Advisory Board 

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The purpose of the Business School Advisory Board is to:

  • Advise on our strategic objectives and their attainment
  • Seek to enhance the Business School's links with the corporate world

About the Board

The Board consists of high-level executives selected for their exceptional stature and their commitment to Birmingham Business School. The contribution they make is crucial to our continued success and future development. Our Advisory Board is chaired by Lord Digby Jones of Birmingham Kt.

The Board

All the Board members are global ambassadors of the School and actively engage individually throughout the year.

Chair: Lord Digby Jones

Lord Digby Jones Kt LLB (hons), D.Univ, D.Litt. DL, CIMgt, FRI
Chairman of the International Business Advisory Board of HSBC Plc
Business Ambassador for Jaguar Cars

Digby Jones is probably the best known ambassador of business and international trade in the UK. He began his career in law, spending 20 years with Edge & Ellison, a Birmingham-based firm of lawyers, where he worked his way up from Articled Clerk to Senior Partner.

In 2000 he joined the CBI and was able to put some of these ideas into action. During his six and a half years as Director General he became known in the public arena especially for his candid, forthright attitude in his many media appearances. He campaigned relentlessly on a range of issues including the move from traditional manufacturing of commodities to value-added, innovative products and services. He also lobbied against protectionism protesting that “it is a scourge which may well find short term popularity but inhibits growth, reduces wealth and oppresses the weak”.

In 2005 he was knighted for his services to business and became Sir Digby Jones in the Queen’s New Years Honours List.

In July 2007 he was appointed Minister of State for UK Trade & Investment and became a life peer taking the title, Digby, Lord Jones of Birmingham Kt. Forthright and, as ever, loyal to British business he spent the next 15 months “doing it in a different way”. He did not join the party of government and without the ambition to progress in politics he concentrated on the business of promoting Britain across the world, travelling to 31 countries in 45 overseas visits.

Now, in addition to his role as an active crossbencher in the House of Lords he serves as Chairman of Triumph Motorcycles Limited, Chairman of Grove Industries, a non-executive director of Flybe, Senior Advisor to HSBC and is Corporate Ambassador for Jaguar Cars and JCB. He has many plans for the decades to come.

Vice Chair: Lord Bilimoria CBE, DL

Lord Bilimoria CBE, DL
Founder of Cobra and Chairman of The Cobra Beer Partnership Ltd
Chancellor of The University of Birmingham

Born in India, Lord Karan Bilimoria graduated in Law from Cambridge University and qualified as a Chartered Accountant with Ernst and Young. Karan is famed for developing Cobra Beer – a less gassy, premium lager brewed to specifically appeal to both ale drinkers and lager drinkers alike and to complement food. Karan spent twenty years building the Cobra Brand name and grew his reputation as a major UK entrepreneur on the speaker circuit. Karan’s family have enjoyed a long association with the University; his grandfather, mother and uncle all studied here, and we were delighted when he agreed to become Chancellor of the University of Birmingham in 2014.

In 2009 Karan went into partnership with Molson Coors who bought 50.1% of Cobra Beer. Karan is the Representative Deputy Lieutenant of the London Borough of Hounslow. Additionally, Karan serves as UK Chairman of the Indo British Partnership, and lectures extensively in the UK and abroad on entrepreneurship, business, education, and the Indo-British relationship. In June 2006, Karan was appointed Lord Bilimoria, of Chelsea. Karan still spends a great deal of his time back in India, where his family and other business interests remain, and has been pivotal in helping advise on the Business School’s marketing effort in India.

Board Members

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Supriya Banerji
Head of Policy Group – Confederation of Indian Industry (CII)

Based in India, Supriya Banerji currently heads the CII’s International Division. Prior to this she was head of the Policy Division and Media Department. Her current responsibilities entail looking after the CII’s international activities in India and their operations overseas. She has also been the Regional Director of CII Southern Region where she has networked with industry and government in the states of Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala, Pondicherry and Tamil Nadu.

Supriya was also in charge of CII operations in the UK, based in London, where she networked with government departments, the Commonwealth Secretariat, industry associations / Chambers of Commerce, universities and various educational institutions. She joined CII in 1984 at the CII regional headquarters in Mumbai. Supriya Banerji holds a postgraduate degree in Industrial Sociology from the University of Mumbai. Supriya was awarded the OBE in 2006.

Ghaleb Cachalia
Managing Director – Interbrand Sampson, South Africa

Based in South Africa, Ghaleb’s experience in business management spans over twenty years. He is Managing Director of Interbrand Sampson, South Africa – the African associate of the Interbrand group which is listed via Omincom on the NYSE. Immediately prior to this he was Executive Director of Baird's - one of the largest full-service public relations and public affairs consultancies in Southern Africa. From 2004 – 2007 Ghaleb was Group Executive & Head of De Beers Group Corporate and External Affairs. He also spent three years as a partner in the international strategy firm Monitor, where he was Global Account Manager. He has consulted on infrastructure projects in Africa and on strategy for leading global firms.

He has founded and managed manufacturing operations in South Africa, Malawi and Mozambique, and managed consulting projects at Board level in the UK, Europe and South Africa. As a Fund Manager at the private equity firm Cycad Fund Managers, he was responsible for raising the Women's Private Equity Fund. Ghaleb has served on the Boards of a number of diamond mining companies across the SADC region and boards of numerous business and educational bodies internationally. He is also chairman of a strategy and investment advisory company focusing on Indo-African businesses. 

Charlotte Conlan
Head of Loan Syndications, EMEA, BNP Paribas

Charlotte Conlan joined the banking industry upon graduating from the University of Birmingham. She started her career with NatWest and held a number of positions in specific financing areas as well as Advisory & Equity Coverage. Charlotte joined BNP Paribas in 2000 to run the leverage syndications business for the Bank in EMEA. She grew this business into a multi-billion euro distribution activity as the private equity sector developed. Charlotte was appointed Head of Loan Origination & Sales, EMEA for the Bank in 2011 and is responsible for the underwriting and distribution of all loan product across the EMEA region.

She works with clients at all stage of their development, and across all lending sectors and the team is consistently ranked at the top of the EMEA league tables. She is a founding member of the Bank’s London diversity group. Charlotte is a member of the Loan Market Association Board, which seeks to improve liquidity and transparency in the primary and secondary loan markets and is a regular contributor to industry magazines and speaker at conferences.

Andraea Dawson-Shepherd
SVP Global Corporate Communication and Affairs – Reckitt Benckiser Group PLC

Andraea joined Reckitt Benckiser PLC in 2008. Reckitt Benckiser is a world leader in household, health and personal care products. The company is truly global, with over 60 operating companies, 49 manufacturing facilities worldwide, and sales in more than 180 countries. Her accountabilities include all external communication and internal leadership and change communication, including corporate and financial PR, crisis communication and the company’s corporate presence online.  Previously Andraea was Global Communication Director of Cadbury Schweppes PLC for seven years, with global responsibility for Cadbury’s internal and external corporate communications, supporting the business’ mission of being a values-led and performance-driven business passionate about both performance and stewardship. 

Prior to joining Cadbury Schweppes, Andraea co-founded Hedron: one of Europe’s leading internal and change communication consultancies. She has worked in and with a wide range of global corporations including Diageo, Aon, Shell, HSBC, Avon, De la Rue and Lloyds TSB. Andraea started her career working in the Houses of Parliament and then in Government Affairs in UK and Europe. After this she moved into financial PR and then into marketing and corporate PR and advertising. She was educated at CASS Business School, where she did her MBA, and Oxford and Exeter Universities where she was an undergraduate in Chemistry.  She has been a visiting lecturer on Services Marketing at CASS Business School. Andraea has authored several articles on communication and change management, and co-edited ‘Understanding Organisational Dynamics’ (Routledge).

Baroness Rita Donaghy CBE, OBE
Former Chair – Advisory, Conciliation & Arbitration Service – ACAS 2000 - 2007

Lady Donaghy began her career as a university administrator and trade unionist who went on to hold significant industrial positions in public life before being created a Labour Life Peer in the 2010 Dissolution Honours List, when she became Baroness Donaghy of Peckham. Prior to becoming a Baroness, Rita was awarded the OBE for services to industrial relations in 1998, then created CBE in 2005 for services to employment relations.

Lady Donaghy was chair of ACAS for seven years where she drove the ACAS mission to improve organisations and working life through better employment relations. Prior to this appointment, Lady Donaghy was President of the TUC 1999 to 2000. She served on the National Executive Council of NALGO/UNISON from 1973 to 2000, including a spell as President.

From 1987 to 2000, Lady Donaghy was a member of the TUC’s General Council and has also served on the executive of the European TUC. She was a member of the Low Pay Commission and the Equal Opportunities Commission Task Group on Equal Pay. She was appointed a member of the Committee on Standards in Public Life (The Graham Committee) in February 2001. Lady Donaghy holds a Fellowship of the Chartered Institute for Personnel and Development, and a Fellowship of the RSA, and honorary degrees from the Open University, Keele University and Greenwich University. 

David Gilbey
Co-founder – Aubert Park Venture Ltd, and Wood for Trees Digital
(Former Vice President – AOL)

David co-founded Aubert Park Ventures in 2007, a privately-funded digital start-up that is creating digital consumer offerings targeting mainstream audiences in the UK and beyond.  David is also a co-founder of Wood for Trees Digital, which helps organisations identify and take advantage of digital opportunities.

From 2003 to 2007, David was Vice President of AOL responsible for the overall online consumer offering for AOL UK and for AOL’s international video and TV propositions, where he created and served the UK’s most engaged mass online audience. Prior to AOL, David was UK Managing Director of Synapse, a $300 million division acquired by Time Inc.

Prior to that, David was Vice President of Time Inc. in New York and London, where he worked on brands including Time, Fortune and Money, both online and off-line.   David graduated with a Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of Birmingham in 1986.

Renate Hornung–Draus
Managing Director – Confederation of German Employers (BDA)

Based in Germany, Renate Hornung–Draus is Managing Director and Director of European and International Affairs of the Confederation of German Employers (BDA). This is the top business organisation representing the interests of private employers in the field of employment, labour and social affairs in Germany covering all sectors of the German economy. Via its sectoral and regional member organisations it represents the interests of 2 million companies employing 80% of the work force in the private sector. 

Renate directs BDA’s activities worldwide. This includes representing the employers’ views through the European institutions (European Commission, EP, Council) and the international organisations (ILO, OECD, UN-organisations), providing advice and services to member organisations and companies on European and international issues, such as European works councils, international framework agreements, corporate social responsibility, labour law and industrial relations issues.

She is chair of the BUSINESSEUROPE (Voice of European Business) Social Affairs Committee, member of the European Social Dialogue Committee, Vice-President of the International Organisation of Employers (IOE), member of the Governing Body of the International Labour Organisation (ILO). Previously she was Director of social affairs at BUSINESSEUROPE (1992–1994) and Director of the BDA’s EU representation, which she established in Brussels (1990–1992).

Anji Hunter
Senior Adviser, Edelman

Anji was born in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, and was educated at St. Leonard’s school, St. Andrews and St. Clare’s Hall, Oxford. After gaining a First in History (BA Hons) at the University of Brighton she worked in a London law firm and taught English in Spain and London. In 1987, she joined Tony Blair as a Political Researcher, rising to be Head of the Private Office in 1994. She ran the Prime Minister’s election campaign in 1997 and entered Downing Street as Director of Government Relations, playing a critical role in implementing the Government’s communications strategy, where she was famously described as “the most influential non-elected person in Downing Street”.

In 2001, she became Director of Government Relations, where she had particular responsibility for links with media, business and foreign governments. She joined BP as Director of Communications in February 2002 where she was responsible for the co-ordination and direction of a range of communications activities that included pro-active communications planning and execution, both internal and external, group reputation measurement, sponsorship, electronic media and events management. Anji left BP in 2008 and became Group Head of Government and Social Affairs for Anglo American, one of the world's largest mining corporations.

She left to join The Royal Academy of Engineering as Director, where she successfully established the Queen Elizabeth Prize for Engineering, awarded in 2013, and helped to promote engineering to the next generation, especially women. She is now a Senior Adviser with Edelman, the world’s largest PR group. Anji Hunter is married to Adam Boulton, Political Editor of Sky News.

Mushtaq Kazi
Senior Consultant – ABB Group 

Based in Switzerland, Mushtaq joined ABB in 2000 and has supported strategic IT initiatives globally. ABB is a global leader in power and automation technologies that enable utility and industry customers to improve performance, whilst lowering the environmental impact. Mushtaq has held several positions at ABB in both Europe and America and is currently collaborating with the group’s technology ventures. Mushtaq started his career with Rover Group, as a Design Engineer working on various car and 4x4 programmes.

As part of the BMW Group, Mushtaq was appointed manager for BMW projects, within the Information Systems department. Mushtaq is passionate about education and has done a lot to support youth development in the West Midlands area. He was a founder member of the Aston Youth Forum established in July 2000 – a fully constituted voluntary organisation working with young people, to enable them to gain opportunities for personal development. Mushtaq did his MBA at Birmingham Business School in 2006, returning to Switzerland immediately after, where he has since helped create international project openings with his clients for MSc and MBA students.

Andrew Lezala
CEO, Metro Trains Melbourne, Australia

A business leader and engineer with 35 years experience in the rail industry. He started his career as a British Railways engineering graduate and spent 10 years in vehicle design, project engineering and maintenance. With a move into the private sector, Andrew started to manage businesses and lead transformations, spending much of his time since, building and turning around rail related businesses.

He has been President of Daimler Chrysler’s world wide metros business, President of Bombardier Transportation’s world wide services division, and CEO of Jarvis Rail and Metronet. Andrew was based in Beijing for four years and then took over the running of what is now Bombardier Australia. He returned to Melbourne ten years later to lead the MTM consortium bid for the Metropolitan Rail Franchise. He has been CEO of Metro Trains Melbourne since November 2009. Andrew is married with three grown up children, and is a keen cyclist, swimmer and guitarist.

Anna Lin
Chief Executive – GS1 Hong Kong

Based in Hong Kong, Anna Lin and her husband graduated from the Birmingham MBA in 1988. In 1989 Anna joined the Hong Kong Article Numbering Association, rising to Chief Executive. She is now Chief Executive of both GS1 Hong Kong and EPCGlobal Hong Kong. EPC is Electronic  Product Code and it is anticipated that in the next 15 years RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) will be the universal method of tagging consignments.

Anna and her organisations are concerned with the development, adoption and dissemination of universal technological and management platforms and standards in international supply chains. The overall aim is, broadly, to link virtual supply chains enabling companies across the world to communicate through a common business language.

Jane Lodge
Non Executive Director – Costain Group plc, DCC plc, and Devro plc

A graduate of the University of Birmingham, Jane was a partner in Deloitte (formerly Touche Ross) from 1986 to 2011. She now has a portfolio of non-exec positions including Non Executive Director and Chair of the Audit Committee for leading UK international manufacturing plc’s: Costain Group and Devro and international sales, marketing, distribution and business support services group DCC plc. She has extensive experience in advising global businesses in a variety of sectors including manufacturing, financial services, construction and house building.

As a partner at Deloitte, Jane held various senior roles at Deloitte. She was head of the Deloitte Manufacturing Group in the UK, leading the firm’s development of business with manufacturing clients and representing the UK on the Deloitte Global Manufacturing Executive Group, and she also held the position of Practice Senior Partner in the Midlands. She was the partner responsible for the firm's UK assurance and advisory training and development, and also spearheaded a global learning taskforce which is now used as the de facto standard for development and implementation of global learning programmes which have been rolled out to offices around the world. She was a member of the Deloitte UK Board of Partners for a 2 year term.

In October 2001 Jane was awarded the prestigious title of Midlands Business Woman of the Year and three years later Jane received a Lifetime Achievement award from the Birmingham and West Midlands Society of Chartered Accountants for her services to the profession. In 2006 she was nominated to the Manufacturing Power 50 by The Manufacturer magazine sponsored by Barclays. Jane chaired the Audit Committee of the University of Birmingham for 7 years and was a member of its Council for 9 years. A former council member of the West Midlands CBI, she is currently member of the CBI Manufacturing Council. Jane is a Board member of the Black Country Living Museum.

Dr Angela Maxwell, OBE
Director – Acuwomen

Angela Maxwell achieved prominence as one of the region’s most dynamic entrepreneurs after she powered Fracino, the UK’s only manufacturer of espresso and cappuccino coffee machines, from a £400,000 turnover in 1995 into a £3.6 million world-class leading brand when she sold her interest in 2008. Industry awards included a Millennium Product Award for design excellence in 2000 and recognition as an “Inner City 100” company in 2001. In 2007 Angela was one of just 200 businesswomen honoured by the Queen at Buckingham Palace, in recognition of her outstanding contribution to UK trade and industry and was awarded an OBE for Services to Business in the Birthday Honours in 2010. A former European adviser to UK Trade & Investment, a finalist in Businesswoman of the Year 2005 and a Board member of Advantage West Midlands, the regional development agency, 2007 - 2012. Angela also sits on the West Midlands Enterprise Forum and is Chair of Capsule UK advisory Board. Since 2009 Angela has been a Non Executive Director of University Hospitals Birmingham Foundation Trust and is Chair of the Investment Committee.

In 2013, Angela was appointed Chair of the Board of Directors of the Birmingham REP, the first female Chair in the theatre’s 100 year history. Acuwomen, her latest enterprise, is the UK’s first company to bring an all-women group of entrepreneurs under one roof. Angela’s hand-picked team encompasses strategic development, sales & marketing, design, PR, and telemarketing. Angela was previously Commercial Director and acting Chief Executive at Sheffield Theatres, jointly responsible for £40 million turnover. There, she managed 160 staff and directed the commercial activities of the Crucible and Lyceum Theatres. The sponsorship department she created began generating an annual turnover of £1 million after just one year. Angela has a Law degree from Oxford University, an MA from San Diego State University and an MBA with distinction from Sheffield Business School, where she earned the highest marks ever awarded.

Dame Julie Moore
CEO – University Hospital Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust

Julie is a graduate nurse who worked in clinical practice before moving into management. After a variety of clinical, management and director posts, she was appointed as Chief Executive of University Hospitals Birmingham (UHB) in 2006. UHB hosts the Royal Centre for Defence Medicine and Birmingham Health Partners, a partnership for health research. The National Institute of Health Research (NIHR) Centre for Surgical Reconstruction and Microbiology was opened at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in 2011. UHB is recognised for its expertise in clinical IT systems, informatics, PFI projects and education of clinical staff. Because of this UHB has been involved in several projects in countries throughout the world, including Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Oman, Kuwait, Abu Dhabi, Australia, Libya, Sweden and India. Julie was a member of the National Organ Donation Taskforces in 2007 and 2008 and in 2009 was a member of the Nuffield Trust Steering Group on New Frontiers in Efficiency.

She is a member of the Independent Member of the Board of the Office for Strategic Co-ordination of Health Research (OSCHR), a member of the MoD/DH Partnership Board overseeing health care of military personnel and a Board Member of Marketing Birmingham, a strategic partnership to drive the inward investment strategy for the city. She is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts. In April 2011 she was asked by the Government to be a member of the NHS Future Forum to lead on the proposals for Education and Training reform and in August was asked to lead the follow up report. Julie was made a Dame Commander of the British Empire in the New Year’s Honours 2011.

Dr Sarindar Singh Sahota OBE BSc, Hon DEng, Hon DSc.
Non Executive Director – Sandwell and West Birmingham Hospitals NHS Trust

Born in Nairobi, Kenya, Sarindar came to the UK to study at the University of Birmingham in 1971, after which he returned home to join the family business: Nairobi Terrazzo Contractors Limited in Kenya. He came back to the UK in 1989 and joined Nanak Electricals in Birmingham. He was unanimously elected to lead the regional business community as the Vice Chair of the West Midlands Regional Assembly. Sarindar is the Chair of the Single Regeneration Budget Round 6 N.W. Birmingham. He is the Deputy Chair of West Midlands Business Council, a non-executive director of the Sandwell and West Birmingham Hospital NHS Trust and the Chair of Dudley Road Traders Association. He was previously Chair of the Asian Business Forum and Institute of Asian Businesses. He is also a trustee of Acorns Hospice. He was a non-executive director of Birmingham Chamber of Commerce and Industry and Prime Focus Regeneration Group. He is a member of the Governing Council of University of Birmingham. He sits on the Regional Housing Board, the Regional Planning Partnership and the Regional Advisory Council of ITV. Sarindar chaired the Strategic Review of Advantage West Midlands Regeneration Zones Panel for the Regional Assembly. The Heart of Birmingham Primary Care Trust awarded him the 2004 Above and Beyond the Call of Duty (ABCD) award. He was given an Honorary Doctorate of Engineering by the University of Birmingham at their congregation in December 2004.

Sarindar was awarded an OBE in the 2005 New Years Honours List for his work in regeneration. Sarindar was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Science by Aston University in July 2005. Birmingham Chamber of Commerce and Industry honoured Sarindar for his work for the Business Community in 2006.

Tony Sealey OBE,
Managing Director – Canefield Limited

Tony splits his year between his businesses in the UK and the Caribbean. In the UK, he is Managing Director of Canefield Limited a company operating multi-restaurant units under a business franchise partner agreement with McDonald’s Restaurants. In the Caribbean, he is the Managing Director of UHURU Global Trading Limited, the parent company for UHURU (Barbados) Limited that  currently operates the “UK branded” Attiva Health & Fitness Clubs across the Caribbean region. Tony started his career in Local Government in 1974 where he held various positions in administration before leaving the service in 1984 to pursue self-employment as a Management Consultant and Managing Director of his own company.

For the period 2003 – 2007 he served as a director with NCB Remittances Services Limited, the UK subsidiary of the National Commercial Bank of Jamaica. He is a board member of Advantage West Midlands (AWM), the Government’s Regional Development Agency (RDA) for the West Midlands. He has chaired the Local Enterprise Agency Black Business in Birmingham (3b) since 1989 and was previously a member of the National Ethnic Minority Business Forum (EMBF), the advisory body to UK Government on ethnic minority business issues. He chaired the West Midlands Ethnic Minority Business Forum 2000 – 2002 and he was awarded the 1999 Winston Churchill Memorial Trust Travelling Fellowship to visit the United States to study the work of the Minority Business Development Agency located in the U.S Government’s Department of Commence, resulting in his publication “Good Practice in Supporting Black and Minority Ethnic Entrepreneurs”. Tony was named the Carlton Television “Midlander of the Year 2002 for Business Leadership” in recognition of his contribution to the development of sustainable businesses in disadvantaged communities.

Marc Stone
Director – Stone Consulting Ltd

Marc graduated from the University of Birmingham in 1994 before joining Lucas Aerospace at the Shaftmoor Lane factory in Birmingham where he qualified as a CIMA accountant and became lean and six sigma trained. In 1999, Marc moved to GEC Marconi becoming Finance and Programmes Director for the Global Estates business, receiving a Special Recognition Award for the Project Inspirations programmes at Ansty, Coventry, Nottingham and Genoa working in partnership with AWM, EMDA, Learning & Skills Council, Coventry City Council, Turner and Townsend and Bovislendlease. In 2002, he moved to DHL Tradeteam to drive M&A and Network Integration activity, before receiving an Innovation Award in 2006 for successfully driving the commercial transformation programme. Marc set up Stone Consulting in 2008 to provide Executive Interim Management and Consultancy, with clients in the Airline and Insurance sectors. Being a passionate advocate of the region, Marc re-engaged with the Business School providing Executive Insight Lectures, sourcing MBA placements, mentoring students and supporting the successful EQUIS audit in 2010. Former Vice President of the CIMA Birmingham Board, Marc is now a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants, and a member of the Birmingham Chamber Executive Club.

Gisela Stuart LLB
MP for Edgbaston, Birmingham UK

Born in Germany, Gisela Stuart later relocated to the UK and has since become one of the country’s most respected Labour politicians, winning four consecutive General Elections to represent Birmingham Edgbaston since 1997 which, unlike any other UK constituency, has had a woman Member of Parliament since 1953.  During the 2010 General Election Gisela was named in The Times as one of Britain's best MPs who should be voted in on merit regardless of party. Gisela was a Health Minister from 1999 – 2001. She has been a member of the Foreign Affairs Committee since 2001 and has represented UK Parliament at the Convention on the Future of Europe. Gisela wrote the Fabian Pamphlet “Writing Europe’s Constitution”. Before becoming an MP Gisela was Deputy Director of the London Book Fair and a Law Lecturer and Researcher.

Howard Wheeldon FRAeS
Independent Defence, Aerospace and Industry Analyst

Following an earlier UK and international career Howard Wheeldon has spent the past twenty-eight covering aerospace and defence as a specialist analyst. He is also a well known speaker and commentator on global macro-economic and geo-political affairs. As Senior Strategist of BGC Partners until February 2012 Wheeldon had the dual role of providing internal macro-economic and geo political comment alongside that of providing support to the UK military and defence industrial base. The latter role involved provision of support to UK defence exports in both written and spoken form. Well respected by the UK military and across the defence industrial base Wheeldon has through his many years of written, spoken and broadcast work been a major contributor to the UK defence debate.

A long time supporter of NATO, his work within defence and aerospace is generally biased toward political and industrial including equipment procurement, operation particularly that related to air power and surface ships, to proffering support to the UK defence industrial base, the UK armed forces and to providing support for UK exports through UKTI DSO. Well connected internationally and politically Wheeldon has made many trips in support of UK export and also to speak at various events. Aged 63 married and living in Fulham, London Howard Wheeldon has two children both of whom are currently at University. A corporate historian he enjoys theatre and classical music plus gardening and motorcycling.

Kate Ellis
Former Vice President, BP Shipping

Kate graduated from the University of Birmingham in 1987. She went on to become an engineer in the car industry before moving into the oil and gas industry where she moved through the ranks to build a highly successful and illustrious career at BP. During her 22 years at the company, Kate led businesses in the gas, chemicals and shipping sectors and held a number of roles in the BP Group headquarters.  Kate recently left BP in order to seek a new challenge.   As well as being a member of the Advisory Board of Birmingham Business School, Kate is also a Trustee of the Richmond Parish Lands Charity.

Professor Howard Thomas
Dean – Singapore Management University (SMU)

Based in Singapore, Professor Howard Thomas has had a distinguished, global career in business and management education spanning almost 50 years. He has been a business school Dean on three continents: University of Illinois, USA; Warwick Business School, UK and Singapore Management University, Asia. His teaching and research interests encompass strategic management and management education.  He is a highly-cited scholar, who is a Fellow of the Academy of Management, USA, the British Academy of Management, the Strategic Management Society and the Academy of Social Sciences.  He is also a Companion of the Association of Business Schools, UK.  He is a past Chair of the Board of the Graduate Management Admissions Council (GMAC), the American Association of Collegiate Schools of Business International (AACSB), the Association of Business Schools (ABS) and the Global Foundation of Management Education (GFME).  He also served as President of the Strategic Management Society.  

 

Advisory Board meetings

The Board meets annually in November each year, and usually convenes again in the spring. View the latest meeting summary, as well as previous board meeting summaries, below.

Leadership

Board members discuss what leadership means to them and offer advice to people looking to progress on to senior leadership roles themselves.