Back Back

New members join University governing body


The University of Wolverhampton has appointed three new members to its Board of Governors.

Geoff Thompson MBE, Ninder Johal and Tony Collins have all been appointed as independent members to the board on three year terms.

The board acts as trustees and has responsibility for ensuring that measures are in place for the effective management of the University of Wolverhampton.

The main responsibilities of the board are to approve the University's strategic plan, approve the annual budget and accounts, approve key performance indicators and appoint the Vice-Chancellor. 

Geoff Thompson is an honorary graduate of the University having received a Doctor of Letters in 2014. He is one of the leading youth activists and experts in sports development and politics. He has over 25 years’ experience in the bidding, hosting and legacy of major games, and the positive impact of sport and arts in the social and human development of young people and communities. He is also five-time World Karate Champion and has been inducted into the Martial Arts Hall of Fame and was honoured in 1995 in the Queens New Year’s Honours list with an MBE for his services to sport.

Ninder Johal is the President of the Black Country Chamber of Commerce having served as the Vice President of the Black Country Chamber. Prior to this he served as President of Sandwell Chamber. Mr Johal is well known in the local business community and besides his position within the Chamber he is also Chair of the Black Country Asian Business Association and is a Black Country Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) board member. Mr Johal is also the Managing Director of Nachural Records and Nachural Corporate Communications.

Tony Collins is the former Chief Executive Officer of Virgin Trains. Mr Collins was employed by Virgin Trains for nearly fourteen years, nine of which were spent as CEO. He began his career with Rockwell Thompson Ltd in Wolverhampton as a Commercial Apprentice before taking on the role of Financial Analyst. Mr Collins joined Virgin Trains from Alstom Passenger Group in Birmingham. Mr Collins is a non-executive director of Virgin Start-up, a not-for-profit organisation dedicated to helping entrepreneurs with small business funding, resources and advice. He is also a non-executive director of the Invinctus Academy, a chain of four academy schools across the West Midlands.

Dr Simon Walford, chair of the Board of Governors, said: “In recent months several very experienced governors of the University came to the end of their permitted term and retired from the Board. I am very pleased indeed that we have been able to recruit  willing volunteers with such a diverse range of experience and interests to help us sustain good governance and the clear sense of purpose so important to the reputation of the University and the quality of experience we offer students.”

Vice-Chancellor of the University of Wolverhampton, Professor Geoff Layer, said: “It is vital to have such a diverse mix of people on the board representing a cross-section of the community we serve.

“It is also important that people who join the board bring with them a wealth of experience and gravitas in their field and can have a positive impact on the running of the University.”

The board is made up of 11 independent members and eight co-opted members, consisting of representatives from staff, students, the academic board and an external institution as well as the Vice-Chancellor.


For more information please contact James Allen in the Media Relations Office on 01902 322003.

For more information please contact the Media Relations Office on 01902 32 2736 or 01902 518647.

Share this release