We welcome two new trustees to our board

With impressive skillsets and genuine passion for the charity, HR leader Deborah Kester and long-time supporter David Plane will be huge assets to the board

We are delighted to announce that Deborah Kester and David Plane have been appointed to our Board of Trustees.  

Deborah Kester

Deborah Kester is joining the board to support and advise on HR. She has a proven track record as an HR leader who has designed and delivered strategic initiatives and developed high performing teams. During a 17-year career at Man Group, Deborah became Global Head of Human Resources, a position she held for eight years before a two-year stint as Director of People at UK Sport. Deborah is currently Head of People at financial services company Firefly Capital.   

Commenting on a role that will see her advise the charity on strategic people management as well as providing broader HR support, Deborah said:  

“The Sick Children’s Trust is a wonderful charity which provides an important service to families of seriously ill children. As a mother of three, I feel particular empathy for the work this charity does and can see how much it is valued by those who are supported in this way. My visit to the Stevenson House ‘Home from Home’ gave me a real insight into the warmth and care that families experience when at one of the charity’s homes – it is truly inspiring.   

“I see this Trustee position as a huge opportunity to combine my passion for HR and expertise in the area, with my genuine wish to give something back and help those who find themselves in need of support at a time of crisis and emotional upheaval.” 

David Plane

David Plane has a close connection to The Sick Children’s Trust, having been supported by the charity in 2015 when his new-born son Brody needed specialist treatment at The Royal London Hospital. Throughout Brody’s treatment David and his wife, Lesa Bennett, were supported with a free place to stay at Stevenson House, keeping them close to the hospital so they could always be by Brody’s side.  

David has been fundraising for the charity ever since Brody’s recovery, completing the London Marathon and Ride London before fronting last year’s Long Ride Home, a brand-new challenge that saw David and eight other cyclists visit all ten of our ‘Homes from Home from London to Newcastle, covering 370 miles and raising more than £44,000.  

In addition to his personal connection and tireless fundraising efforts, David has an impressive professional background, being a founding director of LEDA Orthopaedics, an independently run British orthopaedic distribution company. David, who as a Trustee will have a fundraising and service user focus, said: 

“I’ve been passionately raising money and awareness for The Sick Children’s Trust ever since Brody made a full recovery from a stressful and emotional time in neonatal intensive care at the Royal London Hospital. They looked after us in 2015 when we needed the support and it has been a mission of mine to do whatever I can to give something back to the charity, ever since. 

“Becoming a Trustee of the charity gives me the chance to do more than fundraising, and as much as I love endurance cycling and running events, I’m relishing the chance to help shape the strategy, direction and future of The Sick Children’s Trust.”  

Jane Featherstone, CEO of The Sick Children’s Trust said:  

“I am thrilled to welcome Deborah and David to our Board of Trustees. As well as bringing their impressive skillsets to the table, their passion for the work being done by The Sick Children’s Trust and our ‘Homes from Home’ has been clear for all to see. I know both will be huge assets to the charity, playing a significant part in its development and growth as well as the direction that we will travel in the years ahead. On behalf of everyone at The Sick Children’s Trust, I offer Deborah and David the warmest of welcomes.”   

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