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RIBA appoints four new Board Trustees

Nik Benford, Sarah Boon, Jennifer Dixon and Sumita Singha will complete the RIBA Board of Trustees.

20 January 2022

The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) has announced the two new independent experts and two RIBA Council members who will complete the RIBA Board of Trustees, with immediate effect.

Clockwise from top left: Nik Benford, Sarah Boon, Jennifer Dixon and Sumita Singha.

The RIBA Board is responsible for the management of the RIBA charity, working closely with RIBA Council, the representative body, which oversees the organisation’s strategy on behalf of the architects’ profession – and the executive staff team.

Nik Benford, Sarah Boon, Jennifer Dixon and Sumita Singha will join the Board this month, with the following portfolios of focus:

Nik Benford (Digital) – independent expert

Nik is an IT and business transformation leader with over 35 years’ experience spanning global automotive, tier-1 consulting, healthcare and private equity, across the UK, Europe, India and the USA.

Sarah Boon (Communications) – independent expert

Sarah is Managing Director of Corporate Affairs and Strategic Policy at UK Finance and is responsible for media, campaigns, UK and international public affairs, content and marketing, and cross-cutting policy.

Jennifer Dixon (Membership Engagement) – Council member

Jennifer is an Architect and Lead Designer, with experience of all scales of practice from sole practitioner to global multi-disciplinary built environment consultancy. She currently practices internationally as an RIBA Client Advisor.

Sumita Singha (Education) – Council member

Sumita Singha, OBE, is an award-winning architect, academic and author. She founded RIBA’s equality forum, Architects for Change. She is a non-executive director for the NHS, author of many books and publications, and trustee of four charities.

The new Trustees have been appointed for a three-year term, with the two Council members’ appointments conditional upon them continuing as elected RIBA Council members.

Chaired by Jack Pringle, the current RIBA Board comprises the RIBA President (Simon Allford), Honorary Secretary (Graham Devine), Honorary Treasurer (Simone de Gale), Jo Bacon (Culture & Events), Murray Orr (Business & Enterprise) MaryAnne Stevens (Heritage) and Marjorie Strachan (Organisational Change).

RIBA Board Chair, Jack Pringle, said:

“I am delighted to welcome Nik, Sarah, Jennifer and Sumita to their new roles. With such a vast range of skills and experiences, the RIBA Board is in the best position to manage our operations, ensuring that we provide the tools, support and influence that our members need, now and in the future.”

ENDS

Notes to editors:

  1. Press contact: Abigail.Chiswell-White@riba.org.
  2. Full biographies for each of the new Trustees can be found below.
  3. The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) is a global professional membership body that serves its members and society in order to deliver better buildings and places, stronger communities and a sustainable environment.

Nik Benford

Nik has served as a leader of IT and business transformation for over 35 years, with 30 years in global roles for Ford Motor Company, followed by tier-1 and independent consulting, and with first-hand experience working across the UKL, Europe, India and the USA. In collaboration with colleagues he has delivered transformational business outcomes in supply-chain, marketing, sales, communications, customer service and workforce arenas, working with automotive, healthcare and private-equity businesses. He presently serves as Group IT Director for an automotive business and Non-Executive Director for an MoD organisation.

Sarah Boon

Sarah is Managing Director of Corporate Affairs and Strategic Policy at UK Finance and is responsible for the strategy and delivery of media and campaigns activity, UK and international public affairs, content and marketing, and cross-cutting policy. Prior to this, Sarah was Director of Media Relations at London Stock Exchange Group and has worked across communications disciplines at the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), the Bank of England and the Association of British Insurers. She was press secretary to Andrew Bailey (then Deputy Governor of the Bank of England), acting as his Special Adviser when he became the FCA’s Chief Executive.

Jennifer Dixon

Jennifer is an Architect and Lead Designer, with experience of all scales of practice from sole practitioner to global multi-disciplinary built environment consultancy. She currently practices internationally as an RIBA Client Advisor. Between 2013 and 2019 she headed the architecture discipline at multidisciplinary consultancy AECOM, servicing public and private sector organisations in the UK and globally. Passionate about professionalism and the advancement of architectural practice, she has a particular interest in the broadening role of architects in the multidisciplinary environment. Jennifer was elected to RIBA Council in 2020 and currently chairs the Council Expert Advisory Group on PII.

Sumita Singha

Sumita is an award-winning architect, teacher and writer. Sumita founded Architects For Change, the equality forum at RIBA. Sumita has served on many RIBA committees for over 25 years. She is a non-executive Director in the NHS. Sumita is a trustee of four charities including the Architects Benevolent Society, and founding director of Charushila, an environmental design charity. She has taught for over 25 years, is a visiting Professor in Milan, and a tutor and external examiner at UK universities. Sumita is the author of books on architecture and sustainable design. In 2021, Sumita received an OBE for services to architecture.

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