Dame Stephanie Shirley is a serial IT entrepreneur turned ardent philanthropist. Founder and now Life President of Xansa plc, she is also Past President of the British Computer Society and Past Master of the IT livery company as well as its major sponsor. Since retiring in 1993, she has served on corporate Boards such as Tandem Computers Inc., and the John Lewis Partnership plc. Dame Stephanie's focus has been increasingly on philanthropy based on her strong belief in business people giving something back to society. Her main interests are autism and making better use of IT in the voluntary sector. Her charitable Shirley Foundation is one of the top grant-giving foundations in the UK with £60M in grants given. It has initiated and funded a number of projects that are pioneering by nature, strategic in impact and significant in money terms.
Dame Stephanie served as the UK Government’s Ambassador for Philanthropy in 2009/10.