Our Patron and Governance

Find out more about our Patron and governance arrangements, as well as details of our Trustees and committee members.

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Our Patron and Governance

Our Patron

We are privileged to have HRH The Princess Royal as our Patron, who takes an active interest in the work of the Foundation and its events.

How we are governed  

Governance refers to the system of structures, rights, duties and obligations by which organisations are directed and controlled. Charities are generally governed by a trustee board that takes overall responsibility for the charity’s work, including:

  • the long term direction of the charity, including its objectives or purposes;
  • implementation of policies and activities to achieve objectives;
  • compliance with legal requirements.

A core strength of the Foundation is its governance structure (described in the Articles of Association), which comprises a Board of Trustees, Advisory Committee, Scientific Committee, Editorial Advisory Group, Education Working Groups and a Nominations Committee, on which serve senior/experienced individuals from many walks of life. The composition is deliberately weighted towards the scientific ‘academic’ community, based in universities and research institutes, and those from education, finance, media, communications and HR backgrounds. All those who serve on BNF committees do so without remuneration, with the exception of travel expenses.

The British Nutrition Foundation (BNF) is a company limited by guarantee, incorporated on 21 February 1967. The registered address is British Nutrition Foundation, New Derwent House, 69-73 Theobalds Road, London WC1X 8TA. BNF is a registered charity in England and Wales (charity number 251681) and in Scotland (charity number SC040061). 

BNF President

We are honoured to have Professor Alan Shenkin as our President. In 2010 the British Nutrition Foundation's Council elected Professor Alan Shenkin as BNF's new Honorary President.  Professor Shenkin has been the Scientific Vice President at BNF since 2005. He studied medicine in Glasgow and became a Consultant in Clinical Biochemistry at Glasgow Royal Infirmary in 1978, a post he held until 1990. He then moved to Liverpool as Professor and Head of the Department of Clinical Chemistry and was also appointed Honorary Consultant Chemical Pathologist at the Royal Liverpool and Broadgreen University Hospitals. Since 2007 he has been an Emeritus Professor at the University of Liverpool.  He is married with 3 children and 8 grandchildren.

Professor Shenkin has had a longstanding association with various nutritional organisations, most notably the Medical Royal Colleges Intercollegiate Group on Nutrition and the European Society of Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition. His research interests have focussed on vitamins and trace elements in health and disease, and the use of laboratory tests in assessing nutritional status. Professor Shenkin commented: "I am honoured to be appointed Honorary President of BNF. The Foundation plays a very important role in providing impartial nutritional advice to various individuals and organisations, and excellent teaching resources to schools. I look forward to assisting BNF in its various activities"

The Board of Trustees

The BNF Board of Trustees is responsible for the governance and strategy of the BNF and have full legal responsibility for the actions of the BNF. It comprises up to 12 representatives, who are appointed by the Nominations Committee. Trustees may serve for a maximum tenure of three, three-year terms. Eight representatives must not have a personal financial interest in the commercial food industry. The committee meets at least four times per year. They delegate the day-to-day responsibility for the running of the BNF to the Senior Leadership Team.

  • Professor C Dennis CBE DLm Food Scientist and Technologist (Chair)
  • Professor JC Mathers BSc DipNutr PhD , Professor of Human Nutrition, University of Newcastle (Vice-Chair)
  • Professor CM Williams OBE PhD FSB RNutr FAfN, Director, Food Agriculture and Health, University of Reading (Immediate Past-Chair)
  • Ms D Irving-Brown Deputy CFO, Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust (Treasurer)
  • Mr D Webster BAHead of Communications, ABF UK Grocery
  • Mr M Bond BSc, Marketing Strategy Leader, DuPont Nutrition and Health
  • Mr G Findlay BA, Qualifications Manager, Scottish Qualifications Authority
  • Miss G Fine MSc, Public Health Nutritionist
  • Mrs A Greenhalgh-Ball BSc SRD, Consultant 
  • Professor SA Lanham-New BA MSc PhD RNutr, Head of the Department of Nutritional Sciences, University of Surrey
  • Mr A Wotherspoon BSc (Hons) MIFST
  • Ms L C Redmond BSC (Hons), MA, MBA, FCIPD, Director/Consultant in governance, Investment banking

We also have an Advisory Committee, Scientific Committee, Editorial Advisory Board, and Education Working Groups

Honorary members

Honorary Members, are nominated for membership by the Board of Trustees, and who the Board of Trustees considers has made an outstanding contribution to the Foundation; or an outstanding contribution in the field of nutrition. Current Honorary members:

  • Professor RS Pickard BSc PhD RNutr CBiol FIBiol
  • Professor BA Wharton BA MBA MD DSc FRCP FRCPCH FIFST
  • Miss A Heughan RD

Emeritus members

Emeritus Members are nominated for membership by the Board of Trustees, who has been a Trustee, and who the Board of Trustees considers made an outstanding contribution to the Foundation. Current Emeritus members:

  • Mr IGT Ferguson CBE BSc
  • Mr P Hebblethwaite BSc MSc CEng FIFST FIChemE
  • The Baroness Hooper CMG BA FRGS FRSA
  • Dr WT Little CBE FIFST
  • Professor A de Looy BSc PhD RD FBDA
  • Ms R McRobert OBE
  • Mr DA Tate OBE DL MA
  • Professor RG Whitehead CBE BSc PhD MA FlBiol CBiol HonFRCP

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