How we are governed

Strategic oversight is provided by the Presidents, who each represent their Service, and the Vice-Presidents, who are the current and former Chairmen/Honorary Treasurers. This group meets formally at least twice a year and is kept abreast of current developments by the Chief Executive Officer. 


Photographed left to right:
Sir Baz North, Sir Richard Ibbotson (former OA President) and Lt General Andrew Figgures

Photographed left to right:
Sir Baz North, Sir Richard Ibbotson (former OA President) and Lt General Andrew Figgures


Educated at Loughborough Grammar School, Welbeck College and St Catharine’s College, Cambridge, Andrew Figgures was commissioned into the Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers in 1970. In 1995 he was appointed Commander of Equipment Support at HQ Land Command from where he was deployed to Bosnia, for which he was awarded the CBE.

In 1998 he went to the Royal College of Defence Studies and was then appointed Director of Operational Requirements (Land). In 2000 he was appointed as Capability Manager for Manoeuvres and then in September 2003 he was deployed to Iraq as Senior British Military Representative and Deputy Commanding General, Multinational Force, Iraq. In 2004 he became Technical Director at the Defence Procurement Agency and Master-General of the Ordnance. In 2006 he became Deputy Chief of the Defence Staff (Equipment Capability).

From 2009 to 2016 he was Chief Executive of the British Transport Police Authority.


Air Marshal Sir Baz North graduated from Trent Polytechnic and then served in the RAF from 1982 to 2016; joining as a helicopter pilot. Baz commanded 78 Squadron in the Falkland Islands, the Special Forces unit on 7 Squadron and 33 Squadron, where he led Operation BARWOOD, the UK’s contribution to the flood relief effort in Mozambique in 2000.

He was the Commander of the Joint Helicopter Force in Northern Ireland and later the Air Officer Commanding 83 Expeditionary Air Group, leading all UK air operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. Other appointments included being: Head of Air Resources and Plans in the Ministry of Defence; Air Officer Commanding 22 Training Group; a member of the Air Force Board firstly as the Assistant Chief of the Air Staff and then as the Air Member for Personnel and Capability. He also served as a Non-Executive Director of the Civil Aviation Authority and as a member of the UK Space Council.

Baz is a Liveryman of both the Company of Air Pilots and the Gold and Silver Wyre Drawers, and a Fellow of the Royal Aeronautical Society. He was made Nottingham Trent University Alumnus of the Year in 2011. Since retiring Baz fulfils many voluntary roles: the Honorary Air Officer of 2503 Squadron RAuxAF; a Trustee of the Nuffield Trust; President of the Royal Air Forces Association; a Vice-Patron of the Gallantry Medallists’ League; a director of the RAF100 Appeal; giving evidence to the House of Commons Defence Select Committee; and a member of the Nottingham Business School Advisory Board.


Vice Admiral Peter Hudson CB CBE joined BAE Systems as the Naval Advisor in February 2018 and is a member of the Maritime and Land Sector Board.

Peter enjoyed a long and distinguished 36 year career in the Royal Navy where he served as a Warfare Officer and Navigation specialist. He held numerous seagoing commands including the minehunter HMS COTTESMORE, the T23 ASW Frigate HMS NORFOLK and, in 2002, was the first Captain of the amphibious assault ship HMS ALBION which was built by BAE in Barrow. His other senior commands included leading the UK’s Amphibious Task Group, serving as a coalition task force commander in the Gulf based in Bahrain and, as a Rear Admiral, commanding UK Maritime Forces; an appointment which involved time as operational commander of EU Naval Forces for Counter Piracy off Somalia and service as NATO’s on-call High Readiness Force (Maritime) commander.

Elsewhere he worked in the MoD for 3 years as the Director of Navy Plans and Resources and, in 2011, as Assistant Chief of the Naval Staff (Capability) shaping future capabilities and force development for the Royal Navy. On promotion to Vice Admiral in early 2013, he commanded NATO’s Maritime Command at Northwood and was the senior maritime advisor to Supreme Allied Commander Europe.

He retired from the Service in 2016 and prior to joining BAE was the Director for International Maritime Programmes with L3 Technologies, as well as special advisor to NATO’s Secretary General on issues of adaptation and command structure reform. He is a Commissioner of the Commonwealth War Graves Commission, President of the CCF and a trustee of the Mary Rose Museum in Portsmouth.



Dominic served with what became the Light Dragoons from 1984 to 1988 in Cyprus and Germany and then became an investment manager. From 1992 to 2001 he managed the Officers’ Association’s investment portfolio at Mercury Asset Management, where he was also head of the group that invested for charities. After leaving Mercury in 2001 he had a variety of investment jobs and set up Thistledown Investment Management in 2009.
He was a Trustee of the OA from 2002 and Chairman from 2006 to 2015. He sits on the Board of the Armed Forces Common Investment Fund and heads its investment sub-committee.


Following service in King’s Royal Rifle Corps/Royal Green Jackets 1955-1968, Patrick Mitford-Slade became a stockbroker with Cazenove & Co. He was on the Council of London Stock Exchange 1976-1991, including a period as Deputy Chairman from 1982 to 85. He was Chairman of various City and Stock Exchange Committees, including the Projects Committee for Big Bang in 1986 and also served as non-Executive Director with investment companies and banks 1996-2008.

He was Chairman of Governors at Reed’s School 2002-2008 (now a Joint President), Chairman at St Luke’s Hospital for the Clergy 2001-2011 (now a Vice-President), Chairman Royal Green Jackets Regimental Trustees and then Rifles Regimental Trustees 2005 to 2012. He was Honorary Treasurer of the Royal Commonwealth Ex-Services League from 1993 to 2005 and subsequently Honorary Recorder until 2016 (now a Vice-President). He was a member of The Royal British Legion Benevolent & Strategy Committee 1998-2005. He became a Trustee of the OA in 1983, acting as Chairman from 1985 to 2000 and became a Vice-President in 2000.


(See biography below)

Chairman of the Executive Committee


ALEX SPOFFORTH BA FCAAlex was educated at Bradfield College, from which he was a member of the GB Athelings Rifle Team to Canada; then Durham University (during which time he toured Northern Ireland, entertaining the troops with a Durham University revue group).

A Chartered Accountant in Sussex, he has a wide portfolio of clients including many property and media businesses, as well as a number of charities, which have included the Coldstream Guards Regimental Funds for some 30 years, and its Association.

He is company secretary of Project Hougoumont, a charity which restored the Hougoumont chateau at the field of the Battle of Waterloo.

Alex is also Deputy Chairman of Help Musicians UK, the Musicians Benevolent Fund.

Trustees on the Executive Committee





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