Meet the Governors

Joanne Beaumont Chair

Joanne Beaumont  photo

My role is Head of Careers & Employability at the University of Bradford. I lead the Career & Employability Services’ team and am the institutional lead for employability across the University. I also represent the University with a range of local and regional strategic organisations regarding employment and skills matters.  

I have extensive experience in the pre and post-16 schools and college sectors, HE sector and career guidance sector in a variety of roles including frontline service delivery, operation and strategic management, project management, professional training and development, quality assurance, and teaching, learning and assessment.

Outside of work I enjoy hill walking, travelling in the UK and overseas, socialising with friends and colleagues, and playing in ‘pit’ bands for musical productions at various theatres across Yorkshire.

John Egan Governor

John Egan photo

Now an IT Consultant, I have over 40 years of experience in all aspects of IT and have worked with local government, commercial and not-for-profit organisations. 

Initially in operations, I moved into software development and design, becoming Technical Director on joining a Nottingham based startup company in 1980. I took the opportunity to work in the USA in 1984.  

In 1986 I set up a Software Centre for Excellence in Bradford securing contracts with large clients including British Airways, British Steel and Speedo in the UK, as well as contracts in Europe, the Middle East and the USA. Having grown the initial three man team to fifteen, I sold the company to the Management Team in 1998 and returned to the USA to work on projects including tribal court systems for Native Americans.

I first became involved with Shipley College in the 1990s when taking on placements and joined the college’s ICT Employer Advisory Panel in 1993, subsequently becoming a College Governor in 2010.

Albert Podesta Governor

Albert Podesta photo

I am a Chartered Accountant and spent 25 years in practice in the West Midlands. For much of that time, in addition to a wide client portfolio, I was responsible for recruitment and training of student accountants and continuing training of other staff. 

On retirement in 2010, I returned to my native Yorkshire. I am Chair of Trustees of Leukaemia CARE, a charity offering support and information to all those affected by blood cancers.  

I am a lifelong supporter of Leeds Rhinos and enjoy hill walking and running. I am married with three adult children and four grandchildren. 

Nigel Hainsworth Governor

Nigel Hainsworth photo

I am a Chartered Accountant and Chartered Tax Adviser. I work for HM Revenue & Customs, the UK's tax administration authority, where I assist Tax Specialists, Solicitors and Barristers to safeguard the flow of money to the Exchequer, making sure money is available to fund public services and help families and individuals with targeted financial support. I also develop and deliver training to build the capability of colleagues.

I am married and have 2 daughters aged 25 and 23, an English Teacher and a Physiologist, and consider my greatest achievement to be working with them to ensure they achieved their academic potential within the state education system.

James Parker Governor

James Parker photo

I was born and educated in Newcastle upon Tyne and after studying at London and Leeds Universities, qualified as a teacher in 1976. I taught in several local FE colleges and schools and gained valuable experiences in the roles of senior A-Level Examiner and external BTEC Moderator. 

I was a Youth Leader at centres in Bradford and Ilkley. Whilst teaching, I read a Masters degree in Education Research at Bradford University.

In 1988 I began a career in retail Financial Services and was appointed Divisional Director of one of the UK’s largest Insurance Broking and Financial Planning Companies in 1993. I held special responsibility for liaison with major Plc clients. In 1996, I set up my own Independent Financial Planning Company. I qualified as a Chartered Financial Planner. 

I recently retired from this business, allowing me to spend more time working with the Young Enterprise Organisation and currently, I assist with the delivery of Enterprise Workshops and act as a Business adviser to Young Enterprise companies in Yorkshire Schools. 

I am particularly committed to promoting constructive links between education and the workplace: helping young people acquire skills that will enable them to succeed in a competitive marketplace.   

I am married, with three relatively ‘grown up’ children; we all live in Shipley. I am very proud to have the opportunity to support the College’s unique contribution to the local community. 

My interests are: family life, music and travel. I enjoy running and cycling, even though I get slower by the year!

David Butcher Governor

David Butcher photo

I am a chartered accountant and have held various financial management positions in both private and public sectors.

I am currently Director of Finance and Planning at Leeds Trinity University and my responsibilities include the strategic and operational management of all financial affairs; strategic and business planning; and leading the risk management process.

I have lived locally for over 15 years, appreciate the key role that Shipley College plays in Saltaire and am pleased to be able to support the College in this.

Outside of work, my interests include walking, reading, history, travel, food and wine.

Phill Hunter Governor

Phill Hunter photo
I am an experienced senior public sector manager who has worked in Bradford for over 15 years. During my time in Bradford I have worked in the education sector.  Currently, my portfolio covers post-16 education, career and technical education, adult education, employment and skills, Key Cities education and skills, devolution, and outdoor education.  
I have worked for a variety of public sector bodies, the Office for National Statistics, Devon County Council and the Learning and Skills Council, with particular areas of expertise in economics, education, skills, partnerships, and strategic planning. 
Outside of work I have a young daughter who is currently at primary school and in my spare time I enjoy hiking and camping.  I look forward to working to support Shipley College in any way that I am able. 

Colin Forrest Governor

Colin Forrest photo

Through my roles in funding and quality improvement agencies I have had involvement with Shipley College for over 15 years centering on a range of high quality curriculum and quality initiatives. I have found the student-centred focus of the College inspiring in many different contexts.

I am an honorary visiting research fellow at Leeds Trinity University; actively involved in a wide range of FE related research; and have made a number of international and nation conference contributions publishing papers in fields relating to area review impacts, governance and inspection. I have also supported a range of sector led developments in vocational education, devolution, staff and student voice, English and maths, Prevent, Equality and practitioner research.

Although I am well aware of the impact of the College in the wider region, I enjoy observing the College’s contribution to the local community through regular visits with my daughter in Saltaire.

Catherine O'Connor Governor

Catherine O'Connor photo

I am Head of the School of Business, Communication and Law at Leeds Trinity University and Lead for Learning, Teaching and Employability, which has led work to engage with employers around labour market issues. I have developed a number of projects designed to look at how skills gaps can be addressed and presented on this in both academic and professional forums. Prior to joining Leeds Trinity in 2007, I spent 15 years working in local news media as a journalist.



Kerry Robinson Governor

Kerry Robinson photo

My career spans 40 years. For most of my career, I worked in the retail, hospitality and customer service business. I am pleased to say that I have had the privilege of working in a senior role as an HR and Learning & Development Manager for a major retailer based in Yorkshire. Across my time, one of my main responsibilities was to develop and implement strategies for the UK and Canada, ensuring the business had a strong pipeline ready and able to drive the business forward. I worked with and on behalf of all levels of the business from shop floor colleagues through to Executive Managers.

I was pleased to be part of the team that delivered an extensive and ambitious store and depot opening plan, ensuring that recruitment, development and talent pipelines were in place to ensure that each store and business area succeeded with and through people and skills.

During the latter 10 years of my career, I worked for Bradford Council in Education, Employment and Skills, delivering bespoke recruitment and people services for a wide range of employers across the Bradford District. Partnership working which included participation in the delivery of bespoke solutions through Bradford District FE Colleges. One of the key projects realised the successful opening on The Broadway Shopping Centre in Bradford City Centre.

Following my retirement, I am very pleased to have been offered the opportunity to offer my skills and time to Shipley College.

Nav Chohan Staff Governor

Nav Chohan photo

I was born in London and studied Electrical Engineering at the University of Bath. I joined Shipley College as Principal in July 2009 and have worked in education for over 20 years. 

Before coming to the college in Saltaire, I worked at Leeds College of Technology. Previously, I worked as an Information Systems Project manager for NHS in Scotland and before that as an independent IT Consultant.

Outside of College is mainly about the family but I do love music and football.

Shoeb Desai Staff Governor

Shoeb Desai photo

I have worked at Shipley College since 1995 when I came as a PGCE student from the University of Huddersfield.  I started my career as a Course Coordinator on a Foundation Level Course, with some responsibility for student support.  Over time I gradually left the teaching and increased my role in Student Services.  

I am currently Head of Student Services, with lead responsibility for Equality and Diversity and Safeguarding.  I have been a Governor since 2010 and continue to find the role challenging and personally gratifying.  Outside of work, in relation to personal interests, I enjoy badminton and the surrounding countryside which I am lucky to live and work in proximity to.

Wendy Rowan Staff Governor

Wendy Rowan photo

I have worked at Shipley College since 2003. I started as a lecturer, became a Section Leader after a year, then the Head of Sector for Care Early Years and Health Sciences. Prior to working at the college I worked for the YMCA as a trainer for 2 years, and previously to this, I was employed as a Qualified Nurse, managing a very successful care home I completed a HND in Business as a mature student and then achieved a BA (Hons) 2:1 in Business and the C&G 7307 teaching qualification. This was a huge achievement for myself and I am very proud of what I achieved. During my time at the College I have successfully completed a Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGCE) and have seen and managed many changes to improve the teaching and learning, including maintaining a positive experience for our learners, particularly adult learners who I am responsible for in the Care Sector. I live locally to College which makes work home life balance easier to manage and allows me to spend more time with my family, including two young children. Outside of work, family and friends are my main priority, but I do enjoy going to the gym, open water swimming and making fused glass.

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