ENO board

HRH The Princess Alexandra, the Hon Lady Ogilvy, Patron

Sir Vernon Ellis, President 

Sir Vernon Ellis was Chairman of ENO from 2005 to 2012. He chaired the board of the National Opera Studio 2012-2019. He is chair of the Leeds International Piano Competition, the Britten-Pears Foundation and Live Music Now and was a Trustee of the Royal College of Music for six years.

Sir Vernon was awarded a Knighthood in the New Year Honours, 2011 for services to music.

Dr Harry Brünjes, Chairman (appointed Chairman January 2015)

Dr Harry Brünjes (London University and Guy’s Hospital) started Premier Medical from his Harley Street Practice, becoming Chairman of the Premier Medical Group. RTA (a subsidiary) was sold to BUPA in 2005. In 2010 Premier Medical was acquired by Capita. In 2016 Harry reacquired PMG and rebranded as Kuro Health. WARP Technologies, Medicals Direct and Mobile Doctors were added to the consortium. Non-Exec positions have included The Good Care Group, Equity Red Star (Lloyd’s Syndicate) and Newmans Clinics.

Harry was Governor of Bedford Modern School, Valderrama Golf Club and Expert Witness Institute. In 2007 Harry was President of the Sussex Medico-Chirurgical Society. In 2010 Harry was elected Vice-President of the College of Medicine and is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Medicine. Harry was Chairman of Lancing College between 2009-2019. Harry has a lifelong interest in music, theatre, opera and piano.

Dr Harry Brünjes

Louise Jeffreys, Deputy Chair (appointed Deputy Chair September 2019)

Louise is a freelance consultant and coach working in the cultural sector. From 2010-2020 she was Artistic Director at the Barbican, responsible for the strategic development and delivery of their artistic programme. In this role she led on the development of the Barbican’s presence in east London, resulting in a wider more diverse audience, and she oversaw an increase of income from rental and commercial deals and partnership funding.

Previous roles include Head of Theatre at the Barbican, Administrative Director at Nottingham Playhouse and Technical Director at ENO. Louise Chairs ENO’s Artistic Committee.

Louise Jeffreys

Nicholas Addyman (appointed June 2015)

Nick is a former City solicitor and a founder member of the Parabis Group, sold to Duke Street Capital in 2012. Nick has considerable experience and knowledge gained from his professional career and ENO benefits from Nick’s legal and financial insights at Board level.

Nick holds a number of non-executive directorships both in the commercial and charitable sectors and is not only a keen supporter of ENO but supports a number of other arts organisations including Rosie Kay Dance Company.

Nicholas Addyman

Sally Burgess (appointed February 2017)

Highly acclaimed mezzo soprano Sally Burgess began her relationship with ENO in 1978 and went on to perform at most of the world’s major opera houses collaborating with many eminent conductors including Sir Mark Elder and Sir Charles Mackerras.

As a Vocal Professor at the Royal College of Music and Professor at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, Sally shares her extensive experience as a performer and teacher in music education with the Board and is a committed advocate of the organisation. Sally leads masterclasses, workshops and competitions and regularly directs opera scenes across Europe, Russia and South Africa.

She is a Fellow of the Royal College of Music (2011)

Sally Burgess

Patty Dimond (appointed September 2016)

Patty is an investor in Early Stage Businesses, a Non-Executive and Co-Author: Driven to the Brink: Why Corporate Governance, Board Leadership and Culture Matter. She has had an international executive career advising large PLC, Private Equity and owner operated companies with restructuring, transformation and growth. Her business leadership, marketing and financial skills are brought to the ENO Board from her successful career experience.

She is a McKinsey alumnae of the Retail, Financial Services and Corporate Finance practices, a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA), a Chartered Accountant (CA) and holds an MBA from IMD Switzerland.

Patty Dimond

Phil Edgar-Jones (appointed September 2016)

Phil Edgar-Jones is Director of Sky Arts and has commissioned opera broadcasts from the Royal Opera House, ENO and Glyndebourne. His appointment to the ENO Board brings a wide-ranging knowledge of media and the entertainment business coupled with leadership skills.

Phil has overseen the creation of Portrait and Landscape Artists of the Year alongside a myriad of other programmes spanning the spectrum of Arts genres. Sky Arts is the first broadcaster to broadcast Wagner’s Ring Cycle from Bayreuth which was simulcast in the UK, Germany, Italy and Australia.

Phil Edgar-Jones

Adiba Ighodaro (appointed December 2019)

Adiba is a former Partner and founder member of international private equity firm Actis, where she spent close to 30 years as both an investor and principal fundraiser. Adiba started her career as a lawyer and has long experience of serving as a non-executive director on private and public boards including a former FTSE 100.

Recognised by Private Equity Africa as one of the top female deal makers and fundraisers in the industry, as well as for the impact her leadership has had on women, Adiba has demonstrated an ability to raise funds consistently through up and down cycles, and establish enduring institutional investor partnerships globally.

In addition to her deep love of music, Adiba brings to the board her financial, strategic and legal expertise together with her passion for and commitment to diversity and inclusion. Adiba holds a LLB (King’s College, London) , a C Dip Accounting & Finance (ACCA) and is a member of the Honourable Society of Gray’s Inn.

Adiba Ighodaro

Adiba Ighodaro

Professor Ajit Lalvani (appointed June 2020)

Ajit is Chair of Infectious Diseases and Director of the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Respiratory Infections Health Protection Research Unit at Imperial College London and Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust.

He is committed to improving resilience and wellbeing in underprivileged communities by tackling the social determinants of health including active engagement in the performing arts. He is also Chair of Trustees at the Bromley-by-Bow Centre which pioneered social prescribing, Governor of The Science Museum Group and Chair of the India Alliance Strategy Board, India’s most esteemed medical research funding organisation. 

Professor Ajit Lalvani

Hilary Newiss (appointed February 2023)

Hilary Newiss is a lawyer specialising in intellectual property and former partner in a City law firm. She has served on several public and charity boards involved in innovation, science, arts and culture. She brings her legal expertise, governance and strategy knowledge to the Board.

Hilary has served on the Board of the Natural History Museum, Charleston House, and several boards in health and social care. She is currently the Chair of the British Science Association, on the Board of the Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult and the Steering Board of the Intellectual Property Office. She is an Honorary Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences, and recently retired as Chair of National Voices, the umbrella group of charities advocating for care to revolve around patients.

She is a long-time opera lover, supporter of the ENO and amateur pianist and singer.

Hilary Newiss

Sally Osman (appointed August 2019)

Sally is a senior advisor at global CEO advisory company Teneo and accredited business coach. A respected and experienced communications expert, she was Director of Royal Communications to Her Majesty The Queen until December 2018.

Prior to joining the Royal Household, Sally was Director of Corporate Communications at Sony Europe and, previously, Director of Communications for the BBC. She also led communications at Sky and Channel 5 during periods of growth and change following a career in newspaper journalism and magazine publishing.

Sally Osman

Rt Hon Lord Smith of Finsbury (appointed January 2021)

From 1997 to 2001 Chris was Secretary of State for Culture, Media & Sport. During this time he restored free admission to museums and galleries, expanded funding for the arts and began the process for digital television. He returned to the back benches in 2001. He now sits in the House of Lords as a non-affiliated peer. In 2003 he became Director of the Clore Leadership programme. He was Chair of the Environment Agency between 2008 and 2013. From 2007 to 2017 he was Chair of the Advertising Standards Authority. Since 2014 he has been Chair of The Art Fund. He was Chair of the Judges for the Man Booker Prize 2004 and Chair of the Donmar Warehouse Theatre until 2014. Since 2015 he has been Master of Pembroke College in Cambridge.

Lord Smith

Huw van Steenis (appointed November 2015)

Huw van Steenis is a financier and is currently Senior Advisor to the Chief Executive of UBS and chair of the firm’s sustainable finance committee. Prior to this Huw was Senior Advisor to Mark Carney, when he was Governor at the Bank of England, and led the van Steenis Report report. He provides the board with his knowledge of finance and financial governance alongside his leadership skills and advocacy for the company.

He has a life-long interest in classical music and is an active supporter of the arts. He has served as an adviser or board member to a range of groups and is currently co-Chair of the World Economic Forum’s Global Future Council on Finance and member of the Oxford University Endowment Investment Committee.

Huw van Steenis

Lord Sumption (appointed June 2015)

Jonathan is a British judge, author and mediaeval historian. His appointment brings the board his legal expertise, and a passion for supporting ENO. He served as a deputy High Court judge in the Chancery Division, a judge of the Courts of Appeal of Jersey and the Guernsey and a member of the Judicial Appointments Commission for England and Wales.

In January 2012 he was sworn in as a Justice of the Supreme Court, the first person appointed to the court directly from the bar since its inception in 2009.

Jonathan is a Deputy Chair of the Royal Academy of Music.

Lord Sumption

Patti White (appointed September 2016)

Patti White has served on the boards of multiple charities, including English National Opera, American Friends of ENO (since 2004 and president since 2012), National Museum of Women in the Arts, UK Friends NMWA, Vanderbilt University, the American Friends of the National Portrait Gallery and the American Friends of Winchester College. She brings experience in strategic planning, fundraising, advocacy and volunteering in both the US and the UK. She has degrees from the Harvard Law School and the Kennedy School of Government.

Patti White 

John Cooke, Board Secretary

John Cooke is an international economic relations consultant and chairs an expert group in the City of London on financial services liberalisation. John brings the board his expertise in finance and governance. John is also a Trustee (and a past Chairman) of the ENO Benevolent Fund, a registered charity which makes grants to past or present members of the company in cases of special need or hardship.

John’s previous career was as a senior civil servant and then at the Association of British Insurers. He regularly contributes to conferences, seminars and publications on international trade policy and financial services regulatory issues.

John Cooke