Paul Spanswick, Chair
“One of the best things about being a trustee is working with passionate people who are dedicated to making a real and lasting difference to young people who have been affected by cancer.”
I currently have a number of Chair and NED positions, having recently retired from a long career working in Investment Banking, the last 22 years of which were spent working for Nomura Holdings Inc., a global investment bank. During my Nomura career, I was fortunate to have a number of senior global positions and spent 3 enjoyable years living in Japan.
Before joining Nomura in 1998, I spent 13 years in a variety of finance, risk management and treasury roles at UBS and Citigroup. I have a degree in Accounting and Finance and have been a member of the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants since 1985.
I led on Nomura’s award winning partnership with Teenage Cancer Trust, a two year fundraising campaign which raised £1m for the charity. I participated in multiple events throughout the two years, including The Nomura Three Peaks Challenge.
I became a trustee of Teenage Cancer Trust because I was so inspired by the work of the charity and the leadership team that I wanted to do more than just fundraise. The organisation was growing significantly, so I felt I could also bring my experiences of helping businesses expand. I was honoured to take on the role of Chair of the Board of Trustees in February 2020. Dealing with the impact of Covid was challenging but I look back with intense pride on how well the charity adapted to new ways of working to ensure we remained there for those who needed us the most.
One of the best things about being a trustee is working with passionate people who are dedicated to making a real and lasting difference to young people who have been affected by cancer. Although most people focus on the governance and oversight aspects of being a trustee, people don’t know how much fun you can have and how rewarding and inspiring the experience can be.
I think my main strengths is that I’m an all-rounder and team player. My 35 years business experience allows me to relate to the issues the charity’s leadership team is facing as Teenage Cancer Trust grows.
Teenage Cancer Trust and me
As a teenager I was exactly everything I tell my own children not to be - don’t be so lazy, don’t be so rude, don’t be so untidy, don’t play too much sport, spend more time on your homework and so on. I wanted to be an accountant when I grew up, believe it or not! It’s hard to appreciate at the time, but the best thing about being a teenager is freedom, flexibility, plenty of life options - and long school holidays, of course.
I have many brilliant memories from my time at Teenage Cancer Trust, like handing over a rather large £1,000,000 cheque to fund the University College Hospital unit in London and celebrating this milestone at an Oscars themed quiz night with celebrity supporter Gabby Logan. Other times were more challenging, like participating in the Three Peaks challenge for Teenage Cancer Trust, especially having to share a tiny mini bus overnight with 12 exhausted and somewhat smelly work colleagues!
So much of the work is inspiring, for example seeing young people tell their remarkable story onstage at the Royal Albert Hall shows. My first ever visit to a Teenage Cancer Trust unit was very memorable - the individuals I met there continue to inspire me today.