Meet the Governors
Jane Viner MBE – Chair of Governors
Jane was appointed as Chair of the Governing Body in January 2021 having served as Vice Chair of the Governing Body since July 2019. She was Chair of the People & Resources Committee from September 2018 to August 2022. Jane remains a member of the People and Resources Committee and is also a member of the Remuneration Committee and the Honorary Awards Committee.
Jane was invited to join the Governing Body in September 2017, following the merger of Devon Studio School (where she was a Sponsor Governor) with South Devon College. Jane retired as Executive Chief Nurse and Deputy Chief Executive at Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust in July 2020. She qualified as a nurse in 1985 and specialised in critical care and emergency medicine.
Over her 35-year NHS career Jane held a range of clinical, management and education roles in the UK and the USA. Jane holds a Master of Science (Nursing) qualification and a Master of Arts (Education) qualification. Her professional interests include quality and safety standards, safeguarding and education. Jane is an Honorary Associate Professor of Plymouth & Exeter Universities.
Laurence Frewin – Principal and CEO
Laurence was appointed as Principal & CEO in September 2019 and is a member of the Search & Governance Committee, the Quality, Teaching, Learning and Assessment/HE Committee, the People & Resources Committee and the Honorary Awards Committee.
Prior to his appointment as Principal, Laurence joined South Devon College as Vice Principal Corporate Services in February 2010, bringing a strong background of strategic leadership and management in the private sector and in school education as a Business Manager in both primary and secondary phases. In 2015 he also became Deputy CEO for the College. During the last 10 years he has led cross college ambitions in sustainability and equality and diversity, as well as College professional and business support areas of Learner Services, Estates, Finance, Human Resources, IT
& Systems, Commercial Catering & Retail and Information Services and bidding for additional external funding to diversify College income and enable further responsiveness and success. These bids have included in excess of £30m of new capital grants.
Having achieved a Certificate in School Business Management in 2004, some of his notable achievements at South Devon College have included overseeing the delivery of the £9m University Building; £7m South West Energy Centre, oversight of the funding and development of the £10 million South Devon UTC in Engineering, Water & the Environment; £3m South Devon College Sports Centre; and the new £17m Hi Tech & Digital Centre whilst sustaining the College in Good Financial Health and successful achievement of Investors in People Platinum in 2017.
Wendy Randle – Interim Head of Governance
Roger Knight – Chair of the Audit Committee
Roger was appointed to the Governing Body on the 08 March 2021 and became Chair of the Audit Committee from 01 September 2022. Roger is also a Member of the Remuneration Committee and during 2021/22 served as Vice Chair of the People & Resources Committee.
Roger is a chartered accountant, specialising in audit and related services. He was a Partner with PricewaterhouseCoopers for over 20 years, including in Hong Kong from 1994 until 2010. He then became a Consultant for Assurance, Risk & Quality. He continues to provide audit and related expert services to accountants and their legal advisers, and to regulators, in Hong Kong. He is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England & Wales and Fellow of the Hong Kong Institute of Certified Public Accountants.
In addition to the above, Roger brings to the Board wide-ranging governance experience. In particular, since 2016 he has served as a Trustee for the Torbay Coast and Countryside Trust where he is Chair of the Business and Finance Sub Committee and a Member of the Development and Governance working groups. He is also a Trustee of Children’s Hospice South West (since 2018) where he is a Member of the Investment and Finance Committee and a Member of the Care Committee. He also holds a directorship in South Devon Biomas Ltd and is a Trustee of The Friends of Diptford School.
Roger was born and grew up in Torbay and returned to live in South Devon in late 2015 after more than 40 years away. He has early memories of South Devon College as primarily a catering college and so recognises how much it has changed over time – this change has encouraged him to want to play an active part in the ongoing and future development of the College.
Judy Ravenscroft – Co-opted Member and Designated Lead for Equality, Diversity and Inclusion
Judy joined the Governing Body on 01 March 2019 as a Governor on the Audit Committee and the Curriculum and Quality Committee. Judy is now a co-opted member of the Curriculum and Quality Committee and also the Designated Lead for Equality, Diversity and Inclusion.
Judy started her professional career as a university lecturer and later held leadership roles within a range of public sector and commercial organisations. These included posts in the Education Directorate of a County Council, Strategic Services of a London Borough and with a national commercial services firm. She is currently employed by the University of Plymouth, where she oversees a regional leadership development programme for medical consultants and other clinicians. Judy also still undertakes management consulting and executive coaching assignments.
Judy has a wide range of governance experience, having been a Governor at a Grammar school and a Member for a Multi Academy Trust. Judy is keen to facilitate the sharing of information, expertise and good practice.
Judy lives in Torquay with her family and believes South Devon College’s vision is ambitious, exciting and aligns with her own wish to see increased links with local communities, businesses and employers.
Philip Gibson – Chair of QTLA/HE Committee
Philip joined the Governing Body in June 2016 and is Chair of the Quality, Teaching, Learning and Assessment/HE Committee. He is also a Member of the Remuneration Committee and Honorary Awards Committee. Philip attends meetings of FE Academic Board as Lead Governor for Teaching, Learning and Assessment.
Philip is currently a part-time student at the University of Exeter studying for an MA in Creative Writing and is an External Verifier for the Duke of Edinburgh Award. He has also previously acted as an External Examiner for the University of Brighton and as a PhD supervisor at Plymouth University. These activities follow his retirement in February 2017 from the University of Plymouth as Associate Head of School (Teaching and Learning), Associate Professor and Academic Director of the University Hotel School in the School of Tourism and Hospitality. Prior to joining the University of Plymouth as a Senior Lecturer in 2000, Philip was Head of Centre, Tourism, Hospitality and Sport at South Devon College.
Philip was awarded a PhD in Education from the University of Exeter in 2003 and an MEd in Professional Development from the College of St Mark and St John. He is the author of vocational textbooks and has published many research and conference papers. More recently he has had short stories published as part of anthologies in e-book and hard copy formats.
Philip has lived in Paignton with his family since 1987 and is fully supportive of a College of Further Education that places itself at the heart of its community.
Kate Doodson – Chair of the Search and Governance and Remuneration Committees
Kate joined the Governing Body in March 2020 and is a member of the Search and Governance Committee. She has also been Lead Governor for Careers and Digitaland is now Chair of the Search and Governance and Remuneration Committees. Kate served for 2.5 years as a member of the People & Resources Committee.
Kate is the Joint Chief Executive of Cosmic, one of the leading social enterprises in the South West. Kate’s focus on social mobility through education, inspiration and support means that her values align very closely with those of the College.
Kate specialises in the strategic use of digital to transform business processes. She is passionate about ensuring businesses use the full range of digital services available to them to give them the edge they need to thrive, particularly in the rural economy. She regularly delivers lectures across the UK and internationally on digital transformation. Her previous career in Civil Engineering enabled her to work extensively in both the UK and overseas.
Kate is a Member of the board at Plymouth Marjon University, a steering group Member and digital lead for the South West Cyber Security Cluster and a steering group Member of Tech South West. Kate is also a STEM ambassador in Schools and a Qualified Winter Moorland Leader and Outdoor First Aider, leading young people on Ten Tors and Duke of Edinburgh Expeditions.
Kate has won a number of awards for her work including: Finalist for National Women in IT Awards – Inspirational Women in IT and Finalist for Venus Awards – Women in STEM Awards and is listed on the WISE100 Social Leader of the Year.
Hannah Cash – Independent Governor
Hannah was appointed to the Governing Body on 14 November 2022 and is a Member of the People & Resources Committee.
Hannah is the Founder of Yachting Lawyers, a specialist niche legal practice formed in 2011 to help clients buy, sell, own and operate boats and moorings in the UK and globally. Hannah has offices in London and the South West region. She has been a qualified solicitor for 15 years and has recent board experience as Chairman of British Marine Federation South West from October 2018 to March 2022 and as Vice Chair of the same organisation from 2014 to 2018. She joined this Board in 2012.
Hannah has supported South Devon College for many years by working alongside its marine, engineering, automotive and construction departments. She is passionate about bringing education and industry together and has been particularly active in campaigning to raise awareness of the career opportunities within the marine industry.
Hannah is also a Cadet Welfare Officer and safety boat instructor at Cargreen Yacht Club and was Liaison office for SailGP SWISS team for the championships in July 2022. She is also a mother of two lovely daughters.
Dr Jon Goldman – Lead Governor for Higher Education
Jon joined the Governing Body as a Co-opted Member of the People & Resources Committee in November 2017. He became a Governor in September 2018 and was appointed as Lead Governor for Higher Education in September 2019. He serves on the Search & Governance Committee, Audit Committee, Quality, Teaching, Learning & Assessment Committee/HE Committee and the Honorary Awards Committee. He is also a Trustee for the Friends of South Devon College Students and the Torbay Medical Research Fund.
Jon is a retired Consultant Physician from Torbay Hospital and member of the Royal College of Physicians of London. He has held posts in education and training at a local and a regional level and was appointed to roles in the Peninsula Post Graduate Deanery from 2006 – including Head of School for Post Graduate Medicine and subsequently Associate Dean. Jon has held management roles at Torbay Hospital and has thus been responsible for significant budgets. In addition to being a staff governor for a 3 year term of office, he has chaired committees and has experience in selection and interviewing up to board level.
Jon has been an examiner and then Chair of Examiners for the PACES (Practical Assessment of Clinical Examination Skills) for the Royal College of Physicians for 17 years. During this time, he also contributed to examination standard-setting committees.
Jon has lived in Torquay with his family for more than 25 years. He is keen to give something back to the local community, and in particular, support learners at South Devon College in pursuing the career paths of their choice.
Rory Gilbert – Independent Governor
Rory joined the Governing Body in June 2017 and is currently an Independent Governor. He is also a member of the Remuneration Committee. From May 2020 to August 2022, Rory was Chair of the Audit Committee.
Rory is the Financial Director for Europe, the Middle East and Africa for Spirent Communications plc. Spirent is a leading Global Communications company with offices in the USA, Europe and Asia; at the Paignton office they specialise in test and measurement equipment for the Global Positioning Satellite (GPS) and Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) markets.
Rory has worked in commercial organisations since qualifying as a Chartered Accountant with Ernst & Young 25 years ago. He has a wealth of commercial experiences and a mature understanding of sound decision making in a competitive environment. He has extensive experience of risk management and internal control as well as a firm grasp of the importance of good corporate governance. Rory completed an MBA with the Open University in 2007.
Rory is a keen supporter of vocational education for young people and adults and is keen to develop people within organisations and organisational growth within our local community.
Steve was appointed to the Governing Body on 01 September 2022 and is a Member of the People & Resources Committee.
Steve has recently stepped down as the CEO of Torbay Development Agency (TDA) and alongside this role was CEO of Torbay Council from 2013 to 2020. He brings with him a deep understanding of the skills needs of the local economy as well as the strategic importance of ensuring these needs are met by South Devon College. As well as being a professional asset and project manager, Steve has a strong background in business development and of working with local businesses. He is inspired by helping others reach their potential.
For Steve one of the most important aspects of improving outcomes for Torbay’s residents is the quality and accessibility of further education. He is particularly keen to support the College’s journey back to Ofsted ‘Outstanding’. His personal commitment to the world of education is evidenced by his 12 years’ service as a School Governor during which time he chaired the Buildings and Grounds Committee. He is also a volunteer for the National Trust.
Steve lives in Paignton, has two grown up children, and enjoys badminton, playing chess and table tennis.
Dave Wildman – Staff Governor (Academic)
Dave was appointed to the Governing Body as the Staff Governor (Academic) in November 2017 and is a Member of the Curriculum and Quality Committee. He also serves on the Audit Committee. Dave was re-appointed for a second term of office in November 2021 after a competitive staff governor interview process. He is a Trustee for the Friends of South Devon College Students.
Dave joined the College as a teacher in 2012 following a PGCE placement during 2011-12. Since 2015, Dave has been the Programme Co-ordinator for A-Levels at South Devon College. He teaches across different age groups and levels, from GCSEs and A levels to foundation degree. This means he is well placed to support the work of the Governing Body in ensuring high standards of academic performance.
Dave is passionate about the College and, in particular, supporting students and staff to achieve the best that they can. Before teaching Dave worked in numerous areas of employment, including customer service, before returning to education in his mid-twenties. Away from the classroom, Dave completes research into local history projects and enjoys geocaching on the moors with his dogs.
Will O’Neill – Staff Governor (Professional Services)
Will was appointed to the Governing Body as the Staff Governor (Professional Services) in December 2021 and is a Member of the People and Resources Committee.
Will has lived in Torbay since 2011, when he relocated from his hometown of Dublin, after gaining a degree in Finance and Accounting. He joined the college in 2020 as a Systems Developer and after gaining some experience as Funding Lead, is now the Data and Systems Innovation Lead. With a Masters degree in Data Science and Business Analytics and a background as a qualified chartered accountant, he will support the Governing Body with a knowledge of Data, Systems, and Finance.
Will is an advocate for technology in education and helping students get the best from their studies. He has a specialism in Microsoft technologies and is particularly interested in strategy and the use of digital to transform business processes.
Alastair Campbell – Co-opted Member
Alastair joined the Governing Body as a Co-opted Member of the Audit Committee in October 2020.
Alastair is an experienced internal audit and risk management professional who has worked with the further education sector and wider public and not for profit sectors for 25 years. He is a Chartered Accountant and Head of Risk Assurance and Internal Audit at Bishop Fleming.
Throughout his career, Alastair has worked with boards, audit committees and senior/junior management teams within organisations to provide training and related support for their development of risk management, assurance and wider governance practices (including South Devon College). He has also been involved in due diligence reviews for FE college mergers, sat on client project/programme boards, and managed the external audit for a number of further education and charity clients.
Dave Tucker – Co-opted Member
Dave is a Member of the People and Resources Committee.
Dave is a Chartered Accountant, Chartered Certified Accountant and a Partner at Thompson Jenner LLP where he is Head of Audit. He has a wide range of internal and external audit experience within the commercial, charitable and educational sectors.
Dave also has current experience of educational governance. He is a Governor for Kingsmead Academy Trust where he sits on the Finance, Strategy & Personnel Committee. Dave is also a Trustee for Headway Devon and a Trustee of Factor P Community Interest Company – a ‘Think Tank’ where he shares the directorship with two psychologists from the corporate and clinical sectors. He also holds a directorship at Think Information Technology Ltd.
Lynsey Mizen-Shaw – Co-opted Staff Member
Lynsey was appointed to the Governing Body as a Co-opted Staff Member on 01 January 2022 and is a Member of the Search and Governance Committee.
Lynsey joined the teaching staff at South Devon College in September 2017 after completing her two-year Diploma in Education and Training at the College. Lynsey teaches across different levels and age groups, including GCSE, A Levels and Learning Opportunities. She is passionate about the college and as a member of staff, brings a strong sense of the mission and values of the college to the role.
Prior to joining the College Lynsey worked for the NHS in general practice for 14 years. This management role involved the recruitment of staff, the experience of which she brings to the Search and Governance Committee. When not working, she is a keen reader and member of 2 book clubs and enjoys travelling with her family in her 1977 VW camper van.