Board Members

Board members offer their time and expertise on a pro-bono basis.

Graham Burnside
Consultant, Shepherd & Wedderburn LLP 

Graham is a recognised expert in banking and finance law, specialising in particular in structured finance and capital markets, along with debt trading and financial product documentation. He pioneered the legal development of Islamic finance within Scotland on which he is now considered the country’s leading expert, having structured and documented the first (and so far only) Islamic mortgage products operating under Scots law and the first fully Sharia-compliant commercial real estate financing in Scotland. He is a member of the Advisory Board of the Islamic Finance Council UK. The latest edition of Chambers & Partners Guide to the legal profession conferred on Graham the accolade of “Senior Statesman” in banking and finance law in Scotland, the only lawyer so recognised.

Julian Parrott
Partner, Ethical Futures

Julian has over 20 years advisory experience in financial services offering advice on product areas such as mortgages, personal protection, pensions and investments. Julian specialises in developing ethical and social investment strategies that help clients plan their finances in a way that reflects their personal values and gives them choices in how they live.

Omar Shaikh
Advisory Board Member, Islamic Finance Council

Omar is a Chartered Accountant by profession and specialises in Islamic finance and private equity. He leads the UKIFC’s activities in the arena of government policy advisory and ethical finance. He has advised multiple governments on their capital markets, banking, pension and takaful regulation. Omar’s background includes working with Ernst & Young UK as the firms Subject Matter Expert for Islamic finance. Omar has been actively involved in the UK Government’s development of Islamic finance through CityUK, UKTI and HM Treasury Committees. He has lectured at multiple global conferences and universities and is involved in development initiatives relating to Waqf, shariah governance and Islamic microfinance.

John Watt
Senior Partner, Annequin Associates

John is an experienced infrastructure and public sector advisor with a strong financial and commercial skill set. John works on a number of public and private sector projects either as a contractor to Deloitte or on his own account. He is a consultant to Local Partnerships and Methods Consulting. John is a board member of Our Power Community Benefit Society and Zero Waste Scotland and currently sits on the Capital and Finance Committee of Social Investment Scotland. Social Investment Scotland is a charity and social enterprise that provides loans to other charities, social enterprises and community groups across Scotland.


Activities are assigned to a part-time project manager.

Chris Tait
Project Manager

Chris is an experienced Chartered Institute of Marketing and PRINCE 2 qualified marketing, business development and project manager. Specialising in B2B marketing Chris has occupied roles, across the UK, within the construction, facilities management, education, professional and financial services sectors. During his time at a Scottish law firm Chris developed an interest and expertise in ethical finance and he has since helped to grow the Ethical Finance Round Table series into winners of the prestigious EFICA Awards.

Fran van Dijk

Fran is an experienced sustainability strategy and communications expert adept at supporting companies to become more effective sustainability leaders and to manage risk and opportunity to build lasting value. With a deep knowledge of the UN Sustainable Development Goals Fran operates at C-suite and senior level, asking the right questions, guiding priority-setting and helping to turn ambition into reality. Fran is a Board Member of the Scottish Environment Protection Agency and is as an advisor to a new SDG-based fund run by Montanaro Asset Management. Fran holds an MA in Archaeology and Anthropology from the University of Cambridge and an MA in Environmental Management from the European Association for Environmental Management Education.