Wilbur Smith - Co-Founder

Wilbur Smith published his first novel, When the Lion Feeds, in 1964. His books have sold over 140 million copies worldwide and been translated into 32 languages. Wilbur Smith sadly passed away at his home in Cape Town on Saturday 13th November 2021. For more information about Wilbur please see his official website and Facebook page.

Niso Smith - Co-Founder and Trustee

Managing Director of the Wilbur Smith Enterprise. Niso is a compulsive traveller and voracious reader, loves alpine skiing, fly fishing, bungee jumping, gourmet cooking and has a sartorial eye for men’s fashion. More information about Niso can be found here.

Sebastian Davey - Trustee

Senior Associate at Russells, Sebastian ran his own record label in South London before qualifying in law in 2006. He has a special interest in publishing and the production and exploitation of intellectual property rights including brand partnerships, merchandising and sponsorship, and the marketing and exploitation of digital content. Sebastian works across the arts, with musicians, composers, sculptors, painters, designers, photographers, animators and authors to name a few. 

Ruth Sorby - Trustee

Ruth is an experienced development professional working in the not for profit sector over the past two decades. Most recently Ruth led UK development at the global digital reading charity Worldreader. Prior to this Ruth’s eclectic mix of experience includes marketing and development roles at the UK charity Action for Children, The University of Surrey, McLaren F1 Racing and Lucas Industries. Ruth is proud to bring her skills and experience to The Wilbur and Niso Smith Foundation, continuing her literary links.

Mark Sullivan - Trustee

Mark is a Partner and Senior Adviser at Stonehage Fleming, a leading international family office which specialises in supporting successful business owners and entrepreneurs.   

Previously, he was a Director of Buckland Capital Partners, a single family office specialising in private equity and property development. This followed 14 years as an Investment Director and Client Advisor at Rathbones and UBS Wealth Management, where Mark advised a broad range of International and UK families. He is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute for Securities and Investments, sits on the investment committee of a City of London Livery Company, and is a Non-Executive Director of a UK based family’s investment holding vehicle.

In his spare time, Mark has a keen adventurous spirit and as an experienced sailor spends as much time on the water as possible. In his early teens, he lived in Zimbabwe and returned there during his early twenties to co-manage a horse riding safari. Southern Africa remains a place very close to his heart.

Keith Chapman - Patron

Keith Chapman became Patron of The Wilbur & Niso Smith Foundation in 2018. Founder of Keith Chapman Productions, Keith is one of the most successful creators of kids’ IP in the world. His TV creations have generated combined sales of over $12billion worldwide to date. His first creation was the global phenomenon and Bafta award-winning Bob the Builder, with 18 series in 240 territories. Keith’s latest creation, Paw Patrol is currently the No. 1 rated preschool show worldwide. Through his creations, Keith has given endless joy to millions of children (and parents) around the world.

Kate Silverton - Patron

Kate Silverton became Patron of The Wilbur & Niso Smith Foundation in 2017. Kate is one of the BBC’s main national news broadcasters and has reported from Iraq and Afghanistan, as well as presenting a wide range of prime time BBC One programmes. Kate is a wife and a mother to two young children. She works with a number of children’s mental health charities and has started training to become a children’s counsellor. More information about Kate can be found on her personal website at katesilverton.com