Nigel Annett CBE, previously worked in investment banking, but after ten years joined the Board of Welsh Water, initially as Planning Director. Nigel was one of the founding directors of Glas Cymru, the not-for-profit company that took over the ownership of Welsh Water in 2001, and Managing Director of Welsh Water until 2014. He has just retired from the Board of the Principality Building Society and is also a board member of the Canal and River Trust and a trustee of the Community Foundation in Wales. He is a passionate jazz player, a Welsh speaker and lives in mid-Wales.
Manon Antoniazzi (Deputy Chair)
Manon is currently the Chief Executive and Clerk of the National Assembly, responsible for ensuring that Assembly Members are provided with the services and support they need to represent Wales and its people, and that the Assembly’s reputation is championed within Wales and beyond as an accessible and efficient democracy.
She has been a member of the Board of the Heritage Lottery Fund as Deputy Chair and Chair of the Committee of Wales, and a Non-Executive Director of the London Philharmonic Orchestra. She has also been a Governor of the Royal Shakespeare Company and a member of the advisory boards of the Philharmonia Orchestra and Welsh National Opera.
Prior to joining the Assembly, Manon was Director of Culture, Sport and Tourism for the Welsh Government, and Chief Executive of Visit Wales. Earlier in her career, she was Private Secretary for the Prince of Wales, and worked in senior communications roles at the BBC, S4C and the National Assembly.
Dr Ben Calvert (Vice-Chancellor, University of South Wales)
Dr Ben Calvert joined University of South Wales in 2015 as Pro Vice-Chancellor for Student Experience, before becoming Deputy Vice-Chancellor in 2019. He took up the role of Vice-Chancellor in September 2021.
Prior to joining USW, he worked at the University of Gloucestershire, progressing from being a Course Leader, to Head of Department, to Dean of Faculty; a post that he held for six years.
As a Dean, Ben managed across a broad discipline base including Schools of Media, Humanities, Art and Design and Computing and Technology. Ben established several new degree courses including Popular Music, Television Production and Radio Production, and was part of a team that secured Skillset Academy accreditation for the School of Media.
John Derrick (Chair)
John Derrick is originally from Llanelli. An experienced leader in investment and private banking, his career includes senior roles at Barclays, Lombard Odier and Goldman Sachs. John is currently Managing Director JP Morgan Private Bank and is a Trustee of Pimlico Opera, which focuses its work on prisons and primary schools.
Previously chair of the RWCMD London advisory group, he was appointed Chair of the College’s Board of Governors in 2017.
Mario’s background is in Higher Education Analytics and Funding, with 28 years of service at HEFCE (Higher Education Funding Council for England) and related bodies. He led a highly successful group of specialists responsible for managing the data infrastructure that supported policy development and the allocation of capital and recurrent funds for teaching and research. He was a major contributor to almost every policy development in the English Higher Education system spanning the period 1991 to 2018.
Mario stepped down as Director of Analytical Services of HEFCE in 2018 and has worked as an independent consultant since retiring from the Office for Students in 2019.
Professor Helena Gaunt (Principal, RWCMD)
Professor Helena Gaunt is the Principal at the Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama, the National Conservatoire of Wales. Her strategic vision and leadership are at the core of the vibrant, multidisciplinary College’s ethos of creative excellence, its global position and future-focused ambitions.
A professional oboist for many years and founding member of the Britten Sinfonia, her career in higher education has spanned teaching, academic development, research and enterprise. Before joining RWCMD in 2018, she was Vice Principal and Director of Innovation at Guildhall School of Music & Drama.
Starting her career at 16 managing her friends’ band, she went on to found the Welsh Music Foundation, establishing an infrastructure to support the music creators within Wales. She then formed the Welsh Government’s Creative Industries division which was instrumental in making Wales a global centre for high-end TV and film production.
Following on from this Natasha was responsible for the establishment of Pinewood Studio Wales, helping to regenerate Dragon Studios near Cardiff and bringing Da Vinci’s Demons, BBC Worldwide’s co-production with US television network Starz, to Swansea’s Bay Studios. She is currently Chief Operating Officer for Bad Wolf Productions and the innovative Wolf Studios Wales. Wolf Studio Wales operates on a philanthropic basis and is unique in offering a built-in teaching facility, offering opportunities to local talent.
Lucy Hall (Staff Director)
Lucy Hall trained at Central School of Art in London with Pamela Howard and at NYU Tisch School of the Arts, New York. She has worked as a set and costume designer for theatres in Britain and abroad and has been involved in numerous theatre-in-education projects and has held Artist Residencies in a variety of educational settings. Outside of design teaching, she works alongside the staff and student body to highlight equality, diversity and inclusion, striving to deliver an inclusive training that is fit for the future and reflective of the C21.
She works to position students ‘within the work’ alongside teaching the skills and is the representative for Stage Sight at RWCMD which fights to increase diversity in off-stage roles. A focus on value systems attributed to women’s labour is a theme running through her practice.
Lucy became a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (FHEA) in 2018.
British soprano April Koyejo-Audiger is a former Jette Parker Anniversary Company Artist 21-22 for The Royal Opera. She graduated from the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, and went on to take a Masters degree in Vocal Performance at the Royal College of Music, where she was a Leverhulme Arts Scholar and a Help Musicians UK postgraduate award recipient. She joins WNO for its performance of The Magic Flute next year.
Ian Lewis has over 30 years' experience in the film, TV and advertising industries, and is the founder of media consultancy Serenroc, a film and TV distribution and production company. Nigel spent 21 years at Sky, starting as Director of Promotion Strategy in 1999, before becoming Director of Broadcasting, then Director of Sky Movies, SBO and Acquisitions, and finally Group Director for Sky Cinema. He is also the Deputy Chair on the board of the National Film and Television School.
Graduate of orchestral conducting at RWCMD, Chinese-born New Zealander Tianyi Lu collaborates with major orchestras and opera houses worldwide. Her work is driven by an ethos of empowerment, creating connection and compassion across diverse communities through music. Tianyi Lu is Conductor-in-Residence with the Stavanger Symphony Orchestra in Norway and the Female-Conductor-in-Residence with the Welsh National Opera and Principal Conductor of the St Woolos Sinfonia in the UK. She recently won first prize in the Sir Georg Solti International Conductors Competition and is also an Artist Ambassador for Opera for Peace.
Aled is the President & Chief Executive of Sauce Labs, and Welsh Government envoy to the United States.
In 2016 he joined global technology company TeleSign Corporation as Chief Executive Officer and board member, leading strategy change and its eventual $250m+ acquisition by a major European company.
Aled has previously served on the executive committee of cyber security giant Symantec, (NASDAQ: SYMC) where he held responsibility for the $2bn global Norton business unit.
Prior to this, he was Chief Executive of Cineflex Camera Systems, overseeing the manufacture of high-end aerial filming systems for television & film. It was used exclusively throughout the landmark BBC Series Planet Earth and Frozen Planet (winning a Technical EMMY) and establishing Cineflex as the industry standard.
Aled is also proud to serve as the Chair of the American Associates at the Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama.
Roger Munnings CBE
Roger has extensive experience in finance and in Board and Trustee membership
His principal career was with the international “Big Four” accounting, consulting and auditing firm, KPMG, where he was Chairman and CEO of KPMG Russia and the CIS Region from 1996 to 2008, Chairman of KPMG’s Global Energy and Natural Resources Practice from 1993 to 2008 and a member of KPMG’s International Council, the senior governance body of the international KPMG organisation from 1998 to 2008.
Since retiring from KPMG, Roger has been a member of the Boards of three of Russia’s largest companies, where he has chaired, variously, the Audit and Finance and HR committees until his resignation from those Boards in early March 2022. He is Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Russo-British Chamber of Commerce, an organisation which has now been managed to effective dormancy pending any future support for its re-activation by the UK government.
Roger has also served as a trustee of the John Smith Trust, Deputy Chairman of the Executive Board of the Association of European Businesses in Russia, and a member of the UK Government’s working group on trade and investment between Russia and Great Britain. He has previously served as a specialist advisor to the Bolshoi Theatre in Moscow and as a member of the Advisory Boards of the Russian National Orchestra and the Ekaterinburg Symphony.
David Ruebain is Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Culture, Equality and Inclusion at the University of Sussex, and former Chief Executive of the Conservatoire for Dance and Drama. His previous experience includes advising the FA Premier League on equalities issues, consulting at Equality Works (EW Group). He is a consultant to Black Thrive Global, which seeks to address the impact of systemic racism on Black communities, and a past winner of RADAR’s People of the Year Award for Achievement in the Furtherance of Human Rights of Disabled People in the UK. He has also been named as one of the 25 Most Influential Disabled People in the UK by Disability Now Magazine and last year was awarded an Honorary doctorate by the University of Law.
Natalie Roe (Students’ Union President, RWCMD)
RWCMD Students Union President Natalie Roe is a composer and performer based in Cardiff, having graduated in July 2022 with a First-Class Honours degree in Composition. Turning her craft to both acoustic and electronic music in a variety of genres, her music has been performed by the likes of BBC National Orchestra of Wales and The Band of the Welsh Guards and has been seen on BBC 2 Wales in the short film PARKLIFE. Natalie continues her love for piano and flute performance, working as an actor-musician in children’s theatre company The Flying Bedroom which she also composed the music for - touring around many festivals and schools in Wales.
Natalie has a huge passion for electronic music, studying Music Technology at Sibelius Academy in Helsinki, Finland, in a year abroad. Natalie has received the RWCMD Composition Prize 2022 and The Musicians’ Company Silver Medal award. She also has a love for radio and presenting, which she discovered through her work with RWCMD’s Nat and Jake Show bringing new music to listeners throughout the COVID lockdown periods.
Nitin Sawhney CBE is currently chair of the PRS Foundation, the UK’s leading music charity, and sits as a director on numerous boards. He has scored over 70 films and TV series and released over 20 successful and critically acclaimed albums, and written for and conducted the London Symphony Orchestra multiple times. He has worked with many other notable orchestras and bands around the world, has written, worked with and produced for many of the world’s top musicians. He holds seven honorary doctorates, over 20 major international awards, several fellowships and an Ivor Novello lifetime achievement award. As a musician, he plays a range of styles as a guitarist and pianist. He is also a university lecturer and has lectured at numerous international universities, including Stanford and Berklee in Valencia.