The Board of Trustees oversees the Royal Opera House's mission and aims, acting as the governing body for the Royal Opera House Covent Garden Foundation.

Sir Lloyd Dorfman CVO CBE

Sir Lloyd is the Chair and co-founder of Doddle, the e-commerce IT platform. He is also the Chair of Dorfman Media Holdings, board director of the London Theatre Company and Vice-President of Prince’s Trust Interntional. He sits on the Business Advisory Board for the Mayor of London. He is a trustee of BAFTA, the Royal Academy Trust, the UK Holocaust Memorial Foundation and is deputy-chair of the Community Security Trust. He has served as Chair of The Office Group, the Roundhouse and the Prince’s Trust UK, and on the board of the National Theatre. He was a Governor of St Paul’s School from 2005 – 2016.

He founded the Travelex Group, the world’s largest retailer of foreign exchange and sold it in 2015. 

He was named Honorary Australian of the Year in 2008. In 2011 he was awarded the Prince of Wales Medal for Arts Philanthropy. In 2008 he was awarded CBE for services to business and charity and in 2018 was awarded a Knighthood for services to philanthropy and the arts. He was appointed Commander of the Royal Victorian Order (CVO) in the 2022 Birthday Honours List for his work with Prince’s Trust International. He is the Honorary Colonel of the Third Battalion of the Princess of Wales’s Royal Regiment, an Honorary Fellow of St Peter’s College, Oxford and an Honorary Bencher of Lincoln’s Inn. He is a Freeman of the City of London.

Sir Lloyd was appointed Chair of the Royal Opera House in 2022, having been a trustee since 2015. 

Zeinab Badawi

Zeinab is the current Chair of the Royal African Society, a trustee of Historic Royal Palaces, BBC Media Action (the charitable arm of the BBC) and of Hampstead Theatre.

She was born in the Sudan and her family moved to London when she was two years old. She studied Philosophy, Politics and Economics at Oxford University and completed a Masters degree (awarded with a distinction) in History and Anthropology at SOAS, University of London. She has been awarded two honorary doctorates: from SOAS and from the London College of Communication, University of the Arts London, for her services to broadcasting. She is a broadcast journalist and producer, currently the presenter of Global Questions and Hard Talk for the BBC. Through her own production company, she has produced and presented a major television series about African history.

Her awards include International TV Personality of the Year (the Association of International Broadcasters), the President’s Medal by the British Academy (2018) and the MVISA Movie and Video Industry Lifetime Achievement Award. She has been named several times in the 'Power List' as one of Britain’s top 100 most influential members of the Black community.

Zeinab sits on the Donation and Income Acceptance Committee at the Royal Opera House.

Caroline Britton

Caroline is a non-executive director of Money Supermarket, Sirius Real Estate, and Revolut Limited. She is a trustee of Make-A-Wish International.

She studied Economics at Cambridge University. She is an FCA of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales. She worked at Deloitte LLP for 30 years, having qualified with Touche Ross & Co. She ran the FTSE 250 Deloitte NextGen CFO programme. She was an audit partner at Deloitte from 2000 to 2018.

Caroline is chair of the Audit and Risk Committee and sits on the Finance and Commercial Committee and Nominations and Remuneration Committee at the Royal Opera House.

Lord Browne of Madingley

Lord Browne is the Founder and Chairman of BeyondNetZero, a climate growth equity venture established in partnership with General Atlantic. He served as Group Chief Executive of the international energy company BP from 1995 to 2007, having joined the company in 1966 as a university apprentice. He led BP through a period of significant growth and transformation, including eleven mergers with companies starting with Amoco in 1998 and including Arco, Veba and Castrol. His landmark speech at Stanford University in 1997 established BP as a global leader in the way it thought about and sought to address climate change.

In 2007, he joined Riverstone, a private equity entity, where he was co-head of the world’s largest renewable energy fund until 2015. He is presently Chairman of Pattern Energy, a renewable energy company, Windward, a global maritime predictive intelligence company, and Chairman of SparkCognition, an artificial intelligence technology company.

He is presently independent co-Chairman of the UK Prime Minister’s Council on Science and Technology, Chairman of the Queen Elizabeth Prize for Engineering, Chairman of the Francis Crick Institute, Chairman of the Courtauld Institute of Art, and previously served as Chairman of the Tate Galleries and President of the Royal Academy of Engineering. He was the UK Government’s lead non-executive board member from 2010 until 2015, and chaired the committee that published the Browne Report into higher education.

He holds an MA in Natural Sciences from Cambridge University and an MS in Business from Stanford University in California. In 1999 the Royal Academy of Engineering awarded him the Prince Philip Medal for his outstanding contribution to engineering. He has an interest in Italian works on paper post 1450, art, music, opera and theatre, and is the author of five books.

Lord Browne sits on the Nominations and Remuneration Committee at the Royal Opera House.

Tim Bunting

Tim is a Senior Adviser to Balderton Capital, where he was a General Partner for 15 years. He is also a trustee of the Rainbow Trust Children’s Charity, Royal Springboard and the Paul Hamlyn Foundation. He is Vice-Chair of the Sutton Trust.

He is a graduate of the University of Cambridge. Prior to Balderton, he spent 18 years at Goldman Sachs, holding various roles including Global Head of Equity Capital Markets and Vice-Chairman of Goldman Sachs International.

Tim is chair of the Finance and Commercial Committee and sits on the Audit and Risk, Development and Nominations and Remuneration Committees and the Business Transformation Group.

Lisa Burger CBE

As CEO/Executive Director Lisa has sat on the Board for the National Theatre since 2015. She is also Chair of the Lyric Hammersmith.

She has worked for the National Theatre for 20 years, joining as Finance Director, and moving into roles as Chief Operating Officer, Executive Director and Joint Chief Executive. Prior to this, she spent four years as director of finance and operations at the National Gallery Company, the trading arm of the National Gallery.

She was awarded an honourary degree of doctor of letters from Sheffield University in 2019. She was awarded a CBE for services to the arts as part of the 2022 New Year's Honours.

Lisa became a trustee of the Royal Opera House in 2022 and sits on the Finance and Commercial Committee.

Kirsty Cooper

Kirsty is General Counsel and Company Secretary at Aviva, a member of the Aviva Executive Team and heads the Office of the Chair. She leads the Legal and Secretarial function for Aviva and is responsible for the provision of legal services to the Group, legal risk management and compliance with UK listing requirements. She also supports the Chair and the Board in the discharge of their responsibilities.

She was formerly a board member of the English National Ballet and is currently a non-executive board member of HM Land Registry. She served as a member of the Dormant Assets Commission and was appointed the Insurance and Pensions Industry Champion for dormant assets in 2018. This involves working with industry to encourage their contribution of assets to good causes. She also sits on the Executive Committee of the GC100.

Kirsty studied Law at the University of Glasgow and is qualified as a solicitor in England and Wales, as well as Scotland.

Kirsty sits on the Audit and Risk and Donation and Income Acceptance committees at the Royal Opera House. She is also the Senior Independent Director for the board and the designated safeguarding trustee for the Royal Opera House.

Sue Hoyle OBE

Sue is lay commissioner of the Judicial Appointments Commission as well as a member of their digital board. She is also a trustee of Fuel Theatre, Leeds Culture Trust and a member of the selection committee for the Longwood International Horticultural Fellowships in the USA. Previous trustee roles include for the British Council, DV8 Physical Theatre, London Philharmonic Orchestra and Shobana Jeyasingh Dance.

She was a member of the founding team of Clore Leadership and its Director until 2017. She was previously Executive Director at The Place. Before that she worked for Arts Council England, becoming their Director of Dance and subsequently deputy chief executive, before moving to France as Head of Arts France for the British Council.

She studied Drama and French at Bristol University. She is a Cultural Fellow of King’s College London and an Honorary Fellow in Dance at Falmouth University. She was awarded an OBE for services to contemporary dance and Chevalier dans L’Ordre des Palmes Académiques for Services to French Culture.

Sue is the chair of the Learning and Participation Committee and sits on the Nominations and Remuneration Committee at the Royal Opera House.

Vanessa Kingori OBE

Vanessa sat on the board of directors for UAL (2014–21), she was also a Visiting Fellow of UAL supporting and mentoring students. She sits on the leadership committee for Peanut StartHer, an angel investor focused on purpose-driven startups. She has been a Patron of the British Fashion Council since 2018. She has been part of the judging panels of the Black British Business Awards, the Veuve Clicquot Businesswoman of the Year award and the Mayor of London’s TFL’s diversity in advertising competition. She is also a member of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists Race Equality Task Force.  

She was appointed as Publishing Director of British Vogue in 2017, the first female to lead the business. Prior to this, she was Publisher of British GQ and Condé Nast, after forging her career at Heart Magazines and the Evening Standard. She is now Chief Business Officer across all Condé Nast Britain brands, as well as Vogue’s European Advisor. Vanessa was awarded an OBE in the 2023 New Year Honours list.

She was awarded an MBE in 2016. She was also awarded an Honorary Doctorate from UAL in 2018 and an Honorary Fellowship from Royal Holloway, University of London in 2021. She was voted as one of the 100 Most Influential Black Britons by Powerlist magazine every year between 2013 and 2020.

Vanessa became a trustee of the Royal Opera House in 2022 and sits on the Finance and Commercial Committee.

Paul Morrell OBE

Paul was formerly a trustee and governor of the Royal Shakespeare Company, a trustee of the Bristol Old Vic, a trustee of BAFTA and a trustee and chair of the Siobhan Davies Dance Company.

He is a chartered quantity surveyor, now practising as an independent consultant on governance and setting up major projects. He worked at David Langdon (now part of Aecom) since graduating, becoming a senior partner before retiring in 2007. He was then appointed as the Government’s first Chief Construction Adviser to champion a more coordinated approach to affordable, sustainable construction. He also served as Commissioner on the Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment.

He was awarded an OBE in the 2009 New Year Honours list.

Paul sits on the Finance and Commercial and Audit and Risk committees at the Royal Opera House.

Indhu Rubasingham MBE

Indhu is the Artistic Director of the Kiln Theatre. She started in 2012 and oversaw a major £9 million renovation of the building, which re-opened in 2018.

Prior to leading the Kiln, she worked as a freelance theatre director for over fifteen years across the UK and internationally, predominantly directing and developing new writing. Her inaugural production as Artistic Director at the Kiln was the multi-award winning Red Velvet by Lolita Chakrabarti (Evening Standard Award and Critics’ Circle Award). Her production of Handbagged won an Olivier Award for Outstanding Achievement in an Affiliate Theatre before transferring to the West End and subsequently touring nationally in 2015. Her production of The Invisible Hand was nominated for an Olivier Award for Outstanding Achievement in an Affiliate Theatre in 2017 and 2021. She directed Zadie Smith’s debut play The Wife of Willesden at the Kiln Theatre in 2021 to critical acclaim – it became the theatre’s highest ever grossing show.

In 2022, she directed Anupama Chandrasekhar’s The Father and the Assassin (Olivier Theatre) and is set to direct April de Angelis’ Kerry Jackson (Dorfman Theatre). Other credits at the National Theatre include The Great Wave and The Motherf**ker with the Hat (Evening Standard Award).

She is on the judging panel of the Peggy Ramsay/Film4 Award and the Phil Fox Playwrighting Award and is currently a trustee of the George Devine Award.

In 2017, she was awarded an MBE in the New Year’s Honours List and an honorary doctorate from the University of Hull.

Indhu became a trustee of the Royal Opera House in 2020.

Janis Susskind OBE

Janis served for 10 years on the Arts Council Stabilisation Advisory Panel. She was Chair of the Society for the Promotion of New Music (1983-1988) and has served as a trustee of the Birmingham Contemporary Music Group, NMC record company, International Artist Managers' Association, Royal College of Music and English National Opera. She currently sits on the boards of the London Symphony Orchestra, Britten Sinfonia and Britten Pears Arts and on the advisory council of the Royal Philharmonic Society. 

She studied at Princeton University and has since worked in the music publishing industry. She is now the Managing Director of Boosey & Hawkes Music Publishers Ltd. 

She was awarded Honorary Membership of the Royal College of Music in 2007. In 2014 she was awarded an OBE for services to music.

Janis Susskind became a trustee of the Royal Opera House in 2022 and sits on the Learning and Participation Committee.

Chris Townsend CBE

Chris is a Senior Partner at KPMG and Head of KPMG’s Infrastructure, Government, Defence and Healthcare practice.  A key part of his role is the governance and delivery of a wide range of Government projects and contracts supporting the Government and wider public sector.  He has extensive expertise at Board Director level bringing together multi-disciplinary teams across the public and private sectors.  Over the past 25 years Chris has held a number of CEO and senior commercial and marketing executive roles leading the successful development, delivery and management of major and high-profile projects in broadcast, sports and Government entities including BSkyB, Transport for London, London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, Broadband Delivery UK and Chelsea Football Club.

Chris is chair of the Business Transformation Group at the Royal Opera House.

Michael Ward

Michael is the Chair of Walpole, the official sector body for UK luxury. He sits on the V&A Advisory Board and is a trustee for ECCIA. He is also Chair of Knightsbridge BID.

Michael began his career training in chartered accountancy with Ernst & Young in 1980. He was Group Finance Director of both Bassett Foods PLC and H.P. Bulmer Holdings PLC before moving on to be Managing Director of Lloyds Chemists PLC. Since 2005, he has been Managing Director of Harrods.

Michael Ward became a trustee of the Royal Opera House in 2022 and sits on the Finance and Commercial Committee.

Danny Wyler

Danny has been a governor of a number of schools and produced many fundraising performances for musical charities, including the Royal Opera House. He was previously chairman of the Mustique Company Ltd, a director of Stonehage Ltd and chairman of wealth management business ACPI Investments Ltd for ten years until it was sold in 2018.

He has an MSc in Business Economics from Erasmus University, Rotterdam and began his career in equity research for a New York Investment bank, before becoming Director of Granaria Holdings B. V. until 2017, selling out his fifty percent holding in 2022. He was the CEO of worldwide soft commodities trading activities from 1980 to 1988, after which he built up Europe’s leading nut processing company.

Danny sits on the Finance and Commercial, Audit and Risk Development and Donation and Income Acceptance Committees at the Royal Opera House.

Sir Alex Younger KCMG

Sir Alex is a trustee for the Royal United Services Institute and an Ambassador for the HALO Trust.

He began his career as an infantry officer in the British Army. He was a career intelligence officer in the British Secret Intelligence Service (MI6). He rose to become Chief of the Service in 2014, a position he held for six years.

He became a trustee for the Royal Opera House in 2022 and sits on the Audit and Risk and Donation and Income Acceptance Committees.

The Board of Trustees function in boards and committees which are key to the continued success of the Royal Opera House’s mission and aims.   

The key committees are: Finance and Commercial, Learning and Participation, Development, Nominations and Remuneration, and Donation and Income Acceptance. These committees work alongside the Board of Honorary Directors, the Honorary Trustees and the ROH Pension Trust Ltd. 

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Royal Opera House Covent Garden Foundation, a charitable company limited by guarantee incorporated in England and Wales (Company number 480523) Charity Registered (Number 211775)