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Foundation announces new Chair and members of the Board of Trustees

Manchester United Foundation has announced that Collette Roche, COO of Manchester United, has been appointed Chair of the Board of Trustees, alongside three new members of the charity board.

| by Katie Salter

Collette Roche succeeds Richard Arnold as Foundation Chair, following his 10-year tenure. Collette first joined the Foundation board in March 2019, and was officially appointed Chair in July 2023. She leads a board of ten fellow trustees, including new members Christopher Saad, Monica Shafaq and Lottie Birdsall-Strong.


The new board met at the Old Trafford stadium on 11th December, before visiting a community project at Foundation partner Dixons Brooklands Academy in Wythenshawe, to witness the work of the Foundation first-hand.


Collette said: “I’m delighted to welcome Christopher, Monica and Lottie to the Foundation board, and have enjoyed spending time with them today. Their combined experience is invaluable to the Foundation, and I look forward to putting their visions into practice in the coming months.”


Christopher, Monica and Lottie officially joined the board on 1st October 2023, and each bring a wealth of experience and expertise to the Foundation.


Christopher is the Co-Chair of the Manchester United fan advisory board, and is ranked as a leading barrister in both the Chambers UK and Legal 500 directories. His practice encompasses crime, professional disciplinary and sports law. He has held chair and panel appointments at the Lawn Tennis Association, the Football Association, England Boxing and Sport Resolutions.


Christopher said: “I simply want to contribute to this fantastic charity. The contribution the Foundation makes to the community is there for all to see; it strives to help young people live their best lives. It is the most positive way of harnessing the magic of Manchester United.”


Monica has been involved with the charity sector for 14 years and is Chief Executive at Gordon Moody, a national charity supporting people with gambling addictions.  She has a keen interest in football and holds a number of non-executive roles in the sector. She is a member of the Premier League’s Equality and Diversity Panel and also sits on the board of the Players Foundation, formerly the Professional Footballers Association charity.


Monica said: “Football has the power to influence hearts and minds, and the ability to change young people's lives for the better. Given the numerous challenges our young people face in today's society, we have a moral obligation to do what we can, making the Foundation’s mission to support children and young people more important than ever.”


A former youth player at Arsenal WFC, Lottie has played football in England and the USA.  She is driven by the power of sport for good and previously pioneered and lead Social Return on Investment at the FA. Lottie currently leads youth strategy at the England and Wales Cricket Board and has served as Board Nominated Councillor at the Lawn Tennis Association.


Lottie said: “I strongly believe that no one should miss out on the opportunities football can provide. Personally, I owe so much to football and the opportunities the game gave me. Using football to support girls’ development - both on and off the pitch - is very close to my heart.”


The Manchester United Foundation board is responsible for governance of the club’s associated charity; you can see the full list of trustees here.