Trustee Board

In non-profit organisations, the board of trustees is made up of elected or appointed individuals who will oversee the function of the organisation, ensuring that the core values and purposes of the organisation are reflected in the operation process. Our Board of Trustees is made up of the Officer Trustees, Student Trustees and External Trustees, get to know them below!

Student Trustee Recruitment

Volunteer Trustee
Minimum of 4 meetings p/year

To contribute to the work of the Board of Trustees, bringing a professional perspective, based on experience and independent judgment. To ensure, as a member of the Board, that the Union complies with all charity, company and other relevant regulatory requirements and best practice.

Please email your completed application, including all attachments, to



Chris Hughes


My career started in the BBC World Service moving from there into BBC Local and Network Radio as a presenter and producer before coming to the East Midlands in 1980 as programme director in commercial radio at Radio Trent in Nottingham. It was a time of rapid expansion and we opened stations in Leicester and then Derby and I eventually became Managing Director of all Easy Midlands Stations. I ended my career in London as Business Development Director for GCap Radio at the time the country’s largest Commercial Radio Company working on such famous stations such as Classic FM and Capital Radio. I joined the Governing Council of the University in around 2005 and was Chair of Finance and then Chair of the Council for six years until 2018.

I have thoroughly enjoyed being Chair of the Trustee Board of the Union since 2019.

If I was to join any Student Society it would be Theatre. Whilst at University in Sheffield I was a very active member of their Theatre Group and was heavily involved in building a new theatre . It was this undoubtedly that led to my career in the media.

What I hope to bring to the board are the skills needed to support our students to achieve their potential whist providing a supportive and welcoming environment.

Tony Atherton

Managing Director, ADA Leadership Ltd

More than two decades focused on helping businesses and leaders improve performance through understanding highly effective culture and how to unleash the potential of their people. It's taken me around the world, China, Russia, Singapore and the USA to name a few. Also local to home in Derby and the Midlands and of course London. It's taken me to different industries, Aviation, Banking, Gaming, Renewable Energy, and even Retail High Street Fashion. Across all these cultures, across all these industries one thing is constant... people. They design, build and service it all, and the future is right here being nurtured at the University of Derby.

If I was to join any Student Society it would be the Film Appreciation society! I love the cinema, and you don't sit on as many long-haul flights for as many as I have without cultivating your film library!

What I hope to bring to the board is a broad appreciation of people, business and performance. A career spent working in the people space, a degree of curiosity and experience to help inform decisions and strategies. And a sense of fun. Never forget rule number six folks.

Nicola Hartley

HR Director, UK & Ireland

After completing a degree in Music and working in the classical music business for a while I decided to change tack completely and moved into the field of Human Resources. So for much of my working life I have worked as an HR professional in a variety of different sectors including Higher Education, the BBC, professional services and Consultancy and most recently in the Logistics and Distribution sector. I enjoy the challenge and the sheer variety that a role in HR can offer from developing talent, striving for a more inclusive organisation, partnering with the trade union bodies, costing the benefits strategy and ensuring that our managers are the best they can be, there is never a dull moment.

If I could have any job in the world it would be playing in the orchestra pit in the West End, so therefore the society that I would have to join would be the Musical Theatre Society. I love anything that is a live performance and especially if it involves story telling through song and dance. Even though I’m not one for being centre stage I’d enjoy being a part of the production whether it be behind the scenes, in the chorus or indeed in the orchestra pit.

I hope that I can bring my years of experience working in a whole range of successful organisations to support and challenge the Students Union to be the best employer and service provider to every student that it can be. Alongside my clear interest in creating a sustainable and successful business through the power of its people, my particular passion is coaching and supporting people in realising their potential whatever that may be.

Rosie Smith

Head of Financial Accounting, University of Derby

I studied at the University of Canterbury in New Zealand, getting an BA in History and Linguistics before earning an Honours Degree and MA in European Union Studies. Although the subject matter is big step away from my current career, accountancy, I loved that University taught me to think through issues, see different points of view and get on with a large range of people.

I've been lucky to see University from different perspectives: as the daughter of a lecturer; as the child of a mum studying around working a full-time job because she didn't get the chance to attend after leaving school; and as a student myself. Although cliche, I do believe education is an important tool to raise aspiration and allow people to achieve their goals, and as a Trustee, I can play a small part in the process.

Doing a good job and enabling the people I work with to produce their best and move towards their goals is what motivates me.

I would have loved to join a Photographic Society as I was a member during my own university stint and really loved being able to do something creative. It was an opportunity to bring to life pictures I could see in my mind's eye but not be able to produce with my very limited drawing skills. However, as that option isn't currently available at Derby, I'd have to choose the Wine and Gin Society!

What I hope to bring to the Board is varied range of experience and skills to complement the other Trustees.

Andrew Wilson

LLB Law and Criminology Student

I am an Undergraduate LLB Law and Criminology Student at the University of Derby. I chose to study this because I’ve always enjoyed Law and legal procedures on some level. After representing myself ‘in propria persona’ for my own Family Law child arrangements case, my passion and knowledge for Law grew extensively.

As a result of very challenging personal circumstances I wanted to be able to make positive change and offer a fair and impartial support and bring to justice those who do not use the law fairly and equally. I want to change the law so there is more support and funding available for others in similar, and different situations.

I chose to become a Student Trustee simply because after my foundation year at University I realised that students are greatly under-represented and misheard across the country. I quickly realised that if I wanted to help make a difference then I need to be in a place where I can actually voice student concerns and make sure the President and VPs of the Union are actually dealing with the issues that are most common not just the issues raised by the students who are active towards the Union.

My fondest memory so far of being a student is when a fellow student approached me to represent her in court to help her get a restraining order… we were successful!

My daughter is my inspiration, I want her to live in a world that actually treats everyone fairly not just saying it will.

I am currently a member of the Law Society. My attempts to create a new society were short-lived but that’s because the purposes were more aligned to a student action group and this will now be set up as Student Led Service instead… which is still a win!

I hope to bring the entirety of the student voice into the Union and not just the small percent that engages with the Union so far.

Angel Fosu

Psychology Student

I am currently studying Psychology. After my personal experiences with mental health I wanted to gain deeper insight into how the mind works and learn what makes people so different from each other. It’s offered me a different perspective of life and humanity, as well as taught me to become empathetic and compassionate of others.

I became a Trustee because I felt the Board would benefit from more representation. Due to my background my experiences are unique so it is important to be able to share a different outlook and highlight issues which may target particular groups.

My fondest memory of being a student so far is winning various awards at the Community and Sports Awards. I’m on committee for Raise and Give (RAG) and the Netball club which I have put a lot of time and effort into as they mean a lot to me, so to be rewarded for it was a great experience.

My desire to help people is my motivation. Because of it, I tend to throw myself into any opportunity I can to be supportive and donate my time into, especially if it’s for the good of others. Whilst it means I’m always juggling a lot, it’s always worth it when you see how the impact of your support helps people - for me, it’s the best feeling.

I’d consider joining a Bake Off society; during lockdown I spent a lot of time baking and trying out new recipes so it would be fun to share this experience with others.

I hope to bring a fresh student outlook to the board by using my personal experiences of being a University of Derby student, and to provide support to sustain a positive university environment.

Harvinder Saluja

MSc in Tourism Management Student

I chose to study a MSc in Tourism Management, as I have been working in tourism industry for over a decade and I thought a degree in the same area of study would give boost to my career prospects.

There are specific rights of students and these need to be protected. I believe that my experience and expertise in the previous years of working will help me in the on-boarding process to protect the rights of the students.

My first week at the campus was fantastic as I made many friends from different countries. I loved making a video while walking into the University and posting on social media as I feel pride in studying here.

Learning new things and working together as a team to achieve success motivates me.

I'd like to join the Board and card games society. I like playing chess which helps in brainstorming to make strategies.

I hope to deliver passion to bring the change that matters the most for the benefit of those for which the Trustee Board is made.

Josh Brunning

LLB Law and Criminology Student

I study Sound, Light and Live Event Technology. If there’s an event happening at uni, I’m probably there doing something techy. It basically covers everything from livestreaming a conference to running a festival. I chose it because of that breadth, so I can have a broad range of experience when entering the live events industry as well as the in-depth knowledge and to apply it well.

I became a Trustee to represent students who study at Derby’s other sites. As someone who’s mainly based at Markeaton Street, but who is regularly up at Kedleston Road it’s clear to me that improving the Union's presence on other sites and raising students' awareness of all the great things we do is really important in continuing to provide the best support we can for students.

My fondest memory so far has to be Phantom Radio’s end of year show at the end of last year. It was nice to chat with this year’s hosts and bring everyone together one last time before the summer break.

It might seem strange, but Eurovision one of the things that motivates me. It’s part of the reason I chose the course I have. It was watching it and saying to myself “I want to be involved in that.” So one of my goals is to work on Eurovision at some point in the future.

I’m a member of Musical Theatre and help out on the technical side for their shows. I am also part of the Phantom Media committee as Head of TV, Radio Technical Manager and a host on Phantom Radio.