Professor Layer is currently Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic) at the University of Bradford and will join Wolverhampton in August 2011.
The University’s current Vice-Chancellor, Professor Caroline Gipps, retires at the end of the academic year.
Professor Layer said: “It is a privilege to be invited to be Wolverhampton’s Vice-Chancellor. I am looking forward to working with staff, students, governors and the broader community in building on the excellent progress the University has made.
“The higher education sector faces many challenges in the next few years, but I am confident that by working together we will ensure this is a university we are all proud of.”
Chair of the Board of Governors, Michael Elliott, said: “I am delighted with the appointment made by the governing body of the University. The excellent reputation achieved by the University under the leadership of Professor Caroline Gipps ensured we attracted an exceptional field of candidates.
“Professor Geoff Layer’s considerable achievements, experience and expertise equip him to provide the strong leadership which will be essential to the University’s success in navigating the considerable challenges facing higher education over the next ten years, building its national and international reputation and meeting the needs of the region and its business, student and local communities.”
Professor Layer graduated from Newcastle Polytechnic with a LLB (Hons) and entered a teaching and research career. He joined the Sheffield Business School in 1983 as a Lecturer in Law and became Professor of Lifelong Learning in 1996.
In 1999 he joined the University of Bradford as Director of the Centre for Continuing Education, becoming the founding Dean of the School of Lifelong Education and Development in 2001. He held the post of Pro Vice-Chancellor (Learning and Teaching) from 2004 until taking up his current role in 2008. As Deputy Vice-Chancellor Professor Layer was responsible for the academic development of the University of Bradford across its Teaching, Research, Knowledge Transfer and High Level Skills activity.
Between 2000 and 2006 he was the Director of Action on Access, an agency established to advise HEFCE on its Widening Participation strategy. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and was awarded the OBE for services to Higher Education in 2003.
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