As part of our interview series for our Trustee Network, Taylor Root Partner, Sarah Ingwersen recently spoke to Aurea Garrido about her time as a Trustee for Theatre Peckham. Aurea is VP Associate General Counsel, Warner Bros Discovery, News and Sports division.
What does your Trustee organisation do?
Theatre Peckham is a learning theatre that champions artistic excellence and social change for young people and a hyper-local community. Theatre Peckham is building a representative and inclusive world where everyone can participate in, lead, work in, and enjoy creativity and culture. Side-by-side with performances on stage, the Theatre provides a voice, platform, and opportunities for young people from underrepresented backgrounds to realise their potential. The Theatre is a safe space within which local young people aged 3-25 can reflect on, and creatively communicate lived experiences, enjoy performing arts and mentorship opportunities, following supported pathways leading to tangible employment/education opportunities within the creative industries.
Why were you interested in becoming a Trustee?
When I decided to apply for the position of Trustee, I was already closely connected to Theatre Peckham and had personally witnessed the transformative impact of this charity. Becoming a Trustee had always been something I wanted to do at some stage, but it took a leap of faith to pursue this opportunity. It has exceeded all my expectations, although I must admit that the initial learning curve was quite steep.
Briefly describe your role as a Trustee and what involvement you have in your organisation?
As a Trustee, my role comprises active participation in all aspects of governance within the Theatre. This includes providing support to the Theatre’s Artistic Director and CEO in their mission to guide and shape the organisation’s artistic and operational endeavours.
Given my legal background, my contributions are often directed toward matters where legal expertise is needed. This can include reviewing contracts, ensuring compliance with legal regulations, and offering guidance on various legal aspects of the organization’s operations. However, it’s important to note that as a member of the board, my responsibilities extend beyond my legal expertise. While I bring legal skills to the table, I am also an integral part of the board, working together with my colleagues to ensure that Theatre Peckham continues to thrive and fulfil its mission of enriching our community through the arts.
All trustees actively engage in discussions and decision-making processes related to the organisation’s strategic direction, financial stability, and long-term sustainability, collaborating with fellow trustees, sharing insights, and collectively steering the organisation toward its goals.
What are the benefits to a General Counsel being a Trustee?
The role of a General Counsel aligns remarkably well with that of a Trustee within a charitable organisation. Both positions entail a broad spectrum of responsibilities across the entire organisational landscape. A General Counsel, equipped with legal expertise, possesses a skill set that is highly transferable across various industries and sectors, making them a natural fit for trusteeship.
Yet, what often goes unspoken is the tremendous personal and professional fulfilment that comes from serving as a Trustee. It’s an opportunity to be part of something truly exceptional, an endeavour with the potential to transform lives.
One of the coolest things about being a Trustee is that you get to dive headfirst into a cause you’re passionate about. For me, it’s all about the performing arts – something I’ve always loved and that it is not part of my day job. It’s this fantastic opportunity where I can blend my legal skills with my creative side, and it feels like a great match.
Being a Trustee has been eye-opening in the best way. I get to see first-hand how our organisation, through the performing arts, brightens up the community, changes lives and sprinkles a little magic into people’s days.
And let’s not forget about the connections you make. As a Trustee, you’re in this network of incredible people who share your drive to make a difference.
In summary, the benefits of a General Counsel serving as a Trustee extend far beyond the professional realm. It’s a role that offers personal growth, fulfilling connections, and the opportunity to be part of something extraordinary. For those who are passionate about a particular cause or mission, like me with performing arts, trusteeship is truly a dream come true.
If you are interested in a Trustee role or are looking to hire a Trustee position, please get in touch with Sarah Ingwersen to find out more.
We want to reiterate that this is not a paid service and forms part of our referral programme, so please do not hesitate to get in touch.