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Corporation Governing Body

David Sherlock CBE, MPhil, FCGI

David was Deputy Director of the National College of Art & Design, Dublin; Principal of Winchester School of Art; Head of Central Saint Martin's College of Art & Design; and Development Director of the Royal College of Art. In 1993 he joined the Further Education Funding Council (FEFC) as Senior Inspector before establishing the Training Standards Council (TSC) in 1997 as CEO and Chief Inspector: the first inspectorate to assess work-based learning. In 2001 he launched the Adult Learning Inspectorate (ALI) as CEO and Chief Inspector of Adult Learning for England, bringing together inspectors from TSC, the FEFC and parts of Ofsted. In 2007 he became a Director of Beyond Standards Limited, a specialist consultancy which has worked in over 20 countries and extensively in the UK. David has been a Board member of the Qualifications and Curriculum Authority (QCA); founding Chair of the National Skills Academy for Social Care; founding Chair of GTA England; President of the National Institute for Adult Continuing Education (NIACE); Vice-Chair of the Chartered Institution for Further Education; Chair of the Quality and Standards Committee, City & Guilds; and a Deputy Commissioner for Further Education. He was Professional Lead for the Lingfield Inquiry into Professionalism in Further Education. 

David was Chair of Prospects Learning Foundation, 2013-14, and the founding Chair of PROCAT.

Neil Bates FCGI
Principal and Chief Executive, PROCAT

Neil has been Chief Executive and Principal of PROCAT for over 20 years and has overseen and led its growth and development to become one of leading providers of technical vocational training in England. The last Ofsted inspection identified the college as having ‘outstanding visionary leadership’ and Neil was recently honoured for his achievements through the award of a Fellowship of the City & Guilds London Institute. Neil is the former Vice Chairman of the Learning & Skills Improvement Service and a current Board member of the Institution for Further Education, The Edge Foundation and a Governor of a Secondary School. Neil recently Chaired a Skills Commission of Enquiry in to innovation in the FE sector. He is also a Board Member and Governor of East London University Technical College.

Theo Steel FCIT

Theo is a very experienced strategic manager who has had a long and distinguished career in the Railway industry. Currently running his own business Theo was previously Project Director for National Express East Anglia and in this role heavily involved with the planning of the Olympics and Crossrail. Theo has an impressive track record of public service which includes Chairman of Renaissance Southend (URC), Chairman of Southend Business Partnership and Chairman of Essex Economic Partnership.

Kini Pathmanathan
Vice President, Human Resources for Thales

Kini works for Thales who have recently initiated a substantial Apprenticeship programme with Prospects. Kini is an HR and Communications Director at Thales and is a Chartered Member of the Institute of Personnel & Development. Her first degree was in Mechanical Engineering and she has subsequently graduated from Aston University with an MBA.

Bala Mahendran
Chief Executive at Basildon Borough
Vice Chair

Bala is an experienced senior public servant who is currently Chief Executive at Basildon Borough Council.  Home to over 175,000 residents and more than 6,500 businesses employing around 85,000, Basildon is the second largest economy in the Thames Gateway region outside of Canary Wharf.  Bala has a BSc in Mechanical Engineering and is currently Chair of the Basildon Community Safety Strategy Group, a statutory multi agency partnership, as well as being the former Chair and a current member of the Essex Chief Executives Association (ECEA) and the Thames Gateway South Essex Partnership (TGSE).


Rachel Richards BSc, FCA
Managing Director, DSA Electrical Ltd

Rachel is a Chartered Accountant and after graduating in Accounting at the University of Hull, she undertook an apprenticeship with Moores Rowland Chartered Accountants between 1996 and 1999. Once qualified, Rachel joined the insurance broker Willis Towers Watson, and worked firstly in Ipswich as a consolidation accountant, before moving to London to work as Financial Controller. She then joined the award winning family business, founded by her father, and used her commercial experience to run the back office before taking over as Managing Director in 2013. Rachel is passionate about upholding the company values of innovation, excellence and integrity on which the business was founded, and central to this is the Company's apprenticeship programme. The current skills shortage is a critical issue for anyone running construction businesses and as a result the company regularly gets involved in activities with young people to demonstrate the fulfilling careers the construction sector can offer to young men and women alike. Rachel is proud to represent the construction sector for PROCAT and has involvement with the Construction GTA and the Audit Committee.

Ruth Umerah
Principal, East London University Technical College

Ruth Umerah is currently the principal at Elutec, a University Technical College in East London, sponsored by Ford, UCL, CEME and PROCAT. Ruth is a qualified teacher with a business and accounting background and has 24 years’ experience in secondary education, ten as a senior leader. Prior to her present post, Ruth was vice-principal at The JCB Academy, the country’s first University Technical College. Ruth will bring her vast experience in education, seven years of which are in engineering education, to the Corporation Board.

Peter McKee
Vice Chair

Peter retired as President & Chief Executive Officer of L-3 TRL Technology Limited in 2012 after nine years with the company. TRL employs 400 people in Tewkesbury, Gloucestershire, producing advanced electronic warfare and national security systems for the UK and overseas defence and government customers.

Prior to joining TRL Peter spent 36 years with Raytheon, a leading aerospace and defence company. His last position with the company was as Chief Executive of Raytheon Systems Limited, responsible for all Raytheon’s defence and government operations in the UK. During his tenure Raytheon won a number of key contracts here including the £900 million ASTOR airborne surveillance system. Peter formerly held a number of Chief Executive positions within Raytheon’s European businesses, including the business jet manufacturer, Raytheon Corporate Jets, semiconductor company TAG in Zurich and motor controls supplier BSG in Balingen, Germany. His first assignment as chief executive was with the UK based software and systems company, Data Logic, having formerly been Financial Director.

Peter has been closely involved in further education since 1986, when he became a governor of Stanmore College, a tertiary college in the Borough of Harrow, and subsequently served as Chair of Governors. He was also a non-executive Board Member of the Adult Learning Inspectorate for four years and helped to oversee that organisation’s merger with OFSTED in April 2007. 

Peter is currently a Trustee and Treasurer of the City & Guilds of London Institute and is also a non-executive director of the Farnborough Aerospace Consortium. Peter is a Member of the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants and a Fellow of the Royal Aeronautical Society. He is married with four adult daughters. 

David Wells
Managing Director at JW Froehlich UK

David started a Technician Apprenticeship in 1976 working for a special machine tool company called Ex-Cell-O Corporation based in Leicester, his home town. Ex-Cell-O was an American owned company at that time and Leicester was the European Head Quarters. Having completed his Apprenticeship in 1981 David decided he needed to be better qualified so took an HND in Mechanical Engineering at Leicester Polytechnic. On completion in 1984 he embarked on a two year Master of Science Degree in Precision Machine Tool Design at The Cranfield Institute of Technology.

The final year of his MSc was sponsored by Davy McKee Poole, Dorset who manufactured Aluminium Strip Rolling Mills. David worked there for three years and in 1989 joined Landis Lund, a Precision Grinding Machine Manufacturer based in Keighley, West Yorks. David became Chief Engineer at Landis. In 1993 he moved within the holding Group to Lamb Technicon, a special machine tool Manufacturer based in  the West Midlands. He worked as Engineering Manager until 1998 when he took up the position of Sales Director for Ex-Cell-O UK, who were then owned by Ex-Cell-O GmbH, near Stuttgart in Germany. The American company had previously been closed down. David became Managing Director of Ex-Cell-O UK. In 2006 he moved within the Group to take up the position of Managing Director at JW Froehlich UK, where he is currently based in Laindon. 

Joanne Miller
Estates and Facilities Manager, PROCAT
Staff Governor

Although fairly new to PROCAT, Joanne worked with the Governing Body of her last employer, Colchester County High School for Girls, both on the Full Governing Body, the Premises Committee and the Health & Safety Committee. 

Joanne believes that the PROCAT Governing Body has an important role to play in the strategic direction of the College in this exciting time for Further Education establishments. Joanne is also a firm believer of the importance of having a staff member on the Governing Body.

Joanne's pervious work experience is with BT plc (Group Quality) prior to the birth of her children, and in secondary education (Data Performance and Assessment and more recently School Business Management).  Joanne feels that this wealth of experience, both inside and outside education, puts her in an ideal position to act as the staff Governor for PROCAT.

Joanne is married with two children, one at University and one aiming to become the next Jamie Oliver. In her spare time Joanne loves to walk her dog and spend time with her family.

Stephen Metcalfe
MP - South Basildon and East Thurrock

Stephen Metcalfe is Member of Parliament for the Essex constituency of South Basildon and East Thurrock, a seat he has held since 2010.

He was recently elected as Chair of the Science and Technology Committee, after serving as a member of the Committee during the whole of the last Parliament from 2010-2015.

Besides this, Stephen is a trustee of Newton’s Apple, a charity that helps young scientists bridge the gap between Science and Parliament.

He is also Chair of the Parliamentary and Scientific Committee, which provides an important link between Parliament and scientific bodies, science-based industry, and the academic world.

Rao Bhamidimarri
Vice President at London South Bank University

Professor Rao Bhamidimarri is currently the Vice President at London South Bank University. Previously he was the Principal of Massey University at Palmerston North, New Zealand and also held roles of Executive Dean and Dean at three universities. He has over 25 years of international experience in teaching and research, and strategic management in higher education.

Rao gained his masters in chemical and biochemical engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi and his PhD from the University of Queensland in Australia.

He is an environmental engineer with extensive research and industrial experience. He has published extensively in peer- reviewed scientific journals and developed and implemented several large-scale environmental technology processes and systems. He was a Governing Board Member of the International Water Association for 18 years, having initiated or contributed to a number of environmental initiatives internationally. He was the founding co-editor of Bioresource Technology, an International Editor of Bioscience and Bioengineering, co-editor of Water Science and Technology. He co-edited special issues for IUPAC Journal and more recently the Journal of Environmental Systems Engineering. He was also the lead editor of Educating and Enterprise: Inspiring Innovation published by Springer.

Rao is a passionate advocate of STEM education integrated with creative arts to foster enterprise. He is instrumental in developing an Engineering Academy and a University Technical College in South London to create employment oriented educational opportunities and seamless pathways into further and higher education for young people.

Daniel Bicks
Apprentice, Bombardier Transportation
Student Governor

Daniel is an advanced apprentice for Bombardier Transportation, he currently studies at PROCAT and is studying for his HNC Level 4 in General Engineering. He has been a student for years in another college, meaning he has a good experience of what student life is really like. He is supportive of apprenticeships and hopes to help students achieve their full potential whilst at PROCAT. He can offer his experience of being a student which he will use to make college life more enjoyable at PROCAT.


Corporation Board Meeting Minutes:

1st September 2014

17th October 2014

10th December 2014

25th February 2015

6th May 2015

21st July 2015

16th October 2015

9th December 2015

10th February 2016

4th May 2016

20th July 2016

25th August 2016

31st October 2016

7th December 2016

Audit Committee Meeting Minutes:

14th October 2014

20th January 2015

20th April 2015

30th June 2015

23 November 2015

17th March 2016

21st June 2016

20th October 2016

Other Documents

Financial Statement - July 31 2016

Financial Statement - July 31 2015

Subcontracting Policy 2016/17
Published 26th July 2016

Subcontracting Partner Payments 2015/2016
Please also refer to the above Subcontracting policy. 

Freedom of Information Act Policy

Statement in support of anti-slavery and anti-human trafficking legislation