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BoardAble Programme

The BoardAble Programme: Collaborative role model reinforcement

The BoardAble Programme has been created to enable participants to step-up to Public Appointments, NED roles and Senior Board positions.

BoardAble Patron is Sarah Anderson CBE


The need to address the imbalance at the highest levels of public life and on boards has been clearly identified. The benefits of diversity and widening participation at all levels within an organization are well established. For anyone considering such a role the best way of discovering exactly what is involved is to gain real life experience from others who are already there.

Inspiring leaders who have been BoardAble ‘Shadow Principals’ include Sarah Anderson CBE; Dame Kate Barker CBE; Tracey Bleakley; Natalie Campbell, Dame Teresa Graham; Claire Ighodaro CBE; Kate Nash OBE; Sandi Rhys Jones OBE and Anne Watts CBE. We are hugely thankful to these amazing women for sharing their valuable time and expertise.

BoardAble Participants

BoardAble is designed for senior people of all backgrounds and career sectors interested in finding out exactly what is involved in taking on a Ministerial Public Appointment and/or moving up to a Board or NED role.

The programme has been devised specifically and particularly to tackle the issues which have been and still are preventing women and people from diverse backgrounds reaching the top. The shadowing experience is supported by professional workshops and other key activities. There is a selective recruitment process aligned with that of applying for a board level or public appointment, with professional feedback at every stage.

Peer Group Support

An added benefit of the programme are the close alliances formed, both within each cohort and with other BoardAble alumni. Establishing a strong and confidential peer group of other senior leaders who act as a sounding board to share experiences, support each other and celebrate progress.

Next Steps

The programme runs each spring and autumn, plus there are BoardAble Seminars at least twice each year. The next open seminar on NED and Ministerial Public Appointments is a virtual roundtable. This will take place on Tuesday 26 January 2021 and all are welcome. However to ensure the seminar is fully collaborative, space is limited, so to hold your place please email .

Virtual Seminars are followed by ‘Tea & Talk’ informal conversation & networking hosted by a BoardAble Alumna.

Westminster Seminars are followed by ‘Aperitivo’ informal drinks & networking hosted by Pink Shoe founder Helene Martin Gee.

Both live and virtual events are interactive sessions at which you have the opportunity to meet other senior leaders and gain top tips and insights.

Sessions are held in collaboration with Patron Sarah Anderson CBE and other leading public appointees and NEDs. Along  with an overview on Ministerial Public Appointments and current opportunities you’ll get practical information on working at board level plus details of the application process from Vanda Green and the Pink Shoe leadership team. The programme thus helps fulfil the aim of achieving greater participation for women and under-represented groups in public life and at board level.

Applications for the BoardAble Spring 2021 programme are open.

Subject to circumstances, the next programme, Spring 2021, will take place on Thursday 25th March 2021 and Thursday 13th May 2021 from 1pm-5.30pm followed by optional (but recommended) networking and refreshments until 7.00pm.  The closing date for applications is 12 noon on Monday 1st February 2021.

To find out more about BoardAble and what’s involved, please contact Programme Director Vanda Green for an information pack – email

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