Ian F.

Happy to mentor
Happy to be contacted

About me

Ian F.
Applied Human Rights
Research Postgraduate
United Kingdom

My employment

Parrhesia Inc
United Kingdom
Charity and voluntary sector
Small business (0-49 employees)

More about Ian

Parent whilst studying
Mature student
Commuter Student

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A day in the life of a CEO in the United Kingdom

I don't work for an organisation - but I do have an aim in life: to help establish an independent organisation to better protect and support whistleblowers in the UK

Briefly describe the organisation you work for

I don't work for an organisation - but I do have an aim in life: to help establish an independent organisation to better protect and support whistleblowers in the UK

What do you do?

Currently I am researching a PhD in the Politics Department on the topic of 'The Whistleblower Dilemma: Why don't more Good people speak up abut Bad things?'

Reflecting upon your past employment and education, what led you to your current career choice?

I am in my third life. I was originally an officer (Lieutenant Colonel) in the British Army specialising in telecommunications. I had a great career and did everything I possibly could have done operationally. I then became a director and project manager of large telecommunications projects in the civilian commercial world: I was the IT Director for Domino's Pizza and put pizza ordering online in the UK (OMG!) and then built two of the national fibre optic networks round UK for the expansion of broadband before taking up a role as Programme Director in a subsidiary of the Airbus Group to modernise all of the communications for the National Guard in Saudi Arabia. BUT, I refused to sign off secret payments to offshore bank accounts, blew the whistle on corruption in the contract and fled for my life. This initiated a 10 year criminal investigation and I set up and Chaired Whistleblowers UK as a support organisation for anyone in any professional sector who needed to disclose wrong-doing. I graduated with an MA in Applied Human Rights from the Centre of Applied Human Rights (CAHR) at the University of York in 2018 and began my PhD that year extending my research from whistleblower/ Human Rights Defenders survival strategies to understanding.
We have just founded Parrhesia Inc which we are turning into The Parrhesia Institute when we can fulfill the strict requirements for the title of Institute

Is your current job sector different from what you thought you would enter when you graduated?

No but it is on the pathway to founding the Office of the Whistleblower

Describe your most memorable day at work

That depends on which lifetime we’re discussing....

Are there any challenges associated with your job?

Lots- mainly centred around persuading the Government to do more to protect whistleblowers

What’s your work environment and culture like?

Casual, relaxed but focussed and determined to keep up the political pressure for change

What extracurricular activities did you undertake at university and what transferable skills did you develop through these?

Keeping my family provided for, keeping fit and staying relaxed

What would you like to do next with your career?

Become the first Commissioner of the Office of the WhistleBlower

What top tips do you have for York students preparing for today’s job market and life after graduation?

Stop worrying - do what you love best and do it well . The rest will sort itself out

What topics from students are you happy to answer questions on?


Is there anything else you’d like to tell us?

Google me and you’ll see what a difference you can make in the world! A life well lived - and there’s still a lot to do...

Next steps...

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