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Biographies of the Members of the University Council

David Normington

Sir David Normington

Sir David Normington is the University’s Chair of Council and Pro-Chancellor. Sir David began his first term of office as Chair and Pro-Chancellor on 1 August 2017. Prior to this, Sir David has served as an Independent Member of Council since August 2011. Sir David chairs the Nominations Committee, Remuneration Committee (except when it is considering the Vice-Chancellor's remuneration), Honorary Degrees Committee and the University of Warwick Foundation and is a member of the Finance and General Purposes Committee.

Sir David was a civil servant for 37 years, working in the fields of employment, education and criminal justice. He was Permanent Secretary at the Department for Education and Skills from 2001 to 2005, at a time when the Department was responsible for further and higher education and skills in addition to its responsibilities for children and schools. From 2006 to 2010 he was Permanent Secretary at the Home Office leading a department with over 30,000 staff and responsibility for controversial issues like immigration and law and order. He worked with five Home Secretaries over his five-year term as Permanent Secretary and led a major transformation programme to restore the Home Office’s capability and reputation.

After retiring from the civil service at the end of 2010, Sir David was the First Civil Service Commissioner and the Commissioner for Public Appointments from April 2011 to March 2016. In these roles he regulated appointments to the civil service and public bodies, seeking to ensure that they were on merit after fair and open competition.

Sir David received a KCB in 2005 and was appointed GCB in the 2011 New Year’s Honours list. Sir David has an M.A.(Oxon) in Modern History and is a Chartered Fellow of the Institute of Personnel and Development. Sir David was a Trustee of the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (NSPCC) from 2011 - 2018. He is currently the Chair of Birmingham Royal Ballet, a Royal Ballet governor and a member of the advisory board to Westminster Abbey.

Anita Bhalla OBE

Anita Bhalla OBE is Vice-Chair of the University Council. Anita began her first term of office in December 2016 and began her term as Vice-Chair in February 2020. Anita's current term of office on Council is due to end on 31 July 2022.

Anita is also currently Chair of Performances Birmingham PLC (Town Hall and Symphony Hall), Independent Member of Birmingham & Solihull Clinical Commissioning Group, Chair of Creative City Partnership, Director of Greater Birmingham and Solihull LEP (Local Enterprise Partnership), Governor of the RSC, Trustee of the Children’s University and Chair of WM Mayor's Leadership Commission.

Anita's media career has been extensive of which she spent over 25 years working with the BBC; from setting up the BBC Asian Network to a news Correspondent, Documentary maker to being Head of Political and Community Affairs in England, then Head and Editor of the BBC's Public Space Broadcasting and President of Circom (a European wide group of public service broadcasters).

Anita has a strong commitment to public services and her portfolio in this area ranges from being a Commissioner on the Chancellor’s Commission (Warwick University), member of Birmingham's Social Inclusion Commission to being a past Chair of mac (Midlands Arts Centre), non-Executive Director of Birmingham Women’s and Children's Hospitals NHS Trust, Director of the High Speed Rail College, a previous Chair of a Junior and Infant School and member of the governing body of Birmingham City University.

In 2009 Anita was awarded an OBE for services to Broadcasting and Communities.

In 2012 Anita was the High Sheriff for the West Midlands. Anita has been awarded Honorary Degrees from Wolverhampton University, Birmingham City University and Warwick University. She is also a fellow of the Royal Society of Arts.

Louise Ainsworth

Louise is an independent member of the University Council. Louise began her first term of office in August 2019 and this term is due to end on 31 July 2022.

Louise is also currently Chief Executive Officer, EMEA, Media Division of Kantar and has worked across the advertising and media industry for more than 18 years, with extensive experience in senior consulting. Louise has held leadership roles in research, digital publishing, advertising and digital advertising agencies, including OgilvyOne, and at the BBC.

Louise has also worked at Shell Aviation and as a strategy consultant at Bain & Company. Louise spent six years at The Nielsen Company, leading Nielsen’s online media and advertising measurement & research business in EMEA.

Yewande Akinola

Yewande Akinola

Yewande Akinola is an independent member of the University Council. Yewande began her first term of office in February 2020 and this term is due to end on 31 July 2022.

Yewande is an award winning Chartered Design Engineer and Innovator, specialising in Design and Construction, Innovation and Manufacture of buildings and systems for the built environment. She has worked on projects in the U.K., Africa, the Middle East and in East Asia.

Yewande is also currently Principal Engineer and Innovation Lead at Laing O’Rourke and a TV presenter for Engineering Television programmes.

Keith Bedell-Pearce CBE

Keith Bedell-Pearce is an independent member of the University Council. Keith began his first term of office as an independent member of the Council in August 2009 and became the University Treasurer in October 2011. He retired as Treasurer on 31 July 2020. He will remain as a member of Council until 31 December 2020. Keith remains a member of the Finance and General Purposes Committee and the Investment Sub-Committee and is also a member of the Remuneration Committee, Financial Plan Sub-Committee and the University of Warwick Foundation. Keith is a member of the Warwick Business School Advisory Board.

Keith was awarded a CBE in the Queen's Birthday Honours List in 2009 for public service. Keith is an Honorary Professor of Warwick Business School.

Keith is the non-executive chairman of 4D Data Centres Ltd and chairman of Prudential Staff Pensions Limited. Before he retired in 2001, Keith was a main board director of Prudential plc. His 30 year career at Prudential spanned being a computer systems designer, the company's in-house solicitor, a director of its investment management business, marketing director and running operating businesses both in the UK and abroad. Immediately after retiring from the Prudential, he was appointed chairman of the Student Loans Company and chairman of the Norwich & Peterborough Building Society. He retired from both businesses in 2008 after extended second terms of office. In 2004, he was asked by the Government to become chairman of Directgov (now Gov.uk), having been closely involved in the design and early stage development of what was to become the Government’s destination website for individuals for all public sector information and transactions. From 2002 to 2014, he was a non-executive director of F&C Asset Management plc and from 2008 was Senior Independent Director. From 2006 to 2018, Keith was a member of the Investment Committee of the Royal Society.

Keith has been connected with the University of Warwick for more than 50 years, having gained an MSc as part of the second year intake of the fledgling Warwick Business School in 1969.

Bal Claire

Bal Claire is an independent member of the University Council. Bal began his first term of office in May 2019 and this term is due to end on 31 July 2021.

Bal is an independent Management Consultant, helping organisations across a broad range of industry sectors and individuals to grow and succeed. Bal has built a diverse portfolio of roles including holding a number of non-executive positions, including a local NHS Trust and as well as Chairing a charitable Trust of the BT London Telecoms Region Amateur Sports Association. In a previous association with Warwick University, Bal was an independent member of the Faculty Advisory Board for the Medical School.

Bal had a hugely successful career at BT and has a deep understanding and experience of the telecommunications industry. Starting as an apprentice he worked his way up to senior Director roles holding significant accountability and led large-scale business transformation. Bal is motivated and passionate about delivering the right business outcomes that bring real value to customers.

In his spare time Bal fundraises for charity and likes walking and watching a range of sports including Rugby Union, Football and F1.

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Professor Stuart Croft

Stuart became the Vice-Chancellor and President of the University of Warwick in February 2016, moving from his previous role as the University’s Provost and prior to this as the Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Research (Arts and Social Sciences). Stuart has been part of Warwick’s community since 2007, when he joined the Politics and International Studies department as Professor of International Security.

Stuart chairs the Financial Plan Sub-Committee and is a member of the Finance and General Purposes Committee, Nominations Committee, Honorary Degrees Committee, University Estate Committee, University of Warwick Foundation and the Investment Sub-Committee.

Working with colleagues, Stuart is responsible for ensuring the University of Warwick delivers excellent education and research within the region, nationally and internationally. Stuart’s work is in the field of security studies for which he has previously held senior posts at the University of Birmingham, the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) and the British International Studies Association.

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Professor Christine Ennew

Professor Christine Ennew serves on the University Council as an ex-officio member in her capacity as Provost, where she supports the Vice-Chancellor in the academic leadership of the University. Christine chairs the Social Inclusion Committee and the Capital Space & Amenities Group and is a member of the University Executive Board; University Estate Committee; Finance and General Purposes Committee; Financial Plan Sub-Committee; Fundraising Ethics Committee; Honorary Degrees Committee; Investment Sub-Committee; Nominations Committee and Steering Committee.

A key aspect of her role as Provost is leading the development and delivery of the University’s academic strategy, ensuring that Warwick remains competitive and relevant within HE and beyond. She is responsible for the efficient and effective use of academic resources (including departmental resources, capital planning and space management, and information resources).

Christine graduated from Cambridge University and completed her PhD at Nottingham. She was previously one of Nottingham’s Pro-Vice-Chancellors, as well as serving as Provost and CEO of the University of Nottingham Malaysia Campus. She joined the University of Warwick in August 2016.

She is currently a member of the Advisory Board of the Observatory on Borderless Higher Education, a member of the Board of Directors for Common Purpose Student Experiences. She is also a Board Member for the Higher Education Funding Council for Wales (HEFCW) and Chair of its Regulation Committee.

John Ferrie

Dr John Ferrie CBE

Dr John Ferrie is an independent member of the University Council. John began his first term of office in August 2014. John's current term is due to end on 31 July 2021. Prior to this, John was an external expert member of the University's Audit Committee for the 2013/14 academic year. John is a member of the Audit and Risk Committee, Remuneration Committee and the University Health and Safety Executive Committee.

John was awarded a CBE in the Queen's Honours list in 2004 for services to the defence and aerospace industry.

John has a DEng from the University of Warwick and holds a BSC (Hons) from the University of Strathclyde. John is a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering (FREng), a Chartered Engineer (CEng), a Fellow of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers (FIMechE) and is a Fellow of the Royal Aeronautical Society (FRAeS).

John's Aerospace career spans 44 years with Rolls-Royce, Smiths Group and GE.

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Professor Christopher Hughes

Professor Christopher Hughes serves on the University Council as an ex-officio member in his capacity as Pro-Vice Chancellor for Education. Chris is a member of the Financial plan Sub-Committee.

Chris is a Professor of International Politics and Japanese Studies in PAIS; Research Associate at the Centre for the Study of Globalisation and Regionalisation; Research Associate at the Edwin O. Reischauer Centre for Japanese Studies, Harvard University, and also holds research associate positions at the University of Waseda and University of Hiroshima in Japan. He was previously Edwin O. Reischauer Visiting Professor of Japanese Studies at the Department of Government, Harvard University, and Asahi Shimbun Visiting Professor of Mass Media and Politics, University of Tokyo. He was President of the British Association of Japanese Studies, 2010-2013.

Chris is Principal Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.

Professor Saul Jacka

Saul Jacka is one of four academic members of staff who are nominated to represent the Senate on the University Council. Their current term of office on Council is due to end on 31 July 2021.

Saul is a Professor in the Statistics Department specialising in Mathematical Finance and Probability and a Turing Fellow. He is a member of the University’s European Executive and inaugural chair of the Academic Freedom Review Committee (AFRC).

He is an independent examiner for the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries, a director of the UoW Pension Scheme trustee company and a member of the Joint Expert Panel on USS.

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Dr Deborah Keith

Dr Deborah Keith is an independent member of the University Council. Deborah began her first term of office in August 2015 and her current second term of office is due to end on 31 July 2021. Deborah is a member of the Finance and General Purposes Committee.

Deborah has over 30 years of experience in the science and technology sector, most recently in corporate R&D with Syngenta, a global agri-business. Following an early career in academic research in plant genetics, and in international development in Bhutan, she spent sixteen years focused on the commercialisation of R&D innovation, which included heading up the Syngenta crop protection research portfolio to deliver global products to development, leading R&D strategy development and organisational change. As Head of External Collaborations at Syngenta, Dr Keith headed global teams to build strategic partnerships with academia and commercial enterprises.

Dr Keith is currently a Non-Executive Director of the Boards of the BBSRC, the Aerospace Technology Institute, the John Innes Centre, the James Hutton Institute and Redag Crop Protection Ltd, and Chair of James Hutton Ltd.

Professor David Leadley

David Leadley is one of four academic members of staff who are nominated to represent the Senate on the University Council. Their current term of office on Council is due to end on 31 July 2022.

David is a Professor in the Physics Department, where he has been Head of Department since 2015. His research is in experimental condensed matter physics and specifically in the electronic properties of low-dimensional semiconductors.

David joined Warwick, from Oxford, in 1995. He set up the Midlands Physics Alliance Graduate School in 2007, has been Chair of the Science Faculty Graduate Studies Committee and was briefly Academic Director of the Graduate School. In 2014, he established the interdisciplinary Materials Global Research Priority, and co-led this for five years.

David has sat on many University committees, panels and working groups, which currently include the University Health and Safety Executive Committee and Research Technology Platform Steering Group. He is committed to widening participation, equality of opportunity, and a workplace where everyone is respected and appreciated.

Andy Lockett

Professor Andy Lockett is one of the four academic members of staff who are nominated to represent the Senate on the University Council. Their current term of office on Council is due to end on 31 July 2022. Andy is Dean of Warwick Business School.

Prior to becoming Dean in 2016, Andy undertook a number of leadership roles in WBS including the Head of the Entrepreneurship and Innovation Group, Associate Dean, and Pro-Dean. He became Deputy Dean of the school in 2014 with specific responsibility for the school’s research, engagement and impact strategy.

Andy’s research and teaching interests intersect the areas of strategy, innovation and entrepreneurship.

 

Luke Mepham

 

Rachel Moseley

Jayne Nickalls

Jayne Nickalls is an independent member of the University Council. Jayne began her first term of office in October 2019 and this term is due to end on 31 July 2022.

Jayne is Non-Executive Director of the Pension Protection Fund, and has a strong track record of using information technology to deliver services to consumers during a career spanning almost 30 years in the private and public sectors. Jayne is also currently non-executive director at JADU Inc,

Jayne led Directgov (the UK citizen information service, now GOV.UK) for over five years, leading the organisation from start-up to an established business, at the heart of the government’s digital strategy in the Cabinet Office.

Jayne is a fellow of the Royal Society of Arts (FRSA).

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Adrian Penfold OBE

Adrian Penfold is an independent member of the University Council. Adrian began his first term of office in 2016 and his second term is due to end on 31 July 2022. Adrian chairs the University Estate Committee and is a member of the Finance and General Purposes Committee.

Adrian joined British Land in 1996, following his time in local government and with the London Docklands Development Corporation.

At British Land he has dealt with major mixed use development projects in the UK and in the Republic of Ireland, with a particular focus on central London, including the award winning Regent’s Place and Leadenhall Building (the 'Cheesegrater').

He was a member of the Barker Review of Land Use Planning’s Panel of Experts and led the Government appointed independent Penfold Review of Non-Planning Consents which reported in July 2010. He was a member of the Government appointed Local Plans Expert Group which reported in 2016 and is a commissioner on the Governments Building Better, Building Beautiful Commission.

He was awarded the OBE in March 2016 for Service to the Property Industry and Public Service to Planning.

He is also Non-Executive Chairman of the Design South East charity.

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Neil Sachdev MBE

Neil Sachdev is the Treasurer of the University and an independent member of the University Council. Neil began his first term of office in 2016 and his current term is due to end on 31 July 2021. Neil is a member of the Finance and General Purposes Committee and the Financial Plan Sub-Committee. Neil is also a member and chair of the Warwick Business School Advisory Board and the Campus and Commercial Services Steering Committee.

Neil joined Tesco PLC in 1978, and was property director there before joining J Sainsbury PLC as commercial director in March 2007. Neil held the position of property director until leaving J Sainsbury PLC in March 2014. He was Chairman of the Institute of Grocery Distribution until April 2014.

He is currently Chairman of Bonhill Group plc, CakeBox Holdings plc, Energy Savings Trust and Exclusive Contracts Group Limited, as well as being a governor at Nuffield Health and Network Rail Property.

 

Akosua Sefah

Professor Mike Shipman

Professor Mike Shipman serves on the University Council as an ex-officio member in their capacity as Pro-Vice-Chancellor for International. Mike is also a member of the Financial Plan Sub-Committee.

Mike has responsibility for the academic leadership of the development and delivery of the University’s international strategy.

Mike was educated at Imperial College London and held a SERC/NATO postdoctoral fellowship at Colorado State University. After academic appointments at Loughborough and Exeter, he joined Warwick as a Professor of Synthetic Chemistry in 2003. He served as Head of Department for Chemistry (2010-14), Chair of the Faculty of Science (2015-18) and Chair of the Faculty of Science, Engineering and Medicine (2018-19). Mike is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry and a Chartered Chemist.

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Professor Pam Thomas

Professor Pam Thomas serves on the University Council as an ex-officio member in her capacity as Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Research. Pam is a member of the Gift Acceptance Committee, Nominations Committee, University of Warwick Foundation and the Financial Plan Sub-Committee.

Pam works across Warwick’s departments to maintain the University’s research excellence. Pam oversees departmental and inter-faculty developments, and heads the University’s efforts to generate the impact research at Warwick deserves. The Global Research Priorities programme, for which she provides leadership, has provided the University with significant international attention.

Pam was educated at Oxford University, where she took a degree in Physics, a DPhil in the Clarendon Laboratory and undertook post-doctoral research. She is currently a Trustee of the Faraday Institute.

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Gail Tucker

Gail Tucker is an independent member of the University Council. Gail began her first term of office in 2016 and her second term is due to end on 31 July 2022. Prior to this, Gail was an external expert member of the Universtiy's Audit Committee for the 2015/16 academic year. Gail is a member of the Audit and Risk Committee.

Gail is an experienced audit partner and lead Global IFRS technical partner responsible for insurance at PricewaterhouseCoopers. She is a member of the EFRAG Insurance Accounting Working Group and the ICAEW Insurance Committee in the UK. Gail was admitted to the partnership in 1997 and has worked with insurance companies for over 20 years.

Gail is a frequent speaker at conferences and author of several publications. She works closely with clients and engagement teams on a number of the largest companies reporting under IFRS.