TOPRA Board elections

The TOPRA Board of Directors leads our well-respected organisation and shape the future support we offer our community of regulatory affairs professionals. Board Directors have general oversight of our activities, legal and financial responsibility for the organisation, setting and monitoring its strategy, and overseeing the work of the staff. 

Over the course of a given year, a number of positions will fall vacant as incumbent post holders complete their terms of service. We will typically hold an election in the second half of each year to recruit the successors for these posts, one of which will be for our President-Elect.


Nominations are invited to this post, which is for a one-year term. The successful candidate will then serve a further one year as the TOPRA President and a final one year as Past-President.

If you would like to discuss what Director roles entail, please email our Chief Executive Kevin Pay. You can also be put in touch with current Board Directors to hear their experience of holding office.

Who can stand for election?

Any paid-up Member, Registered Member or Fellow who has been a member of TOPRA for at least one full calendar year can stand for election. There are no limitations in terms of your location, the sector you work in, or who you are employed by.

TOPRA is committed to encouraging diversity and inclusivity throughout the organisation and the Board is no exception.  There are no limitations in terms of age, gender, or ethnic background - if you think you can add a fresh perspective to the way the Board thinks then we encourage you to join them. As signatories to the Science Council Declaration on Diversity, we actively seek candidates who reflect the changing demographic of the wider regulatory affairs profession. 

It is important that our Board reflects our diverse membership. About 60% of our membership is female and currently eight of nine TOPRA Board members are women. We therefore actively encourage applications from minority ethnic candidates, people with disabilities, people who identify as non-binary and men.

TOPRA is keen to attract Board members with a wide skill set. We welcome those who can act as genuine ambassadors for our organisation, who enjoy networking at a senior level and who have deep understanding of regulatory affairs in a global context.

Nominees are asked to provide information about themselves as part of the election process. Members who vote can base their decision on what experience candidates have in regulatory affairs, what they have contributed to the profession and the extent of their current engagement in TOPRA activities, plus any fresh ideas they may have.

Why should you consider standing for election? 

Being elected to the TOPRA Board presents a real chance for regulatory affairs professionals to influence the work of their professional body and to offer their time and talents to promoting TOPRA and the profession.  

Our Board Directors are volunteers, but they also enjoy the benefits of being leaders of an organisation that is increasingly high profile and influential where they have a chance to shape the strategy for TOPRA's future.  

Members of the Board liaise with leading figures in the regulatory affairs world and have opportunities to attend conferences and meetings that help develop their personal regulatory intelligence and networks.

Participation in TOPRA at Board level is a significant personal development opportunity, raises your personal profile and above all is a chance to ‘give something back’ to the profession.

Obligations – and benefits!

Potential candidates should understand that being a member of the Board of TOPRA means that they will be a Director of a Company and subject to the requirements of the UK Companies Act.

Candidates should be sure that they have no reason why they should not stand for a Board position, including contractual issues with their employers or conflicts of interest.

Membership of TOPRA is individual and personal, so Board Directors are elected as individuals and not as representatives of their employer.  However, as meetings take place in business hours, Board Directors do need the support of their employers to undertake their duties.  Many employers recognise that service of this sort is enriching to the individual, but also brings value to their employers in many ways.  It can be part of a wider corporate responsibility agenda.  It also adds value as the employee is well-informed, well-connected, and well-respected because of their involvement with TOPRA.

What is expected of Board Directors?

Members of the Board meet at the TOPRA offices every other month for half a day – it is also possible to join these meetings online. They prepare by reading papers and from time to time they are contacted by email for their opinions or might join teleconferences. A substantial proportion of the background work can be done out of office hours. Some Board Directors also get involved in other activities such as leading committees or meeting key stakeholders, but this varies depending on the Board Director and their interests. So, whilst there is a time commitment, this can be factored into their working lives. TOPRA meets the reasonable expenses of being a Board Director, in line with our expenses policies.

Summary of roles and responsibilities

  • Attend up to six Board meetings (at least one face to face) in one year
  • Contribute to the setting and monitoring of TOPRA’s strategy
  • Undertake all legal and financial responsibilities as a director under UK company law
  • Support the global growth and engagement of membership at a strategic level
  • Represent TOPRA at various events and meetings
  • Champion the development of regulatory excellence 


Terms of service

The new Board is announced to the membership at the Annual Review Meetings (held at the TOPRA Symposium and subsequently in InTouch (monthly email newsletter for members) and on the TOPRA website.   

The Board year runs from 1 January to 31 December in line with TOPRA’s financial year.

Useful resources

How to make a nomination

The nomination form is available to download here: 

Board Director Nomination Form
(Microsoft Word Document)

This form requires the signatures of three other TOPRA members plus a statement from you which explains why you wish to stand and what you think you would bring to the Board.

If an election is held, the statement you provide will be available for members to use as the basis for their selection.

Please note that you can only stand for one position on the Board.

All nominees must be paid-up Members, Registered Members or Fellows of TOPRA, have experience in the field of regulatory affairs and be supportive of the vision and objectives of TOPRA. Some experience of volunteering in TOPRA can be helpful but is not a requirement. Honorary Members and Student Members may not stand for, or vote in, an election.


If there is more than one candidate for any position, an election will be held by electronic means.  Please make sure that your member record contains your up-to-date e-mail address so that you do not miss out on your opportunity to vote and make your voice heard. Results of the election and the composition of the new Board are announced at the Annual Review Meeting.


There is also the opportunity to apply to become a co-optee to the Board. There is also the opportunity to apply to become a co-optee to the Board. Co-optees enable the Board to benefit from their valuable insights and opinions in discussions and can ensure that the diverse range of voices that represent today’s profession are heard. Unlike Board members however, they will not have voting rights or legal responsibilities for the Company.

In addition to being able to positively influence TOPRA’s future direction, co-optee roles are also a great way to gain experience that will assist with career development and even a future application for a Board position.

If you are interested in becoming a co-optee and would like to find out more, then please email our Chief Executive Kevin Pay with your CV and an initial supporting statement.

Annual Review Meeting

Annual Review Meetings are held at the TOPRA Symposium and all members are cordially invited to attend online. These provide an opportunity to hear about the activities of the past year, receive a report of the TOPRA accounts, find out plans and ask questions of the current Board. It is also a chance to meet up with many TOPRA colleagues and friends and there is no charge to attend.

Why join the Board?

Some of our recent Board members on how being on the Board has benefited them:

Anne Nallen
TOPRA President (2021)

Steve Hayes
TOPRA President (2020)

Aman Khera
Director of North America (2021)

Natalie Tolli
Board Director with North America responsibility (2019–2020)

Dr Axel Wenzel
Honorary Fellow, founding member of TOPRA, Past President and former Board Director with EU responsibliity


ANGELA STOKES"Being a member of the Board has given me insights into the running of a boardroom, I have been given an opportunity to shape the future of OUR professional organisation and I have met and worked with a great bunch of people."

Angela Stokes
TOPRA President 2018

"I am thoroughly enjoying being a Board member. I have gained a lot being a regulatory professional, so having the opportunity to give something back is highly motivating to me."

Aileen Fisher
TOPRA Board Member 2018–2019

"My tenure with the TOPRA Board broadened my network and I established relationships with individuals I would otherwise never have met. You meet so many talented people that you can learn from – it is just an enriching experience."

Thomas Kühler
TOPRA President 2016
TOPRA Board Member 2014–2017

"I enjoyed being on the TOPRA Board since I could contribute to the work of bringing industry, academia and regulatory agencies into dialogue with each other around important questions."

Lena Björk
TOPRA Board Member 2016–2017