 16th century tower house, Barholm Castle, she has written a book, Scotland’s Castles: Rescued, Rebuilt and Reoccupied and taken on several trusteeships.

Janet is Chair of the Scottish Castles Association, secretary of the Dumfries and Galloway Chamber of Arts (DGU), a member of the Board of Management of Dumfries and Galloway College and a Board member of Historic Environment Scotland, a ministerial appointment. She is an accredited lecturer for the National Association of Decorative and Fine Arts Societies (NADFAS) and is the Young Arts organizer of the South West Scotland NADFAS group.

Janet is passionate about preserving the built heritage of Dumfries and Galloway and also finding ways in which the arts and education can prosper throughout the region; she hopes that the beautiful Crichton campus can help to deliver benefits in all of these areas for the people of Dumfries and Galloway.

Margaret Burton

Margaret is a Legal Executive with a local firm of Solicitors in Dumfries and helped to set up the firm in 1986.  She provides private clients of the practice with advice on wills, inheritance tax planning and wealth management issues.

As a member of the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners (STEP), which is a worldwide organisation, she is currently a Consultant with a firm of Jersey Trustees and is involved with Offshore Wealth Management. Margaret’s own vision for the Crichton Estate and Dumfries and Galloway is to see this develop and be a credit to Scotland.  It is her intention to give her full support to make this happen during her time on the Board.

David Clark Trustee

David Clark

Professor David Clark is a sociologist at the University of Glasgow, Dumfries Campus in the School of Interdisciplinary Studies, and leads the Glasgow End of Life Studies Group.

He is also a Visiting Professor at the University of Navarra, Spain and Adjunct Professor at the University of Southern Denmark.

He has wide ranging interests in the history and global development of palliative care and his most recent book is a monograph on the history of palliative medicine from the nineteenth century, entitled To Comfort Always, published by Oxford University Press.

In 2015 he served the Scottish Government as Consulting Editor to its Strategic Framework for Action in Palliative and End of Life Care and assisted the Scottish Parliament in its enquiry We Need to Talk about Palliative Care.

A Vice President of Hospice UK, he is an elected Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences and holds a Wellcome Trust Investigator Award for a four year study entitled Global Interventions at the End of Life.

He brings to the Trust board a wide-ranging knowledge of the Crichton and some high level ambitions for how it can develop in future.

Sean Duffy

Sean has spent the last 20 years working for major complex blue chip companies in senior leadership roles. During that time he has led effective and efficient commercial, change management, corporate communications, stakeholder management, transformation and strategic marketing directorates for household names such as FirstGroup, National Express, BskyB, STV and CBS. Sean holds an Executive MBA with distinction from the University of Strathclyde Business School.  As part of his thesis he covered Digital Leadership and transformation, with a focus on its relationship with College and University business schools. This research experience has provided the initial motivation to ‘give back‘ in a manner that will allow others to benefit from access to education, lifelong learning and skills development.

Sean lives in Shotts where he has witnessed the closure and dereliction of Hartwood Psychiatric Hospital (with similar heritage to the Crichton) and the effect that had on the local community.   This first-hand experience has provided further motivation to use his skills and experience to deliver the objectives of the Trust, to ensure a similar fate does not befall the Crichton.

Philip N. Jones

Appointed by the Scottish Government in 2014, Philip is Chairman of NHS Dumfries and Galloway. He leads the Health Board’s decision making processes, acts as guardian of due process and exercises independent judgement on the Board’s policies. Nationally, Philip contributes to development and implementation of strategy and policy through membership of the Scottish and West of Scotland Chair’s Groups and at a regional level is a core member of the multi agency Regional Strategic Partnership.

Philip is former Chief Executive of Dumfries and Galloway Council and joined the Board of the Crichton Trust to contribute his experience to help the Crichton achieve it’s true potential.

Philip is a Chartered Manager of the Chartered Management Institute and obtained a Masters Degree in Management from the University of Strathclyde.

Gillian Khosla

Gill’s career background is commercial, spanning a variety of sectors, from live entertainment, marketing and promoting, through retail and wholesale travel to online applications and digital publishing.

Moving from London to the Glenkens in 2004 introduced her to a vibrant and entrepreneurial 3rd sector and she has had the pleasure of serving on the Board of GCAT (when the Catstrand was being built); co-founding the Crichton Carbon Centre; chairing the Rural Enterprise Group of LEADER and joining the Crichton Trust Board.

Gillian also continues to invest in early stage businesses and travels extensively. Working with the team at the Crichton Trust to deliver the challenging strategic vision, she is particularly focussed on enabling change and encouraging innovation.

Gary Mappin

Gary is a chartered town planner and has been a planning and development consultant for 24 years.  He started his career in regeneration with the London Docklands Development Corporate before joining Property Advisors Hillier Parker (now CBRE).  He then moved into independent planning consultancy before establishing his own practice Mappin Planning and Development (MPD), which was bought over by GVA Grimley in 2005. Gary had overall responsibility for GVA’s Glasgow office as Regional Senior Director leading a team providing planning, development, valuation, leasing, investment, rating, building surveying and property management advice.  Gary is now an equity director of Iceni Projects Ltd, the Royal Town Planning Institute’s 2016 ‘Planning Consultancy of the Year.’

Gary was born in Dumfries and attended local schools before leaving for Heriot-Watt University.  He remains fond of, and connected to, the town and is a regular visitor. He is keen to bring his professional and commercial skills and experience to his role as a Trustee.

Alistair Marshall Trustee

Alistair Marshall

Alistair Marshall is Managing Director of Hardgrove Farm (Dumfries) Ltd. Alistair graduated with Honours in Agriculture from Aberdeen University in 1987 and completed the Advanced Farm Business Management course at Wye College University of London in 1999. He won the most Improved Agricultural Business award from Scottish Executive Planning to Succeed in 2005. Alistair has recently overseen a large expansion in his own dairy farming business with stock numbers and turnover significantly increased.

A past President of his Local Farmers’ Union and of his Local Young Farmers’ Club, Alistair is currently a Treasurer of a planning to succeed dairy group and Vice Chairman of the local Royal Highland Education Trust. He was formerly Chairman of Barony College Board and is now a Vice Chairman of the SRUC Board and SAC Consulting Board.

Passionate about Education and Skills Training from access level right through to Higher Education, Alistair joined the Trust Board to help deliver the Social and Educational benefits the Crichton can bring to the local community.

Kate Thomson

Kate Thomson lives in Dumfries, with her husband, and has just recently retired from the police service after 33 years as a police officer.  In 2011 she graduated from Stirling University with an MSc in Strategic Leadership and she was awarded the Queens Police Medal in the 2016 New Year’s Honours List. During her service she has worked with a number of multi-agency partnerships at front line, supervisory and also senior management levels. These partnerships include the East of Scotland Regional Resilience Partnership, Child Protection Committee, Alcohol and Drug Partnership, Adult Protection Committee and Domestic Abuse and Violence again Women Partnership all of which operated within Dumfries and Galloway.  She was also the Chair of the South West of Scotland Strategic Oversight Group to Manage Sex Offenders between 2010 and 2012.

For the last two years, as an Assistant Chief Constable, she had strategic responsible for the delivery of policing across nine local authorities in the East of Scotland ensuring that key policing services were delivered in accordance with local needs and agreed community plans as well as being within the budget set.

Kate was born, raised, went to school and spent a large part of her working life in Dumfries and Galloway. She is very proud of the area and feels passionate about making sure the area thrives and continues to be a healthy, happy and prosperous place to live and visit.