Trustee – Royal College of Obstetricians & Gynaecologists

The British (now Royal) College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (the College) was founded in 1929 and received its Royal Charter in 1947. As a charity, the College’s purpose is to advance the science and practice of women’s health. As a membership association, its 16,000 Fellows and Members work in over 100 countries worldwide and contribute to the work of the College in a wide variety of ways. The current RCOG Council comprises elected representatives, representing constituencies both within and outside the British Isles.

The College has recently moved to newly refurbished offices on Union Street near London Bridge, where it has extensive meeting and teaching facilities, as well as offices for its 210 staff. Tenants include The Faculty of Sexual and Reproductive Healthcare (FSRH) and The Royal College of Midwives (RCM). There is also a commercial partnership in place with Graysons Hospitality Ltd.

At the heart of the College is its founding purpose, which is the pursuit of excellence in women’s health care. The core purposes are to set standards in the specialty of obstetrics and gynaecology and to provide and ensure delivery of a post-graduate medical curriculum to specialist trainees to achieve these standards. Membership of the College is by a three-part examination currently held in 20 centres internationally and the award of the prestigious Member of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (MRCOG) is one of the most prized badges of specialist achievement in obstetrics and gynaecology anywhere in the world.

Courses are increasingly provided on-line through the College’s e-learning platform, StratOG. To support specialists in obstetrics and gynaecology (O&G), the College also provides courses and hosts numerous conferences, seminars and study days in continuing professional development, which continues to be an area of increasing importance following the introduction of revalidation for all doctors.

  • The Role
    The Board of Trustees is responsible for the financial, business and legal aspects of the College as a charitable business; while the Council of elected O&G specialists remains responsible for the clinical, ethical, research and scientific matters of the College.

    As an RCOG Trustee you would be responsible for ensuring that the College complies with its governing documents, charity law, company law, HMRC regulations, accounting standards, employment law, and any other relevant legislation and/or regulations. You will also be responsible for approving budgets, audited accounts, the management of restricted and designated funds, and for approving, in consultation with the Council, the strategic and operational plans of the College. Trustees also have responsibility for matters of employment, investments & reserves, estate, commercial business and legal transactions.

    When the Board was constituted in 2013, the Trustees were given final responsibility for the legal and business operations of RCOG. The Board gives authority to the Chief Executive and the executive team to manage the day to day affairs of the College.
  • Main Duties
    The statutory duties of a Trustee are:

    • To ensure that the College pursues its objects as defined in its governing document;
    • To ensure that the College uses its resources exclusively in pursuance of these objects and that funds and other resources are not used on activities outside of these objects, no matter how worthwhile or charitable these activities may be;
    • To actively contribute to the board of Trustees’ role in giving firm strategic direction to the College; setting policy, defining goals and targets and evaluating performance against these;
    • To safeguard the good name and values of the College;
    • To ensure the effective and efficient administration and management of the College;
    • To ensure the College is financially stable;
    • To protect and manage the property of the College;
    • To ensure the proper investment of College Funds;
    • To appoint and dismiss the Chief Executive and hold the CEO and senior staff to account;
    • To be involved in the appointment of senior staff as and when required.
  • Additional Duties, Key Working Relationships and Term of Office

    In addition to the above statutory duties, each Trustee should use any specific skills, knowledge and experience they have to help the Board of Trustees reach sound and considered decisions. These are likely to include the following:

    • Scrutinising board papers;
    • Leading or facilitating discussions;
    • Focusing on key issues for the College;
    • Providing guidance and opinion on new initiatives;
    • Chairing and participating in sub-committees, working parties, scrutiny panels and other committees as required;
    • Becoming well informed about health care and women’s health and the context in which the professional and clinical matters of the College are debated;
    • Showing an active and current interest in all aspects of the College;
    • Bringing particular expertise to the work of the College, e.g. aspects of women’s health; business; marketing; communications; financial; legal; or HR expertise;
    • Strategic planning to forward the College’s business development.

    For this particular appointment, the trustee who is appointed will join the Audit & Risk Committee of the Board and be appointed as a Director of the RCOG trading subsidiary RCOG Trading.

    Key Working Relationships

    • Chair;
    • Trustees;
    • President;
    • Officers;
    • Chief Executive;
    • Members of Council;
    • Executive Directors;
    • Senior Management Group.

    In addition, trustees will be expected, from time to time, to interact with organisations and individuals, from charities, women’s health organisations, and other medical colleges.

    Term of Office 

    In line with College Regulations, the term of office for this role is four years from the date of election or appointment, at the end of which they shall retire, but shall be eligible for re-election or re-appointment to the same office for one further term of four years.

  • Person Specification


    • Experience of board or committee membership in a charitable, public sector or commercial organisation;
    • Understanding and acceptance of the legal duties, responsibilities and liabilities of trusteeship and an understanding of the respective roles of the Chair, Trustees and Chief Executive;
    • Ability to work effectively as a member of a diverse team whilst maintaining an independent perspective;
    • Experience of guiding and directing an organisation through strategic and structural growth during a period of significant external pressures and change;
    • An understanding of and commitment to the values of accountability, probity and openness;
    • An understanding and commitment to inclusion, diversity and the application of equal opportunities working in practice; 
    • Commitment to sustainability;
    • Confident and effective communication skills;
    • A track record of being able to process details quickly and get to the heart of an issue;
    • Financial expertise, with a recognised accounting qualification.


    • Cross-functional expertise, including digital, change management and transformation;
    • A proven track record of achievement within a related business environment;
    • Demonstrable knowledge of the healthcare sector;
    • An understanding of the issues of global health and working overseas. 
  • Application Process

    Please submit the following:

    • A copy of your CV;
    • A covering letter (maximum two pages) explaining why this appointment interests you and how you meet the essential skills detailed in the person specification;
    • Equalities Monitoring Form (downloadable below).

    Documentation can either be submitted via the Apply Now button at the top of this page, or by email to Paige Torrance, Talent Manager, The Whitehall & Industry Group (WIG) via [email protected]

    If you have any questions about this opportunity, or would value a confidential discussion, please contact Paige Torrance, Talent Manager, via [email protected] or on 0207 222 1166.

    The deadline for applications is Midday, Tuesday 26 May 2020

    After the closing date, the appointment panel shall compile a shortlist, assessing candidates’ suitability for the role based on evidence provided in the CV and covering letter. 

    Final panel interviews will w/c Monday 15 or 22 June 2020. These are likely to be conducted virtually. 

    The appointment (subject to references) will commence in July 2020. 

    Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists WIG Recruitment Pack May 2020.pdf


    WIG Equalities Monitoring Form.docx