Who’s Who at Big Hearts Community Trust



Jim Panton started his relationship with Heart of Midlothian FC. in 2009 when as Chief Executive of Erskine he was part of the very successful 2 year partnership between Hearts and Erskine.  Prior to that, as a former Army helicopter pilot, Jim was Chief Executive of PoppyScotland during the re-branding of that organisation from the Earl Haig Fund Scotland.  Alongside his current role with Big Hearts, he is now Chief Executive of his family’s engineering firm, Panton McLeod, and a Trustee of the International education charity COCO, which he co-founded in 2000 with former Olympic athlete Steve Cram. 


Lawrence Broadie is an experienced commercial, marketing and communications leader. A director of Progress Sponsorship & Communications, he works across sport, community engagement and education and is extensively connected within Scottish football. A former head of marketing at Hearts until 2011, more recently he acted as consultant to the Foundation of Hearts in their campaign to secure Hearts' future out of administration.  

Billy Watson is the Chief Executive of the Scottish Association of Mental Health (SAMH) and joined the board of Big Hearts in 2014. Billy is a life long Hearts fan and brings a host of experience in from not for profit organisations, including ten years in various roles with the RNIB culminating in 4 years as Group Director there before his move to SAMH.


Tim Gardiner is the former Group Financial Director at Taylors Food Group and prior to that he was Financial Director followed by Managing Director at Mackie’s at Taypack. Between 2003 and 2009 he was Financial Director at Hibernian Football Club, which followed 14 years in various Finance positions within the Real Estate development and investment sector.  Tim currently operates as a freelance Finance Director for a number of small to medium sized businesses.

Ann Budge – who hardly needs any introduction, is the current owner and Chairperson of Heart of Midlothian FC. Ann is the first majority shareholder of the football club to sit on the Big Hearts board.  Her willingness to be part of the Big Hearts Board is just another indicator of Ann’s dedication to the broader community impact that she is looking for from the Club’s overall activities. 

David Sellar QC is the latest addition to the Board and has done company and insolvency work for some 30 years with much of that taking place in the City of London.  He has been a partner in a solicitors' firm in Scotland and also taught at Edinburgh University. Much of David Sellar's work is advisory.


David Bruce represents the City of Edinburgh Council, where he is a Senior Manager in the Education department, and stands in on the Big Hearts board for Gillian Tee, Edinburgh Council’s Director of Children and Families Services.  Both of them represent a key link to one of our major service partners.

General Manager

Caryn Kerr joined Big Hearts as General Manager in May 2015 and brings a wealth of experience in the charity sector. Her most recent role was Head of Partnerships at The Prince’s Trust Scotland.