How the Foundation will be funded

The 2025 Foundation has been launched with a donation of £150,000 from the Chartered Banker Institute, raised from the sale of the Institute's historical banknote collection.

Our initial target is to raise £1 million to support at least 200 Foundation Scholars between 2017 and 2025, which marks the Institute's 150th anniversary. Looking further ahead, we will continue to build the foundation to support as many individuals as possible.

The 2025 Foundation will rely on voluntary income through:

  • Donations from Fellows, Chartered Bankers and other members of the Chartered Banker Institute
  • Major donations from corporates and individuals.

How the Foundation will be managed

The Foundation is managed by a committee, chaired by David Thorburn (a former President of the Institute), and all members are appointed by the Council of the Chartered Banker Institute. The 2025 Foundation Committee is accountable to the Council of the Chartered Banker Institute for all of its actions.

The committee members are appointed for a three-year term and are eligible for a single term of re-appointment thereafter. The minimum number of committee members is four, with a maximum of eight. At least two must be serving Council members and the others must be current Fellows of the Institute.

2025 Committee

David Thorburn

David Thorburn

Chair |


David joined Clydesdale Bank in 1978 having graduated from the University of Glasgow with a law degree. David completed his Institute bank exams in the early 1980s and today is a Chartered Banker. He also undertook the Advanced Management Program at Harvard Graduate School of Business in 1999.

David spent 37 years in banking with the National Australia Bank and TSB Group, latterly as CEO of Clydesdale and Yorkshire Banks. He is also a former Chairman of CBI Scotland, the Scottish Financial Services Skills Gateway and the Advisory Board at Strathclyde Graduate School of Business.

David is a Past President of The Chartered Institute of Bankers in Scotland, and former Board Director of the British Bankers Association and Scottish Financial Enterprise. He was a founder member of the Professional Standards Board of the Chartered Banker Institute.

David is now pursuing a portfolio career and is an INE with EY Global and chairs the firm’s Global Public Interest Committee. He also chairs the firm’s UK INE Oversight Committee. David is also an External Member on the Bank of England’s Prudential Regulatory Committee.

Bernard Adjei

Bernard Adjei

Lloyds Banking Group | Programme Delivery Manager


Bernard is a Programme Delivery Manager in Lloyds Banking Group. Since joining LBG in 2014, he has been responsible for the delivery of key projects to improve efficiency in the Banking Industry. He has also be responsible for setting up the RISE  (Reach Inspire Support Empower) initiative aimed at equipping disadvantaged young people to build financial awareness and employability skills. Through the scheme, Bernard has supported and mentored more than 200 students in London, Manchester, Leeds and Edinburgh.

Bernard was named the UK’s Young Banker of the Year 2016 for his innovation within the International Transfer Market where he developed a concept to improve visibility on international transfers.

Bernard has been recognised as a Power list Rising Star twice, Black British Business Awards Finance Rising Star in 2018 and GUBA Rising Diaspora.

View Bernard’s LinkedIn Profile. 


Irene Grant

Irene Grant

Craigelachie Consulting Ltd | Executive Coaching & Mentoring


Irene is an experienced Executive Director, having worked in Banking for 30 years, primarily at HSBC.  Her specialism is Corporate Banking, supporting companies of all sizes in diverse sectors.  Irene’s career is highly international, having worked in Scotland, London, West Coast USA and Hong Kong, and led teams in a further 15 countries including Czech Rep, Poland and Russia in Eastern Europe, Greece, Malta and Spain in Europe and Armenia, Bermuda and South Africa further afield. 

Irene now has a portfolio career.  Through her company Craigelachie Consulting Ltd Irene provides Executive Coaching & Mentoring and Consulting services.  Her particular passion is helping female leaders and aspiring leaders unlock their potential.  She is a Board members at the Edinburgh International Book Festival, a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Bankers and a volunteer Mentor with Women in Banking and Finance.
View Irene's LinkedIn Profile
John Needham

John Needham


A Chartered Banker, John’s career at RBS spanned over 39 years including 15 years as an Executive of the bank. During that time, he specialised in banking operations, branch banking, change management, corporate banking, audit and regulatory risk. He served on the Council of the Chartered Banker Institute for 13 years and served as President 2013 - 2015.

John has an MBA from the University of Strathclyde Business School and retains a keen interest in mentoring aspiring bankers whilst actively supporting the increased professional qualification of bankers across the UK.

Robert Owen

Robert Owen

United Trust Bank | Managing Director


Currently Robert is a Managing Director at United Trust Bank and a NED at Protection Products Ltd, a specialist insurance company.

Robert has over 30 years’ experience in the UK banking and building society sectors. He joined the Burnley Building Society in 1976 and in his early career was General Manager at Haywards Heath and subsequently, Head of Lending and Arrears at the Yorkshire Building Society.

In 1995, he joined Lloyds TSB as divisional director of the consumer finance division, latterly as Managing Director of Endeavour Personal Finance a specialist lending subsidiary of the bank. From 2000 to 2006 he was Chief Executive at Matlock Bank where he founded the London Mortgage Company.

In February 2007, he became the Senior Independent Director at Al Rayan Bank plc, undertaking the roles of Chairman of the Audit committee and taking over as Chairman of the bank during the transfer of ownership. He stepped down from this NED role in 2014.

He has BA and MBA degrees, is a Fellow of the Chartered Banker Institute and a Liveryman of the Worshipful Company of International Bankers.

View Robert’s LinkedIn profile

Claire Sheilds

Claire Sheilds

KPMG | Director

Claire is currently a Director in KPMG’s Consulting practice. Since joining KPMG in 2013 she has led large scale Banking transformation programmes and regulatory programmes working closely with the FCA. She acts as mentor to a number of colleagues. 

Prior to KPMG, Claire worked for National Australia Group (Clydesdale and Yorkshire Banks) initially joining as an Accountant and latterly as Head of Small Business. She has experience of most customer Banking areas; Retail, Commercial and Wholesale Banking. Claire studied at Glasgow University gaining a degree in Mathematics and a Post Graduate qualification in Accountancy.

Claire is a Fellow of the Chartered Banker Institute. 
Simon Thompson

Simon Thompson

Chartered Banker Institute | Chief Executive


Simon leads our work to shape and implement professional standards and professional development for bankers. Simon Thompson was appointed as our Chief Executive in 2007. In 2011, Simon led the establishment of the Chartered Banker Professional Standards Board (CB:PSB). He is a Board member of the CB:PSB and chairs the CB:PSB’s Professional Standards Committee.

Before joining us, Simon was responsible for managing the International Accounting Education Standards Board (IAESB), developing ethics and education standards for accountants. He previously worked for the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA), establishing ACCA in 25 countries in Central & Eastern Europe, and leading a number of EU and other donor-funded accounting education and reform programmes.

Simon holds a BA (Politics and Economics) from the University of Newcastle-upon-Tyne, and an MBA from the University of Edinburgh. He is one of our Fellows (FCIBS), and a Chartered member of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (MCIPD).

Simon chairs the Global Education Standards Committee recently established by a group of leading international banking institutes, and is a lay member of the General Teaching Council for Scotland. He is a former Vice President of the European Bank Training Network.

View Simon's LinkedIn Profile

Follow Simon on Twitter: @ChtBankerSimonT