Getting on Board 2021

Find out more about what it’s like to be on the Board of Trustees ahead of this year's elections

20 Jul 2021

Icon members were invited to join an informal meeting on 6 July to hear current Icon trustees talk about their experience of being part of Icon's Board.

Sara Crofts, Icon's Chief Executive: Getting on Board

The session started with an introduction from Sara Crofts where she described the key duties of charity trustees and outlined the Board's responsibility for setting the strategy for the organisation.

You can download a copy of the presentation slides below: 

Getting on Board (Presentation Slides)


Hear from our current Trustees 

This was followed by a series of short presentations from existing Trustees: James Murphy, Sophie Rowe ACR and Duygu Camurcuoglu ACR who shared a few reflections about their experience of being on the Board and what it means to be a Trustee.

We then had a lively and intersting Q&A session where we explored aspects of governance and personal development in greater detail.

Are you an Emerging Professional?

A particular focus of the discussion was the Board's decision to create a reserved seat for an Emerging Professional in this year’s election. This is a new initiative, which has been introduced as a result of the work being undertaken by the Board’s Diversity and Inclusion Task and Finish Group.

Any Icon member beginning a career in heritage preservation or conservation who is undertaking relevant training; or is a current student member; or any member who is within the first five years of work experience in any aspect of heritage preservation and conservation may stand for the reserved seat for an Emerging Professional.

The Board of Trustees hope that by introducing this reserved seat they will diversify the range of voices on the Board and bring fresh perspectives to our strategic decision-making.

James Grierson talks about the new reserved seat for emerging professionals

Since becoming Chair of Icon I have welcomed the opportunity to engage with our student and Emerging Professionals Network members.  It’s been hugely interesting and encouraging to hear from such impressive and committed people in the early stages of their conservation journeys. Your passion for conservation and your creative-thinking and initiative is clear, but it is also clear that these are quite uncertain times, with many members facing significant hurdles as they settle into their chosen career.  So, it seems particularly important that your perspectives are available to the Board of Trustees as we tackle the future’s many challenges and opportunities.

For this reason the Board of Trustees has decided to create a reserved seat on the Board for a trustee who is a student member or a member of the Emerging Professionals Network.  This will be a three-year elected appointment and the successful person will be able to stand for a second three-year term if they wish.  In recognition of the time commitment involved for someone who may not yet be earning, or be earning a modest salary, we have decided that their membership fees will be waived for the duration of their appointment.

We’re aware that many early-stage conservation professionals will not have considered standing as an Icon trustee, and may be unfamiliar with what it involves or may worry about their lack of experience.  Be assured, however, that it’s the different perspective that an early-stage professional can bring that is the overriding purpose of this initiative.

So, if you fit the bill, please consider standing for the reserved seat for an Emerging Professional.  This will be a stimulating opportunity to expand your understanding and experience, to build your CV and networks, and to play a valuable role in working with the other trustees to help shape the future of your organisation.

Finally, it is important to say that this initiative as just one step towards making Icon and the conservation profession more diverse, more inclusive and more representative of the society we serve. Our Diversity and Inclusion Task and Finish Group are currently working hard to develop further ideas that we hope to share with the membership shortly.

James Grierson


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