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Goodbye my tall friend

Martin Bojam, HE marketing expert and Education Cubed Chairman, died last week. I first met him when he was at JWT. We hit it off immediately and he and I met up regularly at various sector conferences and events – usually with a glass of red wine in hand and much laughter. He was an absolutely fantastic listener. This, combined with his ability to ask the right questions, made him a mentor to many, including me. He dug me out of many a hole when I was stuck (or low) at various stages in my career – always signing off with a pep talk and a reassuring message. His emails always included a check-in with how I was feeling, and he always signed off with three kisses. I asked him to chair the Education Cubed board in 2018 and he did so with his usual charm – giving me that concentrated look from over his glasses – benevolent but also ensuring that I was on the right path.

His death was a huge shock. I found out en route to a Cubed Board meeting at which he was due to chair, with his name at the head of all of the papers. A tough day. At his funeral on Friday it was immensely comforting to be with so many people who I have worked with and alongside for many years. I wasn’t expecting it to be such a comforting experience as we all ditched any superficial competitive nonsense and shared the sadness. I am not sure anyone apart from Martin would have been able to pull cross sector people together in such a way – everyone talked about his kindness, generosity of spirit (sharing his time and his knowledge abundantly) and his thoughtfulness.

He’ll be a huge loss to the Education Cubed board and a personal loss to me too. He often said that he was only really memorable as he was so tall and he had an unusual surname. Martin – you will be remembered for so much more than that.

Sending my thanks to you my tall friend,

Jo Redfern

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