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Ali Athab Al-Kinani (Academic Staff Member)

Ali Athab Al-KinaniAli Athab Al-Kinani is a Senior Lecturer in the Pharmacy department, in the Faculty of Science, Engineering and Computing at Kingston University. Ali started his journey at Kingston over 10 years ago as a Masters student. After completing his PhD at Kingston, Ali contemplated a number of job opportunities at several institutions around the UK. However, his positive experience of studying and working at Kingston encouraged him to stay and he succeeded in obtaining an academic position in the Pharmacy department in 2015. Previously Ali has worked in Iraq and Qatar as a clinical and community pharmacist, experiences which saw him develop a wider understanding of and strong belief in equality and diversity in the ever-thriving academic environment.

He joined the Athena Swan self-assessment team for both his department and the institution, serves on the self-assessment team for the institution Race Equality Charter and is a member of the Network of Equality Champions.

Ali is a fellow of the Higher Education Academy, and teaches on various undergraduate and postgraduate courses in the School of Life Sciences, Pharmacy and Chemistry. Beside his teaching commitments, he is an active researcher within his Faculty, supervising a number of postgraduate research students. Ali works in multidisciplinary research projects ranging from formulation of ocular drug delivery systems to the investigation of the effect of delivery systems on biological targets. His high standard research has been acknowledged through several national and international research awards. Ali is serving on the Board of Governors as the Academic Council representative.

Stephan Burow (Independent Member)

Stephan has an international background, having been born in Germany before finishing schooling in Scotland. He's also spent time in the US and southeast Asia.

He went to Kingston Business school completing a BA (Hons) in Business Studies before embarking on his professional career and becoming a chartered accountant. He worked many years in fast moving consumer goods (Unilever, JTI, Tesco/dunnhumby) before getting closer to the world of start-ups and scale-ups. The interest in the latter has taken him to Gousto, where he holds a senior leadership role within finance. During his time the business scaled to become a so-called unicorn (a start-up that successfully scaled to a valuation of >$1bn).

Stephan is passionate about giving back and extending a helping hand and support to those at the beginning of their career, whether students or early professionals. In addition to his investment in Kingston University, he is also supporting Oxford Said Business School as well as CIMA, the chartered accountancy body.

When he finds some 'free' time he loves to go for a swim, a cycle or more generally spend time outdoors.

Sandra Campopiano (Vice Chair)

Sandra Campopiano Sandra is a portfolio Non-Executive Director and Board Advisor with extensive experience in HR and Organisation Development operating at board level in complex multi-national organisations. Sandra has worked on several board governance committees including Policy, Risk and Remuneration Committees. Sector experience includes Technology, Financial Services and Tourism. Specialties include leading and supporting businesses through transformational change, building organisational culture and capability.

Sandra was previously Chief People Officer at Sage Group plc, responsible for all aspects of Human Resources globally. This included strategic HR planning, talent acquisition, reward, and organisational development. She had specific responsibility for Sage's capability agenda, digital skills ambitions and for accelerating diversity in a high-performance customer focussed culture.  Before Sage, Sandra was Chief People Officer at Thomas Cook plc and Premier Farnell plc. In these roles she developed people strategies to support business transformation and led global programmes in all areas of organisation effectiveness, people development and colleague engagement.

Sandra holds an MBA from Surrey University, is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (FCIPD) and an Accredited RSPP Mediator, having trained at the Regents University London School of Psychotherapy & Psychology.

Gill Hall (Independent Member)

Gill HallGill is an advisor, independent board member and coach. She spent twenty years as a consultant, working with clients in government and the private sector on strategy, technology and finance projects. She is expert in the design and build of digital platforms, launching new businesses and innovation in operating and commercial models. She has worked in the energy and climate sector for over ten years and is passionate about the need to transform the way we live and learn in order to create a more sustainable future for ourselves and our planet.

She recently trained as an integral coach and now runs her own business, working with leaders and their teams to develop the strategies and skills needed for leadership in the twenty-first century.

Gill is a life-long learner with LLB in English and French Law, MA in Applied Linguistics and MBA and has carried out postgraduate studies in Aesthetics and Consciousness.

Jane Hargreaves (Non-Academic Member)

Jane HargreavesJane has been at Kingston for over 10 years – joining as a mature student studying Pharmacology in 2011 and working throughout her course as a student ambassador. She is now a pivotal part of the award winning Access, Participation and Inclusion team. Jane is passionate about supporting students to achieve and in her role as the Student Systems and Engagement Manager she has established a holistic approach to identifying students at risk of disengagement and is considered an innovator in the use of technology for attendance monitoring.

As well as being an active member of the university community, Jane has an extensive 20 year history of volunteering with organisations that support young people to flourish and ensure that vulnerable adults have access to the support they need.

Dirk Kahl (Independent Member)

Dirk KahlDirk Kahl is the Chief Financial Officer of Lidl Great Britain and is based at their Head Office in Wimbledon. Dirk joined the Lidl Group as Global Finance and Accounting Director in 2008 and was subsequently appointed as Board Executive for Finance, Accounting and Tax for the German operation before joining the UK Board of Directors in 2014. In his current role, Dirk is responsible for the Financial and Administrative operation of Lidl UK, which has over 22,000 employees in Great Britain. He is currently a member of Retail Week live's advisory board, the joint economic working group of the GBCIC and the Embassy of the F.R. of Germany, and the Institute of Directors.

Prior to joining Lidl, Dirk held the Position of Chief Financial Officer for Group Lagardere's German travel retail division, HDS Retail. 

As a Qualified Chartered Accountant, Dirk worked for KPMG out of Frankfurt, Shanghai and Singapore for almost ten years while also lecturing at the University of Applied Sciences in Frankfurt.

Dirk earned a Master's Degree in Economics from the University of Mainz and is a Certified Fraud Examiner.

Peter Mayhew-Smith (Co-opted Member)

Peter Mayhew-SmithPeter Mayhew-Smith has worked as a life-long learning practitioner for 28 years, starting as a community education tutor in west London, where he held a succession of different roles. He co-wrote a guide to London for people with disabilities (Access in London, published by Nicholsons). He was appointed as a community education adviser to the Local Authority's Education Committee in Richmond in 1993 and, in the same year, won a scholarship to look at workplace basic skills education in the USA.

Peter then moved to South Thames College to manage Basic and Key Skills provision while contributing to a number of local and regional projects, including inspection visits for the BSA Quality Mark and the establishment in 1995 of one of the first Summer Colleges for Year 11 children at risk of exclusion and under-achievement. In 1998, he wrote a Guide to Careers in Further Education, published by the Guardian Newspaper.

Peter went to Lewisham College in 1998 as Head of Key Skills and then, in 2002, moved into the role of Director of Faculty, with a remit for general education, adult education, basic and key skills, ESOL, learning disabilities and learning support. In 2005, he led the College's successful bid for the provision of learning to offenders in South London. In 2006, Lewisham College's provision was graded 'outstanding' by Ofsted.

At the end of 2006, Peter became vice-principal for Quality and Curriculum Development at Lewisham College, overseeing all of the College's assurance and improvement arrangements, including teacher training and learning and development.

In summer 2009, Peter was appointed as the new principal of Kingston College and took up post there in April 2010. In December 2011, the Government agreed that Kingston and Carshalton Colleges could share a principal under their proposed federation and Peter became principal of both colleges from that time, forming the first college group of its kind and overseeing £45m-worth of learning in south-west London. In 2013 Kingston College was graded 'Good' by Ofsted for the first time, with Carshalton College achieving its first-ever 'Good' Ofsted grade the following year.

In 2017, Peter oversaw the merger of four south London colleges to create the 10th largest college in the country, spanning four London boroughs and 20,000 students; he has been Chief Executive of the South Thames Colleges Group since then.

  Caroline Mawhood (Independent Member)

caroline mawhoodCaroline was a prominent figure in auditing for more than 12 years as Assistant Auditor General in the National Audit Office and she now has a number of non–executive roles. She is currently a member of the Executive Committee of the Institute for Fiscal Studies and Chair of their Audit Committee and she is a member of the Audit Board of the European Audio Visual Observatory. She is also a trustee of the Wimbledon Guild which is a local charity.

She was for 8 years, until 2019, one of three external members of the Audit Progress Committee of the European Commission. She has also been a member of the Audit Committees of the City of London (until March 2021), the UK Debt Management Office (until June 2019) and the Department of Energy and Climate Change (until 2016) with representation on the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority. She has contributed to charity by being the Treasurer and Trustee of Breakthrough Breast Cancer and its successor Breast Cancer Now.

During her executive career in the National Audit Office, and also as President of the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy, she played a significant role in the development of strong financial management in the public sector. Her experience encompassed auditing major UK government departments and running the corporate services of Audit Office. Caroline is a geography graduate from Bristol University and a fellow of the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy.

Alison Osborne (Independent Member)

Alison OsborneAlison qualified as a Chartered Accountant in 1981 and worked as a management accountant at Trusthouse Forte before joining a City law firm as financial controller soon after its establishment. During the time spent there the firm expanded rapidly both in London and overseas. Following a period living in New York and with three small children, Alison gained a First Class Honours degree in Mathematical Sciences from Kingston University and an MSc in Applied Stochastic Systems from UCL. This was followed by 15 years teaching at Cass Business School and 5 years at Kingston University.

The subjects taught included Finance and Financial Reporting, Corporate Finance, Decision Analysis, Probability and Statistics and Accounting for Informatics students. Voluntary work includes 8 years as a primary school governor, 10 years as a trustee and treasurer of a local children's charity and independent examiner of several clubs and charities. From April 2017, Alison has been the Central Treasurer of the national Wives Fellowship organisation.

Bimal Patel (Independent Member)

Bimal is the Deputy Chief Executive and Chief Finance Officer at North Middlesex University Hospital NHS Trust. He has over 20 years of NHS acute provider experience and has held the role of Chief Finance Officer in two NHS organisations. He is a CIMA qualified accountant and has worked at all levels within finance, from a Trainee accountant to Head of Financial Management and then to Head of Financial Control with a variety of experience.

Bimal's ethos for finance is to reduce as much waste as possible to give clinicians more time to deliver excellent patient care (in the NHS) and more resources for students (in academia).

Bimal is a former Kingston University alumni who wants to be able to give something back to the university that gave him so much.

Andrew Pearce (Independent Member)

Andrew PearceAndrew is a Managing Director for Accenture Operations (UK and Ireland). A client account lead and delivery specialist with many years' experience of delivering and leading complex multi-geography finance, HR and Procurement, solutions for clients. He has been a delivery centre lead in Mauritius and lived and worked in New York and Brazil. An Ex Royal Air Force Squadron Leader he is an Alumnus of Oxford and Imperial College.

Passionate about inclusion and diversity, Andrew is the Executive Sponsor of the Accenture African and Caribbean network UK Chair of the ELC. He was named as one of the Top 50 BAME Execs in the UK, US, and Ireland by the Upstanding List 2016, Empower List 2017 and ranked by the Empower List 2018 as being a top 30 minority ethnic leader across the UK, US, Ireland & Canada. Andrew was also recognized on the Green Park list as one of the top 100 BAME leaders in Business 2018 and on the Power in the City list 2018 as one of the top 30 most influential leaders in the UK of African, Caribbean or African American heritage working within legal, financial and professional services.

Andrew lives in Lincolnshire with his partner Sally – a therapist. He has a son who is a trauma surgeon at the Royal London and also a Royal Air Force Squadron Leader. He is still rugby-mad but is now more of a spectator. Golf, hiking, skiing, and reading make up his leisure time.

Francis Small (Chair)

Francis SmallFrancis Small is Chairman of British Business Investments, an investment company with over £3bn committed to finance providers supporting some 40,000 SME businesses across the UK. He is also chairman of Quixant PLC, an AIM–listed technology company and a Non–Executive Director of 1Spatial plc, another AIM–listed technology company where he chairs the Audit Committee and Remuneration Committee.

Francis had a 36–year international career working for Ernst & Young, a global professional services firm. A chartered accountant by profession, Francis has held board roles at UK, European and Global levels. Career highlights include being Global Head of Corporate Finance and Senior Partner for International Clients. Prior to this Francis was Managing Partner of EY's London Office.

Francis is an MA Law graduate from Cambridge University.

He joined the Board of Governors in 2015 and became Chair in March 2020.

Tom Smyth (Independent Member)

Mr Tom SmythTom has over thirty years' experience of global financial markets, the last twenty–four of which have been at Rothschild & Co where he is Executive Vice Chairman, Financing Advisory.

He founded Rothschild & Co's debt advisory business in the UK which has grown to become the largest independent financing advisory franchise of its type in Europe and beyond. He has advised the boards of the biggest listed and private equity owned companies on a wide range of their funding, risk management and treasury structures and strategies. He has also helped them establish and negotiate their financing arrangements through business cycles.

He is a non–executive director of Clarion Housing Group where he also chairs their Treasury Committee.

He holds a BA (Hons) in Economics from Durham University and is a qualified member of the Association of Corporate Treasurers. He has previously served as a Trustee of Rothschild & Co's UK pension fund.

He is married with two children and has lived in the Kingston area for the past 20 years.

Steven Spier (Ex-officio Member)

Professor Steven SpierA respected expert in architecture, theatre and dance, Professor Spier was appointed Acting Vice-Chancellor in October 2016, before being made Vice-Chancellor in May 2017. He was formerly Dean of the University's Faculty of Art, Design and Architecture, which rose to prominence as one of the top providers of design education, both in the United Kingdom and around the globe, under his leadership.

Before becoming Vice-Chancellor, he also held the post of Pro Vice-Chancellor for Culture and Civic Engagement – a role in which he was pivotal in strengthening links with the wider community and forging an extensive network of high-profile external partners.

A strong advocate of excellence in teaching, research and enterprise, Professor Spier joined Kingston University in September 2012 after heading the School of Architecture and Design at the University of Ulster. Born in Canada, Professor Spier grew up in the United States. He holds a degree in philosophy from Haverford College, Philadelphia, and completed postgraduate studies at the Southern California Institute of Architecture. His early career saw him based in a number of European cities, including a period teaching at the world-renowned Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, ETH Zürich. He was later founding principal of the HafenCity University Hamburg in Germany, which specialises in urban planning, architecture and civil engineering.

An acclaimed expert in contemporary Swiss architecture, Professor Spier's many published works include 'Swiss Made', named one of the books of the year by Architects' Journal in 2003. Also a specialist in choreography as a form of spatial organisation, he edited the first English-language book on renowned choreographer William Forsythe, 'William Forsythe and the Practice of Choreography. It Starts from Any Point'.

Professor Spier has links with a wide range of cultural institutions. He was a founding director of the board of Architecture and Design Scotland, is an honorary fellow of the Royal Incorporation of Architects in Scotland and of German body Bund Deutscher Architekten and was a long-serving board member of Scottish Ballet. He is also a board member of the cutting-edge Glasgow-based production house Cryptic – much vaunted for its work fusing music, sonic art, theatre and multimedia.

Sarim Syed (Student Member)

Sarim Syed was a pharmacy student at Kingston University. He is the current President for the Union of Kingston Students and chairs its Board of Trustees, representing the student voice and the students' union. His main aims are to review and establish the Union governance to ensure the Union maintains a transparent and accountable organisation to students. This is essential for the organisation to achieve its objectives, drive student achievement and engagement, and put students at the heart of the Union.

In his spare time, Sarim likes to take part in philanthropic projects across the globe as well as campaign on issues that matter to students. He believes that international students make a valuable contribution to Kingston University and the wider society and that they should be strongly supported as our students, colleagues and friends who contribute to the culture and the diversity we have at Kingston. Before being elected as President, Sarim was President for one of the largest societies on campus, the captain for the University's cricket team as well as an academic rep for the largest academic society, KUPSA (Kingston University Pharmacy Student Association).

Mick Williams (Independent Member)

Mick WilliamsMick is enjoying a second career as a management consultant, having previously served a long and enjoyable career in the Royal Air Force. Appointments included full command, CEO, COO, HRD, and highly enjoyable tours of duty in Hong Kong, Germany and the Falkland Islands.

Now a cross-sector management consultant, with a focus on transformational change, Mick has a masters degree in Law & Employment Relations, is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development, and a qualified company secretary. Mick Lives in Cheam and, along with his role at Kingston University, is Chair of trustees at CAYSH, a charity supporting young homeless people in south London.


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