About the Scottish Teachers’ Pension Board

Pension boards for the schemes administered by SPPA were established in 2015. We have four Pension Boards covering our Police, Firefighters, NHS and Teachers Schemes.

The boards have equal number of employer representatives and member representatives and are each led by an Independent Chair and Independent Vice-Chair.

Pension Boards are responsible for assisting the Scheme Manager with the governance and administration of the Scheme. This includes ensuring compliance with the Scheme regulations, and any other relevant legislation and requirements as set out by The Pensions Regulator (TPR) in relation to the Scheme.

Every individual who is a member of the Pension Board must be conversant with the rules of the Schemes; in other words the Regulations and other legislation governing the Schemes; and have knowledge and understanding of the law relating to pensions. The Pension Boards meet four times a year.

Scottish Teachers’ Pension Board Members

Mark Cook, Independent Chair

Raised in the North East of Scotland Mark is a Biochemistry graduate of Aberdeen University with postgraduate MBA from Edinburgh Business School and has spent 30 years in roles within the life science sector including biologicals/pharmaceuticals, medical technology and consultancy. Currently he is Chair of Life Sciences Scotland and also Chair of The Association Of British Healthtech Industries Scotland both of which are dedicated to improving the health and wealth of Scotland through innovation in life sciences. In addition, Mark has published on healthcare resource utilisation in areas such as diabetes, hypertension and heart failure.

Mark is taking on the independent Chairmanship of the Teachers Pension Board after 4 years as Vice Chair of the NHS Pension Board at the SPPA. Historically Mark was also the Chair of a defined benefit pension scheme in the private sector. The role as Chair of Life Sciences Scotland Industrial Leadership Group has brought a sharp focus on the need for a highly skilled workforce and the critical value of the STEM in education across the school, college and University sectors in Scotland.

Married with 3 adult children in his spare time Mark enjoys mountain biking, archery & travel.

Richard Giles, Independent Vice Chair

Richard has 30+ years working in the pension industry. He has fulfilled a number of roles including as Scheme Actuary with Mercer, a Partner at PwC and most recently as the Head of the Teachers’ Pension Scheme (England and Wales). In his role as Head of the Teachers’ Pension Scheme Richard was responsible for the relationships with Department for Education and the TPS Pension Board and led a team of 330 people.

In addition to his role with SPPA, Richard has two Board roles on an “extra-curricular” basis; he is a trustee of the Board of Bradford Diocesan Academy Trust, a Multi-Academy Trust that manages 17 schools; and he is Chairman of Ilkley Town AFC, a volunteer-run sports club.

Richard lives in Ilkley, West Yorkshire with his wife. He has two grown up children.

Maureen Kennedy, member representative


John Crichton, member representative

John Crichton is a Professional Officer with the Scottish Secondary Teachers' Association (SSTA). He is an SSTA representative on the Scottish Negotiating Committee for Teachers (SNCT) Pay and Conditions of Service Technical Sub Group and the Management Advisory Group for STSS. He’s also a member of the Ill Health Retirement Review Sub-group.

John has an honours degree in Economics and has 28 years’ teaching experience in Business Studies/Accounting as well as four years of service on the SSTA Finance Committee and more than nine years’ experience as a full-time trade union official dealing with STSS members. John has a strong interest in the operation of the STSS and pensions.

David McGinty, member representative

David was a Trustee of the EIS Superannuation Scheme for Officers, Officials and Staff from 2004 to 2016. During that time, he worked with, and received training from, two firms of actuaries: Mercers and First Actuarial. From 2008, David was Convenor of Trustees and chaired all the meetings.

Drew Morrice, member representative

Drew was assistant secretary of the Educational Institute of Scotland from October 2003 until February 2017. During that period he had responsibility for pension matters. He has been a member of the Teachers' Superannuation Working Party, SPPA Management Advisory Group Scotland (MAGS), The Scottish Teachers' Pension Scheme Negotiations and the STPA Advisory Board.

Leah Stalker, member representative

Leah has been employed by the Educational Institute of Scotland in her current role for nearly five years, advising and representing teachers and lecturers on employment matters including pension enquiries.

Sharon McKenzie, employer representative

Sharon McKenzie is Head of Human Resources at Fife Council. She has worked in the public sector for more than 30 years and in senior roles for around 20 years. She has always had an interest in the policy side of pension regulations covering both the LGPS and Teachers. As a consequence, she has a good working knowledge of current and developing regulations.

Sharon has a lead role within Fife Council in the development of pension policy which requires the ability to translate complex regulatory frameworks into clear and simple statements of policy and good practice.

Peter Smith, employer representative

Peter Smith is Vice Principal, Finance and Resources, at North East Scotland College. He was nominated to the Board by Colleges Scotland to represent the college sector employers. As a member of the College's senior management team, he has responsibility for the finance, estates and ICT as well as strategic and operational risk management, legal matters and issues related to governance and compliance.

He has a wide appreciation of the issues facing individual colleges and scheme members as well as those affecting the whole sector. He has been a member of the Steering Group for the College Finance Development Network since 2007 and chaired the group from 2011 - 2014. He was a lay member of the Pensions and Trusts sub-committee of City of Edinburgh Council from 2006 - 2007 and represented Borders College as a scheduled body of the Scottish Borders Council LGPS from 2007 prior to membership of the Scottish Borders LGPS Pension Board from April 2015 to September 2018.

Peter is a Trustee of both the Environmental Association of Universities and Colleges and Advanced Procurement for Universities and Colleges and has experience of the duties in applying independence to matters concerning the governance of those bodies. Peter also acts as Company Secretary for Aberdeen Skills and Enterprise Training Limited.

Louise Wright, employer representative

Louise has worked in local government in Scotland for over 25 years, firstly as a practitioner in housing and urban regeneration, before moving into strategic policy roles, specialising in social justice, tackling poverty and health inequalities. Following a period working as a Best Value Performance Auditor with Audit Scotland, she returned to local government, working across corporate governance, social inclusion, and health and social care. An experienced people and project manager, she also developed core strategies for the city council and community planning partnership where she worked for many years. In 2016, she moved into Third Sector children’s services, both as a volunteer and an employee, latterly working for a major charity, on additional support for learning, policy development, and managing a national partnership project to support children’s wellbeing. Joining the Convention of Scottish Local Authorities (COSLA) in 2019, she has worked as Policy Manager in both in the Health and Social Care Team (Workforce Portfolio) and most recently, in COSLA’s Employer Team.

Andy McGoff, employer representative

Andy is Finance and Operations Director of Edinburgh Napier University and sits on the University Leadership team.

He has full responsibility for the finance of the University and sits on the Finance and Property Committee and Pensions subcommittee which is responsible for reviewing and monitoring pension matters within the University.

Andy also chairs the Scottish Universities Finance Director Group and has good oversight of sector matters.

Vacancy, employer representative


Councillor Brian McGinley employer representative

Brian has a 30-year employment background and degree level qualifications on community and post school education, a Masters degree in Public Policy and a strong record of experience in partnership working and community planning along with a history of lecturing in Higher Education. He also brings board-level Governance experience to the Pension Board and has been a Councillor in South Ayrshire since 2012 , currently Depute Council Leader and Portfolio Carrier for Finance and Performance. Brian has extensive knowledge and experience of understanding, managing and developing governance and organisational structures, systems and processes.

Graham Hutton, member representative

I have been a teacher for 37 years and currently Rector of Grove Academy in Dundee, a post I have held for the past eight years. Prior to this post, I was Head Teacher of Dumbarton Academy for three years.  I am currently President of School Leaders Scotland.  This is a prestigious post in an Association representing the interest of school leaders (from Business Managers, Principal Teachers to Deputes and Head Teachers). I am also involved in discussion and negotiations with Scottish Government Ministers and civil servants, and representatives of SQA, Education Scotland, Universities and Colleges across Scotland.


Further reading

Related documents

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Minutes and Agenda's





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