Chair WorldSkills UK
Rooney is the former CEO of the national pub retailer and brewer Greene King. Having led Greene King plc for 13 years, Rooney is credited with turning the organisation into a brand-led restaurant and hotel operator, and a FTSE-250 company. He was named Business Leader of the Year at the 2016 Lloyds Bank National Business Awards.
In 2018, Rooney was announced as Chairman of the Casual Dining Group and he also sits on the board of Morrisons.
Rooney is Chair of WorldSkills UK and also chairs the Governance and Nominations Committee.
Marion Plant, OBE FCGI
North Warwickshire & South Leicestershire College, and Deputy Chair, WorldSkills UK
Marion Plant is Principal and Chief Executive of NWSLC and Chief Executive of the Midland Academies Trust which is responsible for four secondary schools. Marion also served a 3-year term as a non-executive director at the Department for Education. In March 2018 Marion was awarded the ‘Business Woman of the Year Award’ by the East Midlands Chamber of Commerce and in September 2019 was presented with a Lifetime Achievement Award at the Leicestershire Live Women in Business Awards, devised to celebrate the outstanding achievements of female professionals in the region.
Coleg Sir Gar and Coleg Ceredigion
Barry Liles, Skills Champion for Wales and Pro-Vice-Chancellor at the University of Wales Trinity Saint David (UWTSD) was recognised in the Queen’s Honours in 2018 for his Services to Skills and Young People in Wales.
He is the former principal and CEO of Coleg Sir Gar and Coleg Ceredigon and is a member of the WSUK board of trustees.
Paul G K Little
City of Glasgow College
Paul Little is the founding Principal and CEO of Scotland’s leading college ranked No.1 in the UK for the standard of its technical and professional skills.
Principal Little has a global reputation as one of the foremost Thought Leaders and Change Innovators bringing a wealth of experience in Tertiary Sector transformation and redefinition, curriculum innovation and performance excellence. A graduate of Harvard Business School and distinguished academic, he brings a wealth of experience in tertiary sector transformation, curriculum innovation, change management and performance excellence.
Over the past 30 years he has successfully led and reshaped five UK colleges earning a national and international reputation as a visionary reformer, successful change agent, merger specialist and thought leader in redefining college education. He gained peer recognition as the top ‘Beacon of Excellence’ College in the UK and his leadership has been recognised with the Queen’s Anniversary Award. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and a Member of the Institute of Public Relations and Member of the Nautical Institute.
Mark is the Chief Executive of AELP.
Beginning his career as a chartered accountant, Mark is a member of the ESFA Advisory Board and IfA Quality Alliance advisory group. He is also on the DfE’s Apprenticeship Stakeholder Board. He is currently a governor of Sawston Village College and Stapleford Community Primary School and a scout leader.
Mark is Chair of the Finance and General Purpose Committee.
MA MBA BEng CEng FICE FIMechE FRAeS FWES
Dawn Childs is the Change Director for National Grid with responsibility for driving transformation across the UK business. She held several previous roles across various industries as; the Group Engineering Director for Merlin Entertainments with responsibility for engineering delivery and standards of over 130 theme parks and attractions; and the Head of Engineering of Gatwick Airport responsible for all of the infrastructure and technical services at the airport; she joined Gatwick in 2012 after serving for 23 years as an Engineering Officer in the RAF. She is President of the Women’s Engineering Society and a Trustee for World Skills UK.
Sam is the Senior Partner and Head of Corporate at Portland. He leads the UK team in advising global brands on a combination of communication disciplines including corporate comms, public affairs, financial communications, local campaigning, and employee engagement.
Before entering consultancy he worked at The Independent Newspaper, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and was a Teach First Participant.
Chief Executive of Cardiff and Vale College Group
Mike James is an engineer by background and now Chief Executive of Cardiff and Vale College Group. He has over 23 years of experience in the FE sector, including holding senior posts in both Bristol and a major London College prior to Cardiff.
Southern Regional College
Brian has been Principal and Chief Executive at Southern Regional College since the formation of the college in 2008. He previously held the position of Deputy Director for Teaching and Learning at the Newry and Kilkeel Institute. Brian has taught in both the post primary and further education sectors and is a past graduate of Queen’s University Belfast and Ulster University and has recently completed a senior leadership programme at the University of Oxford.