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Who's Who


Air Marshal Sir Kevin Leeson KCB CBE FREng CEng FIET

Mr Alan Smith FRAeS (and Chairman RAFCTE and RIAT)
Lady (Delia) Thornton LLB (Hons) Barrister at Law
Air Commodore Andy Sudlow MBE BSc (Hons) FCMI
Mr Ian Beresford MBE FRAeS FIoD CEng CDir
Mr Peter Brown MBE BSc (Hons)
Mrs Sarah Jones
Mrs Kate Wigston 

Director of & Secretary to the Trust
Group Captain Justine Morton OBE

Additionally, the RAFCT retains close links with the RAF, primarily through Assistant Chief of Air Staff.

Kevin Leeson
Air Marshal Sir Kevin Leeson

Air Marshal Sir Kevin Leeson served for 38 years in the RAF. An Engineering Officer, he served in a variety of appointments in maintenance, acquisition, logistics and plans and programmes. His final appointment was as Chief of Materiel (Air) in MoD Defence Equipment & Support and a member of the Air Force Board and Chief Engineer (RAF). He has served as a member of the Board Safety Review Committee at British Airways and is currently Director of Military Affairs with Airbus UK and a Senior Advisor with Atkins Defence and Security. He was appointed a Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire in the Queen's Birthday Honours List 2003 and became a Knight Commander of the Most Honourable Order of the Bath in the New Year's Honours List 2012. Sir Kevin has had a long association with the Royal International Air Tattoo, starting as a volunteer in 1992, before becoming a Vice President in 2009, a Vice Patron in 2011, and taking over as Chairman of the RAF Charitable Trust in 2013.

Alan Smith
Alan Smith
Born in 1946 in Leicester, Alan has spent most of his career working in retailing. Following a Business Studies Degree at Leeds Polytecnic, Alan rose through the ranks of Joshua Tetley, before being appointed Managing Director of Victoria Wine. He then joined the Kingfisher Retail Group, first as MD of Superdrug, then B&Q, before moving to the role of Chief Executive of Boddingtons, Evans Halshaw, Punch Taverns and Somerfield Food Stores. His final executive role was as Chairman and Chief Executive of Robert Dyas. Alan is Chairman of ScS Group plc and Displayplan Ltd and a Non Executive Director of NAAFI. 
Lady Delia Thornton
Lady (Delia) Thornton
Delia is a practising Family Law Barrister at St John's Chambers Bristol. Prior to moving to Law as a profession, Delia was a nurse and midwife and spent 8 years serving in the RAF as a Flight Lieutenant midwife and Aeromedical Evacuation Nursing Officer. She played an active role in the Aeromedical Evacuation of the injured during the Falklands War and led the first Aeromed team to land at Port Stanley. Delia has also held positions on the main grants committees of both SSAFA and the RAFBF. 
Andy Sudlow
Air Commodore Andy Sudlow
Andy Sudlow served in the Royal Air Force for 32 years as a pilot. He was a Qualified Weapons Instructor and a Qualified Flying Instructor and has flown the Jaguar, F-16 and Tucano aircraft. His last appointment was Director of Flying Training and he maintains an active interest in aviation as a volunteer pilot for the Air Cadet Organisation. Other appointments have included the Ministry of Defence, the UK Joint HQ, command of the Expeditionary Air Wing in Afghanistan and an exchange with the Royal Netherlands Air Force.

Ian Beresford
Ian is Group Director Engineering & Operations with the QinetiQ Group. He is the head of profession for QinetiQ's Engineering, Science and Technical (EST) community and holds responsibility for Technical Assurance, including Aviation Assurance within QinetiQ. In addition, he also oversees the QinetiQ Safety, Assurance and Sustainability function. He joined QinetiQ in 2006. Ian started his career as an Aircraft Engineering Apprentice in the RAF, and served as an aircraft technician, prior to being commissioned as an Aircraft Engineering Officer. He completed 22 years' service with the RAF. On leaving the RAF he became the Business Unit Director of 2 large Aircraft Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul organisations, where he drove a business change initiative using LEAN methodology. In addition to his engineering qualifications, Ian is a Chartered Director and a qualified Executive Coach. He is passionate about STEM outreach and developing high performing teams and is committed to helping individuals attain their full potential.

Peter Brown
Peter is a Partner at PwC where he leads the People & Organisation HR Management Consulting practice. He joined PwC in 2010 from Accenture. Peter served as an RAF Education & Training Officer from 1989-2001 having been an RAF sponsored cadet at Exeter University. His postings included RAF Brize Norton, RAF Sek Kong, HQ British Forces Cyprus, RAF Staff College Bracknell and RAF Akrotiri. He also did two tours as Staff Officer to the Chief of Air Staff. Peter is married to a retired Army midwife and they have 2 young children.

Sarah Jones
Sarah began her career at British Aerospace in the Military Aircraft Division at Warton. From there she moved on to various postings across the Group including being Chief of Staff to the CEO and finally running the Radway Green Ammunitions factory in Crewe. After 13 years with BAE, Sarah moved to become the CEO of learndirect which, at the time, was a Government backed organisation tasked with improving the literacy & numeracy skills of adults. In 2011 Sarah led the organisation through a Management Buy Out, followed by a major merger the following year, to create the UK's largest skills training business. Sarah now has a portfolio of various directorships including being Chair of Outreach Solutions, Deputy Chair of Sheffield Children's Hospital, Governor of City & Islington FE College and Strategic Advisor to Stirling Dynamics Ltd.

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Kate Wigston
Joining the RAF Charitable Trust as a Trustee in 2016, Kate brings her experience of being married to a serving RAF officer, with the rewards and challenges for their family of numerous postings in the UK and abroad in Cyprus and Germany. Kate is a practising litigation solicitor with an international law firm, specialising in larger value personal injury cases. Growing up and attending University in Australia, Kate qualified as a lawyer and practised in Sydney and London before moving permanently to the UK in 1994. Kate also sits on the Main Grants Committee of the RAF Benevolent Fund.

Group Captain Justine Morton
Director of & Secretary to the Trust

Justine Morton is a recently retiredRoyal Air Force GroupCaptain who has had extensive experience in the world of personnel in both command, staff, joint and single serviceappointments. Shealso brings experience to the Director role fromchairing a board of trustees for a leading autism charity.


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