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Leeds College of Building's CEO to step down

Veteran Principal at Leeds College of Building retires after 22 years

Posted by Alex Diggins | May 12, 2018 | People, policy, politics, money

Ian Billyard, CEO and Principal of Leeds College of Building, has announced his intention to retire after 22 years at the institution.

Ian, a former building surveyor, has been CEO & Principal since March 2003. Previously, he was Deputy Principal, a role he had held since April 1996. By the time he retires, he will have been employed by the College for over 22 years. “It has been an enormous privilege to have worked with such an outstanding team of staff and Governors. During this time, the College has changed considerably in response to shifts in both the wider industry and the FE sector. Because of these changes, the college is in great shape for the future,” he said.

He continued: “The College has grown from under £2m turnover to nearly £20m and with phase 2 of the Hunslet Campus well underway, we will shortly house half of our estate in start-of-the-art modern buildings. This has been achieved by supporting each other and remaining resolute in the presence of external pressures. It is always difficult to make such a big decision, especially when you enjoy the job as much as I do, but I feel that stepping down now provides me with the opportunity to do other things and for the College to embrace the next stage in its development.” 

Ian started his working life as mining surveyor with English China Clays in the South West. He also worked with the Local Authority and various contracting companies. He began teaching at the Darlington College of Technology, before progressing to Head of Department at Bolton College and Dean of Faculty at Boston College. After that, he joined Leeds College of Building as Deputy Principal in 1996.

Andrew Iveson, Chair of Governors, said of Mr Billyard's retirement: “During his time here, Ian has led the College through some challenging periods whilst developing the curriculum and business base. This has enabled us to maintain independence as the only specialist construction college in the country. His leadership and strategic planning has ensured that the College is in the right places to influence national and local developments in construction and FE, whilst driving operational and financial performance that has resulted in the College being in a strong position going forward”.  

He concluded: “The Board are grateful to him for all his hard work over the years in supporting students to achieve their aspirations - and stakeholders to engage with us - to ensure that the construction sector is supported and developed in the Leeds City Region and beyond.”

Ian Billyard will be retiring at the end of December 2018. The Board has set up a Selection Committee to oversee the recruitment process for a successor.

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