Impact Group

Role of the Impact Group

From the outset we have been keen to involve key players from industry and the further education sector in the project, recognising that their involvement is crucial in enabling us to contribute knowledge which is relevant and useful for governing boards, policy makers and other stakeholders.

We have therefore set up the Impact Group, comprising representatives from each of the eight participating colleges and key organisations in the four UK nations. The Impact Group is coordinated by Professor Ron Hill, a leading practitioner and academic in the field of governance in colleges of further education.

The Impact Group will advise on the direction of the research and ensure that the findings are disseminated to, and taken up by, relevant bodies.

List of Impact Group Members and Organisations

Andy Hall – British Council

Ian McKay – Otherhand Ltd

Iestyn Davies – Colleges Wales

Jo Matthews – ETF

Louise Thomson – ICSA

Victoria Underwood – CDN

Erika Stoddart – TEC Partnership

Gill Alton, OBE – TEC Partnership

Fiona McCauley – South West College

Karen Kelly – Glasgow City College

Louise Thomas – Cardiff & Vale College

Steve Taylor – Dundee & Angus College

Toby Prosser – Grŵp LLandrillo Menai

Martin Doel – University College London

Susan Bailey – TEC Partnership

Lindsay Armstrong – Southern Regional College

Kieran Swail – Southern Regional College

Full details on Impact Group Members and links to Organisations

Ian McKay

Ian is the owner of consultancy firm, Otherhand Ltd that specialises in high-level facilitation and mediation in Scotland.

Ian serves as Independent Chair of the Scottish Police Negotiating Board, which considers police officer terms and conditions in Scotland, and chairs the Scottish Police Consultative Forum. This involvement is complemented at UK level where Ian is a Board member of the Security Industry Authority, which is responsible for regulating the private security industry across the UK.

Elsewhere, Ian is a Board member at Critiqom Ltd, a leading print and mail services provider and a member of the Scottish Advisory Committee for the telecoms regulator, Ofcom. He also chairs the Business Advisory Board at Stirling University Management School, where he is an Honorary Professor.

Ian was previously the Director of Scottish Affairs for Royal Mail Group in Scotland, and held senior positions with the Educational Institute of Scotland and at Stevenson College Edinburgh. He has been a leading member of the Institute of Directors in Scotland for some years and remains a member of the IoD UK Council. He was previously a longstanding member of the Scottish Council of the CBI and the Executive Committee of the Scottish Council for Development and Industry.

Ian served as inaugural Chairman of the Board of Edinburgh College and was a Board member at Colleges Scotland, the sector body for Further Education in Scotland, where he chaired the Employers’ Association for the sector. He was previously a member of the UK NHS Pay Review Body, and served on the boards of Lothian Buses plc., the Scottish Business Crime Centre, the Centre for Confidence and Well-Being, Arts & Business Scotland, and the Edinburgh UNESCO City of Literature Trust.

He lives in the Borders with his wife Ruth, who is a Headteacher in Edinburgh.

To find out more about Otherhand Ltd, please click here.

Jo Matthews

An experienced leader, executive coach, trainer, sustainable development specialist and facilitator of organisational change, with 34 years working in the Further and Higher Education sector. Previously a senior post holder in a General College of Further Education, she set up her own business 10 years ago to work with strategic leadership teams, using coaching and appreciative inquiry as a foundation. She has a strategic and systemic understanding of all aspects of education, refreshed recently as a chair of a college corporation supporting a college turnaround.

Coaching executives, CEO’s and Board members, both as one to one, and in small teams. The clients tend to focus around whole organisational change, and the leadership requirements for success. Facilitates governor residentials and executive away days, particularly around Corporate Responsibility and using Appreciative Inquiry in leadership.

Serves on several boards, both for educational establishments and charities. Currently a Leadership and Governance strategic associate with the Education and Training Foundation.

Exercised at the moment by unconscious bias and how it impacts on board effectiveness, and increasing diversity in the sector.

To find out more about the Education and Training Foundation, please click here.

Louise Thomson

Louise Thomson FCIS is head of policy for ICSA: The Governance Institute covering the not-for-profit sectors. She has a wealth of governance experience covering charities, educational institutions, health bodies, and the sports sector, leading on ICSA’s activities to promote good governance and better understanding of the role and value of the governance professional.

To find out more about ICSA: The Governance Institute, please click here.

Victoria Underwood

Vicky Underwood is Head of Leadership and Governance and part of the leadership team within CDN, the skills and sector development agency. CDN’s mission is to maximise the impact of education for learners across the vocational and college system in Scotland.

We have three aims, through which we deliver our mission:

• We work to improve the quality of teaching and support for learners by developing the skills and expertise of our vocational workforce.

• We invest in the strategic vision and performance of vocational education, by developing great emerging leaders and excellent governance structures in colleges and beyond.

• We are a catalyst for sector innovation, by networking colleges and showcasing their expertise, connecting industry and education to boost economic growth, and empowering partnerships that join up the learner journey.

CDN has a key role in translating Scottish Government policy drivers into practical actions for colleges. We do this by developing and sharing good practice to support high quality learning and teaching, creating and sharing resources and acting as a hub for connecting staff across the sector.

Prior to joining CDN, Vicky was International Business Manager at Edinburgh College, where she was responsible for expanding the college’s international portfolio of commercial activity, developing strategic partnerships, as well as leading a number of high-value projects in TVET.   Vicky has also served as Vice-Chair of the CDN’s International Network and the Association of Colleges’ Latin American Business Group. Prior to this, Vicky undertook a number of political policy roles in both Edinburgh and London.

To find out more about CDN, please click here.

Fiona McCauley

Fiona McCauley is Secretary to the Governing Body of South West College, a College of Further and Higher Education based in the South West of Northern Ireland and a partner college for this project.

Fiona is a graduate of Queen’s University Belfast’s faculty of Engineering and has worked in both the public and private sectors in the fields of software engineering, social inclusion, economic development and governance.  In her current role she is responsible for the effective management of the business of the Governing Body of South West College and for ensuring the proper exercise of its powers.

To find out more about South West College, please click here.

Karen Kelly

Karen has recently moved into freelance consultancy specialising in financial management, organisational governance and programme assurance. From 2012 to 2015 she was Head of Corporate Programmes at the City of Edinburgh Council, responsible for overseeing a diverse range of major projects. Prior to this she was Head of Financial Services and also spent time as Treasurer to the Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo and Forth Road Bridge. Karen is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy, serving as Scottish Chair in 2008-09, and is currently a member of the Institute Council.  She also serves on the Board of the Golden Jubilee Hospital where she is Chair of the Audit and Risk Committee.

To find out more about Glasgow City College, please click here.

Louise Thomas

Clerk to the Corporation/Group Head of Corporate Governance for Cardiff and Vale College: Louise was appointed to the newly merged College to head-up the corporate governance function and has since steered the Board through a sector-leading restructure. Prior to her role in corporate governance, and before relocating back to Cardiff, Louise started her career in London as a Graduate Trainee on the Marks & Spencer Management Programme in HR, and then moved to professional service firms Allen & Overy as a HR Manager and Ernst & Young as a Senior Recruitment Manager. Louise has also worked as a local volunteer for Breast Cancer Care and has been a Board member of two local charities, Bombastic Dance and Penarth Pier Pavillion.

To find out more about Cardiff and Vale College, please click here.

Steve Taylor

Steve Taylor is Vice Principal People and Performance at Dundee and Angus College.

Educated at the University of the West of Scotland and Strathclyde Business School, Steve has worked in the engineering sector, as well as higher and further education, and is an Associate Assessor with Education Scotland. Steve is responsible for a broad remit at Dundee and Angus College which includes operating as Secretary to the College and executive responsibility for Outcome Agreement and Strategic Planning; Human Resources and Organisational Development; Quality; Student Services; Business Intelligence; Learner Engagement and the Students’ Association.

To find out more about Dundee and Angus College, please click here.

Toby Prosser

Toby Prosser is Director of Governance and Information at Grŵp Llandrillo Menai. He holds over two decades of FE and Local Authority management experience. He chairs the Further Education Governance Network for Wales, and is Chair of Governors on behalf of a Local Authority School. Toby has contributed to several national publications supported by ColegauCymru; these include a 2016 Good Governance Code for FE which has been formally adopted by all Welsh Colleges, and Welsh Government endorsed FE Sector guidance on Complaints handling and practice.

To find out more about Grŵp Llandrillo Menai, please click here.

Martin Doel

Martin Doel was appointed as the first Further Education Trust for Leadership Professor of Leadership in Further Education and Skills at University College London (Institute of Education) in April 2016 after having previously been the Chief Executive of the Association of Colleges (AoC) from 2008.  Prior to this Martin served for 28 years in the Royal Air Force where his final appointment was as Director of Training and Education for all three Armed Services, working in the Ministry of Defence, the largest employer of apprentices in the UK.

Martin’s particular research interests at UCL (IOE) have been concerned with the distinctive contribution that further education can make to national prosperity and individual well-being, and the leadership challenges facing further education providers of all kinds.  He advises the UK government on reform of apprenticeships and wider skills provision through his membership of a range of consultative and advisory boards. In April 2019, Martin moved to visiting status at UCL (IOE), and at the request of the Further Education Commissioner, was appointed Interim Chair of West Kent and Ashford College which became only the second college in England to be place into education administration.  In January 2020, at the request of the Further Education Commissioner, he was appointed Interim Chair of Highbury College.

He is also a Trustee of the Royal Society for Blind Children, a Governor of Cambridge Regional College and the independent member of the Audit and Risk Committee of the Institute for Technical and Further Education and  a member of its Covid-19 Response Oversight Group.

To learn more about University College London, please click here.

Susan Bailey

Susan Bailey is Clerk to the Corporation at the TEC Partnership, formerly the Grimsby Institute Group, one of England’s largest providers of further and higher education.  Susan joined the TEC Partnership in November 2015 and advises the Corporation with regard to the operation and effective conduct of its business and good governance practice.  Susan has played an integral role in steering and supporting the Corporation through a governance restructure in 2017 which now includes the operation of a local board at each of the TEC Partnership’s core learning sites in order to promote local accountability and allow increased focus on local strategic opportunities and developments.

Susan is an experienced governance professional having supported and advised governors and senior leaders at a number of Further & Higher Education colleges for over 18 years. Susan holds a BSc Degree in Information Science having worked in the Education Sector for over 25 years.

To learn more about the TEC Partnership, please click here.

Kieran Swail

Kieran Swail is a Staff Governor, a member of the Finance Committee and has been employed for eight years as a Tourism Innovation Specialist, part of the Business Support Team at Southern Regional College.  He has over 30 years industrial experience in a variety of roles as an Associate Tourism Consultant, running his own tourism training and consultancy business, working as a Lecturer / Course Co-ordinator in Travel and Tourism, operating educational tours and managing a pub.

Kieran holds a MSc in Tourism Management, a BA Hons Degree in Hospitality and Tourism Management, a Post Graduate Diploma in Further and Higher Education and a Post Graduate Diploma in Innovation and Design Thinking.

To learn more about Southern Regional College, please click here.

Lindsay Armstrong

Lindsay Armstrong is Secretary to the Governing Body of Southern Regional College, a College of Further and Higher Education with campuses in Newry, Armagh, Banbridge, Portadown, Lurgan and Kilkeel. In her current role, Lindsay is responsible for organising the business and providing efficient administrative service to the Governing Body and its Committees.

Prior to joining SRC, Lindsay was employed for 10 years within the Legal, Governance and Monitoring Department of Kirklees Council which routinely dealt with matters pertaining to litigation, planning, childcare, conveyancing, housing, contracts and employment law. As Secretary to the Solicitor to the Council, Lindsay’s work experience comprises of matters relating to corporate governance, data protection and freedom of information, standards complaints and fraud investigations.

Lindsay is a graduate of Huddersfield University and holds a Bachelor of Science in Architectural Technology.

To learn more about Southern Regional College, please click here.

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