UK Management Team
Founder & CEO
After 25 years of non-profit experience, 105 overseas programmes involving over 1500 students and adults, this charity is a continuation of John's dream. Following a career with the Colonial Police in Northern Rhodesia (now Zambia), as an Army officer and finishing with 25 years in management with Marks & Spencer PLC, John decided that early retirement was not for him. Now, with the same ideals, to educate, house and support deprived youngsters, John is able to offer the chance to you to understand and appreciate just how wonderful this experience can be. One of John’s goals is to see one of our students enter an Indian university.
Photo, Book & Brochure Design
Since early retirement in 2005, Philip has worked as a volunteer helping promote Lotus Flower Trust through photography and editorial work. After a business life in photography, with over 30 books to his credit, numerous articles for the press and a recently developed love of India, Philip is using his wealth of experience to write and illustrate material to help fund the projects and promote the charity. It is Philip’s responsibility to manage our ‘image bank’ of several thousand photographs taken whilst travelling for the charity in India. After 11 trips to India, Philip is as committed as John in promoting Lotus Flower Trust.
Laura joined the team in 2011, just weeks after the birth of her third child. It was crazy timing but once she met John and heard about his work she knew she had to be involved. With a background in Journalism and Public Relations, Laura’s job, among other things, is dealing with any pressing matters (especially the Press), writing our newsletters as well as putting this new website together. She hasn’t been to India yet, but one day hopes to meet all the faces she has come to know so well amidst these lovely pages you are reading.
Indian Management Team
Ashok is managing director of Amazing Treks and Tours. His responsibility is arranging flights, hotels and transport within India. In fact, everything needed to make our trip proceed without problems or holdups. He has had the responsibility of organising both the Tibetan and The Great Wall of China marathons. He also takes care of 60 motorcyclists on an annual 14 day expedition amongst the Himalayas. He has recently been joined by his daughter Amrita who now looks after the Delhi office alongside Mr Amar Dabas, a retired building consultant, Mr Rigzin Namgyal of Eco Designs and Mr Bakshi.
Tantar is our ‘Man Friday’ (and all the other days of the week) in India. Any student that has ever travelled with us will have fond memories of Tantar. He is our invaluable campsite manager, with his experienced team, looking after all the needs of the group throughout the projects. Helping everywhere, organising supplies and meals, transport and accommodation. This is the man who makes sure that everything is where it should be, when we want it. A true asset to our charity.
Amazing Treks & Tours
‘The Boys’ is a generic word for both the boys, and girls, who work for Ashok Tripathi. They look after our camps with cooking and other support on treks. John Hunt has known most of these ‘boys’ for almost 20 years. We believe they are the best team on the mountains. They are nearly all Buddhist and as such nothing is too much trouble for them, ensuring those who travel with us have the best of times.
Sarah Branquinho (Chair)
Sarah Branquinho is a businesswoman and became involved in founding Lotus Flower Trust after her son had a life-changing experience working on a school in the Himalayas with John Hunt. She is an active fund raiser for the Trust and visits projects in development whenever possible.
Erik Juul-Mortensen, a founding Trustee, has enjoyed a successful career in international business and is currently President of TFWA, a global trade association representing brands in the $60 bn international duty free and travel retail industry. The Association supports many charities and has funded several schools through Lotus Flower Trust. Erik is also on the board of three regional trade associations as well as on the Duty Free World Council.
John Wilbourn is a retired international business manager, having worked in both East and West Africa, South America, the Far East and the Indian sub-continent. Since retirement he has worked with several charities and educational establishments in the UK and overseas. He has also held governorships in five state schools.
Dr Ann Hunt
Dr Ann Hunt is a retired Community Paediatrician who has worked with Lotus Flower Trust as a Trustee and office support since it’s inception. For 6 years after retiring she was the Medical Advisor and Education Manager in a Leadership Development charity working in India and other developing countries.
Dr Jamie Hill
Dr Jamie Hill was a VSO in Thailand as a school leaver before university and medical school; he served a short service commission as a doctor in the Royal Navy before entering General Practice in Scotland. Jamie has been able to contribute expeditionary medical experience to the Trust.
Now retired, Richard Wollaston was formerly the senior partner of Wollastons. In the elite Leading Lawyers list, he was a consultant in the company’s corporate team, acting on company acquisitions and sales, reconstructions and commercial deals of all sorts. He was introduced to the charity by school friend Dr Jamie Hill and has a keen interest in the Himalayan region.
Sam Hart is a former army officer who now teaches at Winchester College. He took part in the School’s first expedition with the Lotus Flower Trust in 2010 and has since led two further expeditions. He has worked hard to develop the School’s relationship with the Trust, coordinating annual expeditions and fundraising efforts.
Michael Crockett FRGS is a professional photographer and inveterate traveller. His work with British Airways and others takes him around the world, photographing people from China to Brazil. Michael first travelled with John Hunt more than 20 years ago, with Fulcrum Challenge, and is now using his knowledge to help promote Lotus Flower Trust in new media.
Rebecca Slater is a qualified Chartered Accountant and a highly experienced Finance professional with over 20 years of company Board level experience. She is now an independent business consultant providing advice on finance and strategic matters to various companies.
She joins as Treasurer after having been introduced to the Trust in 2010 and then working with them on a school project in India.
The Trustees and Management of Lotus Flower Trust are committed to the principles and practices of good governance and our governance policies reflect the principles recommended by the National Council of Voluntary Organisations (NCVO).