Stephen Lewis – Chairman
Stephen has held senior positions in the golf, health and fitness and hospitality industry for nearly 40 years. His first love has always been the game of golf which has given him tremendous pleasure and lasting friendships over the 50 years he has played the game. Stephen passionately believes in the Golf Foundation’s founding principles of helping young people to be active by introducing them to the joys of golf and developing their life skills.
Sanjit studied and worked in the film & television industries before spending ten years in advertising, marketing and technology working at media giant Time Warner, Golf Magic and TradeDoubler- where he ran eCommerce and digital marketing activities for blue chip brands including Dell, Apple, Nike, lastminute.com, RBS and more. In 2011 Sanjit started his first sports business – the seminal football media-tech start up, Squawka. Over a period of six years Sanjit built the company to 55 people and led the team towards 14 leading industry awards including Best British Business (UK Trade & Investment 2016), Best Use of Data (British Media Awards 2016), Best Technology Company (O2 Smarta 100 2014) and Business of the Year (O2 Smarta 100 2014). He was also personally awarded Emerging Entrepreneur of The Year (Worshipful Company of Information Technologists 2016) and 40 Under 40 In Sport (Leaders 2016).
In 2017 Sanjit founded Halfspace – a fast growing agency which uses data to help brands and rights holders in sport, media & entertainment understand their audiences and build growth strategies across fields such as sponsorship, PR, content, subscriptions, ticketing and more. The agency was shortlisted for Young Agency of the Year (Sports Industry Awards 2020) and named by Drake Star Partners as one of the top emerging businesses in the world of sport (2020). Over the past year Sanjit has worked with many top names in the sports world including Harlequins Rugby, Brentford FC, Virgin Racing Formula E Team, Eurosport, The Madrid Open, The RFL and Velon – the world’s 11 largest professional cycling teams.
Kevin studied Electronic and Electrical Engineering at Strathclyde University before returning to Glasgow University to study Scots Law. He trained as a solicitor, before joining The R&A in 2000 where he worked in the Rules department for 16 years. During this time he refereed many amateur and professional events (including The Open), conducted Rules Schools all around the world, and was responsible for The R&A’s online Rules materials. In 2016 he transferred to The R&A’s Golf Development department. The R&A is a proud supporter of the Golf Foundation and has been represented on the Board of Trustees for many years.
Nick is a committed life time golfer and semi-retired businessman who is ready to give something back to help young people from all backgrounds enjoy golf. As a member of two golf clubs, Royal St George’s and The Berkshire, a past Captain and low handicap golfer he plays regular competitive golf. Nick’s business background has given him an insight and appetite to make the work of the Golf Foundation more visible and relevant to more golf clubs. Nick is also a member of The Golf Foundation’s Finance Sub-Committee.
Jim Brigden has over 20 years successful commercial experience in the Digital Marketing Industry where he has worked with a variety of different companies on their digital marketing strategies. He is committed to social mobility, diversity and inclusion and wants to share his love of golf, helping more players participate in a great sport. He is happily married, has 3 children and lives in North West London and is a member of Ealing Golf Club.
Currently working for CBRE, a global leader in commercial real estate services and investments, as Research Director – Commercial Thought Leadership, Davinder is a trained economist and researcher.
She has previously worked for the European Commission, the City of London Corporation, a professional membership body representing retail real estate and a global engineering foundation. Having worked at local, national and international levels, Davinder has led and engaged experts and government to deliver works of impact, and positive change.
She holds separate non-executive Trusteeships with the Liverpool F.C. Foundation, The Laurel Trust and the Royal Society for Public Health. She is also a Committee Member of the British Paralympic Association’s Social Impact Working Group, and a Fellow of The Royal Society for Arts (RSA).
Working on programmes that deliver public benefit and sustainable impact, the young is where it all begins for instilling lifelong skills. And what better way to do it than through sport.
Robert Maxfield first swung a club as a two-year-old, played golf for England as a schoolboy, and now brings years of golf and business experience to our Board.
Robert’s early start in golf paid off and he has played off a ‘plus’ handicap for more than 30 years (currently plus-4), including his competing in the Seniors British Open in 2018, having won qualifying.
After completing a golf scholarship at Florida State University, he joined the De Vere Group in the UK and was promoted to Director of Golf at The Belfry, where he worked at three Ryder Cups and numerous European Tour events. Robert joined The PGA staff in 2006 as Executive Commercial Director, then Deputy Chief Executive in December 2015 and became Chief Executive in January 2017.
Marcus has worked in the sports marketing and management industry for 25 years. Predominantly in the golf industry, working in athlete management, sponsorship sales, brand marketing, rights activation and event management. He has managed more than 60 golfers including Justin Rose, several Major winners and Ryder Cup players. Marcus has delivered brand partnerships with more than 70 companies across multiple industry sectors.
Marcus has worked with The Golf Foundation for a number of years through Golf Foundation ambassador, Nicola Bennett, across social mobility, diversity and inclusion programmes. He is committed to driving golf participation encompassing the life skills and social benefits that the game of golf can deliver.
Fran Merrylees joined the European Tour as Chief People Officer in December 2019. She is responsible for the People and Sustainability strategy for the business. She came from ITV where she spent 15 years as an HR Director in numerous roles across the Broadcasting, Commercial and Digital teams. During this time she supported the business, modernising the Commercial teams through the digital growth in TV; establishing and developing the teams in the advancement of its digital ‘catch up’ service – ITV Hub; and supported the launch of BritBox.
Prior to ITV, she spent 8 years as a Management Consultant at the HayGroup (now part of Kornferry), where she supported many International organisations drive strategic growth, and she started her career coming out of the Graduate programme at Marks and Spencer’s as a Store Manager.
A lifelong lover of Golf, he has represented his club, county and English region for many years culminating in qualifying for the 2017 Seniors Open Championship at Royal Porthcawl GC, won by Bernard Langer.
Jeremy joins the Golf Foundation board with an energy and consummate desire to help drive a wider understanding of the enjoyment, life skills, and health benefits participating in the beloved game of Golf can bring.
Alan has spent 20 years running international IT companies and 20 years investing in IT companies, through his investment vehicle Blackhawk Capital (where he is the Chairman and Senior Partner.) He is also a former CEO of numerous companies, with Cisco Systems being the most notable.
Alan is a very keen sportsman and describes himself as an enthusiastic golfer who clings on to his single figure handicap (and enjoys many happy hours on the golf course with his family). In 2009 he was Captain of the Wentworth Club and has been a member of The Berkshire Golf Club for 10 years. During his time as Wentworth Captain, Alan took a very active interest in the Wentworth Foundation, which provides funding for children from the local area who have demonstrated a skill in golf or tennis, but also embrace the spirit of sport.
Kim has worked in media for the past 30 years primarily with Emap plc, one of the biggest media groups in Europe. She is now Chairman and joint owner of Women & Golf, the UK’s leading media brand in women’s golf and has recently overseen the relaunch of the new Women & Golf website and membership offering, recognising the importance of digital media for the future. She was also Chairman of Enfield Golf Club for six years and supported the development of it’s very successful junior section along with the benefits its expansion brought to the club as a whole.
No stranger to the Golf Foundation, Kim also helped organise successful fundraising events for the Spirit of Golf Award in its early years when she arranged for Gary Player and Tony Jacklin to receive their awards in person.
A keen golfer herself who enjoys watching football and is an avid Arsenal and Bournemouth FC fan!