About>University Structure & Governance>The Board of Governors

The Board of Governors

​​​​ Aerial image of Llandaff Campus

Our Board of Governors is made up of both external and internal members, with a lay majority; they have responsibility for the educational character and mission of our university, as well as having oversight of its activities.

Key functions of the Board include considering and approving our strategic plan, which sets our university's aims and objectives, and overseeing the financial, physical, and staffing strategies necessary to achieve this plan.

Details of the work of the Board of Governors and opportunities for membership may be obtained from the University Secretary & Clerk to the Board of Governors.

In the academic year 22/23 the Board of Governors has six committees:

  • Audit Committee
  • Campus 2030 (Programme Board)
  • Governance & Nominations Committee
  • Remuneration Committee
  • Resources Committee
  • Strategic Planning & Performance Committee

Key Documents and Minutes

Board of Governors | Independent and Co-opted Members

Our Independent and Co-opted Members provide specialist skills and experience to the university by providing advice, guidance, and critique on the University's strategy.

Chair of the Board | John Taylor CBE | Chair of Strategic Planning & Performance Committee 

John Taylor  

​Member of: Remuneration Committee, and Strategic Planning & Performance Committee

John began his career in HR before going on to lead companies in the employment, training, economic development sectors. His leaderships roles include work at the Training and Enterprise Council (South East Wales), the Development Board for Rural Wales, and as Chief Executive of ACAS.

Also having experience as a Non-Executive Director for a range of private, public and not-for-profit organisations, and with a passion for employment, education, and organisational development, John shared his passion further having been on the Board of the University of West London for nine years, as well as the University of Reading and Cardiff and Vale College.

John was appointed Chair from 1 August 2021 and said "The resilience and innovation shown by staff and students at Cardiff Metropolitan during these unprecedented times is nothing short of remarkable and I am looking forward to working with the Vice-Chancellor and her Executive Team as we begin to emerge from the pandemic and face the challenges of a post -Covid world."

Memberships, qualifications, and recognition: 

  • CBE in the 2013 Queen's Birthday Honours

  • Doctorate of Literature (University of West London)

  • Chartered Manager and Companion

Vice-Chair of the Board | Matthew Tossell


Member of: Audit Committee

As Managing Partner of Hugh James from 1999 to 2011 and Chief Executive of Hugh James Involegal LLP from 2011 to the present day, Matthew has had a notable legal career, building up a significant client base, and transforming the business to become more digital. Establishing a Hugh James Training Academy, Matthew has developed relationships with various educational institutions in city to provide bespoke training.

Recently appointed to the Cardiff Capital Region Business Council Board, Matthew will represent the business interests of the city whilst the region is being developed.

Matthew likes to achieve consensus where possible, and his legal background will be of significant value as a governor at Cardiff Met.

Memberships, qualifications, and recognition:

  • LLB Law (UWIST Cardiff)
  • Dreams and Wishes Ambassador and Governance Advisor

Senior Independent Governor | ​Nick Capaldi | Chair of Governance & Nominations Committee

Nick Capaldi Member of: Governance & Nominations Committee, and Strategic Planning & Performance Committee

Nick was Chief Executive of the Arts Council of Wales for 13 years to September 2021. He's also worked as an Executive Director for the Arts Council England in the South West.

Nick clearly has a passion for the arts, having originally trained as a musician at Chetham's School of Music and the Royal College of Music before starting his career in media doing broadcasting on TV and radio but also playing his instruments in hotels and bars, and then working at festivals and in orchestral management. 

Nick is delighted to be working with Cardiff Met, sharing our passion to widen the university's engagement.

Memberships, qualifications, and recognition:

  • Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts
  • Honorary Doctorate of the Arts from City University, London.

Member of the Board | Alison Thorne | Chair of Campus 2030 (Programme Board)

Member of: Remuneration Committee

Following a successful commercial retail career as an executive director in listed and private companies Alison developed a second career in executive search and business development as Founder and MD of atconnect, Alison is passionate about mentoring and people development, and has also lead post graduate studies at London Collage of Fashion to foster talent.

Alison has a focus on building effective relationships for organisations, both internally and externally, and she is known for her creative strategic thinking and asking the right questions.

Alison has a breadth of experience to offer Cardiff Met, with experience as Non-Executive Director, Chair, Executive Director, and committee member across sectors with a focus on diversity and inclusion.

Memberships, roles, qualifications, and recognition:

  • Wales Lead for Women on Boards

  • Special Independent Panel Member for Public Appointments (Welsh Government)

  • Board Member and Member of the Finance and Audit Committee (Sport Wales)

  • Chair and former committee member Finance and Risk, Commercial Innovation ( Chwarae Teg - leading equality charity)

  • Post Graduate Certificate in Learning and Development (UAL 2012)

Member of the Board | Scott Waddington | Chair of Audit Committee


​Member of: Audit Committee

Scott spent most of his career in the hospitality sector, working with businesses such as Bass, Carlsberg, and Century Inns, as well as being the Chief Executive of SA Brain for 17 years, overseeing huge change for the business.

Scott has also sat on various boards, in the past being Chair of CBI for Wales; Wales Commissioner to the UK Commission for Employment and Skills; and has been part of the British Beer & Pub Association. 

Having a diverse level of high-profile roles, Scott offers broad and practical knowledge as an Governor.

Memberships, qualifications, and recognition:

  • Economics and Accounting (Reading University)
  • Chair of Cardiff Business Club
  • Chair of Transport for Wales

Member of the Board | David Warrender | Chair of Resources Committee


Member of: Resources Committee, and Governance & Nominations Committee

David is currently a Director of Airbus Endeavr and an owner of an international freight services business, and also brings a background in both the private and public sector, software, and management consultancy. 

Whilst in the public sector, David has been in a variety of senior positions within the Welsh Government, as well as creating and leading Digital Wales and then finding and serving as CEO of Innovation Point.

Impressed by Cardiff Met's strength of purpose and potential, David contributes his knowledge and skills as governor, towards our ambitious goals in technology, innovation and entrepreneurship. 

Memberships, qualifications, and recognition:

  • Board member of Hafod
  • Representative of the Welsh Government's interests in the Alacrity Foundation

Member of the Board | Kellie Beirne

Member of the Board | Roisin Connolly


Member of: Strategic Planning & Performance Committee

A Senior Management Consultant at Accenture since 2012, Roisin provides strategic direction to c-suites, and will often focus on difficult programmes of work including digital transformation or inclusion, diversity, and behavioural measures to improve and make an organisation more impactful.

Passionate about getting more women into in tech, Roisin regularly speaks at events and schools to advocate the area.

Rosin is eager to lend her expertise as a governor, feeling the vision and values of CMU resonate with her. Roisin finds enjoyment in helping others and supporting the next generation to drive a sustainable economy.

Memberships, qualifications, and recognition:

  • BSc Economics & European Politics (University of Birmingham)
  • Part of PICTFOR (The Parliamentary Internet, Communications and Technology Forum) via DevelopHer
  • We are the City Tech Women Top 50 Women winner 2017


Member of the Board | Kevin Coutinho

Member of the Board | Fergus Feeney


Member of the Board | Karen Fiagbe

Karen has a wealth of experience in public sector, currently working at Lewisham Council as Interim Head of Economy and Partnerships, as well as holding previous experience at Croydon Council and past roles such as a governor at a primary school and on business improvement district boards.

With a wealth of experience in community and supporting the local population, Karen has worked with a variety of bodies to innovate and develop city regions. Karen is particularly interested in Cardiff Met's focus on enterprise, entrepreneurship, and innovation, feeling her own passions and interests would be used well as a governor.

Memberships, qualifications, and recognition: 

  • BSc Business Economics (Cardiff University)
  • Prosperity through Partnership Award winner 2020


Member of the Board | Dr Iva Gray


Member of the Board | Peter Kennedy

Member of the Board | Paul Matthews


Member of: Governance & Nominations Committee, and Strategic Planning & Performance Committee

Paul is currently the Chief Executive of Monmouthshire County Council, where he has been for over 10 years. However, Paul's public sector experience doesn't stop there, he's also Innovation and Business Engagement lead for the Cardiff Capital Region, Solace Wales lead for Economy and Digital, and a Board Member of SRS (wales), you can also see more below.

As well as offering his advice and knowledge in the boardroom, Paul also teaches as a visiting Professor at Cardiff University.

Paul brings a breadth of experience in in a variety of settings, from educational to entrepreneurial to public sector. 

Memberships, qualifications, and recognition: 

  • Clerk to the Lord Lieutenancy of Gwent 

  • Member of Wales Government Brexit Advisory Panel 

  • Member of Wales Government Digital Advisory Panel 

  • Chair of the Monmouthshire Public Service Board 


Member of the Board | Menai Owen-Jones

Menai Owen-Jones  

Member of: Audit Committee

Menai is a Chartered Director, consultant and experienced social sector Chief Executive and Non-Executive Director. 

As well as previously being Chief Executive of a UK-wide health charity, The Pituitary Foundation, Menai holds a variety of non-executive director and advisory roles, including as an Independent Adviser to the Welsh Parliament (Senedd) Commission and Trustee of Wales Council for Voluntary Action (WCVA) and Race Council Cymru. Additionally, until recently Menai held positions with Samaritans Cymru, the Association of Chief Executives of Voluntary Organisations (ACEVO) and Daring to Dream.  

Menai has 20 years of experience across many different disciplines in the voluntary sector and is a fluent Welsh speaker.  

Holding the belief that higher education makes a fundamentally important difference to individuals, the economy and society, and committed to our values and purpose, Menai is a passionate member of the Board.   

Memberships, qualifications, and recognition:   

  • Chartered Director (2020) 
  • LLB Law Degree (2002)
  • Ambassador for the Institute of Directors Wales 

  • Fellow of the Institute of Directors 

  • Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts (RSA)

  • Fellow of the Institute of Welsh Affairs


Member of the Board | Christopher Pilgrim


​Member of: Remuneration Committee

With experience in the UK and overseas, Chris has developed a significant skillset in HR within ExxonMobil, Shell, and E.on-Npower. Leading in change within culture and behaviour, Chris has built relationships on trust and credibility throughout the organisations he's been part of.

Chris has had a number of NED and Executive roles, notably he is currently Chair of the Doctors and Dentists Pay Review Body and Chief HR and People Officer at E.on-Npower.

Chris is keen to be part of a board in a sector that is important to him, hoping to bring his experience in commercial organisations with a focus on HR and change.

Memberships, qualifications, and recognition:

  • MA Organisation Behaviour and Analytics (Lancaster University)
  • Postgraduate Diploma in HR Management (Cardiff University)
  • BA Politics (University of Exeter)

Member of the Board | Dr Giri Shankar MBE​

Board of Governors | Staff Members

These are members of the University's staff who sit on the Board.

Vice-Chancellor| Professor Rachael Langford

BA MA (Oxon), PhD

Professor Rachael Langford is our current President & Vice-Chancellor as well as being a Professor of French Cultural Studies.

Read more about Professor Langford.

Professional Services Staff Governor | Charlie Bull

Member of: Governance & Nominations Committee

Charlie joined the University back in 2003 and currently works as Lead Technician Demonstrator: Undergraduate Studies and Digital in Cardiff School of Art & Design. Her background is in Architecture and spatial design, and she is interested in developing approaches to teaching within technical practice. 

Alongside working here at the University, Charlie is a Cardiff Met Unison steward, and joins the Board of Governors as Professional Services Representative. Charlie has also been involved in live music, comedy and arts events.

Memberships, qualifications, and recognition:

  • BSc (Hons) Architecture (Cardiff University, 2003)
  • PGCtHE (Cardiff Metropolitan University, 2016)
  • Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (FHEA)

Academic Staff Governor | Clare Glennan

Clare joins the ​Board as a representative of the academic staff at the University.

Academic Board Representative | Kirsty Palmer

Kirsty joined Cardiff Met in October 2015 as Director of Employability, taking on the role of Director of Student Services from August 2017. Student Services covers student disability & mental health, careers and placement support, money advice, chaplaincy and the iZone student helpdesk.

Before moving into Higher Education, Kirsty spent a decade working in the youth and volunteering sectors in London. This included contributing to the recruitment of volunteers for the London 2012 Olympics. She was also Chair of the Board of Trustees at North Kensington Law Centre, with no legal background.

Since moving to Cardiff Kirsty's been active in the local running community and is a Co-Event Director of Tremorfa Parkrun which was set up in October 2019 with lots of support from Cardiff Met.

Memberships, qualifications, and recognition:

  • BA Modern European Languages (Durham 2001)
  • MSc Strategy, Change & Leadership (Bristol 2021)
  • Member of the AUA
  • Chair of the Board of Trustees at Welsh Women's Aid

Board of Governors | Student Members

The President and Vice-President of the Cardiff Met Student's Union are ex officio members of the Board of Governors, and they ensure that the voices of the students at our university are heard.

SU President | Natalia-Mia Roach

natalia-mia roach  

Natalia-Mia is the 2023/24 Cardiff Met SU President, having joined the university in 2019 to study Sport and Exercise Science BSc (Hons).  

A driven representative, Natalia was actively involved in the SU and student life throughout her time at Cardiff Met, becoming both a student ambassador and student mentor, as well as a fitness assistant at the University’s gyms. Natalia also represented the Women’s Rugby team during her three years as a student at Cardiff Met, as well as being a Social Secretary on the Women’s Rugby Committee. 

Natalia said, “ I hope to promote positive change through student voice, keeping Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion at the heart of the University with equal opportunities for all.​

SU Vice President | Rewathi Viswanatham


Rewathi Viswanatham is the 2023/24 Cardiff Met SU Vice President, having joined the University in 2023 to study Masters in International Business Management.

Rewathi is originally from India and has a background in Technical Support, with a Bachelors in Business and Commerce.

Rewathi said, "My priority is to ensure our students at Cardiff Met thrive within the academic sphere and are equipped with the skills to confidently shape the world when they leave us, whilst forever remembering the communities and networks we helped them build here at Cardiff Met.”​​

External Co-opted Members

External Co-opted members of the Board are not 'full' members of the Board, and instead provide specific expert advice on matters such as HR or finance.

Adrian Piper


Member of: Audit Committee

Adrian Piper, a former Governor of the University, worked for the Bank of England from 1971 until his retirement in 2009; the final five years of his career were spent as the Bank’s Agent for Wales. From 2010 until 2020 he was a Non-Executive Director of Hodge Bank and Hodge Life Assurance Company, serving as Chairman from 2017 until 2020.

As a former Chair of the Audit Committee, he has significant experience of the University’s financial affairs.​

Lisa Winstone


Member of: Audit Committee

Lisa is currently Director of Finance and Corporate Services at the Education and Workforce Council, where she is responsible for a range of financial matters, including audit, as well as HR and other areas. Having previously worked in leading roles at the Office of National Statistics, RSM Tenon, and EY, Lisa has an in-depth knowledge in the financial field.

With significant experience in finance and audit, Lisa is a valuable member of the Audit Committee.