NIAB - National Institute of Agricultural Botany

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The NIAB Board

 

 Jim Godfrey

Mr Jim Godfrey (Chairman)

Elected as Chairman of the NIAB Board in September 2016 Jim Godfrey OBE is a director of RJ & AE Godfrey, a family farming business in North Lincolnshire with 4,000 ha of arable crops and a successful indoor pig unit with 6,500 sows, producing 165,000 pigs each year for customers including Morrison’s.

A specialist in leading strategic change and corporate governance he is also chairman of Innovate UK’s Sustainable Agriculture and Food Innovation Platform and of the Board of Trustees of the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI). He is a member of the UK Agri-Tech Strategy’s Leadership Council, chairman of the Commercial Farmers Group, a RASE honorary vice-president, a director of the Lincolnshire Rural Support Network, and a faculty member of the International Agricultural Research (CGIAR) Board Training Programme.

Former board and committee positions include chair of The Potato Marketing Board, Scottish Crop Research Institute, Sentry Farming Group plc, the International Potato Centre and the Alliance of the 15 Research Centres of the CGIAR, a council member of the Biological and Bio-Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) and a member of the Nuffield Farming Scholarship Selection Panel.

Jim was awarded the OBE for services to agricultural research in Scotland in 2002.

Richard Macdonald

 

Mr Richard Macdonald (Vice-chairman)

A former Director-General of the NFU Richard is currently a Governor of The Royal Agricultural College Cirencester; Trustee of Farm Africa, Chairman of SALSA (Safe and Local Supplier Approval) an independent auditing and certification body for small food businesses; Trustee of the Nuffield Agricultural Trust; Fellow of the Royal Agricultural Society, a non-Executive Director of Moy Park and Director of the Bicton Overseas Agricultural Trust. He also chairs Defra's Better Regulation Task Force and has recently been appointed as a non-Executive Director for Dairy Crest.

Richard was awarded a CBE in Birthday Honours List in 2002 for services to agriculture. Hobbies include participation in a number of sports, gardening, local radio broadcasting, and involvement in the East African Wildlife Society.

Andrew Kuyk

 

Mr Andrew Kuyk CBE

Andrew is Director General of the Provision Trade Federation (PTF). He was Director of Sustainability at the UK Food and Drink Federation (FDF) for 5 years from 2009 to 2014, leading work on resource efficiency, food security and climate change to help reduce the environmental impacts of food production while producing healthier and more sustainable food to meet growing global demand. Before joining FDF Andrew was a career civil servant dealing with a range of food, agricultural, trade and environmental issues in the UK and at EU and international levels, including postings to the UK Permanent Representation in Brussels (UKREP) and the British Embassy in Paris. After leaving FDF, Andrew continued to engage on the challenges of sustainable food production and consumption in a consultancy capacity. Andrew is also a Board member of NIAB. He was awarded a CBE in 2006 for services to Defra.

Robert Harle - NIAB Board

Mr Robert Harle

Elected to the NIAB Board in September 2012 Robert is a partner in two family businesses farming arable, beef and sheep in Durham and Northumberland, and has been involved with farmer-funded near market research since 1985. He was a member of the University of Newcastle-upon-Tyne Farm’s Advisory Committee and Farm Directorate 1989-2002.

Robert was a director of the North of England Arable Centre (NEAC) 1986-1990 and chairman 1990-1999 when it merged with Arable Research Centres (ARC).  He was a director of ARC from 1999 to 2003, and following the merger with the Morley Research Centre was a director of The Arable Group (TAG) from 2003 to 2013.

Sir Jim Paice

Sir Jim Paice

Former Member of Parliament for South East Cambridgeshire from 1987-2015, Jim served as Minister of State for Agriculture & Food in the Coalition Government from 2010-2012.

Originally from Felixstowe in Suffolk he attended Framlingham College and then Writtle Agricultural College after which he started a career in farm management. In his youth and early twenties Jim was active in the Young Farmers movement, becoming chairman of the Agricultural Policy Committee of the National Federation and representing the UK on the European Council of Young Farmers.

Upon entering Parliament in 1987 he served on the Select Committee for Employment before being appointed Parliamentary Private Secretary (PPS) to Baroness Trumpington at the Ministry of Agriculture in 1989, then promoted to PPS to John Gummer as Minister of Agriculture and then Secretary of State for the Environment. In 1994 he was appointed Under Secretary of State at the Department of Employment and in 1995 at the Department of Education and Employment.

After the General Election of 1997 Jim was appointed Opposition Spokesman on Agriculture. Following the 2001 General Election, he was appointed Shadow Minister for Police and then in September 2004 he was promoted to Shadow Minister for Agriculture and Rural Affairs - a position he retained until the General Election in 2010 following which he was appointed Minister of State for Agriculture & Food until 2012. He retired from Parliament in 2015 but continues as a Director/Trustee as well as being a Director of Camgrain Ltd as well as a Director/Trustee of the Game and Wildlife Conservation Trust where he is Chairman of the lowland research committee and chairman of the Allerton project.

Charles Lang

Dr Charles Lang

Since graduating from Cambridge University in 1960 Charles has spent most of his career working in the field of computational geometry, computer graphics and computer-aided design (CAD). After returning from two years at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1965, he founded the CAD Group at the Cambridge University Computer Laboratory before jointly founding Shape Data Ltd in 1974 and Three-Space Ltd in 1986. Both these Cambridge companies specialised in 3D geometric computation and its application. The 3D geometric modellers they developed are used in CAD systems worldwide.

More recently Charles has been taking an active interest in problems arising from climate change, and in particular issues relating to global food security. He is using his experience to encourage and support entrepreneurship in agriculture and associated industries.

Kathy Fidgeon

Kathy Fidgeon FCA

Kathy is a Chartered Accountant and a partner in Fidgeons, a firm of accountants based in the Cotswolds. She is an audit specialist and was a partner at Grant Thornton for more than 20 years before leaving in 2013 to set up a new accountancy practice. Throughout her professional life Kathy has dealt with a wide range of clients, acting for individuals, partnerships, trusts and companies across a broad spectrum of businesses. Her sector specialisms are Agriculture, Charities/NFP and Property.

With her interest in developing people, Kathy was part of a small team responsible for the appointment of new partners at Grant Thornton and, as a trained coach, was also involved in the coaching of new partners.

Kathy has served on the national Membership and Practicing Certificate Committees of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales, and is currently a Governor and member of the Audit Committee of a local independent school.

Nigel Kerby

Dr Nigel Kerby

Following postdoctoral research on carbon and nitrogen fixation, Nigel was appointed as a lecturer in Microbiology at the University of Dundee. In 1993 he left academic research to focus on technology translation and transfer, and took up the position of Managing Director of Mylnefield Research Services Ltd, the commercial affiliate of James Hutton Research Institute; retiring in April 2015. Current interests include plant and crop science, particularly plant breeding and its importance in addressing global development, sustainability and food production. Nigel was awarded a MBE in 2014 for services to business and science.

Nigel is a Fellow of the Institute of Biology and a member of the Governing Board of International Crops Research Institute for Semi-Arid Tropics. Previous appointments have included Chairing the Dundee and Tayside branch of the Institute of Directors and directorships of several companies including the China Britain Business Council.

Prof Alison Smith

Prof Alison G Smith

Alison Smith is Professor of Plant Biochemistry in the Department of Plant Sciences at the University of Cambridge, UK, where she teaches undergraduates in Natural Sciences, and runs a research group funded by BBSRC, Innovate UK and EU FP7. Her research interests are focussed around the metabolism of plants, algae and bacteria, in particular of vitamins and cofactors, and of lipid precursors for chemicals and biofuels. As well as developing strategies for metabolic engineering of algae, she has been instrumental in advocating the use of microbial consortia for optimizing growth of dense algal cultures for industrial cultivation. She is a founding member of the Algal Biotechnology Consortium (ABC), the interests of which are in exploiting algae for example for biomass and biodiesel production, and remediation of waste streams including water and CO2.

Alison is a member of the BBSRC Industrial Biotechnology Strategy Panel, and the Management Boards of two BBSRC-EPSRC-Innovate UK Networks in Industrial Biotechnology. She is a Fellow of Corpus Christi College, where she has been Director of Studies in Biology, Admissions Tutor for Science, and a member of the Executive Body. From 2001-2015 she was a Council member of the Council of the Cambridge Philosophical Society, a charity aimed at promoting science, and its President 2010-2011. She is currently a Governor on the Council of the Marine Biological Association of the UK, and was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Biology in 2012.

Steve Ellwood

Mr Steve Ellwood

Steve has spent his career in the food and farming sector and now has a number of non executive roles with UK based companies. These include businesses operating in fresh produce, poultry meat, large scale farm management and animal feed production. He is a graduate of Newcastle University and spent a number of years leading HSBC Banks Agriculture Team. Outside of work he is a fell walker and keen cricket fan and commits a significant amount of time to charity and voluntary work.