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Our Trustee Board

The Trustee Board is responsible for directing the affairs of the UPP Foundation, ensuring it is well-run and delivering the charitable outcomes for which it has been created. All UPP Foundation grant applications are reviewed and authorised by the Trustee Board.

Jon Wakeford – Chair of the Trustee Board (UPP Foundation), Group Corporate Affairs Director (UPP)

Jon is responsible for UPP’s business development, communications, public affairs and Corporate Social Responsibility strategy and has been on the Group Board for almost a decade.

Jon has more than 25 years’ experience in the higher education sector and originally joined UPP in 2000, when UPP was established as a specialist business unit of Jarvis plc.

As Head of Research and Development he originated the company’s selective approach to partnerships and played a key role in the establishment of the Group’s bond programme and acquisition by its current Shareholders.

He has also worked as a Senior Advisor for the higher education team at KPMG.

Jon is a member of the cross-party Higher Education Commission.

Jo Mildren, Deputy General Manager, UPP

Jo Mildren is Deputy General Manager for UPP’s team at the University of Exeter and has been with the company since 2012. Jo was appointed as a Trustee in 2017 and since this time has brought a valuable and unique UPP employee voice to the Board.

Prior to working for UPP, Jo held roles in marketing, events and hospitality and she holds a PGCE in Post Compulsory Education and NVQ Assessors Award. Jo also supports local charities (Action Medical Research and Mid Devon Messenger), enjoys walks across Dartmoor and Exmoor, and competes in open water swimming events.

Professor Mary Stuart, Vice-Chancellor, University of Lincoln

Professor Mary Stuart is Vice-Chancellor of the University of Lincoln. She is a graduate of the University of Cape Town and the Open University where she obtained her Doctorate in Social Policy in 1998. Her research interests are focussed on life histories, social mobility, higher education students and community development. Since joining Lincoln she has established and grown the first new Engineering School to be created in the UK for more than 20 years (in collaboration with Siemens plc).

Mary is Vice Chair of the Equality Challenge Unit and Trustee of the UPP Foundation. She is a Fellow of the Bridge Group. Mary is Chair of the Lincoln Cultural and Arts Partnership (LCAP) and the Founding Director of the Greater Lincolnshire Local Enterprise Partnership (GLLEP), a member of the Greater Lincolnshire Leaders Board, Director of Lincoln Science and Innovation Park (LSIP), Director of Lincolnshire Economic Action Partnership (LEAP) and Chair of the Members of Lincolnshire Educational Trust.

Our Staff

Richard Brabner, Director of UPP Foundation

Richard Brabner was appointed Head of UPP Foundation in July 2016 and was promoted to Director in 2018. Working with the trustees, he sets its strategy and leads on all aspects of the UPP Foundation’s activities. Richard joined UPP in 2015 as Business Development Manager and his responsibilities included setting up the UPP Foundation.

Prior to joining UPP, he was Head of Policy at the University of Hertfordshire, advising the Vice-Chancellor and senior management team and leading the University’s public affairs function. Before this, he worked as a researcher for two MPs in Parliament. He graduated from the University of Essex in 2007 and holds an MRes in Public Policy and Management from Birkbeck, University of London.

Contact UPP Foundation

The UPP Foundation is a grant-making body and a public policy platform, working to encourage collaboration and innovation within the higher education sector.

If you would like to contribute to this discourse or find out more about the UPP Foundation please get in touch.

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