The rugby charity Hearts+Balls has made two new appointments as work unfolds to set the organisation’s work on a new trajectory. Zander Fagerson, Glasgow Warriors’ legendary centurion tight head forward and Scottish international, is to be the first of several new Ambassadors who will represent the charity’s interests and leading PR professional Viki Mendelssohn has joined the Board of Trustees where she will help develop and implement a new communications strategy and fund-raising effort for the Trust.

Zander Fagerson was a long-time friend of the late Jim Taylor who was a key person in the development of the Trust’s work, helping support rugby players who are living with the implications of life-changing injuries sustained while playing.  He was recently named as the Warriors’ best international player of the 23-24 season, which is coming to a climax this weekend with a BKT URC Championship semi-final against Munster.

Zander said: “I was always aware of Jim Taylor’s contribution to Hearts+Balls and he became a great friend in his role in the commercial department of Glasgow Warriors.  I am extremely pleased to be asked to help take the Trust work forward with a very strong team and I know that the work done with injured players is hugely valuable and appreciated.” 

Viki Mendelssohn launched her own company Big Blue PR in 1999 after gaining experience in sports marketing at Scottish Rugby Magazine, where she was Commercial Manager for five years. She was also instrumental in establishing the first women’s rugby club in Scotland, the pioneering Liberton RFC, and was recently involved in the outstanding “90 Days”, a play detailing Scotland’s involvement in saving the 1994 Women’s Rugby World Cup.


Viki said: “It is an honour to become a Trustee of Hearts & Balls. I am looking forward to working with the Board to further the aims of the Charity and bring my experience and ideas to the Board Room.  Hearts & Balls have enjoyed an extraordinary journey – but the charitable sector is not a place to take breath, we have to accelerate and continue to promote and fundraise so we can assist and support players who need it most. I am looking forward to working with the Board to continue the great work done over the years by all those involved.’

Hearts & Balls Chair Hugh Dan MacLennan said: “I am delighted that the Trust has captured two very significant individuals with key insights into the implications of supporting players who are living with life-changing injuries.  I know how much Jim Taylor thought of Zander as a player but, above all as a person and he would be delighted that we have him on board.  Viki’s tremendous knowledge of the media world and her work in strategic delivery of communication planning will be a huge asset to the Trust as we continue to build on the foundations set 25 years ago, taking us forward with confidence.”

For further information, please contact Hugh Dan MacLennan, Chair, Hearts&Balls Trust on 07515287040