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New Chair Appointed to Board of Trustees

MND Scotland has appointed a new Chair of our Board of Trustees, as Lawrence Cowan steps down after four years.

New Chair Appointed to Board of Trustees

Posted : 30/11/2020

Today we’re saying goodbye to Lawrence Cowan (left), as he steps down as Chair of our Board of Trustees, and welcome Adrian Murphy (right) as our new Chair.

Lawrence joined our Board of Trustees, alongside best friend and MND campaigner Gordon Aikman in 2015, after Gordon was diagnosed with MND in 2014.

Together Gordon and Lawrence founded Gordon's Fightback, a campaign to lobby for better care for people with the illness and to raise funds towards finding a cure for MND.

The campaign achieved extraordinary success, including doubling the number of MND specialist nurses in Scotland and ensuring these roles are paid for by the public purse, as well as raising £640,000 for MND Scotland to invest in vital research.

Lawrence’s commitment to improving the lives of people affected by MND and driving the search for cure, saw him appointed as Chair of MND Scotland’s Board of Trustees in 2016.

During his time as Chair, MND Scotland has funded the first clinical drug trial to come to Scotland in 20 years, and have made our largest investment ever into MND research, funding the pioneering drug trial MND-SMART.

Lawrence said, “This has been a very difficult and emotional decision to take. When my best friend Gordon was diagnosed with MND it was devastating. Everyone in the MND community picked me up at one of the lowest points in my life. To each and every one of you I will be eternally thankful. You helped me grieve and to turn that grief into good.

“It has been a privilege to lead MND Scotland in achieving historic milestones in the fightback against the disease. People with MND in Scotland now have world-leading levels of access to MND nurses and almost everyone with the disease now has access to a drug trial in Scotland. Six years ago progress like this was a dream. Now, because of our determination to fight back, it is a reality.

“If there’s one thing that witnessing the devastation of MND has taught me is that life is fragile, unpredictable and every moment matters. I need to take some time out to make the most of the moments with my young family.

“I wish Adrian well as new Chair and look forward to playing a role in the future of this great charity and community – albeit in a different capacity.”

We want to thank Lawrence for his hard work, inspirational leadership and commitment to the fight back against MND over the years, and wish him all the best for the future. As we say goodbye to one member of the team, we also welcome Adrian Murphy as our new Chair.

One of the newest members of our Board, Adrian brings to the role invaluable knowledge and skills, with particular experience in cash flow analysis, due diligence, investment research, risk management, and long-term planning.

The CEO of Murphy Wealth, a multi award-winning financial planning business based in the centre of Glasgow, is also bringing his own personal experience of MND as his brother, Brian, was diagnosed with the disease in 2018.

Adrian said, “It's an honour and a privilege to follow Lawrence as Chair of MND Scotland. I plan to build on the fantastic work that has been done over the last few years and work with the Board and the rest of the team to make a difference in peoples' lives today, while we continue the search for a cure for this terrible disease.

"I am lucky to have the full support of my family and my senior team at Murphy Wealth, to devote time and energy to the mission of MND Scotland, and plan on speaking to all of our key stakeholders to progress our key objectives of care and a cure."

 

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“I plan to build on the fantastic work that has been done over the last few years and work with the Board and the rest of the team to make a difference in peoples' lives today, while we continue the search for a cure for this terrible disease.”

Adrian Murphy | Chair of Board of Trustees

Adrian Murphy | Chair of Board of Trustees