The Legal Education Foundation — Governor & Investment Committee Member

The Legal Education Foundation is looking to appoint a new Governor to join its Board and become a member of its Investment Committee. The successful candidate will have a track record at a senior level in the investment management industry and therefore bring an understanding of the investment process and associated governance. Experience of embedding ESG considerations into investment decisions and an understanding of the not-for-profit sector would be beneficial. Deadline: 13 September 2022

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Established in 2012, The Legal Education Foundation (TLEF) is an independent grant-making foundation distributing around £6m a year through its own grants and programmes, and over £15m in the next ten years through funding partnerships. Its vision is of a society which fosters the principles of justice and fairness, where people understand and use law to bring about positive change and to prevent harm, and where public systems and structures uphold the rule of law.

In this work, TLEF knows that there are significant numbers of people who cannot obtain justice in relation to everyday problems, and that these unmet needs trigger or exacerbate clusters of issues which have a social and economic impact on individuals, communities and wider public policy goals. It believes the law should be readily available at the times and in the places where people need it. The Foundation operates a combination of open and proactive grant programmes, awarding, since inception, over £35m through 514 grants to 200 organisations.

TLEF has also developed and now runs itself a set of initiatives tackling particular strategic challenges in the sector. These include the 'Justice First Fellowship', a scheme which was established in 2013 to support the next generation of social justice lawyers. The Foundation also supports the organisations it funds in a variety of other ways including providing access to training, consultancy and networking to promote exchange, learning and collaboration. It also carries out its own development work, particularly in the fields of public policy and research and it places a strong emphasis on collaboration with other organisations in the field.

Looking ahead, there are three programmes and objectives which will drive TLEF’s work to 2025: 

  • Stronger Sector: Training and support for a thriving social justice legal sector
  • Fairer Systems: Transparency, accountability and the protection of rights
  • Smarter Justice: An enduring commitment to learning and evidence in the justice system

The principal source of funds for the Foundation are the returns on an endowment which currently stands at around £270m. In addition, the Foundation receives and distributes restricted grants from other organisations and has a charitable subsidiary whose principal source of funds is restricted grants from other charitable foundations and organisations.

Role specification

The Governors ensure that they work as an effective team, using the appropriate balance of skills, experience, backgrounds and knowledge to make informed decisions. They can access independent professional advice, such as legal or financial advice, at the Foundation’s expense if needed.

Responsibilities of the Governors include oversight of the values, governance, strategy, fiduciary duties, assets and activities of the charity and ensuring that it is carrying out its purposes for the public benefit in compliance with its governing document and the law. There are currently 10 Governors. In addition to sitting on the main Board, Governors can be invited to join one of the committees. TLEF is particularly looking for a new member of the Investment Committee.

Investment Committee

TLEF’s investment policy is intended to provide long-term growth and stability to maintain the real value of the capital fund after transferring funds for grant and other expenditure each year. The Foundation’s Investment Policy Statement sets out the parameters within which the Investment Committee and Investment Advisers must operate. The Governors have approved a grant and operational expenditure budget of over £9m for the Foundation for the period to 30 June 2023. This sum will be taken from the capital fund during the year. Sarasin and Partners were appointed on 24 August 2021 as the Foundation’s Investment Managers. Sarasin maintains a diversified portfolio for the Foundation with a current emphasis on equities.

In addition to the Governor Members, the Investment Committee consists of one professionally-qualified external member. Its terms of reference includes overseeing the implementation of the Investment Strategy Policy, monitoring investment performance and recommending the amount to be made available to the Foundation for grant and operational expenditure each year.

Person specification

TLEF is looking to appoint a new Governor to join its Board and become a member of its Investment Committee. The successful candidate will have a track record at a senior level in the investment management industry and therefore bring an understanding of the investment process and associated governance. They will have recent experience of advising on or directly managing large investment portfolios with an equity bias. It is also desired that they have experience of embedding ESG considerations into the investment decision making process.

In addition, it would be beneficial that the successful candidate has first-hand understanding of the not-for-profit sector and / or experience of advising charities on mission related investments. On a personal level, candidates should demonstrate a passion for and commitment to the Foundation’s vision, mission and values.

It is preferred that candidates have prior non-executive experience but TLEF is open to those candidates seeking their first board position provided that they demonstrate an understanding of the non-executive role and how it can be used to guide and support the executive team. They will be able to work in a team, think differently and criticise constructively. They will also have good, independent judgement and a willingness to probe, challenge and speak their mind.

Board composition

Paddy Sloan, Chair
Ailsa Beaton
Rupert Baron
Jonathan Freeman
Vivek Luthra
Alison Pickup
Monica Risam
Hetan Shah
Rupen Shah
Alex Temple

Terms of appointment

The role is unremunerated, although expenses are reimbursed. Governors are appointed for an initial period of three years, renewable for up to two further terms. Board meetings are normally held four times a year in central London with meetings commencing at 4pm. Governors can attend by telephone or video conference, but it is expected that they attend at least one meeting in person. The Investment Committee normally meets four times a year on a separate day to the main Board meetings. If ad hoc decisions or discussions are necessary, there may be conference calls and / or emails with circulation of required papers.



The deadline for consideration is 13 September 2022.

If you would like to register your interest in this role, please fill in the form below. A member of the Nurole team will be in touch ahead of the deadline to let you know whether it would be worth submitting an application and to discuss the process further.