David Burbidge CBE DL
Chairman of the Coventry City of Culture Trust, David is also Chairman of Burbidge & Son Ltd, former Chairman of the Belgrade Theatre and served on the main Board of the Royal Shakespeare Company. He is a Deputy Lieutenant and former High Sheriff of the West Midlands. He was recently awarded a CBE for services to cultural philanthropy in the West Midlands – particularly Coventry and Warwickshire.
Vice Chair of the Coventry City of Culture Trust, Erica became Deputy Artistic Director of the Royal Shakespeare Company in January 2013. She works closely with Artistic Director Gregory Doran on all aspects of artistic strategy, taking a particular lead on the development of new work. Erica led the team which reopened The Other Place in March 2016, a creative hub dedicated to daring theatrical exploration. Erica takes a lead on extending equality and diversity across all RSC activities and is passionate about participation in theatre-making. Erica is a theatre director with many years’ experience all over the UK.
Rashid Bhayat MBE
After setting up his first youth-work social enterprise aged 17, Rashid has gone on to work at a national level, advising on youth policy and programmes for a range of organisations spanning over 20 years. His career includes 15 years in local authority, which included leading on a ‘spin out’ of his service area under a public service transformation agenda. Since 2011, Rashid has led the Positive Youth Foundation, an ambitious charity which supports young people deemed to be in challenging circumstances. The charity focusses on educational attainment, community engagement, health inequalities and the city’s youth-service co-ordination.
Ian Harrabin MBE
Ian has worked in most parts of the UK but has recently concentrated on projects in the Midlands and in particular Coventry, his city of birth. His company, CDP, was the development partner to Coventry council in delivering the city’s £60m Millennium project, The Phoenix Initiative. The project was shortlisted for The Sterling Prize in 2004. CDP then converted redundant power station buildings to the north of the city centre into 114 office and residential units. This project, now known as Electric Wharf, won an award for Outstanding Place of the Decade in West Midlands in 2010. Currently an ambitious long term partnership project to regenerate the historic Far Gosford St area as the city’s creative quarter is nearing completion.
Roger Medwell MBE
Roger was Chairman and CEO of NP Aerospace Ltd. He is currently Chairman of Imagineer Technologies and is involved in Imagineering, an independent educational charity with the aim of introducing young people of ages 8-16 to the world of engineering, science and technology. He is also on the board of Culture Coventry and the former Chairman of Godiva Harriers, where he still coaches every Sunday.
Professor Judith Mossman
Judith is Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Arts and Humanities at Coventry University. A scholar of the theatre of ancient Greece, Judith read Classics at Corpus Christi College, Oxford, followed by lectureships at Oxford and Trinity College, Dublin. She is President of the Society for the Promotion of Hellenic Studies. She is a passionate advocate for the arts.
Martin has been Chief Executive of Coventry City Council since April 2009. He was the Chief Executive of the West Midlands Combined Authority March 2016 to September 2017. He is a Governor on the Board at Coventry University; is the first Honorary President of LARIA (Local Authorities Research and Intelligence Association) and on the board of the Centre for Cities.
Alan is former Director of Warwick Arts Centre. Since being appointed in 2001 he successfully steered Warwick Arts Centre’s programme to a position where it regularly hosts high profile, contemporary, international theatre, music, visual arts and interdisciplinary events. He lead on a major £34m capital development of Warwick Arts Centre featuring new developments in facilities for the contemporary visual arts, digital production and exhibitions. He is also a member of the 2021 Executive Group responsible for overseeing the programme.
Over the last twenty three years, Baljit has been involved in the management of NP Aerospace, with oversight for their joint venture in Jordan and Finance Director from 2004. Baljit’s role was never that of a traditional FD, with a wide ranging view over many aspects of growing the business, he brings unparalleled experiences to any business.
Monica Fogarty is Chief Executive of Warwickshire County Council. With over twenty five years’ experience in local government, Monica has held a number of senior roles. Until 2016 she was Strategic Director for Communities leading the ‘place’ agenda for Warwickshire and prior to that she was Assistant Chief Executive for Warwickshire. Monica has also held a range of Head of Service posts including Policy; Performance and Change Management, having also worked for Coventry City Council. Particular areas of expertise are Economics, Strategic Infrastructure; Partnerships and Organisational Change. She has experience of managing most forms of council front line services. With London-Irish roots, Monica and her family live in Kenilworth, Warwickshire.
Councillor Richard Brown
Richard has been a ward councillor for Cheylesmore since winning a by-election in May 2014. He has served on many committees since then and has been twice Chair of Scrutiny as well as Chair of Planning and Chair of the Audit and Procurement Committee. Richard is also the designated “Digital Champion” to help drive through a Digital Transformation Strategy for the City. He also serves on the Overview & Scrutiny Committee on the WMCA and appointed to the City of Culture 2021 Trust Committee. Richard has lived in Coventry since 1973, has 3 children and a grandson, all living in Coventry. He has entered local politics after a 30 year career in the private automotive sector. He is also a governor at Howes Primary School in Cheylesmore.
Professor Simon Swain FBA
Simon Swain is Vice-President National and Regional Engagement at the University of Warwick and Vice-President for Research and Higher Education Policy at the British Academy. In his Warwick role he works with the amazing colleagues at the trusts, charities, and governmental agencies and authorities who are building the City of Culture and ensuring its legacy in Coventry and our region. At the British Academy he is helping to defend the health and funding of our Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences disciplines. He is still active researching the interface between the worlds of ancient Greece and Rome and the Islamicate empire of the middle ages. His most recent book is on the 13th/7th century author Ibn Abi Usaybi‘ah’s Classes of Physicians.