The Edwin Morgan Trust has been working to consider our place in the Scottish Literary sector and we are excited to announce an open call for new board members.

BACKGROUND

The Edwin Morgan Trust was established in 2012 to carry out the wishes of poet Edwin Morgan as outlined in his will. Morgan died on August 17, 2010. He left a gift of one million pounds to establish a Trust, which would administer an annual award for promising Scottish poets under 30. 

The Edwin Morgan Trust (EMT) has run the Edwin Morgan Poetry Award biennially, with a £20,000 cash prize given to a Scottish poet under 30 in 2014, 2016, 2018 and 2020.  EMT has also run a series of Translation Workshops, with poets from Slovakia (2015), Portugal (2017) and Hungary (2019) visiting Scotland and sharing their work with Scottish poets. In addition to these two major programmes, the EMT has supported partnerships with a range of Scottish and international organisations, along with providing grants for Scottish poets to travel abroad.

From April 2020 to March 2021 the Edwin Morgan Trust celebrated The Edwin Morgan Centenary. During this time, EMT activities shifted in a new direction to accommodate a changed global environment. Programmes included Hold Hands Among the Atoms, a suite of videos that expanded on Edwin Morgan’s life and work, and The Second Life, a commission programme for new creative responses to Edwin Morgan. The success of these initiatives and our partner programmes has encouraged EMT to develop our offering to the Scottish literary sector.  

The Edwin Morgan Trust has spent the past eight months re-visiting our missions, values, aims and visions for our future programmes (EMPA and The Second Life Awards). We are looking for new board members to bring their experience, skills and enthusiasm/ passion to the EMT to work on delivering this exciting new chapter. 

While this role is unpaid, we have a budget to accommodate support such as training, travel, accommodation, care duties and accessibility for people who may experience barriers that may otherwise limit their ability to join the board of Trustees. 

DESCRIPTION

What

We are seeking new members to join the Edwin Morgan Trust as Trustees. 

Specific roles might include Vice Chair, Secretary and Treasurer, but we are looking more broadly for people with suitable skills and vision who can contribute to the new EMT. 

The Edwin Morgan Trust is a Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation regulated by the Scottish Charity Regulator (SC043142). This means that Trustees are responsible for governing the Edwin Morgan Trust in alignment with our constitution and in line with the guidance and good practice outlined by OSCR. 

Trustees meet 4 times per year (remote and in-person possible), and are in touch regularly to discuss projects and lend their expertise to planning and development. Meetings plus interim decision-making and consultation may add up to an average of one day/month. The service term for Trustees is 3 years, with the potential to continue for a further 3-year term, with a limit of 6 years’ service, either continuous or in total. 

We particularly encourage applications from people from backgrounds and lived experiences that are currently under-represented in the EMT. This could include people who experience racism, those who are disabled and/or neurodivergent, people who are trans, non-binary and/or queer, and people from working class/lower socio-economic backgrounds as well as those who experience other under-represented and oppressed identities. We would also like to hear from people who live and work outside Scotland’s Central Belt areas. We consider life experience to be a skill for this role, and will review applications with this in mind. 

Please get in touch at contact@edwinmorgantrust.com if we can help you to make this role or the process of applying for this role more accessible for you.

Who

We would like Trustees to share the values of the Edwin Morgan Trust and have some of the skills/ experience/ passions listed below. There is not an expectation of previous experience on a board and we actively encourage and seek to support people who have not had the opportunity to join a board previously. EMT has funding available to support training for new Trustees. 

  • Knowledge of the Scottish poetry scene and connections in the literary/creative sector at large. 
    • A passion to promote, support and amplify Scottish poetry nationally and internationally. 
    • A network of creatives and organisations and a strategic approach to seeking out collaboration. 
    • A knowledge of ‘gaps’ in the current format and a desire to support change. 
  • Creative and cultural learning, mentorship and development.  
    • A proven dedication to lifting up voices and supporting creatives to achieve their potential. 
    • Investment in community and an understanding of the ways in which the Trust can provide value in forms beyond financial support. 
    • Cultural development and a knowledge of the cultural sector. 
  • Identifies as someone currently under-represented in the EMT, with a commitment to equal opportunities and inclusion.
    • A proven dedication to seeking out and amplifying under-represented voices.
    • A direct understanding of barriers of entry/ access to guide the Trust in ensuring that decisions are made with an awareness of experiences outside their own. 
  • Financial management and/or legal knowledge, specifically in the context of a not-for-profit organisation. 
    • Forward thinking, proactive knowledge of sound and ethical financial investment and charity governance.
    • Ability to guide the Trust in ensuring that projects are financially viable and sustainable. 
    • Ability to guide the Trust in legal matters, HR and fair work policies. 
  • Fundraising, networking, strategic planning and advocacy.
    • The ability to look critically and creatively at Edwin Morgan Trust activities and think ‘outside the box’ about impact, sustainability and the future.
    • Potential to identify opportunities for growth and development and lead the Trust in securing meaningful partnerships. 

As a Trustee of the Edwin Morgan Trust you will 

  • Believe in the vision and aims of the Trust.
  • Advocate for the Edwin Morgan Trust, amplify our projects and seek out opportunities to increase impact.
  • Be a strategic thinker and willing to use your experience to work towards a more equal and inclusive Scottish poetry community. 
  • Be a team player, listen and be willing to learn and respond as needed.
  • Be committed to the development and support of the Scottish poetry scene and the creative sector in general.
  • Actively commit to anti-racist, anti-ableist, anti-homophobic, anti-transphobic and anti-misogynistic approaches. 
  • Enjoy Edwin Morgan’s poetry!

A person will not be eligible for election or appointment to the Board if they are:
– disqualified from being a charity trustee under the Charities and Trustee Investment (Scotland) Act 2005;
– an employee of the organisation;
– unwilling to endorse the Trust’s practice and policy on equal opportunities, diversity and inclusion.

How

Trustees work with an advisory group and temporary freelance staff to ensure that the overall direction of The Edwin Morgan Trust aligns with the constitution and mission, and is administered effectively through strong governance, risk management and clear strategic planning.

  • Work with fellow Trustees to ensure that The Edwin Morgan Trust is dynamic and responsive to changed environments and new opportunities.
  • Attend a minimum of three out of four board meetings per year and be responsive to communication and engagement between meetings.
  • Ensure that The Edwin Morgan Trust complies with relevant guidance, legislation and agreements. 
  • Use your experience, connections and knowledge to build and further the Edwin Morgan Trust’s missions and development. 
  • Represent the Trust and adhere to the Trust’s constitution and code of conduct, including the confidentiality, social media and investment policies. 

KEY INFORMATION

  • Callout deadline February 11, *Deadline extended to midnight, February 14, 2022.
  • Interviews will be held in February 2022, with a panel chaired by the current Chair of the EMT David Kinloch. 
  • Time commitment, 3 years, approximately 1 day per month (including attendance at a minimum of three meetings). 
  • The role is unpaid, but financial assistance is possible to help reduce barriers for folk who would otherwise be unable to consider a Trustee position. Further reasonable expenses incurred in connection with your duties as a Trustee will to be reimbursed. 
  • We would like the board of Trustees to represent a range of lived experience and perspectives.  Training is available for new trustees without board experience.
  • New Trustees will be welcomed to the Edwin Morgan Trust in March 2022. 
  • Please contact Siân McIntyre at contact@edwinmorgantrust.com with any questions or accessibility requests.


APPLY

Please use the online form here, answering the questions and attaching your current CV. 

We have included questions to assist in actively seeking out new voices to represent The Edwin Morgan Trust in line with our person specification listed above. These responses are optional, but they will be taken into consideration as criteria for proactive inclusion. 

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