Board of Trustees

The Board of Trustees is the governing body of the Institution of Chemical Engineers (IChemE).

Our Trustees are responsible for the strategic direction of IChemE. All top-level decisions are ratified by the Board. In addition, IChemE’s annual budget and financial decisions are scrutinised and signed-off by the Trustees. Trustees have a joint responsibility to work together and drive the Institution forward.


Ken Rivers

Ken Rivers, President

Ken Rivers has over 35 years experience of the international downstream oil industry with Shell. He has recently returned from New Zealand where he was CEO of Refining NZ , a publically listed company operating the country’s only oil refinery. He was previously responsible for Shell’s refining and petrochemical operations in the UK. He is a past President of UK Petroleum Industry Association. He has extensive commercial board level experience as well as national industry groups and community boards. He has now embarked on the non executive phase of his career and building a portfolio of non executive directorships.

Ken has a passion for safety. He chaired a joint industry/regulator task force in the wake of the Buncefield terminal explosion and was a founding member of the Business Leaders Health and Safety Forum in New Zealand. Since returning to the UK, Ken has been appointed chair of the COMAH Strategic Forum tasked with improving the effectiveness of major hazard legislation and comprising both the regulatory authorities and the Oil & Chemical industries. He has recently been asked to chair the Midstream Oil Sector Government and Industry Task Force which will consider ways of improving the resilience and viability of the UK refining and fuel import sectors following the recent government review.

Ken studied chemical engineering at Cambridge University and is a Fellow of the Institution of Chemical Engineers and a Chartered Engineer. He is a Member of the Institute of Directors in both UK and New Zealand. His earlier work experience included refinery operations , supply planning and technology management in Shell refineries coupled with Central Office roles in strategy, product quality development and oil supply. He has extensive international experience, which includes assignments in New Zealand, Netherlands and Malaysia.

Ken is an Honorary Fellow of NorthTec - Tai Tokerau Wananga for services to the wider New Zealand community.

John McGagh

John McGagh, Past President

John McGagh has 35 years' experience in the minerals and minerals processing industries, he brings to IChemE a significant experience working in and with Executive teams and Boards to deliver at scale business improvement.   He has been successful in delivering business change most recently in the areas of Applied Industrial Technology & Innovation.

John led the breakthrough Rio Tinto "Mine of the Future" programme which introduced the first a-scale autonomous haulage systems into an industrial setting which secured a step-change improvement in productivity, but, more importantly, significantly improved safety performance.

He brings to IChemE an international perspective having lived and worked in Australia, USA and Europe whilst being responsible for leading the establishment of facilities and transacting substantial business in Europe, Southern Africa, China, India, North and South America.   He supports a range of pro-bono activities whilst serving on a number of Advisory Boards spanning Oil and Gas through Mineral Technology Services focussing primarily upon introduction of digital systems to improve business performance.   John is a start-up Investor/Director in the advanced machine learning platform, Interlate, serving the minerals and mining sector with advanced digital solutions.

John holds honours degrees in Chemical Engineering and Management Economics. He is a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Technology Science and Engineering, a Fellow and Past President of the Institution of Chemical Engineers, Adjunct Professor at the University of Queensland and Chair of the Institute of Social Science Research at the University of Queensland.   In 2015 John chaired the independent review into the Australian University Higher Degree by Research (PhD) system, 11 of 13 recommendations were subsequently implemented by Government.

John has lived and worked in the UK, Europe and in a number of Australian cities and remote locations. Based in the United States for an extended period he relocated to Brisbane, Australia in July 2007. He is married to Sharon and has one son and two daughters.

Andrew Thompson

Andrew Thompson, Deputy President  

Following an Oxford MEng and Cranfield Water Sciences PhD, Andrew's career started at Severn Trent, where he covered the full cycle of feasibility studies, design, commissioning and troubleshooting.
Broadening his experience, he moved into contracting with Imtech Process where he led a large team of process engineers in multiple locations across the UK.
Over the last five years he has worked in a consultancy (Royal HaskoningDHV) leading the UK roll-out of a new wastewater treatment technology, described as "the biggest change to the industry in 100 years" (United Utilities' Head of Innovation).   Through this work he has proven his ability to implement change and promote new ways of thinking in one of the most risk-averse industries.

Andrew has been part of the IChemE Water SIG committee for 10 of the last 12 years, including several years as Chair.  Adapting to reduced SIG funding, he led the group to embrace greater use of webinars over physical meetings, and internationalisation through the committee structure.   These foundations have led to a group that has more than doubled in size and engagement.

He was elected Fellow in 2015 and acting chair of the Midlands Group in December 2017.

Iain Martin photo

Iain Martin, Honorary Treasurer

Iain Martin, Divisional Technology Director for the Process Technologies Division at Johnson Matthey PLC, has leadership responsibility for the Division’s R&D and engineering capability across a range of engineering and science disciplines. Johnson Matthey’s Process Technologies Division provides catalyst, process technology and asset integrity solutions to the chemical, refinery and oil and gas industries worldwide. Iain’s role focusses on the effective development and commercialisation of a portfolio of new products from first inception through to commercial operation. 

Iain has close to 30 years’ experience in the process engineering industry covering EPC, technology development and licensing. He joined the Process Engineering group of Davy McKee in 1985, continuing as the company focussed on technology licensing as Davy Process Technology where he has spent most of his career in what is now Johnson Matthey Davy Technologies. He designed and commissioned a variety of chemical technologies worldwide, before moving on to more commercial and subsequently technology management positions. He moved to his current role within Johnson Matthey in 2013. 

Iain graduated from University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology and is a Fellow of the Institution of Chemical Engineers. Prior to his current role, Iain sat on the council for British Chemical Engineering Contractors Association (BCECA).

Macsene Isles-Ahite

Macsene Isles-Ahite

Macsene graduated from South Bank University with BEng (Hons) in 2001; she has over fifteen years' experience as a Process Engineer in the refining and petrochemical industry. Since November 2011, she has been offering her services as a self-employed Engineering Consultant, who has designed both onshore and offshore facilities, to various companies operating within the Oil & Gas sector. Her role as an Engineering Consultant is often to question design assumptions, to ensure the design is compliant with the relevant engineering and safety standards and to evaluate the technical content of process technology/vendor/licensor packages.

She has an affinity for roles that require her to have an attention to detail; using this skillset, she will scrutinise and verify the Institution’s compliance with its financial strategy. She will also make the decisions necessary to effect positive change to the Institution’s governance and management; her experience as the managing director of her limited company and in leadership roles as a consultant in various companies, will enable her to help the Institution’s leadership team to develop strategies that will set organisational goals, direction and accountability frameworks.

In her role as ordinary member, she will use her expertise to provide oversight in order to ensure that the Institution satisfies its charitable obligations (as a qualifying body) as well as represents the wishes of its membership. One of her main aims, is to influence policy decisions regarding the distribution of the Institution’s resources, for the support of members and for the benefit of society. For example, she will work to secure larger discounts on course offerings so members can afford to satisfy their CPD requirements. She will also work to support initiatives like Project SMART and the Engineering Council Standards Review.

In her day job, she works as part of large engineering teams consisting of other engineering disciplines to ensure that equipment design and layout, piping design and routing and instrumentation design and selection, complies with the engineering and safety standards for each Project. She is comfortable leading teams as well as being an active and productive member of teams. She enjoys the challenges that come with new roles and opportunities and during meetings, she is able to actively listen to and put forward constructive and thoughtful ideas. She is excited about being able to help the Institution to achieve its future objectives and being part of the team of people who will determine what those future objectives will be.

In her role of ordinary member, she will focus on promoting member engagement by developing strategies to effectively open the channels of communication between the membership and the Institution’s leadership team; she will develop participation incentives so the IChemE can secure the differing perspectives from all grades of the membership. She will try to develop a “grade related value proposition” strategy that will result in increasing the networking opportunities at members events and online forums.

Keith Plumb

Keith Plumb

Keith Plumb graduated from UMIST in 1974 with a BSc(1st) in Chemical Engineering and joined Lankro Chemicals. In 1979 he achieved chartered status and started a two-year MBA course at MBS.

After MBS, he joined his family engineering consultancy partnership, working on the design and commissioning of process equipment within speciality chemicals businesses.

In 1984 he started working with Fisons Pharmaceuticals which started his long association with pharmaceuticals, although he has worked in other industries. In 1989 he started work with Snamprogetti in a lead engineer role gaining the required level of responsibility for fellowship.

In 2007 his father retired and Keith started his own engineering consultancy Integral Pharma Services. Since that date he has been involved with the design of process equipment for the biopharmaceutical industry along with the process safety aspects of a number of related industries.

His first IChemE volunteer role (mid 1970s) was with the National Committee for Non-Corporate Members. This followed with roles on the Manchester and Salford Centre and North West Branch committees. In the mid 1980s, he joined the PharmaSIG committee, was chair for eight years and until recently the secretary.

He was a visiting lecturer at the University of Nottingham for two years and now carries out this role at the University of Chester.

Wendy Wilson

Wendy Wilson

With 28 years’ experience in the Oil and Gas industry, Wendy brings a combination of senior management, strategic leadership & project management skills to her role as a Trustee.

She has significant experience of taking a strategy and turning it into a robust implementation plan along with the necessary feedback loops. Wendy has also implemented a successful hub and spoke model and has extensive experience of working in virtual and global teams. She is extremely well organized and action orientated and has the ability to work and think globally while also delivering local requirements.

She is keen to use these skills to help define and shape the improvements to the systems and processes that are key to the IChemE being an Institution that is led by members, supports members and serves society. She also firmly believes that having robust systems and process will help openness & transparency which is a key enabler to improve Member Engagement as well as trust. As a result Wendy, is the lead Trustee for the Member Engagement Working Group and the support Trustee for the Risk & Audit Committee, Finance & HR Committee and the IT refresh and ISO 9001 Certification working groups.

Wendy has always been an advocate for the IChemE, although it is only in the last 2 years that she has volunteered and actively contributed. She is a member of the DIWG and one of 4 members of the Social Mobility Study team. This team completed the first survey and issued a report in Q2 2017 and are part way through the analysis of the follow up Survey. Wendy has carried out numerous engagements with undergraduates as well as graduates and gave a number of talks to encourage youngsters to consider a career in engineering. Throughout her career, she has mentored graduates (Chemical Engineers as well as other disciplines) and assisted/supported them as they moved towards chartered status. Wendy continue to be an advocate for female engineers and has attended a number of events both in the UK and in the Americas to promote women in Engineering & STEM.

Mark Sutton

Mark Sutton

Mark has over 30 years of technical, commercial and senior management experience in the process industries, most recently as Business Development Director for Johnson Matthey.   He brings to the Board of Trustees significant experience in developing and implementing commercial strategy, organisational design and company directorship.   Mark wants to now use this experience to work with the Institution to ensure it will be well-equipped to remain relevant in the 21st Century and to be led by members, support members and serve society.

After graduating in chemical engineering from the University of Bath, Mark started his career at BP before moving into the EPC contracting industry with Davy McKee.   His early years were spent designing and commissioning chemical plants and gaining the real-world lessons of seeing his designs turned into steel.   He then held several technology management roles developing and implementing new process technology before moving into commercial management, where he sold syngas and methanol technology in Asia, North America and the Middle East for Davy and Johnson Matthey.  

In 2010, he left Johnson Matthey to become the COO of a start-up, Plaxica, that had spun out of Imperial College and was developing bioplastic and renewable chemicals technology. After an exciting time building the company and demonstrating the technology at Wilton on Teesside, he returned to Johnson Matthey as Technical Director for its Chemicals and Catalyst Technologies businesses.  In this role he led a large international team of engineers and scientists developing technologies and catalysts for the process industries and designing the plants to use them.

Jarka Glassey

Jarka Glassey, Vice President (Technical)

Jarka Glassey is a Professor of Chemical engineering Education at Newcastle University. She graduated from the Slovak University of Technology in Bratislava and, following her PhD studies at Newcastle University, she became a lecturer and then a reader at  the School of Chemical Engineering and Advanced Materials at Newcastle University. Her research is predominantly in the area of bioprocess optimisation, modelling and control and over the years she collaborated with  major pharmaceutical companies on a range of microbial and cell culture processes. She is the Executive Vice President of the European Society of Biochemical Engineering Sciences (ESBES) and immediate past chair of the Modelling, Monitoring, Measurement & Control Section of ESBES.

She also carries out pedagogical research in the area of effective delivery and assessment of chemical engineering and she currently chairs the IChemE Education SIG. Jarka is the immediate past Secretary of the Working Party on Education of the European Federation of Chemical Engineers and a recipient of a number of national awards in recognition of her contribution to teaching. Most notably, she was awarded a National Teaching Fellowship and a Principal Fellow of HEA recognition. She has been actively involved with IChemE for a number of years now, having resurrected the activities of the Tyneside member group and chairing its committee for three years. She is actively involved in the Education and Accreditation Forum as an Experienced Executive team member with responsibility for educational development. She is actively involved with the learned society and member engagement agenda and she is passionate about the equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI) and working with the early career chemical engineers.

Ainslie Just

Ainslie Just, Vice President (Qualifications)

Ainslie has over 40 years' experience in the process industries and consulting, including in technical, operational, management, construction, commissioning and consulting roles.

Ainslie began his career in 1977 in the Alkali group of ICI Australia in South Australia before moving to their Plastics group in NSW, then back to the Alkali business.   He continued in the Alkali business when it was sold to Penrice Soda Products in 1989, with responsibilities at various times for process development, plant operation and environmental management.   He moved to a consulting role with PPK Consultants in 1993, and continued with that company during subsequent takeovers by Rust, Balfour Beatty and Parsons Brinckerhoff until 2014.   Ainslie now provides consulting services as Principal Advisor with Phronis Consulting in Brisbane, Australia.

Within IChemE he is chair of the Qualifications Committee and VP Qualifications, one of the global Registrars and also Chair of the ANZ PFF.  He has been a member of the local QLD Group since 1994.   He was the SA and QLD State representative on the Australian National Committee (which later became the Australian Board) between 1987 and 2004, and was Honorary Treasurer of the Australian Board from 2005-2010.

He has a BSc and a BE Hons (Chemical) from the University of Adelaide, a Grad Dip in Engineering (Control) from the NSW Institute of Technology (now UTS), and a Grad Dip in Business (Management) from Deakin University/APESMA.   He is a Fellow of IChemE and a Member of the Institution of Engineers Australia, a Chartered Engineer, Chartered Professional Engineer, Chartered Scientist and Chartered Environmentalist, and a Registered Professional Engineer Queensland.

Tom White

Tom White, Vice President (International)

Tom joined the IChemE in 1995 as an undergraduate then after graduation spent two years as a regional WhyNotChemEng champion before being elected as Chair of the London and South East Branch.  Since then he has served on committees in the UAE and Oman as a result of spending more than half his professional life overseas.

His engineering career started with emergency civil construction with the armed forces in Hong Kong before joining a process technology licencing start-up in India.   From there he has worked with the multinational engineering design consultancies; Jacobs, WorleyParsons, AmecFosterWheeler and Parsons International.  These experiences provided exposure to projects as diverse as oil & gas, nuclear & renewables, refining & petrochemicals, carbon capture & storage, gasification & Syngas, food & pharmaceuticals, water, utilities & waste treatment.

A spell in general management culminated in responsibility for a $100m revenue business unit comprosing 500 engineers, in a multi disciplinary design office and project management teams supervising $4Bn of projects.

International business development roles have seen Tom plan and lead the process of launching new projects in Africa, Europe, Middle East and Asia.

He now serves as CEO of Badr Enhanced Oil Recovery, an ambitious Omani owned oilfield services company in Muscat with aspirations to diversify into geothermal and biofuels.

allyson woodford

Allyson Woodford, Chair, IChemE in Australia

Allyson Woodford is the Operations Manager at Australia's largest oil refinery, BP Kwinana.   She previously spent 17 years with Caltex Australia in several senior engineering and business roles including operations, business improvement and corporate strategy, at Caltex's refinery in Brisbane and head office in Sydney.  

Allyson has been a board member of IChemE in Australia since 2012 after having been an active member of IChemE since her undergraduate days at the University of Queensland.   Allyson has also completed Advanced Leadership courses with University of Cambridge in the UK and in Singapore.

With a passion for leadership, sustainable futures and growth, Allyson was a foundation member of the IChemE Energy Centre Board, an international board that governs the direction of the recently formed Energy Centre.

Christina Phang

Christina Phang, Chair of IChemE in Malaysia

Ir Dr Christina Phang is a Fellow of the IChemE and a Professional Process Safety Engineer.   She is also a registered Professional Engineer with the Board of Engineers (BEM) in Malaysia and Professional Engineers Board (PEB) in Singapore.   She has over 25 years' experience in safety and risk management predomonantly spent working in the oil and gas sector providing advice relating to safety engineering during project development, commissioning and construction through to operational and decommissioning phases.   Christina is a Principal Partner at ERM based in Kuala Lumpur.   Her current role is Commercial Director for Technical Risk & Safety services in Asia Pacific.

Christina had been involved in supporting risk management decisions for many capital projects directly for PETRONAS, Shell, ExxonMobil, ConcocoPhillips, Chevron, Talisman, EnCana, Tullow Oil as well as working with engineering houses such as TechnipFMC, KBR, McDermott, Mustang Engineering, SBM Offshore HHI, etc.

During the early days of her career, Christina worked at the University of Sheffield in association with the Major Hazard Section of the UK Health & Safety Executive (HSE) on a research project focussed on gaining a deeper understanding on how management factors affect major accident events before returning to Malaysia in the mid-1990s.   She is also a member of the Executive Committee of the Malaysian Oil & Gas Engineering Council (MOGEC) for over 10 years.  Christina is passionate about coaching and raising young engineers to become world-class safety/risk consultants both in Malaysia and in the Asia Pacific region.

Jane Atkinson

Jane Atkinson, Chair, UK Board

Jane Atkinson is Transformation Director of Altrad Services, the largest industrial service provider in the UK.

She began her career in 1990 with British Steel where she has managed all of the major production units including several plants in Alabama, USA. Jane then moved into power generation managing coal and gas fired assets including the UK's first Biomass Power Plant. She now works as a critical industrial services provider to major blue chip companies.

Jane has won several awards most notably the CBI First Woman Award in Manufacturing and the prestigious Stephenson's Award for inspiring young people in science and engineering. She is an active member of the Royal Academy of Engineering and the Chair of the UK IChemE Board.   Jane is also a Governor of Teesside University and an Advisory Board Member of the National Science Museum in London. 

As a trustee of the IChemE, Jane brings a passionate and determined view to make the organisation more business like, whilst providing support to the membership.   Jane's aim is to ensure her responsibilities of a trustee are discharged appropriately, whilst creating a sustainable and exciting institution.

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IChemE is a registered charity in England & Wales (214379), and a charity registered in Scotland (SC 039661).