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Advisory Board

The School of Business and Management (SBM) Advisory Board offers advice on the development and work of the School particularly on future strategy and the employability of our students. The Board consists of a broad cross section of members of the international, national and local business community, government and the third sector.

The functions of the Advisory Board are to advise on:

1. The overall strategy and direction of the School, particularly in terms of issues such as undergraduate and postgraduate education, plus employability and the external image, identity and positioning of the School.

2. SBM partnerships with business, government and the third sector locally, nationally and internationally and, when appropriate, facilitate such partnerships.

3. Fundraising activities, especially opportunities most relevant to the teaching and research areas of the School.

4. The future direction of the School’s research centres and themes in the light of potential opportunities and issues of contemporary relevance.

Nick Montagu (Chair)

After leaving Oxford, where he studied classics and philosophy, Nick Montagu lectured in philosophy at the University of Reading for seven years. Joining the Civil Service at 30, Nick held a couple of health policy posts in the Department of Health and Social Security (DHSS), before being seconded to the Cabinet Secretariat. He returned to the social security side of DHSS, undertaking one of the early “Rayner” efficiency scrutinies, and subsequently led the secretariat for the Pensions Inquiry, which spearheaded the social security reviews of 1983-86.

Nick headed the pensions and personnel divisions of DHSS, moving to the new Department of Social Security when the DHSS was split in 1988. He became head of personnel, finance and planning, leading the establishment of the major executive agencies under the “Next Steps” programme. From 1992-1997 he was at the Department of Transport, overseeing the privatisation of the railways and the competition to build the fast rail link to the Channel Tunnel.

After a brief spell heading the Economic Secretariat in the Cabinet Office, Nick became Chairman of the Inland Revenue, following an open competition in 1997. He was Chairman until his retirement in March 2004, leading the Revenue through the greatest changes in its history, as it became a social as well as a tax collecting Department and developed its e-services. He was also the Permanent Secretary Diversity Champion for the whole Civil Service, and chaired the Civil Service Benevolent Fund.

Since his retirement, Nick has been a member of PricewaterhouseCoopers’ Advisory Board, a Director of the Pension Corporation and of Xafinity, and Chairman of the Aviva UK Life With-Profits Committee. He has also undertaken numerous consultancy and speaking engagements, including work with overseas governments and coaching for senior executives contemplating a portfolio career; and he has written on a wide range of public administration issues.  He is currently Chairman of the Financial Ombudsman Service, and Chair of the Committee of University Chairs.

Nick Montagu holds honorary doctorates from Middlesex, Bradford and Reading Universities, and was appointed Knight Commander of the Order of the Bath (KCB) in 2001, having previously been a companion of the Order (CB).


Kay Ali

Kay is responsible for heading up global partnership development at Youth Business International, an NGO who work with supporting young people around the world.  Kay has nearly 15 years’ experience across the charity, social enterprise, NGO and public sector. A business development expert with experience of securing international, national, local funding; as well as successfully managing and delivering charity, corporate and community projects.  

Kay has gained extensive experience in developing and delivering successful funding partnerships, marketing and monitoring & evaluation. Kay holds a BA (Hons) degree in Politics and an MSc in Migration. She also undertakes a number of voluntary roles including with a food bank charity and local community group.


Monica Chadha

Monica Chadha is an external Council member and graduated from Queen Mary in History in 1999. She is on the advisory board of the School of Business and Management and is a member of the Audit & Risk Committee.

The concentration of her activity has been working in media and technology for more than twenty years. At the age of 24 Monica was the youngest person to be appointed to the board of the British Association for Screen Entertainment (previously the British Video Association). She held a number of senior positions in media and technology including Production Director of Prism Leisure Corporation plc, Commercial Director at MyMovies.Net, Non-Executive Director of Voddess Portal, Chair of the British Board of Film Classification Working Party Group and Advisory Board Member of BAFTA and the Industry Trust For IP Awareness. In 2011 she moved into general management and was appointed CEO of MyMovies.Net.

Currently Monica is a Non-Executive Director on the board of Obviously Creative and an Advisory Board member of the British Independent Film Awards. She also runs her own consultancy and is a business coach and mentor. In 2016 Monica graduated from the Deloitte Women On Boards Programme - by invitation only and aimed at senior women being considered for a NED position at a UK listed company. More recently she stepped down from Women's Aid as an Advisory Board Member of the Key Supporter Group so she could throw herself into Queen Mary.


Peter Fanning

Peter Fanning joined the CIOT in 2008 as its first Chief Executive following a brief secondment to the office of the permanent secretary to HM Treasury. From 2004 Peter led the transformation of the Office of Government Commerce (an independent office of HM Treasury) as Deputy Chief Executive/Director General and later Acting Chief Executive/2nd permanent secretary. He previously served as the founding Director of London’s Centre of Procurement Excellence based in the former Association of London Government, Managing Director of IPF, the commercial arm of CIPFA and Chief Executive of the 4ps, established to support Local Authorities procure through the PFI. Peter spent over twelve years with the NatWest Group, which he left as a Director of NatWest Capital Markets in 1994 and former Head of Product Development in the Commercial Division. Peter was Trustee and Board 
member of the Coalfields Regeneration Trust and a former committee member of Hyde Housing Association.


Sinead Finn

In 2011, Sinead established affinnity, which assists tech businesses to perform and grow in Europe by doing business in the Aviation and Travel Sectors. Prior to this she worked for Ryanair for 13 years during the Company’s most prolific growth years, establishing an outstanding track record for increasing revenue and market-share as Head of Sales & Marketing. In 2008, she was promoted to the role of Director of Commercial Revenue, responsible for the management and development of all ancillary revenue streams, of which she oversaw significant growth. On her resignation, Michael Cawley the Deputy CEO of Ryanair commented; “Sinead joined our sales team when we were carrying 
less than 3m passengers and leaves as we head towards 78m passengers in 2011.”


Leor Franks

Leor Franks is Regional Director of Marketing for EMEA at FTI Consulting and is based in London. He is a specialist in the Professional Services industry. Mr. Franks has 15 years marketing and communications experience.

He joined the firm from Ernst & Young, where he was Marketing Director for the Transaction Advisory Services practice across Europe, Middle East, India and Africa. Prior to Ernst & Young, he was Marketing and Business Development Director for the Corporate Finance practice at Deloitte. Before Deloitte, he served as Assistant to the CEO of RSA Insurance. Earlier in his career Mr. Franks worked in consulting at Arthur Andersen having previously edited a trade magazine - Online Recruitment.


Dr Ulrike Hotopp  

Ulrike joined DEFRA on 2 January 2012 as Director for Analysis and Chief Economist. Before she was a Senior Economist in the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills. She worked in the centre of BIS with the Chief Economist on appraisal and evaluation methodologies, socio-economic research and risk and performance measurement. Her team included BIS’s Operational Research Unit. Other previous posts in Government include Deputy Director in the DECC, including responsibility for the analysis of the Renewable energy strategy, Carbon Capture and Storage and the EU ETS. In this capacity Ulrike led the DECC energy model and a large part of the statistics group. Ulrike has also been the Chief Economist at the HSE, worked in the Cabinet Office on Better Regulation and has been an Economic Advisor on Labour Market regulation in DTI. Ulrike holds a PhD in International Economics from the University of Sussex, and MA in European Studies from the Central European University in Prague, and MA in Economics from the University of Sussex.  Ulrike holds an honorary professorship for Government Policy at Kent University.


Professor Vanessa Knapp 

Professor Vanessa Knapp OBE is a Visiting Professor in the Department of Law at Queen Mary University of London, specialising in company law and corporate governance. She is a member of the EU expert group on company law and chairs the Company Law Committee of the Council of the Bars and Law Societies of the European Union. She is a special advisor to the corporate governance committee of Save the Children Association/Save the Children International and is a trustee of the London Symphony Chorus Endowment Fund.


Anne Sharp

Anne Sharp began her civil service career as an inspector in the Health and Safety Executive, before working on risk management policy in industries including railways, nuclear weapons, construction and offshore oil and gas. She then moved to Defra where she led fisheries management policy before becoming Director of National Climate Change and Energy. From 2009 to February 2013 Anne reported to the Lord Chief Justice of England and Wales as Chief Executive Officer of the Judicial Office which supports judges and magistrates around the country. In February 2013 she took up post as Chief Executive Officer of the Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (Acas).


Dr Peter Young 

Peter Young has been Chair of the Aldersgate Group since 2007 and is actively involved in promoting the economic benefits of de-carbonising the economy and reducing resource use intensity as well as reversing the loss of natural capital as essential for future well-being. Peter drives for consensus amongst the broad membership including major blue chip companies, membership organisations, NGOs and influential individuals from all parts of the political spectrum. He regularly provides advice at ministerial level and has given evidence to House of Commons Committees.

Peter has spent his entire career working on environmental issues since the late 1970s, mainly in multi-disciplinary environmental management consulting, currently working part time as a Principal Consultant with Geosyntec and CAT Alliance Ltd. He has advised companies, public sector bodies, government departments and investors on the economic opportunities and strategies to meet environmental sustainability challenges and deliver a low carbon and resource efficient economy. He has worked with Defra, DECC and BIS and their antecedents on developing high level policies for competitive advantage in a low carbon economy, as well as companies (from start ups to large plcs), specialist investors and regional bodies to help them exploit opportunities throughout the environmental technologies and services sector.

He is a member of the joint BIS/DECC/Defra Green Economy Council, Defra's Regulatory Challenge Panel, and was a member of the recent business-led Ecosystems Markets Task Force. He is a Trustee of The Wildlife Trusts and is chair of the Industrial Advisory Panel for the School of Energy, Environment and Agrifood at Cranfield University. 

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