As BBC Group Managing Director, Bob oversees all the BBC’s people functions including HR, culture and the development of on-screen and on-air talent. He is also responsible for the BBC’s centenary plans. Bob has led the BBC’s response to the coronavirus and also co-ordinates what the BBC does between its commercial and public service operations.
Bob was educated at the Royal Grammar School in Lancaster and at Corpus Christi College, Cambridge, and graduated with a degree in English Literature. Bob started his career as a journalist in commercial radio, at Hereward Radio.
He joined the BBC in 1987 and progressed to a variety of senior roles in BBC Sport including, from 1998 to 2000, the position of Head of BBC Sport. In this role, he was responsible for overseeing all sport on BBC TV, radio and online.
In August 2000, Bob was appointed Controller of 5 live, launching 5 live sports extra in September 2002. In late 2004, Bob was given overall managerial responsibility for BBC Asian Network.
After leading Channel Four Radio in 2008, Bob returned to the BBC as Controller, Radio 2 and 6 Music in January 2009. Bob led the network through the transition from Wake Up To Wogan to the launch of The Chris Evans Breakfast Show. In 2011, Bob was once again appointed controller of Asian Network and was appointed Head of Popular Music.
In March 2014, Bob was appointed Director of BBC Music and oversaw the launch of the inaugural BBC Music Awards. In October 2016, he was appointed Director of Radio & Music, responsible for the day-to-day running of BBC network and digital-only radio stations, as well as BBC Performing Groups, BBC Proms, BBC Music and radio production.In April 2019 he began his current role as BBC Group Managing Director.
A lifelong Liverpool FC fan, Bob is a Trustee of the Roundhouse venue in Camden, International Director of the Country Music Association and vice-chairman of BBC Children in Need.
Sandeep is Chief Operating and Financial Officer of the Barbican Centre and Guildhall School of Music and Drama. A chartered accountant, Sandeep has worked for British and American multi-national companies in UK and Europe, as well as undertaking consultancies for local government projects including business process engineering and privatisation initiatives. He moved to the Barbican in 1999, and in 2008 began working with the Guildhall School. In 2010 Sandeep assumed his current role, with oversight of strategic planning and operational leadership; he is responsible for all non-artistic activity across both organisations.
Kathryn became a trustee in 2010 after a number of years as a trustee for the Alexandra Rose charities. She is a Fund Management director with Jupiter Asset Management with more than 25 years of investment experience. She has two adult children involved in the arts and has a strong, lifelong, amateur enthusiasm for music.
David became a trustee in 2016. David is a solicitor who has worked in the City of London since 1998. Since 2012, David has been a partner in the Investment Funds team at the leading City firm, Simmons & Simmons. His expertise is in transactional, advisory and regulatory work in the asset management and investment fund sector and David has a broad range of experience across the funds industry.
David has a particular focus on matters relating to private equity, real estate, infrastructure, debt and other alternative asset classes. As well as advising investment fund managers and promoters, David also regularly advises some of the world’s largest institutional investors – including charities, sovereign wealth fund and pension funds - on the legal aspects of their investments, highlighting legal risks issues and negotiating protections. David has a long-standing interest in music, and is proud to be able to contribute to the work of Help Musicians.
Alex joined as a trustee in 2017 after a period as an advisor on the financial side of Help Musicians. Alex is a Chartered Accountant who has worked in the Entertainment and Media sectors as well as with a number of charities for many years. He is also currently Chairman of Trustees at The Officers’ Association, a military service charity looking after the welfare and transition of officers into civilian life. Alex also lectures on charity finance and governance topics.
Alex has been a pianist for over 50 years, working in Butlins, cruise ships, musicals, jazz & funk bands, and has a number of compositions and contributions to CDs to his name. Realistic about his own talents, he decided to join the family accountancy business and look after musicians far better than himself. His clients include a very active orchestra, the Coldstream Guards Regimental Band, and musicians who work in the gig economy on that well-known hand to mouth basis.
Richard Wigley, who became a trustee in 2018, is the Managing Director of the Ulster Orchestra in Belfast. He has considerable experience of providing high-level support for orchestral clients across Europe and leads Find Your Way, the Association of British Orchestras’ leadership programme. He was a member of the bassoon section at the Hallé Orchestra in Manchester and spent a decade as the General Manager of the BBC Philharmonic.
Stephen Daltrey became a trustee in 2018. Stephen is an experienced coach and an expert in the delivery of executive coaching, having achieved the magical '10,000 hours' of experience in international coaching and coaching-related practice. He provides a specialist coaching service to celebrities, CEOs, senior executives and other high-profile individuals in diverse fields such as business, music, entertainment and sports, in the UK and worldwide.
Jason Carter became a trustee in 2018. He has worked for over 25 years in the live music and events sector as an artist, agent, promoter, manager and commissioner of live music and events for broadcast. He produced many of the marquee large scale major events and festivals for the BBC as Event Director and created from conception some of the landmark UK events at the BBC, including Radio 1’s Big Weekend, BBC 6Music Festival through to 1Xtra Live and Radio 1’s Teen Awards.
In 2007 Jason launched BBC Music Introducing, supporting new and emerging musicians across the BBC; he led the platform for 10 years overseeing editorial programme teams across 38 local radio stations and the key national radio networks. He was also Festival Director for BBC Radio 1’s Hackney Weekend, 2012. Jason is currently Managing Director of Get On Music Media, a live music and events consultancy based in London.
Dr Melanie Grundy became a Trustee in 2018 and is based in Newcastle upon Tyne, where she qualified as a GP in 2015. She subsequently worked as a Specialty Doctor in Psychiatry of Learning Disability and trained in Gender Dysphoria. She currently works as both an NHS GP and as an Associate Specialist in Gender Dysphoria in the private sector; she has also previously worked as an assessing clinician and presenter for BAPAM. Before studying Medicine, Melanie gained a degree in Theatre Costume Design and spent several years working as a freelance designer/maker, so she understands the unpredictability of working in the creative industry. Melanie has recently been diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder and is a proud advocate of the superpower of being a neuro diverse woman.
Melanie describes herself as having been "marinated in jazz since birth" and although jazz remains her musical passion, she is interested in a range of genres, including ambient electronica, prog-metal, gentle world/folk and minimalist classical; think Elizabeth Alker's "Unclassified" on Radio 3. She is involved with music promotion as a Trustee of Jazz North East, where she takes an active role in programming and audience development. She can also occasionally be caught singing and has previously taken part in the Summer Studios residency at Sage Gateshead, as the vocal half of duo Alembic, alongside pianist Paul Taylor. This unique combination of knowledge and experience from both the medical and creative spheres is invaluable in her role as a Trustee of Help Musicians.
Charisse, who joined as a trustee in 2018, has over 13 years of experience in brand creation and in delivering market innovation, having worked with corporate businesses, media organisations, artists and charities. She provides first-hand extensive advisory and consulting services to artists, managers, labels and students to develop and manage their career in entertainment.
She has previous experience as Company Director of Preacher Boy Entertainment, an independent award-winning artist management and record company. In this role, she designed and provided full-service and cross-functional career and brand management for award winning and Grammy-nominated music artists across the UK and US.
Charisse has a strong knowledge of the UK’s urban music scene and has worked closely with artists at the beginning of their career. Additionally, Charisse is Founder of Mahima Women, an initiative that works with two organisations in Nepal to provide finance to teach literary skills and income-generating techniques to vulnerable people.
Edward Kershaw, who became a Trustee in 2019, has worked in and around the music industry for 30 years. He studied music at university, and went on to work in the record industry with marketing and A&R roles at Virgin and Decca. He has produced and edited numerous classical recordings for Virgin, EMI and other labels. In 2000 he switched tracks to the technology industry, running Vodafone's global music activities. Following roles focusing on mobile media and consumer behaviour with Nokia and Nielsen, he was appointed Chief Commercial Officer at 7digital, the leading B2B digital music platform.
Edward plays in several amateur orchestras around London, buried among the ranks of string players.
Mrs Anne Mitchener, who became a Trustee in 2019, has a BSc in Psychology from University College London and followed this with a PhD at the Institute of Psychiatry in drug abuse. She qualified in medicine from Cambridge (Downing College and New Addenbrooke's Hospital) and completed her neurosurgical training in London, Glasgow and Edinburgh, becoming a consultant in 2001.
Between 2002-2006, Anne worked abroad as Consultant Neurosurgeon in Norway and then as a Consultant Neurosurgeon in the NHS in London until 2009. Her neurosurgical interest is in spine. She has been practising fully independently in London and Surrey since 2009. Recently Anne has broadened her scope of work to include Emergency medicine and trained as an executive coach. Her broad interest in music especially includes opera and jazz.
Jon Higgins, who became a Trustee in 2020, is an accomplished technology leader with extensive experience in IT, Multichannel Retail, Product Development and Product Ownership, Engineering, Innovation and Leadership and is one of the ‘founding fathers’ of Tesco.com. His specialties include IT transformation for the digital age, Agile and Continuous Delivery Enterprise Transformation and Public cloud adoption and migration strategy at large enterprise level. He was formerly a trustee at the premier London Arts centre, Somerset House. Jon has a lifelong passion for music and enjoys listening to an eclectic mix of genres from classical music and to modern. Mozart, Nick Drake, Stevie Wonder, Vulfpeck, Zero 7 and Jacob Collier are at the top of his 2020 repeat list.
Judah Armani lives in Brighton and is the founder of Public Service, a social design practice, improving lives through innovation by co-creating projects that affect community change. He established InHouse Records UK, the world’s first record label to be launched in a prison and run by prisoners.
He studied at the Royal College of Art and Central St Martins with expertise in product design, service design, human rights and corporate social responsibility.
Cliff is partner at Lewis Silkin LLP and founded and leads its Media & Entertainment group and its complementary service, Eleven. He advises major names in media, entertainment and technology. He has worked in the music industry for the last 25 years holding senior roles at Warner Music UK and Capital (now Global) Radio before joining Lewis Silkin in 2006 as a partner.
Cliff has significant experience in the world of charities in the creative industries with experience as company secretary to Capital Radio’s Charities and formerly a Trustee for Sound & Music. He is also Chair of the Trustee Board of The Ivors Academy Trust, the charity for songwriters and creators.
Silvia Montello is a seasoned music industry senior executive with 30 years of marketing, commercial and operational experience, including end-to-end product development, multi-discipline marketing & brand campaigns, business development, supply chain and global team management. She has worked for companies big and small, from major corporates to small independently owned, and currently works at Audio Network as Head of Operations.
Passionate about dance and electronic music, she is an active member of the Association for Electronic Music, and co-founder of dance label #remarqabl with the mission to nurture new songwriter & producer talent from under-represented areas– womxn, LGBTQ and people of colour.
Stephen has been a member of Help Musicians’ Finance and Audit Committee since 2018. He also sits on the Finance Committee of Britten Pears Arts.
Stephen spent four years as a Trustee for the Aldeburgh Music Endowment Fund and five years as both a Trustee of the Monteverdi Trust and a Board member of Monteverdi Choir and Orchestra Limited.
After twenty-five years in institutional stock broking, specialising in European equities and technology, he was a founding employee at Artorius, an independent wealth advisory business. He is a member of the Artorius investment team as well as looking after clients.
Stephen was a music scholar who played trumpet in the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain.
Jim Benner is Head of Music and Events for the charity Children in Conflict (the US partner of UK charity War Child, with whom he also works in an advisory capacity). He joined War Child UK in 2013 and helped the charity and its partners to use music-related fundraising to secure funding of over £14 million for children affected by conflict. In the UK he played a key role in launching War Child’s biggest annual fundraisers – the Winter Wassail gala fundraiser (with Carey Mulligan and Marcus Mumford) and the flagship BRITs Week series, securing it as a fixture in the UK music industry
Sam Jackson is Executive Vice President of the Global Classics & Jazz division of Universal Music Group, where his role encompasses international marketing, content creation, brand expansion, digital innovation and strategic communication, working with many of the world's leading artists in their respective fields.
He is also a Trustee of the Young Classical Artists Trust, a Member of the Board and Company of Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance, and a Member of the Royal Philharmonic Society Council.
He formerly ran the radio brands Classic FM, Smooth and Gold.
The composer and conductor Ronald Corp has been involved with Help Musicians for some 25 years. He became a Trustee of the charity in 2000 and was for many years Chairman of the Giving Committee, while serving on several other committees. He has chaired the committee which organises the charity’s annual Festival of St Cecilia, and continues to work to support this key event. Ronald also regularly chairs audition panels for Postgraduate Awards and is a valued member of the charity’s Creative Advisory Board. Ronald was appointed as a Trustee Emeritus in 2019 in honour of his long and exceptional service to the charity, which continues to this day.
Photo: Thomas Wolker
Tom Sharpe became a trustee of the charity in 1999 and left the board in May 2018. During that time, among other things, he served on the Finance Committee. He saw the great change from a small office in Ogle Street, focussing mainly on elderly, retired musicians to the larger and more modern organisation working in partnership with others to offer a broad spectrum of help, support and opportunities to empower musicians of all ages, at any stage of their career.
Tom grew up in a musical family. His mother was training to be a concert pianist in Rome, in 1939, which was unfortunately disrupted by the war. He taught law at Oxford then went to the Bar, taking silk in 1994 and was made a bencher of Lincoln’s Inn in 2004. He is on the council of the London Philharmonic Orchestra and is a trustee of Awards for Young Musicians.