Leadership Chairman Messages

Headmaster’s Message

One of the challenges facing independent schools worldwide is that of affordability. How does Kearsney continue to offer the outstanding holistic education for which we have become renowned while keeping the opportunity within reach for boys from all backgrounds?

At Kearsney we approach this challenge with our characteristic positive attitude, combined with ingenuity and hard work. We are driven because we are convinced that deserving boys regardless of race, creed or culture, from all walks of life, are critical to Kearsney’s identity and relevance, and will always be a part of the Kearsney story.

We have always been a school that has “walked with kings yet kept the common touch” and we wish to remain so. The Kearsney Foundation was established in May 2001 to address the task of funding important projects and deserving pupils within the school. These range from bursaries and scholarships for top students, many of whom are from needy families, to capital projects necessary to keep the College at the forefront of education in South Africa and the world.

All revenue into the Kearsney Foundation is directed towards these vital areas. Achieving the Kearsney Foundation’s vision requires that the broader Kearsney community stand up and come together. Pupils, staff members, parents, Old Boys, friends of the College and corporates are invited to support Kearsney College and the Foundation’s objectives.   Kearsney College has enjoyed a remarkable 100 years as one of the country’s great schools. With the help of our generous supporters, we can continue to produce men of significance, who can make a positive contribution to South Africa and the world, for the next century.

Patrick Lees

Meet the Development Fund Trustees

Ted Garner


Edward Sephton Clayton Garner (Finningley 1956) CA (SA), MBL (Unisa), MSIA (Carnegie Mellon, USA)

Appointed as Trustee 2001

TED’s early career was spent owning and managing various small businesses. He joined Tongaat-Hulett Group in 1967 and was appointed Financial Director in 1978. While at Tongaat Hulett he was Executive Chairman of various operating divisions, Vice Chairman of the Zimbabwe Triangle Sugar Corporation and a director on the SBDC, CBM and NHT of SA. Since his retirement in 2000, Ted focused on business consultancy.

Ted attended Kearsney from 1952 to 1953 (Finningley). His son Michael (Finningley 1981) lives in Australia and sent Ted’s grandson Christopher to Kearsney for a term in 2013. Ted served on the Kearsney College Board of Governors from 1980 to 1992 and as a Trustee of the Kearsney College Trust from1995 to 2007. He chaired both the Board of Governors and Trust during his tenure. He was elected as an Honorary Life Trustee of the Kearsney College Trust in 2009.

David Pearse


David Kenneth Pearse (Finningley 1974)

Appointed as Trustee 2005

DAVID founded Bay Union Financial Services Group in 1990 and remains the CEO of the Company. He represented KwaZulu Natal at rugby and cricket. David is a keen adventurer and at the end of 2010, he achieved his goal of completing extreme foot races on all seven continents.

David attended Kearsney from 1971 to 1974 (Finningley) together with his two brothers Peter (Finningley 1977) and Mark (Finningley 1982). He was a member of the Kearsney College Board of Governors from 2003 to 2007 and served as Chairman from 2005 to 2007. He was appointed as a Trustee of the Kearsney College Trust in 2010

Grant Coppin


Grant Norman Coppin (Pembroke 1983) CA(SA)

Appointed as a Trustee in 2021

Grant started his career at Deloitte and then moved to the South African Revenue Services. Following this, he started a 25+ year career in financial services at NBS Corporate Bank, McCarthy Bank and Investec Bank, where he focused predominantly on investment banking, mergers and acquisitions, and private capital transactions. He left Investec Bank at the end of 2019 to join GSH Private Capital. GSHPC has interests in various assets in a broad variety of sectors and geographies, including Amsterdam headquartered, managed IT services business, Getronics, where he is a non-executive director.

Grant attended Kearsney from 1980 to 1983 (Pembroke) together with his brother, Barrie (Pembroke 1981), and brother-in-law Richard Gafney (Pembroke 1988). His father-in-law was John Gafney; a long-serving trustee of the College. Grant was also articled to Peter Morgan (Pembroke 1970), the former Chairman of the Kearsney Development Fund. Grant also served on the Kearsney Board of Governors for 12 years, with eight years as head of finance.


Benji Hector


Benjamin Hector (Gillingham, 1997) BCom; Post Graduate Diploma in Financial Planning (CFP®)

Appointed as a Trustee in 2021

After studying, Benji played professional cricket for Boland, Griqualand West, Eagles, Cape Cobras and UK clubs from 2001 to 2008 before joining Standard Bank Financial Consultants for a year. In 2009 Benji joined Alexander Forbes Financial Planning Consultants, where he continues his career as a Financial Consultant to date.

Benji attended Kearsney from 1993 to 1997 (Gillingham) and was the Head of School in his Gr. 12 year. He joined the KCOB Executive in 2017 and served as Treasurer for five years. Benji also Captains the Kearsney Old Cricks side (comprising of past Kearsney 1st team players) and Chairs the KCOB Golf Committee.