Chair: Teresa Donaldson
Teresa is the Finance Officer for community development trust Forward Coupar Angus.
Originally from Coupar Angus, Teresa spent a number of years working and living in Aberdeen before returning to the east Perthshire town after starting her family.
Over the years, she has worked in various roles in a diverse range of sectors, including solicitors and architects and in the retail and licensed trades as well as in television. Teresa also has experience of business start-up, being self-employed and charity finance and management.
Teresa is passionate about raising awareness of the positive impact young people can have in communities and supporting them to do so. She became Chair of BRDT in July 2021.
Member: Len Seal
Len worked for almost forty years in social work – with older people, in criminal justice services, child protection and children with disabilities and their families. The final eleven years was as a senior manager with a voluntary child care agency managing large budgets and staff teams. Len brings many skills to the Trust including people management, strategic management, service design and delivery and conflict resolution.
He is committed to working towards the town being a more vibrant active community with a ‘buzz’. Len is a committed advocate for social justice and supporting many projects which address the consequences of climate change and plastic pollution. He has chaired various voluntary groups and two Relays for Life in Blairgowrie. Len’s role at the Trust is to manage the HEAT Project, develop the Strathmore cycle network and contribute more generally to the health of the organisation.
Member: Geoffrey Thomson
Geoffrey’s background is in venture capital debt and equity investments. He was founder and CEO of a successful Investment Group for 18 years, resulting in several spectacular Scottish success stories and he brings financial engineering and commercial skills to the Trust Board along with a strategic focus.
Living just outside “the Community” defined by the Trust’s Articles, Geoffrey joins the Board as a Non-Member.
Member: Bob Swan
Bob was brought up in Fife and qualified as a chartered accountant in Edinburgh, subsequently spending most of his career in London.
He held a variety of roles within the financial services industry and spent the last 20 years working in insurance. He has held a number of voluntary roles in the charity sector, including periods as treasurer of a community centre and a Scout group where he was involved in several grant applications for the rebuilding of the Scout hall.
He recently retired back to Rattray and now hopes to provide support to the Trust in its various endeavours.
Member: Stuart Nichol
Stuart initially qualified as an architect and then went on to work at senior management level in various public sector agencies for over thirty years, consequently he brings strong leadership, management and partnership working skills to the Trust. Stuart was Chair of BRDT until July 2021.
His main remit includes engagement with politicians, Perth & Kinross Council officers, local businesses, volunteer organisations and many others to bring about improvements to the town. He is the Chair and lead for the coordination and delivery of The Community Action Plan, as well as assisting with many other projects such as finding a permanent home for a town heritage centre, a community hub and the development of the Ericht Riverside area.
Member: Robin Duncan
With an extensive background in Asset Finance, Robin owned his own finance brokerage business for many years and has also been active in various voluntary roles – especially it seems where golf is involved! Since retiring, Robin has been serving the local Blairgowrie and Rattray community in several capacities and is currently a member of Rotary and has the role of Treasurer of the Community Council.
Member: William Wilson
William’s career was in Mechanical and Electrical Consultancy responsible for the design, supervision and project management of building services required in the construction industry. This career took him to working on projects throughout the UK and extensively overseas.
William brings with him a vast experience in project management and engineering in the building services industry.
William is also on the committee of Blair in Bloom and is particularly involved in the development of the community garden being built for the town.
Karen Hicks is the Trust’s Finance Officer. Her accountancy background is in industry, and she is a management Accountant (CIMA).
Karen used to work for multimillion companies including RS Components, Shell and TNT. She also worked on many temporary assignments and worked briefly in practice (statutory accounts and tax). Karen also has a creative side, having trained as an Illustrator, working with sole traders - as well as spending sixteen years as a piano teacher, whilst working part-time in accounts.