Who we are

Our board and committees

Our board is responsible for setting our strategy and making sure we deliver it. The board meets regularly throughout the year.

Board members:

James Wharton, Lord Wharton of Yarm, was appointed chair of the OfS board on 1 April 2021.

He was elected MP for his home constituency of Stockton South in May 2010 and served as Northern Powerhouse Minister at the Department for Communities and Local Government and then Africa Minister at the Department for International Development.

In September 2020, he took his seat as a member of the House of Lords.

He is director of a consultancy company providing strategic and management advice to a wide range of organisations.

His early career was as a solicitor working for a firm in the north-east of England.

Arif is Director for Freedom of Speech and Academic Freedom at the Office for Students. He took up his position in August 2023.

Just before taking up his present appointment, Arif was a Commissioner at the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC), Professor of Philosophy at the University of Cambridge and a Fellow of Gonville and Caius College. He has held visiting academic posts around the world.

For many years until 2021, he was a trade union representative and caseworker for the University and College Union. 

In 2021 he was awarded an MBE for services to education and the 2021 Index on Censorship Freedom of Expression Trustee Award.

John is Director for Fair Access and Participation at the Office for Students. He took up his position in January 2022.

Prior to joining the OfS, he was a senior leader and researcher in the schools sector, leading on public affairs and curriculum research and design for Ark, policy and strategy for Now Teach, and History initial teacher education for the Harris Federation.

John has also worked as Head of Education and Social Reform for the think tank Policy Exchange, was a founder governor of Oak National Academy, and served as an advisor to the government on reforms to initial teacher training and continuing professional development.

Martin is deputy chair of the board and chairs the Provider Risk Committee.

He is a member of the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) board and he chairs the CMA Panel whose members investigate markets and mergers. Martin is a quondam fellow of Hughes Hall, University of Cambridge.

Early in his career he was a Law lecturer and he has held board or similar positions at the University of Kent, the Economic and Social Research Council, the Solicitors Regulation Authority, Police Now, The Higher Education Funding Council for England and the global law firm Norton Rose Fulbright.

Elizabeth is a former CEO and non-executive chair of Boots UK and Republic of Ireland. She is currently chair at the D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership in Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire. She is also a non-executive director of pooling solutions company, Brambles Limited.

She is a former president of ISBA (Incorporated Society of British Advertising) and of the Women in Advertising and Communications Club, and was a member of the ASA Council for six years. Elizabeth received an honorary doctorate from Nottingham Trent University in 2018.

In January 2020 Elizabeth received a CBE in the Queen’s New Year Honours list for her services to gender equality in business.

Katja has held a number of senior communications, sustainability and marketing roles in private sector organisations. Most recently, Katja was Interim Director of Corporate Affairs at ASOS where she was responsible for communications, public affairs and corporate events. Her previous roles include Chief Corporate Affairs and Marketing Director at Capita and Group Head of External Affairs and Sustainability at HSBC.

Between 2011 and 2015, Katja was Chief Policy Director and Deputy Director-General at the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) and led CBI’s policy development and advocacy work in the UK and internationally. At the start of her career Katja worked in HR at the BBC.

Verity has been Principal and chief executive of Leicester College since 2013. Prior to that she worked at the Skills Funding Agency in the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills.

She currently chairs the Student Loans Company’s Advanced Learning Loans Stakeholder Group, is a board member of the Leicester and Leicestershire Enterprise Partnership, and a member of the Lifelong Education Institute Advisory Board.

She is also a trustee of the Skills and Education Group and of the National Space Centre, and a director of Leicester Community Sports Arena Ltd.

Rachel is a former assistant headteacher and Director of Training and Staff Wellbeing in a large 11-18 mixed comprehensive school in the north-east of England. She read Modern Languages at Oxford before returning to the north-east to train to teach in the school she attended as a student.

Rachel is passionate about social mobility and ensuring that students of all backgrounds are supported to access higher education. Throughout her career, she has worked with the Oxford Access Scheme and Cambridge outreach programmes to encourage young people from the north-east to consider higher education as a pathway to success.

Rachel was designated a Specialist Leader in Education and was a member of the Leadership Partner Schools Network. She was selected for the DfE Get Into Teaching case study and nominated for a regional ‘Inspirational Secondary School Teacher of the Year’ award.

Susan was appointed chief executive of the OfS in September 2022. She served as its interim chief executive from May 2022. Before this she was its director of regulation, which carries responsibility for the OfS’s approach to regulation and the way this is deployed in relation to individual higher education providers.

She has a background in the higher education sector, having held senior roles at various universities and colleges and at the Higher Education Funding Council for England.

Simon is the managing partner and co-global chief executive officer of the global law firm DLA Piper. He is a visiting professor and lecturer at Imperial College Business School.

Dayo is currently the principal of Brampton Manor Academy and executive principal/CEO of Brampton Manor Trust. Prior to that he held various leadership positions in education including as an Ofsted inspector and National Leader of Education.

Under Dayo’s leadership, Brampton Manor converted to academy status and opened a sixth form provision in 2012 which has enabled hundreds of students to progress to top Russell group universities (including Oxbridge) and to secure rewarding careers in various walks of life.

Dayo passionately believes that good quality education is a key ingredient in advancing social mobility. In 2016, he was awarded an OBE for services to education.

Michael has been President and Provost of University College London (UCL) since January 2021. Prior to this he was Vice-Chancellor and Principal of the University of Sydney, which under his leadership rose to first in Australia and fourth in the world for graduate employability. He was also responsible for the largest philanthropic campaign in Australian history, raising a record one billion Australian dollars.

He is recognised internationally as a leader in the field of intellectual property theory and holds a Doctor of Philosophy from the University of Oxford, where he headed Oxford’s Law faculty and Social Sciences division.

In 2017, Michael was awarded a Companion of the Order of Australia for service to leadership of the tertiary education sector, to the advancement of equitable access to educational opportunities, to developing programmes focused on multidisciplinary research, and to the Anglican Church of Australia. He is an ordained Minister in the Anglican Church. 

Caleb is a postgraduate student at the University of Exeter studying an MBA apprenticeship degree. He was previously awarded an MA in Diplomacy and International Relations at Lancaster University and a BA (Hons) in Public Services at the University of Plymouth.

Caleb is currently employed as the Safeguarding Manager for Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service, having spent over seven years in secondary education as a Safeguarding Lead. Appointed as the youngest Magistrate for the Ministry of Justice in 2017, Caleb is now a member of the National Magistrate's Leadership Executive and further volunteers his time sitting on the board of trustees for the Youth Hostel Association (England and Wales).

Caleb chairs the OfS Student Panel.

View OfS board papers

Our committees

A number of committees advise the chief executive and the board.

Two board members serve on the Provider Risk Committee:

  • Martin Coleman (Chair)
  • Elizabeth Fagan

Independent members:

  • Nisha Arora
    Nisha is Director, Cross Cutting Policy & Strategy at the Financial Conduct Authority. She was previously Senior Director, Consumer at the Competition and Markets Authority and Acting Senior Director at The Office of Fair Trading. Nisha’s experience builds on an earlier 20-year legal career in private practice and as a senior Government lawyer.
  • Michael Grenfell
    Michael is a Competition Lawyer. From 2015 to February 2024, he was Executive Director of Enforcement at the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) and an executive member of the CMA Board. Prior to the CMA’s establishment he was a partner in legal practice at Norton Rose Fulbright LLP (previously Norton Rose), where he specialised in competition law for 25 years, including as Head of the firm’s London Competition Group.
  • Charles Ilako
    Charles is a sub-Committee Member of the Law Society in England and Wales and until recently was a Trustee Director of PwC’s Pension Schemes. Previous roles he held included Chair and Financial Services Supervisor of the Financial Services Regulatory Authority in St Helena, Head of Banking Supervision at the Cayman Islands Monetary Authority and Lead Partner of PwC’s EMEA Financial Services Regulatory Practice for a number of years.
  • Juliet Lazarus
    Up until August 2021 Juliet was General Counsel and Director of Competition at the Office of Road and Rail. She is a member of the CMA’s Panel of independent experts which investigates major mergers and markets and hears regulatory appeals. She is also a member of the Ofgem Enforcement Decision Panel. 
  • Simon Wilde
    Simon is a partner at Oxera Consulting LLP, and up until 2023 was an Executive Committee member at Ofgem, most recently as Senior Director of Markets and Gas Crisis. Prior to joining Ofgem, he had over 25 years investment banking experience primarily in the energy markets and lectured at a number of UK business schools.

Provider Risk Committee: Register of interests

Two board members serve on the Quality Assessment Committee (QAC):

  • Simon Levine (Chair)
  • Dayo Olukoshi

Independent members:

  • Dr Jagjeet Jutley-Neilson
    Jagjeet is a Director of Student Experience and Progression in Psychology at the University of Warwick. She is responsible for enhancing students' learning experiences and strengthening the student voice. Jagjeet is also involved in educational research which explores Black, Asian and minority ethnic and disabled students’ learning experiences in Higher Education.
  • Paul Gratrick

    Paul is the Head of Operations in the Student Enhancement and Experience team at the University of Liverpool. Previously, Paul has worked in faculty business partner roles at the University of Liverpool and University of Manchester, working with senior academic and professional service colleagues on employability and student experience initiatives. Alongside this Paul is also a director for the Association of Graduate Careers Advisory Services (AGCAS). Currently Paul is also a part-time PhD student at Durham University, researching student perceptions of value for money at UK higher education institutes.

  • Professor Graeme Pedlingham
    Graeme is Deputy Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Student Experience and Professor of English at the University of Sussex and also has strategic responsibility for assessment across the institution. He has expertise in curriculum design and management, and in supporting student transitions in higher education. An academic in English literature, Graeme has experience of working across education sectors and in developing cross-institutional collaborations. From 20 September 2022 to 20 September 2023, Graeme was seconded on a full-time basis to the OfS from the University of Sussex as a principal assessor to assist the OfS with its programme of quality assessments. During that time, Graeme stepped back from his role as a member of QAC and did not attend QAC meetings. Graeme resumed his membership of QAC following the end of his secondment.
  • Professor Deborah Rafalin
    Deborah is Professor of Psychology at City, University of London where she is Academic Lead, Educational Outcomes and an Associate Dean. Across her career, Deborah has worked at a senior level in education, health and social care, in partnership with service users and their families, educators, health and social care professionals, commissioners, and regulators. Deborah is an Hcpc Registered Psychologist who works in the field of adolescent and adult mental health. She is also an Executive Coach and has supported clients across private and statutory sectors to improve quality of provision and stakeholder experience. Deborah has also served as a Lead Assessor for OfS assessments of the quality of academic experience at higher education providers.
  • Diane Rainsbury
    Diane is Registrar at Istituto Marganoni London where she has institutional responsibility for governance, quality assurance, academic standards and regulatory compliance. She has extensive experience of higher education in similar roles across a diverse range of institutions, having led various strategic and capacity building projects working with a wide range of stakeholders. She is also active in a wide range of sector groups, has undertaken various external quality reviews and has a specific interest in comparative education systems and policy analysis.
  • Ramita Tejpal
    Associate Professor Ramita Tejpal is Dean of Academic Quality and Policy at BPP University. Ramita has significant experience across both the higher and further education sectors and has held advisory roles across the sectors on strategic and policy-based matters, additionally working closely with statutory and regulatory bodies as a reviewer and inspectorate. She is also a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts in recognition of her extensive work in, and contributions to, the sector. In addition to her professional roles, Ramita is also pursuing a Professional Doctorate in Education at the University of Glasgow.
  • John Kirkpatrick
    John is Deputy Chief Executive at the Equality and Human Rights Commission. Until October 2023, he was Investigations Delivery Director at the UK's Trade Remedies Authority. Up to 2018, he was Senior Director, Research Intelligence and Advocacy at the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) and advised government on regulatory policy design.
  • Oscar Minto
    Oscar is a postgraduate student at the London School of Economics and Political Science studying a Master of Laws specialising in IT and Data Law. He was previously awarded a Bachelor of Laws at the University of Reading. Oscar currently works as a Student Experience Officer at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. He previously worked as an Education Officer at Reading Students’ Union where he was the primary student contact for the University’s Teaching Excellence Framework submission. Having represented students over the past six years, Oscar has held several roles at university, the QAA and as an OfS student panel member.
  • Tymon Zgorzelski
    Tymon is an emerging composer from Poland. He has recently graduated the Royal College of Music with first class honours and was elected as Students’ Union President there for academic years 2022 - 23 and 2023 - 24. His musical outputs include instrumental music for various ensembles, a fully-staged chamber opera based on text by Nobel Prize-winning author Olga Tokarczuk and purely electronic, site-specific works. Alongside artistic interests, Tymon is passionate about education and student agency. He was a member of Teaching Excellence Framework Panel 2023 for the OfS and is a volunteer at Chelsea Physic Garden Youth Panel.

Quality Assessment Committee: Register of interests

Board members on the Risk and Audit Committee:

  • Katja Hall (Chair)

Independent members:

  • Suzanne McCarthy
    Suzanne holds a number of non-executive roles in the public and charitable sectors, including as chair of the Fire Standards Board and as a non-executive director of the Fundraising Regulator. She was previously chair of the University of London’s audit and risk assurance committee.
  • Margaret Monckton
    Margaret is Chief Finance Officer at the University of Nottingham. Prior to her roles in higher education, she worked at Nottinghamshire Police as Assistant Chief Officer. She is also a director at Nova Education Trust, a multi-academy trust in the East Midlands, and was previously a governor at Stoke College.
  • Satish Jeram
    Satish has held a range of finance and executive roles in the private space specialising in Finance, HR and Internal Audit. He has worked for a variety of SMEs and blue chip companies across several sectors in the UK and overseas. His last role was as a Finance Director with Qmatic. He is currently pursuing work in the voluntary sector.
  • Nick Gash
    Nick is a non-executive director at Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust and Hillingdon Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust; he chairs the Audit, Risk and Governance Committee at Imperial College. Since 2021 Nick has served as independent Chair of the Audit and Risk Committee of the Royal Society of Medicine. He chairs the North West London advisory committee for the national NHS Clinical Impact Awards. Outside his NHS roles, Nick works as a consultant offering communications, policy and political advice, and training. Until 2004, Nick was chief executive of the National Union of Students.

Risk and Audit Committee: Register of interests

Three board members serve on the Remuneration and Nominations Committee:

  • Rachel Houchen (chair)
  • Caleb Stevens
  • James Wharton.

Independent members:

  • San Johal
    San has extensive senior human resources and organisational development experience across a number of sectors. She is the Group Chief People Officer at Calisen, and previously was Chief People Officer for EDF Renewables UK and Executive Director of HR and OD at Highways England. She has also run her own HR consultancy, supporting clients in all sectors to deliver people strategies and solutions as well as cultural/organisational transformation.

Remuneration and Nominations Committee: Register of interests

Last updated 05 June 2024
05 June 2024
Added Nick Gash to RAC; updated registers of interests and committee rules of procedure.
23 May 2024
Updated committee rules of procedure file.
14 May 2024
Updated register of interests for OfS board and member biographies for the quality assessment committee
24 April 2024
Updated note for Juliet Lazarus, under Provider Risk Committee.
11 April 2024
OfS board register of interests updated
11 March 2024
Updated risk and audit committee register of interests
19 February 2024
Updated Provider Risk Committee register of interests and Committee rules of procedures
25 January 2024
Updated board register of interests.
07 December 2023
Updated board proceedings and code of conduct document
30 November 2023
Updated board proceedings and code of conduct document
06 November 2023
Updated register of interests for members of the PRC.
02 November 2023
Policy on managing conflicts of interest added.
31 October 2023
updated Quality Assessment Committee - Register of interests document
20 October 2023
Updated note for John Kirkpatrick, under Provider Risk Committee.
04 October 2023
Updated OfS scheme of delegation, with effect 1 October 2023.
20 September 2023
Updated note for Graeme Pedlingham, under Quality Assessment Committee.
08 September 2023
Updated board membership.
11 August 2023
Updated board and committee memberships and registers of interest.
02 August 2023
Added policy on managing conflicts of interest; updated register of interests and committee rules of procedure.
10 July 2023
Scheme of delegation updated
30 June 2023
Updated register of interests and committee membership.
05 May 2023
Board members' register of interests updated.
02 May 2023
Risk and Audit Committee register of interests updated
27 April 2023
Board members' register of interests updated.
04 April 2023
Registers of interest updated for the board and the Risk and Audit Committee
03 April 2023
Scheme of delegation updated
08 March 2023
Board members' register of interests updated.
03 March 2023
Updated Provider Risk Committee and Quality Assessment Committee registers of interests.
24 February 2023
Registers of interests updated for the board and the Risk and Audit Committee.
13 February 2023
Board register of interests and committee rules of procedure updated
01 February 2023
Updated list of board members - Martha Longdon removed and Caleb Stevens added. Board register of interests updated.
01 January 2023
Updated board and committee memberships and register of interests.
14 December 2022
Updated Risk and Audit Committee membership and register of interests.
08 December 2022
The work of the Specialist Provider Panel has now concluded - details removed from this page.
07 December 2022
Link added to the TEF Panel page where the rules of procedure and membership of the TEF Panel have been published.
11 November 2022
Board members' register of interests updated.
18 October 2022
Committee rules of procedure updated
06 October 2022
Details of TEF panel added
22 September 2022
Updated register of interests file.
02 September 2022
Page updated to reflect the appointment of Susan Lapworth as chief executive.
17 August 2022
Updated Risk & Audit Committee register of interests.
01 August 2022
Clarification on frequency of board meetings
29 June 2022
Board register of interests updated
30 May 2022
Membership of the specialist provider panel added.
26 May 2022
Updated board register of interests
12 May 2022
Updated Committee Rules of Procedure
10 May 2022
Updates to the board register of interests, and the biography for Michael Spence.
01 May 2022
Removed Nicola Dandridge; added Susan Lapworth; updated Register of Interests.
20 April 2022
Register of interests updated for the board.
01 April 2022
Updated board membership and committee rules of procedure.
30 March 2022
John Kirkpatrick added to the Quality Assessment Committee, and Quality Assessment Committee register of interests updated.
23 March 2022
Three new board members appointed - Rachel Houchen, Dayo Olukoshi and Dr Michael Spence. Biographies and register of interests updated.
23 February 2022
Risk and Audit Committee register of interests updated
14 February 2022
Register of interests updated for the Provider Risk Committee
03 February 2022
Register of interests updated for the board
24 January 2022
Register of interests updated for the board
05 January 2022
Register of interests updated for the board and the Risk and Audit Committee, and some biography updates.
01 January 2022
Details added for John Blake, Director for Fair Access and Participation.
16 December 2021
Board register of interests updated
03 December 2021
Elizabeth Fagan's bio updated
11 November 2021
Rules of procedure, PRC, QAC and RAC committee members and register of interests updated
27 October 2021
Board register of interests updated
13 October 2021
Updated member list and register of interests for Risk and Audit Committee.
01 October 2021
Update to reflect the reappointment to the Board of Martha Longdon.
17 September 2021
Board members and register of interests updated
18 August 2021
Board register of interests updated
12 August 2021
Board register of interests updated
05 August 2021
Board register of interests and Gurpreet Dehal's biography updated
20 July 2021
Board members’ register of interests document updated
29 June 2021
Katja Hall's job title updated
04 June 2021
Board members' register of interests and board members updated
27 May 2021
Risk and Audit Committee: Register of interests updated
21 April 2021
Board members’ register of interests document updated
01 April 2021
Updated to reflect new chair James Wharton
05 February 2021
Board members’ register of interests document updated
15 January 2021
Board members’ register of interests document updated
30 September 2020
Board register of interests updated
29 September 2020
Two board members' bios updated
22 September 2020
Scheme of delegation updated
18 September 2020
Updates to board register of interests and one board member's bio
17 September 2020
Updates to board register of interests and two board members' bios
22 July 2020
Board register of interests and bio for Gurpreet Dehal updated
03 June 2020
Uploaded version 10 of the OfS scheme of delegation
04 May 2020
Board register of interests updated
15 April 2020
Remuneration and Nominations Committee register of interests updated
01 April 2020
Quality Assessment Committee register of interests updated
02 March 2020
Board register of interests updated and biographies updated for Martha Longdon and Suzanne McCarthy
25 February 2020
Quality Assessment Committee register of interests updated
21 January 2020
Risk and Audit Committee register of interests updated
15 January 2020
Board members' biographies updated
24 December 2019
Quality Assessment Committee register of interests and terms of reference updated
16 December 2019
Risk and Audit Committee register of interests updated
05 December 2019
Board proceedings and code of conduct updated
05 December 2019
Remuneration and Nominations Committee terms of reference updated

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