The Engineering Construction Industry Training Board (ECITB) has announced the appointment of six new Board members.

Appointed by Secretary of State for Education Gillian Keegan MP, Board members will work under the leadership of Lynda Armstrong OBE, Chair of the ECITB.

Lynda Armstrong - ECITB Chair

Lynda Armstrong OBE, Chair of the ECITB

The ECITB Board, which is made up of employer representatives and several independent members, sets the strategic direction and monitors performance of the ECITB, with a majority drawn from levy payers.

The new trustees will help steer the ECITB and hold the Executive Team to account for the delivery of the ECITB’s strategy to grow the engineering construction industry (ECI) skills base. They will also act as ambassadors to champion the ECITB’s work as the statutory skills organisation for the industry in Great Britain.

The new Board members are:

  • Mark Riley, Project Controls Lead, Emerging Energy, Phillips 66 Limited
  • Helen Higgs, Head of Construction Workforce Capability, EDF Energy
  • Andrew Colquhoun, Executive Vice President, Altrad
  • Richard Law, Managing Director, Technica Limited
  • Mark Fotheringham, Technical Director, Infinity Engineering
  • Professor Paul de Leeuw, Director, Energy Transition Institute, Robert Gordon University

The ECITB is an arms-length body of the UK Government, reporting to its sponsor, the Department for Education (DfE).

The process of appointing six new Board members was managed by DfE, with a panel conducting the first and second interviews that was chaired by a representative of the DfE and also included Lynda Armstrong and an independent member.

The panel submitted a list of finalists to Minister for Skills, Apprenticeships and Higher Education Robert Halfon MP for approval and the appointments were also reviewed and approved by Scottish Ministers.

Chair Lynda Armstrong said: “I am delighted to welcome such a high-calibre group of professionals to the ECITB Board.

“The new members are industry figures and together represent the wide range of sectors and regions in which the ECI operates. They bring to the Board a real breadth of expertise and knowledge of the engineering construction industry.

“This industrial knowhow is complemented by Professor Paul de Leeuw, who has an excellent energy academic background.

“Our six new trustees bring new perspectives and complement the diversity of talent already represented. I am in no doubt that these appointments will greatly benefit the ECITB in helping deliver the aims from our Leading Industry Learning Strategy 2023-25.”

Meet the new Board members

Mark Riley

Mark Riley

Mark, the Project Controls Lead for Emerging Energy at Phillips 66 Limited, has held several leadership positions within the refining business, spanning capital project and construction delivery, turnaround planning and execution, and tank maintenance programme lead.

Mark has been at the forefront of contractor and resource management policies and practices throughout this period, developing best practice documents and regional strategies. He is also the Chair of the ECITB’s CCNSG Safety Passport Committee.

He said: “I am honoured and proud to have been appointed as a Board member of the ECITB. I look forward to being able to support the ECITB Executive in meeting the skills needs of industry as we embark on our journey to net zero.”

Richard Law

Richard Law

Richard, who is Managing Director at Technica Limited, has worked within the UK gas transmission and energy sector since 2009. He has held various technical and senior roles within SME organisations supporting major clients such as National Gas Transmission, Centrica, SGN, Gassco and J Murphy and Sons.

Prior to entering the energy sector, Richard served for 15 years as a Weapon Engineer Officer within the Royal Navy having joined under an engineer scholarship pathway.

He said: “As a representative of an SME business and a military veteran, I am really pleased to be appointed as a trustee. I am looking forward to working with the Board and Senior Leadership Team to help deliver the current strategy and inform future decisions and policy.”

Andrew Colquhoun

Andrew Colquhoun

Having joined the company in 1985 as an apprentice, Andrew has built his career at Altrad Babcock over the past 38 years in a range of manufacturing, project engineering and operational delivery roles.

Andrew has gained valuable experience working across nuclear, oil and gas, thermal and petrochemical sectors. Prior to his appointment as Altrad Executive Vice President of Operations, Andrew held a number of executive roles within Doosan Babcock.

Andrew said: “I am very proud to have been appointed to the ECITB Board. I look forward to working with my colleagues to help the UK industry attract, train and develop the skilled workforce our country needs to deliver its ambitions.”

Professor Paul de Leeuw

Professor Paul de Leeuw

Paul is a senior industry leader and executive with over 35 years’ experience in the global energy sector, having worked for a wide range of companies and organisations, including Shell, Marathon Oil, Amoco, BP, Venture Production and Centrica.

He is currently the Director of Robert Gordon University’s Energy Transition Institute, Chair of the National Energy Skills Accelerator, a government and industry advisor, and a board member of the International School in Aberdeen.

He said: “I’m delighted to join the Board of the ECITB at this crucial time. With the requirement to re-plumb, re-wire and re-purpose the UK’s energy system over the coming decades, the work of the ECITB is absolutely critical to successfully prepare the workforce for our new, net zero future.”

Helen Higgs

Helen Higgs

Helen is Head of Construction Workforce Capability for EDF Energy nuclear new build projects. Over the past 20 years, she has led on delivery of effective workforce strategies for major projects across the nuclear cycle, providing the required capacity and capability for the business and projects whilst impacting social mobility and diversity.

She has served as Chair of the Board for National College for Nuclear and is now Co-Chair of the Nuclear Skills Strategy Group, the sector skills body.

She said: “I’m delighted to join the ECITB board to support the growth of engineering construction skills for all levels, which will create enormous opportunities for social impact and for increasing productivity of our projects.”

Mark Fotheringham

Mark Fotheringham

Mark is an engineering and project management professional with significant experience in the energy sector having spent several decades working in engineering and construction in the UK and overseas.

An expert in business, leadership and technical skills, Mark is currently Technical Director at Infinity Engineering, an engineering consultancy focused on energy security and transition. He is also a trustee and board member of North East Scotland College.

He said: “I am delighted to be offered the opportunity to contribute to the excellent work of the ECITB in developing the engineering construction skills necessary to deliver national economic benefit through a period of transition.”

Find out more about the ECITB Board