Current Governors

Karen Burrows

Karen Burrows

Retired Commercial Director

Karen has a legal and commercial professional background and worked for BG Group Plc from 1985 to 2011 obtaining many years of management experience across a wide range of disciplines. In BG Group Karen worked on several major projects and became Deputy General Counsel in 1997. Subsequently she had commercial and country management roles for BG Group in Trinidad and Canada.

Karen was an Environment Agency Board Member for six years from 2012 and chaired the Audit and Risk Assurance Committee, taking a particular interest in the work of the Devon ,Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly area, as well as the Solent and South Downs area.

Currently Karen is a Board Member of the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Local Nature Partnership, and a Trustee of Cornwall Wildlife Trust. Married with two grown up daughters her interests include hiking, rowing, skiing, sailing and working with environment groups including the National Trust and the Roseland Environment Action Team.

Will Charnley

Will Charnley

Commercial Director

Will is a Commercial and Strategy background, leading strategy and planning for businesses such as Greene King, John Lewis and Seasalt Cornwall. Most recently Will was Chief Sales Officer at Seasalt Cornwall, responsible for sales and strategic development of Seasalt’s growth in stores, online, international and non-direct to consumer. Currently Will is the Managing Director of a BCorp Sustainable Packaging business, Flexi-Hex, and runs consulting engagements with a variety of Retail and Hospitality businesses.

Outside of work Will is a singer with Truro Cathedral Choir, plays cricket (when time permits!) and holds a Level 3 award in Wines from the WSET (Wines Spirits Education Trust). He has a family with two young children which also keeps him busy!

Lee Charnock

Lee Charnock

Study Programme Manager

Lee is a Study Programme manager who currently teaches across multiple campuses within the Cornwall College Group, teaching on a mixture of FE and HE provision within the sciences.

Lee was born and raised in Cornwall and studied with Cornwall college, obtaining his degree in Applied Zoology and then his PGCE.

Before getting into teaching Lee worked at the Blue Reef Aquarium in Newquay as an aquarist for many years and began teaching for the college as part of this role.

In his spare time Lee can be found either on his allotment or exploring the local marine environment.

Lee joined the Board in 2021 as a Staff Governor and sits on the HE Committee.

John Evans

John Evans

Principal & Chief Executive

John has more than 30 years’ experience, mainly in outstanding General Further Education Colleges in the South West.

He held the post of Principal of Yeovil College since January 2014, following a role as Vice Principal for Curriculum and Quality of Swindon College.

John also worked at Bridgwater and South Devon Colleges, as Head of Motor Vehicle, Construction & Engineering and Head of Technology respectively.

John has a wealth of experience in developing and leading improvements at each of the Colleges that he has worked.

He has spoken at numerous national conferences on how to become an outstanding college.

John has a close connection to the region and understands the role that an inspiring and outstanding college can play in the local and business community.

John joined the board in September 2019.

He is a director of CCMS (2000) Limited (the College’s subsidiary company which operates Concorde recruitment agency).

Michael Hambly

Michael Hambly

Farmer and Agricultural Policy and Supply

Michael farms 200 hectares in a family partnership producing cereals, oil seed rape and beef. After graduating from Harper Adams he joined Cornwall Farmers, a farmer co-operative, and gained over 20 years’ experience of working in the supply sector prior to returning home to farm. Michael is a qualified agronomist and ran the grain division of Cornwall Farmers for six years before heading up First for Forage, a national trading company. Michael has held office at all levels in the National Farmers Union including four years as National Chairman of the NFU Crops Board representing growers in England and Wales. Michael is Vice Chairman of the European Oilseed Alliance and NIAB TAG Technical Committee Chairman for Cornwall.

Michael has worked with initiatives to promote Cornish grain and was instrumental in developing links between Ginsters and Growers for the production of identity preserved Cornish milling wheat. He is a past Chair of the HGCA British Cereals Export Committee which promoted all UK cereal exports. Closely involved with co-operative initiatives, Michael was a founder member, past Chairman and Director of Kernow Grain and is also Vice Chairman of West Country Grain Marketing. For 8 years Michael was Vice Chairman of Brussels Copa-Cogeca Oilseeds Group,

Michael also serves as the South Regional Advisory Board Chairman for the NFU Mutual.

Michael joined the Board in 2020 and is a member of the Curriculum and Quality Committee.

Dr Wilf Hudson

Dr Wilf Hudson

Retired HMI

Dr Wilf Hudson has spent most of his working life in further education, starting as a part time teacher at South Trafford College and Openshaw Tech in Manchester teaching GCE “O” Level Biology in the 1970s.  He then worked as a full time teacher at Colchester Institute for seven years, moving on to Blackpool and the Fylde College as Head of Department for two years.

After seven years as Assistant Principal at Exeter College, Wilf joined the Further Education Funding Council and was appointed an HMI in 2001.

Wilf spent three years on secondment to the DfE as part of the post 16 Standards Unit working mainly on Science and Mathematics.  Wilf retired in the summer of 2016.

Wilf is currently undertaking consultancy work in colleges, and is a trustee for his local Citizens Advice Bureau.

Wilf chairs the Curriculum and Quality Committee and is a member of the Search and Governance Committee and Remuneration Committee.

Wilf’s main interests are walking, golf and reading as well as keeping up with his growing family.

Wilf was appointed as a Governor in 2016.

Kathryn James

Kathryn James

Further Education Consultant

Kathryn started her working life as a careers adviser (Special Needs) and then worked in a further education college where she won national awards for her work supporting learners with mental health problems.

In 2000 she moved on to work for organisations such as NIACE, LSIS and ETF where she wrote policy, published good practice guides, commissioned and led large national projects.

In 2015 Kathryn became a consultant and now works on projects and delivers training on equality, diversity, inclusion and social justice, SEND, mental health and wellbeing to leaders, managers and teachers. Kathryn is a leading member of the Women’s Leadership Network in FE.

Kathryn joined the Board in 2022 and is a member of the Curriculum and Quality Committee and lead Safeguarding Governor

Jonathan Mashen

Jonathan Mashen

Chartered Accountant

Jonathan is a Chartered Accountant who has worked in practice as a partner in local firm Lang Bennetts since 2005, he has recently retired from the partnership and remains an active consultant. He led the firms audit team during that time, with clients across the diversity of the Cornish economy. Charity and not for profit entities have been an area of specialism. He is a member of the Audit and Risk Committee of Cornwall College.

He is responsible for the development of trainee Chartered Accountants at Lang Bennetts.

Prior to qualifying as an accountant in 1991 Jonathan worked as a trainee mining engineer with experience in UK coal and overseas in gold mines, having qualified from the University of Wales in 1983 with a degree in Mining Engineering.

He has been actively involved with the charity sector having served a term as trustee and vice chair of Cornwall Blind Association – iSight Cornwall.

Jonathan enjoys cycling and has been involved in the running of cycling time trials in Cornwall. A passion is cycling in the Alps and conquering the high mountain routes. He also enjoys travelling and walking.

Penny Mathers

Penny Mathers

Former Ofsted Inspector and Further Education Consultant

Penny has had a working life that spans across health and social care as well as education. She holds qualifications as a teacher, trainer and a social worker. She has held senior posts in local and central government. She was a senior board member in Cornwall Social Services responsible for occupational therapy and joint working with the Health Authority and a Children’s Adviser for Department of Education.

In 2003 she was appointed as lead inspector with expertise in health and social care for the Adult Learning Inspectorate. She later joined Ofsted and led teams of inspectors across the country inspecting further education. Her areas of expertise were safeguarding and SEND.

From 2006 to 2010 she worked for the Department of Education as Children’s Services Adviser to the local authorities of Somerset, Torbay, Swindon, Wiltshire, Bournemouth, Poole, Plymouth, Devon, Cornwall and Isles of Scilly.

She provided challenge and support to directors, councillors and staff, and reported to ministers.

Penny holds a MEd in Training and Development and has been a Chartered Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development. She is married with three sons. She and her family have been involved with the college both as learners and teachers. She is a local Parish Councillor and chair of the Environmental Sustainability Group.

Penny worked as a consultant to the college in the area of SEND prior to being appointed as Governor in January 2022. She is a member of the Curriculum and Quality Committee and is committed to values of inclusion and diversity.

Patrick Newberry

Patrick Newberry

Retired Chartered Accountant

Patrick joined the Board in November 2017 and was simultaneously appointed as an Audit Committee member. He rejoined the Board following a short break in February 2020. A chartered accountant by profession, he spent 25 years as a partner with PricewaterhouseCoopers until his retirement in 2013. At PwC he worked mostly in the financial sector in working with major banks and insurers around the world, holding various roles including Global Leader of Insurance Consulting and Commercial Managing Partner of PwC’s UK Consulting Practice. He also served as a member of PwC’s Supervisory Board.

He is a past President of the Management Consultancies Association and is a non-executive director of Cambridge & Counties Bank Limited and Brunel Pensions Partnership Limited. He is also a Commissioner of Historic England.

Married with four children, he enjoys sailing a classic yacht and researching and writing architectural history.

Patrick is the Chair of the Board and a member of the Remuneration and Search and Governance Committees.

Jane Warren

Jane Warren

Business Change Consultant

Jane is an interim director and business change consultant and has worked with a large number of predominantly public sector organisations over the last 20 years.

Her professional background is in the ICT/Digital arena and she has a wealth of experience delivering IT and information solutions often involving multiple organisations and stakeholders.

Most recently Jane worked as Digital Programme Director across the NHS in Sussex. She also spent several years as a performance auditor with the Audit Commission, providing external assurance services to organisations across the NHS, local government, police and probation sectors.

During the early part of her career, she worked within the education sector and she is a passionate advocate of high quality education for all.

She enjoys singing in her local community choir and takes part in a number of public performances each year.

Jane was appointed as a Governor in 2019 and is a member of the Audit and Risk Committee, HE Committee and Major Capital Projects Committee.

Geoff Warring

Geoff Warring

Retired Accountant

Geoff joined the Board in 2017 after retiring from Imerys where he was Financial Controller of the calcined kaolin business based at St. Dennis.

After education at Polperro CP, Liskeard GS and St Austell College of FE, he joined the then ECC as a management accountant trainee. His career has included working in the light engineering, baby food and pharmaceutical industries.  In the latter he also became involved in the strategic planning of worldwide Ibuprofen manufacture for Boots and global planning and PR for the launch of an anti-obesity drug for BASF.

On returning home to Cornwall in 2002 he joined Imerys whilst buying a B&B business with his wife Suzanne in Falmouth and these ran in tandem until the business was sold in 2009.

Geoff joined the Board in 2017, and is Chair of the Finance and Resources Committee, a member of the Search and Governance Committee and the Remuneration Committee.

He is a director of CCMS (2000) Limited (the College’s subsidiary company which operates Concorde recruitment agency).

Geoff has two grown up children who live and work in Plymouth.  He is treasurer of his local community hall and he enjoys walking, travel, reading and almost every sport, if only in a watching capacity these days!

Sarah Watts

Sarah Watts

Staff Governor

Sarah has worked for The Cornwall College Group since September 2014, most recently as HR Manager.  Prior to this she held a variety of roles within diverse organisations, from starting her career in backstage theatre to supporting SMEs to engage with novel research projects at the European Centre for Environment & Human Health.  Since working for the College, Sarah achieved both her PGCE and Level 7 CIPD Diploma in Human Resources Management.  She has also attended a Saturday Skills course with the College and learned how to plaster walls.  Sarah lives in Whitemoor with her husband, 2 children and 2 crazy cats.  In her spare time she enjoys singing with a local choir and gardening.

Sarah joined the Board in 2022.

Pat Wilde

Pat Wilde

Retired, following professional management career in Higher Education, most recently at the University of Plymouth

Pat was born in St Helens, Merseyside but moved to Devon in the early 1980s.  In July 2019, she retired from a successful 35 year professional management career in Higher Education, encompassing academic governance and compliance, student administration and quality assurance.   She served as a member of the Academic Registrar’s Council and on a variety of sector groups relating to her professional interests.  Her time at the University of Plymouth covered the ground breaking days of partnership work in the region, with Cornwall College being one of its pioneers; and she is delighted to be able to continue that relationship by joining the Corporation Board.

Pat lives in Ivybridge, Devon, with her husband, daughter, three dogs and a cat. She is a volunteer at St Luke’s Hospice, Plymouth, sings in a local choir and has recently discovered the joys of owning an allotment.

Pat is Chair of the HE Committee, a member of the Curriculum and Quality Committee, the Search and Governance Committee and Remuneration Committee. Pat is the Lead Governor for E,D & I.

Pat joined the board in 2020.

Ellen Winser MBE

Ellen Winser MBE

Retired Investment Manager

Ellen was one of the first women members of the Stock Exchange and the first in London to be taken into partnership by her firm. After taking five years out to go long distance sailing with her husband, Ellen became chairman of two publicly quoted companies, one in London and the other in Plymouth. She has served on various commercial and charitable boards including the National Maritime Museum Cornwall and the South West Regional Development Agency.

Ellen was on the governing body of Truro and Penwith College for 17 years and is currently Chair of the Board for Truro and Penwith Academy Trust (TPAT).  For services to further and higher education, Ellen was appointed MBE in the 2012 New Year Honours. From 2014-2017 she was Vice Lord Lieutenant for Cornwall.

Ellen joined the board in 2021.

Ellen is a member of the Finance and Resources Committee, Audit and Risk Committee and Major Capital Projects Committee.