Valued Chairman of Colchester Institute Foundation Trust is celebrated as he steps down after 32 years voluntary service at Colchester Institute

A much valued and very longstanding champion of Colchester Institute, Ken Leeson has chaired his last meeting as Chairman of Colchester Institute Foundation Trust (CIFT).

The Colchester Institute Foundation Trust, formally known as The Friends and Associates of Colchester Institute Trust, was initiated by Ken in 1996, at which time he was also Chair of the College’s Corporation Board. The Trust was established to benefit students of the College, either through direct grants to individual students in financial hardship, or through grants to help support student groups.

Ken has offered his expertise, on an entirely voluntary basis, to Colchester Institute for a staggering 32 years, first starting his journey as a College Governor in 1986. Here he was appointed as a representative of Professions, Employers and Employees. He became Chairman of the Corporation Board in 1989, a post he held until 2003.

On his recent retirement as Chair of CIFT, Ken Leeson, Chairman of Colchester Institute Corporation Board, commented: “I have thoroughly enjoyed my time with CIFT. It is interesting to note that over the years, the job that has given me most satisfaction is the one that paid the least!

Most of what I have done has only been possible with the backing and help of the College’s very supportive leadership. The fact that CIFT is able to continue our work helping students is also thanks to the people on the committee who are willing to give their time, including the new Chairman, Peter Beadles.

I think the College has gone from strength to strength over the years and I shall continue to watch its progress with interest.”

In presenting Ken with a token of the College’s huge appreciation for his exceptional support, Principal and Chief Executive, Alison Andreas said, ‘There are few people who have voluntarily given so much to the College over so many years and we are enormously grateful for Ken’s friendship, commitment and experience, first as a governor, then as Chair of the Corporation Board and for the last fifteen years as Chair of CIFT. We know that we are not the only beneficiaries of Ken’s loyalty and hard work; he has supported a number of the town’s good causes, including still raising funds for the Rotary Charities.’

Members of Colchester Institute Foundation Trust (CIFT)

Left to right: Irene Kettle, Cllr John Baugh, Alison Andreas, Cllr Theresa Higgins, Ken Leeson, Peter Beadles (New Chairman of CIFT), Maeve Borges, Hazel Paton and Maureen Cosgrave