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Life By-Fellow

William J. Conner has over 40 years’ experience in development and as a management consultant in philanthropy with broad international experience. His expertise is in institutional development, strategic planning for large fundraising campaigns, leadership giving, volunteer leadership recruitment and good governance practices. Having retired from Oxford in 2019 and again from Cambridge in 2023, he holds an Emeritus Fellowship from Wolfson College, University of Oxford and as well as the Life By-Fellowship with Hughes Hall.  William continues to maintain a thriving multi-national consulting practice, Conner and Associates, based in London and Boston. In 2024 he became an Expert Panel member with Chapel and York, another provider of international fundraising services.

Much of William’s life has been centred around a strong interest in classical music, with a particular expertise in 17th and 18th century keyboard music. As an editor of The New Grove Dictionary of Music in the mid-1970s, he worked on bibliographical problems, musical instruments and instrument makers. William was a founder of the Boston Early Music Festival in the late 1970s and is a trustee of Handel Hendrix House in London, Pushkin House (London) and the Voces8 Foundation (London). New projects emerging as part of retirement 2.0 include developing international opportunities for talented young musicians, a new focus on where classical music meets the digital world, and supporting the musical life in Tuscany where he now lives part of the year.