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The International School of Aberdeen Board of Trustees has fourteen attendees. There are four appointed members, four elected members, five guest members, and one ex-officio member.

Appointed Members

Companies are sorted by the number of students that they support at ISA. The top five companies appoint three of the appointed Board Members. The top five companies as of 1 October 2018 are: Schlumberger UK; BP; Total E&P UK; Shell UK; and ENI UK and Repsol Sinopec Resources tying for fifth position. The current Members appointed by the top five companies are Joseph Farrell, Patrick de Plaa, and Christopher Sawyer.

The second five companies appoint one of the appointed Board Members. The second five companies are: Chevron North Sea; Equinor UK Limited; and Apache North Sea, Halliburton, and VMOG UK tying at ninth place. This position is currently held by Michael Thompson.

Appointed members are expected to serve as a Board Member for two years. The terms are staggered to ensure continuity amongst the Board Members.

Joseph Farrell (ConocoPhillips)
Patrick de Plaa (Shell)
Chris Sawyer (BP)
Michael Thompson (Chevron)

Elected Members

Three members are elected from nominations at the Annual General Meeting held in November of each year. The term for each elected member is two years and the terms are staggered for Board continuity. The current elected Board Members are Karen Boesen and Manuel Guedez. At this time, there is one vacant elected position.

One Board Member is elected by the Executive Board (appointed and elected members) to serve for one year. This position is from the local Aberdeen community. The purpose of the position is to give stability to the Board and to give local insights into the community. This position is currently held by Brenda Holohan.

Karen Boesen
Manuel Guedez Elected
Brenda Holohan Elected

Guest Members

Guest Board Members were added to the Board in order to give greater transparency to the Board’s activities and to gain a broader insight about the School. The guest members are the current holders of the following positions: Middle School/High School Principal (Angus Carmichael), Elementary School Principal (Don Newbury), Finance Manager (Lesley Blackstock), elected Staff Representative (Josie Crimp), and PTO President (tbc).

Ex-Officio Member

There is one ex-officio Board Member. The ISA Head of School (Nicholas Little) holds this Board membership.

Officers of the Board

The officers of the Board are elected by the Executive Board from the appointed members. Current officers are:

  • Chair - Joseph Farrell
  • Vice-Chair – Patrick de Plaa
  • Secretary – Christopher Sawyer
  • Treasurer – Michael Thompson

Board Committees and Leads

The Board currently has five standing committees as follows:

  • Communication/Marketing – Manuel Guedez
  • Finance – Michael Thompson
  • HSSE – Manuel Guedez
  • Policy – Christopher Sawyer
  • Strategy – Brenda Holohan

Board Contact Email Address


Accredited by

International Baccalaureate Council of International Schools Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools Cambridge International Examinations CNED