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UEF Board

The members of the UEF Board oversee the foundation's governance and strategies for finance, grantmaking and philanthropy.

The board has established several committees for the foundation, including an Investment Committee, Audit Committee and Grantmaking Committee. The mandate of the board is non-remunerated, members share their time and expertise with the UEF on a voluntary basis.

Stef Kranendijk, chairman of the board

Stef Kranendijk was a board member at the UEF and has been chairman of the board since the beginning of 2023.
He is co-founder & board director of grow leather company Qorium BV, chairman of Solar Polar Ltd. and board member of Tribes. Previously, he was CEO of Qorium and CEO of circular economy company Desso, President EMEA Stanley Works and 19 years in management positions at Procter & Gamble Europe. He was also a board member of the Concertgebouw Fund, chairman of De Groene Zaak, chairman of the Maritime Museum Amsterdam and a board member of the Surviving with Pancreatic Cancer 'Support Casper' foundation. He studied economics at the RUG and has an MBA from the Rotterdam School of Management.

Jouke de Vries, board member UEF and president of the University of Groningen

Jouke de Vries has served as a member on the UEF's board since 2018 and is currently the president of the UG. He sits on the boards of various organizations including: VSNU (Dutch Association of Universities), EBNN (Economic Board Northern Netherlands) and NERA (Netherlands Energy Research Alliance).

Previously, he was a full professor in Public Administration at the University of Leiden, where he also served as dean of the Campus The Hague for 16 years.

Gert van der Leest, board member, Chair of the Investment Committee and co-chair of the Audit Commission

Gert van der Leest has been a member of our board and co-chair of the Audit Commission since 2020. As an independent consultant in accounting, he helps businesses in optimizing the quality of their audits.

Prior to this, he was a partner at PriceWaterhouseCoopers in the Netherlands and Netherlands Antilles. He graduated with an MA in Accounting from the UG.

Mariëtte Plaggemars, member of the board and co-chair of the audit commission

Mariette Plaggemars joined the board of the UEF in 2020 and is also the co-chair of our Audit Commission. She is a notary and partner at Damsté lawyers, and specializes in corporate law.

She is also involved with the TexPlus Foundation, a non-profit that promotes sustainability in the textile industry. Mrs. Plaggemars obtained an MA in Notary Civil Law from the UG.

Heleen ten Heggeler - Verloop, board member UEF

Heleen ten Heggeler - Verloop joined the UEF board in 2023 to oversee our fundraising strategy. She is also on the board of the Grachtenmuseum Amsterdam.

She was previously the business director at National Opera & Ballet and held corporate positions at Paleis Het Loo, Artis and Royal Theatre Carré. She has also been involved with numerous charities including the Red Cross and SOS Children's Villages. Mrs. ten Heggeler obtained an MA in Business Economics from the UG.

Liesbeth Nagelkerke - Mulder, board member UEF and chair of the Grantmaking Committee

Liesbeth Nagelkerke - Mulder joined our board in 2022 and oversees our grantmaking strategy. She is the founding director of ReachOut2, providing advice on strategic and programmatic development to private and family foundations.

She is also a member of the Commission for Good Governance at FIN, the association for charitable foundations in the Netherlands, and serves on the boards of several grantmaking foundations. Mrs. Nagelkerke - Mulder holds an MA in Criminal and Civil Law from the UG.

Grant Committee

The UEF's grantmaking is overseen by the Grant Committee, chaired by our board member Liesbeth Nagelkerke - Mulder.

The committee consists of four independent experts who were recruited externally and share their time and expertise with us on a voluntary basis. Some of the committee members are UG alumni. The members of the committee are:

Paul Nillesen

Paul Nillesen is responsible for PwC's energy practice in the Netherlands, and is a member of the Global Energy Leadership Team. He has worked as an advisor to executives in the energy and utilities industry for more than 25 years, focusing on challenges and opportunities of the energy transition. Paul studied at the universities of Edinburgh and Oxford and obtained a PhD in Energy Economics from the University of Tilburg.

Nicole van der Meulen

Nicole van der Meulen is the IT Cyber Security Innovation Lead at SURF, the cooperative association for Dutch educational and research institutions. She previously worked as the Head of Policy and Development at Europol. She holds a PhD in Law from Tilburg University, and also worked in cybersecurity roles for the Nederlandse Vereniging van Banken and the RAND Corporation.

Peter van Dijken

Peter van Dijken is an expert in the field of healthy living. His work at TNO revolves around collaborations with government organizations and entrepreneurs for innovations for a health society. He holds a PhD in Biochemistry from the University of Groningen and is active in the field of youth healthcare, prevention and the labor market. Peter studied Chemistry at the University of Groningen and completed multiple academic courses in the fields of law, economics and business. Hij is on the board of the Nationale Stichting voor Geneesmiddelenonderzoek, a member of the Advisory Board at the Vereniging van Contractmanagers and a board member at NanoNextNL.

Hidde Boersma

Hidde Boersma is a science journalist and documentary filmmaker, with a PhD in biology from the University of Groningen. He writes for a variety of national and international newspapers and magazines, including De Volkskrant, De Groene Amsterdammer and Al Jazeera, mainly on agriculture, biotechnology and ecomodernism. He co-wrote several books including Ecomodernisme (2017) and Over Eten (2020). Hidde has frequently appeared as TEDx-speaker and is the co-founder of techo-optimistic NGO WePlanet, active in 14 countries around the world.

Investment Committee

The UEF’s strategy for asset management is overseen by our Investment Committee, chaired by UEF Board member Stef Kranendijk.

Members of the Investment Committee share their time and expertise on a voluntary basis. The investments of the UEF are managed by Van Lanschot Kempen wealth management in Amsterdam.

The members of the committee are:

Lex Hoogduin is a full professor in Complexity and Uncertainty in Financial Markets at the UG and a board member at Wilgenhaege.

Professor Hoogduin brings expertise from previous leadership roles at De Nederlandsche Bank, the London Stock Exchange Group, and Robeco

Ties Tiessen currently holds various board member positions at nonprofit and for-profit organizations.

Throughout his career, mr. Tiessen worked in senior management positions at EY, Getronics and SNS Reaal

Volkert de Klerk is currently the CIO of Roots Investments, and brings extensive leadership experience in investing from previous roles at MN, ING and SNS

Mark Glazener is the Managing Director at Robeco Luxembourg, and was previously the Fund Manager at Robeco. He is also a board member for Stichting Aelwijn Florisz.

UEF Staff

Kim Evertz

Development Manager

Remco Kouwenhoven

Executive Director

UEF Staff

Kim Evertz

Development Manager

Remco Kouwenhoven

Executive Director

Get in touch

The UEF welcomes donors, foundations, alumni and others who share our curiosity about the future.

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