A new approach to the way the GTA University Centre recruits board members has resulted in broader industry representation.

Earlier this year, the GTA decided to open up the recruitment process to ensure its board reflected more closely local business sectors.

‘We were delighted with the success of this new approach which generated much interest and 10 formal applications. We were very impressed by the calibre of all the applicants, who in every case were worthy of strong consideration,’ said GTA University Centre board chairman David Leafe.

Following interviews, Paul Hodgson, managing director of Butterfield Trust (Guernsey) Limited, and Pete Johnson, who until recently was a group director and group CIO of First Central Group, have joined the board alongside Derek Maddison, senior vice president at Marsh Captive Solutions, who will represent GIBA.

‘All three are very experienced businessmen with a strong interest in education and training. They will bring their knowledge of their business sectors and a strategic approach that will help us to set a strategy relevant to support both the current and future economic environment,’ said Mr Leafe.
Mr Hodgson was a non-States member of the Public Accounts Committee for the past four years and is joint deputy chairman of the Guernsey Association of Trustees (GAT). He was also chairman of the local branch of the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners (STEP) from 2012 until 2015 and, said he applied as he had worked with the GTA in the past in that role as STEP has maintained a close relationship with the GTA for many years.
‘I have seen first-hand the excellent work that the team do in supporting the learning and development of those seeking to progress within the trust sector specifically and the finance industry generally. I want to use my commercial experience generally and my specific experience as an employer within the island, to complement the existing board members. I applaud the GTA for this refreshing inclusive approach to board recruitment as inclusivity should form a key part of the management of any successful business,’ he said.

Mr Johnson said he hoped to use his expertise as a technologist to benefit the GTA as modern technology was creating an unprecedented rate of change in all sectors and that he had applied to give something back to the community that had become his home.
‘Technology will have an important part to play in the GTA’s strategy. Whether its ensuring that the island has the technical skills it needs, looking at ways technology can support the learning experience, or just ensuring that the GTA has the right technology to support its operations. It’s rare that organisations have technical input and challenge in the form of a technical non-executive director but it’s something that most Boards could do with,’ he said.
As deputy chair of Guernsey International Insurance Association (GIIA) and a past education secretary for GIIA, Mr Maddison said he hoped to represent the wider business community and would be using the experience gained through his MBA and attending numerous courses.

‘I feel that the GTA is at a very important stage in its development and I hope that my broad business experience in professional services firms and as risk manager for a FTSE 100 company can add value. I have a strong background in finance, risk management and governance, as well as the strategic perspective gained from undertaking the MBA through the GTA,’ he said.

Mr Leafe added:

‘We are committed to this being the approach we follow from now on. We know there are people in Guernsey who can have a positive influence in the success of any professional organisation, and I am excited to be working with our new team.’