BOARD OF DIRECTORS

Philip Barnett

Chair

Philip is the current Chair of the Board of Trustees of the Grand Theatre having been appointed to the role in April 2016.

Philip was born locally and has been based in Wolverhampton for the majority of his working life. Although now retired from his role as Operations Director of Marston’s plc, he continues to represent his old company as a member of the Wolverhampton Business Champions. He has been a Business Champion from when the group was first founded and held the position of Chair from 2012 to 2017.

Over the 40 years he worked for Marston’s (previously known as Wolverhampton & Dudley Breweries) Philip held several senior roles in various parts of the organisation including Brewing, Logistics, Export, Sales and Retail. He is a qualified brewer and on retiring was made a Life Member of the Institute of Brewing and Distilling for his services to the Brewing Industry.

He is a key supporter of the City and actively works with the Council, local politicians and other key stakeholders to make Wolverhampton a better place to invest, work, live and visit.

In September 2016 he was awarded an Honorary Fellowship by the University of Wolverhampton for his services to the City.

Ian Morrison

Vice Chair

Ian joined the Board of Trustees in 2016 bringing extensive commercial, governance and risk management experience following a wide-ranging career in banking. He held senior management positions at several UK banks, predominantly in the West Midlands. His most recent roles were at Board level working for a specialist bank which looks after charities and social enterprises.

A life-long supporter of theatre and the arts, Ian is passionate about the key role the Grand Theatre has in the local community and its ability to reach out and inspire people. He is a strong advocate of making theatre accessible to everyone and its role in encouraging and developing new talent.

He was appointed Vice Chair of the Board in 2017 and chairs the Governance Review Sub-Committee. Ian is also the Board’s representative on the charity’s Health & Safety Committee and is a Director of the theatre’s own Production Company.

Professor Sir Geoff Hampton

Professor Sir Geoff Hampton was the first recent recipient of a Knighthood in recognition of his services to education (awarded in 1998). This followed the transformation under his leadership of the first ever ‘failing secondary school’ into a successful and oversubscribed establishment. KPMG requested that Professor Sir Geoff should become their inaugural Chair of Education Leadership.

He is frequently asked to comment upon educational matters by the media and has appeared as a panel member upon ‘Question Time’, Any Questions, and the Dimbleby programme. He was the first appointee to the ‘SMART’ initiative, which was launched by the government to raise standards in nominated schools nationwide. He also acted as Chief Adviser for the Black Country Challenge which sought to raise standards in schools throughout the region.

More recently as Deputy Vice Chancellor, at the University of Wolverhampton, Sir Geoff’s portfolio included responsibility for Academic Schools and Departments. He also established a Multi Academy Trust on behalf of the University.

To mark the new Millennium the Prime Minister hosted a series of six lectures upon key topics at Downing Street. Professor Sir Geoff was given the honour of being asked to present the Education Lecture to Mr and Mrs Blair and their invited guests, choosing the topic of ‘What Makes a Good School’. He has subsequently addressed international conferences around the world and has acted as advisor to many governments, amongst which are Jamaica, Chile, the UAE and New Zealand. He recently opened an International Leadership Symposium in Japan.

Peter Bilson

Peter has a wealth of experience of involvement in various roles in Local Government, the Fire Service and the Voluntary and Community Sector, over a period spanning many years. He is currently Deputy Leader of the City of Wolverhampton Council and the Cabinet Member with responsibility for City Assets and Housing.

In the course of a long career as a Member, Peter has Chaired the Personnel, Housing, Leisure, Environmental Health and Economic Development functions of the Council. He has also served on a number of Regional and National Bodies and presently sits as a member of West Midlands Joint Committee and the LGA and Chairs the Joint Advisory Group of the Black Country Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP). He is also a Graduate of the IDeA’s Leadership Academy and the IDeA’s Strategic Housing Academy. He is a former member of the Regional Assembly and Regional Housing Executive, the City’s Strategic Partnership Board and Chair of the City’s Strategic Housing Partnership. He is also a member of the Wolverhampton City Board.

Originally employed as a Firefighter, then as a Trade Union Official, Peter went on to serve as the Chair of the Regional Fire Authority (WMFCDA) for 6 years before becoming the Millennium Mayor of Wolverhampton for 1999-2000.

Peter has also Chaired a number of multi-agency and other community and business organisations including the Board of Directors of the Grand Theatre, a city wide Millennium Working Party and the Wolverhampton City Centre Company, (WVone). He also serves as Wolverhampton Area President for St John Ambulance, as a Governor of the Council of the West Midlands Ambulance NHS Foundation Trust, (representing the Black Country), and was formerly the Chair of the Black Country Housing Group (BCHG).

Nuala O'Kane

Nuala O’Kane is currently a Non-Executive Director on Shropshire Community Health Trust. She is also a Trustee of Together for Short Lives (a national children’s palliative care organisation) and Cuan Wildlife Rescue.

Nuala was CEO of the Donna Louise Trust Children’s Hospice in Stoke on Trent from 2007 until 2014. Prior to that she was the Director of Fundraising at Hope House Children’s Hospice from 1994 until 2007. Nuala worked in the voluntary sector for over 30 years for a number of different organisations.
Nuala was a Councillor on Telford and Wrekin Council for 12 years until 2003. She held a number of leading roles during this time and was the first person to be elected to the position of Speaker of the Council in 2002.

Nuala has a long and affectionate relationship with the Grand Theatre, going back many years. Her love of live theatre was borne out of her regular attendance at the Grand from a very young age as her Grandmother ran the sweetshop attached to the Theatre, which led to her lifelong passion for the performing arts.

Nuala was a member of the West Midlands Regional Arts Board for a number of years and was Vice chair for two years.

Other voluntary roles include:-
Chair of West Midlands Committee of the Big Lottery Fund
Member of Regional Committee of BBC Children in Need
School Governor
Borough, Town and Parish Councillor

Hayleigh Lupino

Hayleigh is a qualified CIMA accountant and has held positions in industry finance, in addition to other operational roles. Following a degree in Accounting & Finance from Derby University in 1999, she spent 3 years gaining the relevant professional exams and work experience as an Management Accountant for Monks & Crane and Corporate Express (Staples) before moving to Marston’s in 2003 where she has worked across both the Pub & Beer divisions in various finance roles and since 2015 has held the position as Director of Finance and Customer Services for Marston’s Beer Company. She has also achieved coaching and mentoring from the Chartered Management Institute in 2014.

Working at Marston’s PLC has given Hayleigh a wide variety of skills and enabled her to demonstrate this over the years, including managing large teams across finance and operations, project managing acquisitions including legal contracts and integration of businesses. Sitting on various committees such as business continuity, data security and fraud/risk for the division.

Working in a FMCG business like Marston’s and shaping strategy has helped Hayleigh understanding consumers & customers where the environment in the leisure/retail sector is dynamic and ever changing.

She has lived in Wolverhampton most of her life and has a son who is also a keen theatre goer and they are both lifelong supporters of Wolverhampton Wanderers.

Tracy Worthington

Tracy joined the board of directors of the Grand Theatre in 2014. She is also a solicitor and partner in a local law firm specialising in employment law and HR.

Tracy lives locally and is married with 2 grown up children.

As well as being a member of the main board of directors Tracy also serves on the governance committee.

Luke Maskew

Company Secretary

Luke is a qualified Solicitor, having qualified in February 2017. Luke obtained a degree in Criminal Justice & Law from the University of Wolverhampton where he stayed on to complete two post graduate courses; Law conversion and the Legal Practice Course. After graduating University Luke went on to work for Marston’s PLC as a property paralegal, before becoming the company’s first Trainee Solicitor in 2015. He then qualified in-house at Marston’s, based at Wolverhampton’s very own Banks’s Park Brewery, and now works as a commercial lawyer focusing on contract law, intellectual property and commercial and strategic business advice.

Luke has been supporting the Board of Trustees at the Theatre since February 2017, where he is undertaking the role of Company Secretary. Luke is eager to play a role in the revival of Wolverhampton and is excited for the City’s future.

Luke has lived in Wolverhampton all of his life and is a lifelong season ticket holder at Wolverhampton Wanderers.