Mission & Team

We work with individuals, families and financial institutions to increase philanthropy in society.

NPT UK provides donor-advised funds (DAFs) to donors in the UK and those around the world who wish to base their philanthropy from the UK. We are an independent charity driven by our mission to make philanthropy more convenient and efficient for donors. We offer giving vehicles and expertise to philanthropists, family offices, and wealth managers from one of the world’s leading financial centres.

NPT UK is affiliated with National Philanthropic Trust, the largest independent provider of DAFs in the United States. Since its founding in 1996, NPT has raised more than $45.6 billion in charitable funding and has made more than 600,000 grants exceeding $23.6 billion to nonprofits around the world.

The NPT group also includes NPT Transatlantic, a US/UK dual qualified charity providing DAFs that enable dual taxpayers to benefit from tax relief in both the UK and the US.

Senior Leadership

Tom Keville

Operations Director

Tom Keville is Operations Director of National Philanthropic Trust UK. He has over 15 years of experience in banking and philanthropy. Prior to joining NPT UK Tom was a Vice President at BNY Mellon where he worked in structured finance for over 10 years in both London and New York. Tom Holds a BSc (Hons) in Mathematics from Imperial College London.

Oliver Nicholl-Dovell

Investment Operations Associate

Oliver Nicholl-Dovell is Investment Operations Associate at National Philanthropic Trust UK. He has 3 years of experience in finance and operations. Before joining NPT UK, Oliver worked in accounting at GP Bullhound and completed an internship at Aon. Oliver holds a BA (Hons) in Business and Finance from The University of Lincoln and is currently a CFA Level 1 candidate.

Natalie Pinon

Senior Director of Development

Natalie Pinon is Senior Director of Development of National Philanthropic Trust UK. Ms. Pinon is a leader in impact finance with expertise advising family offices, wealth managers and business owners on impact investing and philanthropy since 2006. She focuses on working with multi-generational global families to support their values-based giving and investing. Ms. Pinon has particular expertise advising female philanthropists and wealth holders, and supporting organisations focused on accelerating gender equality and the empowerment of women and girls. She is recognised by NatWest WISE100 as a leading woman in impact investment and mission-driven business.

 

Ms. Pinon was previously Director of Impact for Social and Sustainable Capital, a leading impact investment fund. Ms. Pinon began her career in investment banking before moving to the international development field, where she worked for the United Nations Secretary General’s office and later the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE). She was Head of Impact at the London based family office Novator and Senior Advisor at the Charities Aid Foundation. Ms Pinon has sat on several nonprofit boards and is currently a Trustee of the Womanity Foundation. She holds an MSc from Sciences Po Paris and the London School of Economics.

Lucy Shepherd

Head of Grantmaking

Lucy Shepherd is Head of Grantmaking at National Philanthropic Trust UK and brings 10 years’ experience in philanthropy and international development. Prior to joining NPT UK, Lucy held a variety of roles in international NGOs including Christian Aid, Concern Worldwide and CARE International specifically managing corporate partnerships.

 

Before joining NPT UK, Lucy was the Senior Manager at the Swarovski Foundation and managed several charity partnerships which supported education, women’s empowerment, climate environment and arts and culture.

 

Lucy is also a Trustee of Rising Girl, a UK charity that empowers and inspires girls globally by providing educational opportunities to break the cycles of poverty and build brighter futures.

Stefan Velvick

Director of Development

Stefan Velvick is Director of Development at NPT UK and has over 25 years of experience in philanthropy and donor-advised funds. He previously worked for the Charities Aid Foundation, where he helped ultra and high net worth individuals to manage their philanthropy. He is involved with a small children’s charity and helps out with the local community boys football club.

Board of Trustees

Filter biographies by NPT UK Board NPT Transatlantic Board

Mary Boakye

Mary Boakye

Mary Boakye is a finance lawyer with over 25 years’ international capital markets and investment experience, globally and across multiple sectors. She has advised corporates, investment funds, financial institutions and governments across Africa, Europe, Asia and the United States.

 

Mary is a dual-qualified solicitor and New York Attorney with a stellar career including in leadership at leading global firms in New York, London, South Africa and Hong Kong. She worked at Allen & Overy and Dentons where she was head of the firm’s Africa Financial Markets Group. She also co-led the team that advised on Ghana’s 2007, 2013, and 2014 sovereign bond issues. Mary is the founder and CEO of Oriol Associates.

 

Mary is a board member of The Fore Trust and Dentons’ Board Diversity Committee. She has served on numerous advisory boards including the Technical Committee of the World Bank / AfDB All-Africa Conference on Law, Justice, and Development, Business Advisory Board of H.E. Kofi Annan’s Africa Progress Panel, and the China Europe International Business School’s Africa Foundation for Governance and Leadership.

 

Widely regarded as a leading authority on doing business in Africa, ‘Powerlist’ named her as one of the UK’s 100 most influential blacks and ‘The Lawyer ‘as one of the UK’s “Hot 100 Lawyers” being “skilled in dealing with complex regulatory environments and jurisdictions”. She has been recognized by Cranfield School of Management in its 100 Women to Watch and 50 BAME Women to Watch lists and by the Legal week Class of 2021 as one of U.K.’s leading female lawyers.

 

Mary holds an LLB, Law (Hons) from Brunel University, Solicitors Final Exams from the University Law, Guildford and Distinctive Leadership in Organisational Leadership from Leadership College, London.

David Rowe

David Rowe

David Rowe spent 5 years in the British Army before leaving to work in finance. He spent 16 years at Schroders where he initially worked as a fund manager before becoming Managing Director of their UK Charities and Private Client business. After Schroders, he spent 17 years at UBS where he had responsibility for many different areas including their UK intermediary, Philanthropy, and Charities businesses. During his time at UBS, he created the UBS UK Donor-Advised Foundation, which is now the second largest DAF in the UK. Other locations in UBS (Switzerland and Singapore) have now replicated the UK philanthropy model.

 

He holds a degree in Economics from Exeter University. He is the Treasurer of SSAFA ‘the Armed Forces Charity, a trustee of the Army Sports Control Board and the Honorary Treasurers’ Forum. He is a Visiting Fellow in Charity Investments at the Bayes Business School, City University of London. He has been married for nearly 30 years and has a daughter and son. Amongst his interests are golf and gardening during the daytime and cooking and bridge in the evening.

Eileen R. Heisman

Eileen R. Heisman

Eileen R. Heisman, ACFRE, is the President and CEO of NPT. She is a nationally recognized expert on charitable and planned giving. Ms. Heisman has been interviewed about philanthropy and donor-advised funds on CNBC, PBS, NPR, CNN International and Bloomberg TV, and by nearly every national newspaper and major trade publication, including the Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Washington Post, Bloomberg, CBS MarketWatch, Financial Advisor, and Investment News. She has been named nine times by NonProfit Times as one of their Power and Influence Top 50, an annual listing of the 50 most influential executives in the philanthropic sector, most recently in 2022. She is currently listed as one of ONE HUNDRED’s top influencers in philanthropy and, earlier this year, she was the recipient of a 2019 Carnegie Mellon University Alumni Achievement Award. At the invitation of the Chinese government, Ms. Heisman spoke to their emerging nonprofit sector about American philanthropy. She was the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP)’s 2014 Outstanding Fundraising Professional, the highest award granted by AFP to recognize effective, creative and stimulating leadership, and the practice and promotion of ethical fundraising. She was also among the first fundraising professionals to earn the distinguished ACFRE certification.

 

Ms. Heisman currently teaches a graduate course in philanthropy at the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Social Policy and Practice and is also a member of the faculty at LEADERSHIP Philadelphia. She is on the Governance Committee for the Nonprofit Leadership Program at the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Social Policy and Practice. She is a periodic lecturer for the Nonprofit Board Leadership Program at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School. Ms. Heisman is both a lecturer and member of the National Advisory Board at the University of Michigan School of Social Work and serves on Carnegie Mellon University’s Dietrich College Board of Advisors (formerly College of Humanities and Social Science). She served as founding chair of Culture Works Philadelphia for seven years.

 

Ms. Heisman received a bachelor’s degree with honors in psychology from Carnegie Mellon University and a master’s in social work with a major in social program evaluation from the University of Michigan. She is a member of the third Wharton Fellows Class at the University of Pennsylvania and completed the Executive Program for Philanthropy Leaders at Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business.

Ceris Gardner

Ceris Gardner

Ceris Gardner is one of the founding partners of Maurice Turnor Gardner LLP, a boutique private client law firm established in 2009 following the demerger of Allen & Overy LLP’s highly-rated Private Client Department.  Her areas of expertise include tax, estate planning, family governance, charity law (she is well known for advising both grant-making and operational charities on matters of charity law, governance issues and tax) and immigration.  This means that Ms. Gardner is able to adopt an holistic approach when providing advice.  She has a particular interest and involvement in encouraging families to consider philanthropy and in helping them to plan their giving strategy.

 

Ms. Gardner is actively involved in the charity sector, serving as a trustee of Philanthropy Impact (a body which incorporates the European Association for Planned Giving, Philanthropy UK and the Philanthropy Advisers Forum) and Crimestoppers.

Vivien Gould

Vivien Gould

Vivien Gould is currently the Senior Independent Director of The Lindsell Train Investment Trust PLC, and a non-executive Director of Baring Emerging EMEA Opportunities plc, Schroder AsiaPacific Fund PLC and Third Point Investors Limited.

 

Ms Gould has many years’ experience of the financial services industry and the charitable sector.

 

Ms Gould started work in financial services in 1981. She was a founder Director of River & Mercantile Investment Management Limited (1985) and served as a senior executive and Deputy Managing Director with the Group until 1994. During this period, the Group developed into a boutique investment management company specialising in the management of closed-end investment companies. She then worked as an independent consultant and served on the boards of a number of investment management companies and listed investment trusts from 1994-2001. Between 2001 and 2004 she served as an executive with Gartmore Investment Management. Ms Gould then served as a non-executive director of Cooper Gay (2006-2010), one of the largest privately-owned insurance and reinsurance groups in the UK. She served as a non-executive director of Waverton Investment Management (2014-2017), a privately-owned discretionary portfolio manager for private clients, charities and institutions.

 

Ms Gould has been actively involved in the charitable sector since 2005. That year she became a Trustee of the Stroke Association and Chairman of its Investment Committee (to 2014), and a Trustee of Cobalt Health (to 2015), a medical charity specialising in the provision of diagnostic services with cutting-edge scanning technology. Ms Gould has also served as a Trustee of the John Ellerman Foundation (2011-2017), and was a member of the Investment Committee and the Finance Committee.

Richard Cassell

Richard Cassell

Richard Cassell is Of Counsel in the private client and tax group at Withers, based in London, having been a partner there for over 15 years and previously a partner at another major US law firm.

 

Mr. Cassell advises on US and international tax and trust and estate planning, with clients based in Europe and the US. He specialises in US tax strategies for individuals, international trusts and closely held business structures. Mr. Cassell devotes a significant part of his practice to cross-border philanthropy and pioneered the use of dual qualified charitable structures.

 

Mr. Cassell was educated at University College London and qualified as a solicitor before moving to the US and attending the University of Pennsylvania Law School and has practiced in Washington DC and London. He is admitted as a solicitor in England, as a member of The District of Columbia and US Tax Court Bars.

 

Mr Cassell is a trustee of several charitable trusts and a school governor and is a former trustee of Philanthropy Impact, a membership group for charities and their advisors.

Mary Boakye

Mary Boakye

Mary Boakye is a finance lawyer with over 25 years’ international capital markets and investment experience, globally and across multiple sectors. She has advised corporates, investment funds, financial institutions and governments across Africa, Europe, Asia and the United States.

 

Mary is a dual-qualified solicitor and New York Attorney with a stellar career including in leadership at leading global firms in New York, London, South Africa and Hong Kong. She worked at Allen & Overy and Dentons where she was head of the firm’s Africa Financial Markets Group. She also co-led the team that advised on Ghana’s 2007, 2013, and 2014 sovereign bond issues. Mary is the founder and CEO of Oriol Associates.

 

Mary is a board member of The Fore Trust and Dentons’ Board Diversity Committee. She has served on numerous advisory boards including the Technical Committee of the World Bank / AfDB All-Africa Conference on Law, Justice, and Development, Business Advisory Board of H.E. Kofi Annan’s Africa Progress Panel, and the China Europe International Business School’s Africa Foundation for Governance and Leadership.

 

Widely regarded as a leading authority on doing business in Africa, ‘Powerlist’ named her as one of the UK’s 100 most influential blacks and ‘The Lawyer ‘as one of the UK’s “Hot 100 Lawyers” being “skilled in dealing with complex regulatory environments and jurisdictions”. She has been recognized by Cranfield School of Management in its 100 Women to Watch and 50 BAME Women to Watch lists and by the Legal week Class of 2021 as one of U.K.’s leading female lawyers.

 

Mary holds an LLB, Law (Hons) from Brunel University, Solicitors Final Exams from the University Law, Guildford and Distinctive Leadership in Organisational Leadership from Leadership College, London.

David Rowe

David Rowe

David Rowe spent 5 years in the British Army before leaving to work in finance. He spent 16 years at Schroders where he initially worked as a fund manager before becoming Managing Director of their UK Charities and Private Client business. After Schroders, he spent 17 years at UBS where he had responsibility for many different areas including their UK intermediary, Philanthropy, and Charities businesses. During his time at UBS, he created the UBS UK Donor-Advised Foundation, which is now the second largest DAF in the UK. Other locations in UBS (Switzerland and Singapore) have now replicated the UK philanthropy model.

 

He holds a degree in Economics from Exeter University. He is the Treasurer of SSAFA ‘the Armed Forces Charity, a trustee of the Army Sports Control Board and the Honorary Treasurers’ Forum. He is a Visiting Fellow in Charity Investments at the Bayes Business School, City University of London. He has been married for nearly 30 years and has a daughter and son. Amongst his interests are golf and gardening during the daytime and cooking and bridge in the evening.

Iain Younger

Iain Younger

Iain Younger is a Partner for EY Frank Hirth. Having joined in 2000, Iain has successfully established and built the Trust and Estates service within our Private Client offering. He covers numerous areas of US and UK taxation.

 

Iain is a qualified Chartered Tax Adviser (CTA), US Enrolled Agent (EA), and a member of the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners (STEP).

 

He was listed in eprivateclient’s ‘Top 35 Under 35’ in 2013. In Spear’s 500, he was ‘Top Recommended’ from 2016–20, and was named one of the ‘Top 10 Accountants and Tax Advisers’ in 2021–22. Furthermore, he was recognised as the ‘Private Client Accountant of the year’ in Spear’s wealth management awards in 2021.

Charles Lubar

Charles Lubar

Charles (Chuck) Lubar advises clients on all aspects of international tax and estate structuring and planning for individuals and their assets at McDermott Will & Emery. He also provides corporate and individual tax planning for international investments and cross-border family business matters. Mr. Lubar served for several years with the Chief Counsel’s Office of the Internal Revenue Office in Washington, DC. He has international experience that extends wells beyond United Kingdom and continental Europe, and includes working with clients from Latin America, North America, the Middle East, Japan and the United States. He has held roles as managing partner, chairman of the International Section, vice chairman of the Tax section and senior counsel with a well-established and respected firm in London. He is now Senior Counsel with McDermott Will & Emery, resident in their London office.

Eileen R. Heisman

Eileen R. Heisman

Eileen R. Heisman, ACFRE, is the President and CEO of NPT. She is a nationally recognized expert on charitable and planned giving. Ms. Heisman has been interviewed about philanthropy and donor-advised funds on CNBC, PBS, NPR, CNN International and Bloomberg TV, and by nearly every national newspaper and major trade publication, including the Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Washington Post, Bloomberg, CBS MarketWatch, Financial Advisor, and Investment News. She has been named nine times by NonProfit Times as one of their Power and Influence Top 50, an annual listing of the 50 most influential executives in the philanthropic sector, most recently in 2022. She is currently listed as one of ONE HUNDRED’s top influencers in philanthropy and, earlier this year, she was the recipient of a 2019 Carnegie Mellon University Alumni Achievement Award. At the invitation of the Chinese government, Ms. Heisman spoke to their emerging nonprofit sector about American philanthropy. She was the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP)’s 2014 Outstanding Fundraising Professional, the highest award granted by AFP to recognize effective, creative and stimulating leadership, and the practice and promotion of ethical fundraising. She was also among the first fundraising professionals to earn the distinguished ACFRE certification.

 

Ms. Heisman currently teaches a graduate course in philanthropy at the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Social Policy and Practice and is also a member of the faculty at LEADERSHIP Philadelphia. She is on the Governance Committee for the Nonprofit Leadership Program at the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Social Policy and Practice. She is a periodic lecturer for the Nonprofit Board Leadership Program at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School. Ms. Heisman is both a lecturer and member of the National Advisory Board at the University of Michigan School of Social Work and serves on Carnegie Mellon University’s Dietrich College Board of Advisors (formerly College of Humanities and Social Science). She served as founding chair of Culture Works Philadelphia for seven years.

 

Ms. Heisman received a bachelor’s degree with honors in psychology from Carnegie Mellon University and a master’s in social work with a major in social program evaluation from the University of Michigan. She is a member of the third Wharton Fellows Class at the University of Pennsylvania and completed the Executive Program for Philanthropy Leaders at Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business.

Ceris Gardner

Ceris Gardner

Ceris Gardner is one of the founding partners of Maurice Turnor Gardner LLP, a boutique private client law firm established in 2009 following the demerger of Allen & Overy LLP’s highly-rated Private Client Department.  Her areas of expertise include tax, estate planning, family governance, charity law (she is well known for advising both grant-making and operational charities on matters of charity law, governance issues and tax) and immigration.  This means that Ms. Gardner is able to adopt an holistic approach when providing advice.  She has a particular interest and involvement in encouraging families to consider philanthropy and in helping them to plan their giving strategy. Ms. Gardner is actively involved in the charity sector, serving as a trustee of Philanthropy Impact (a body which incorporates the European Association for Planned Giving, Philanthropy UK and the Philanthropy Advisers Forum) and Crimestoppers.