The following have been appointed to serve on the Project Board:
Chair: Miss Gwerfyl Pierce Jones MA
Gwerfyl Pierce Jones was born in Holyhead, Anglesey and was educated at Holyhead Secondary School and the University of North Wales, Bangor. She began her career as a lecturer in the Welsh Department at St David's University College, Lampeter.
She subsequently held posts in arts administration with the Welsh Arts Council, yr Academi Gymreig / The Welsh Academy (now Literature Wales) and the Welsh Books Council. She served as Director and chief executive of the Welsh Books Council from 1987 until her retirement in 2009.
She has served on numerous boards and committees, including the British Council (Wales Committee), the National Library of Wales and the Welsh Language Board. She is the Chairman of the James Pantyfedwen Trust and chair of its Examining Committee. Gwerfyl is also chair of Theatre Genedlaethol Cymru. She became a Fellow of the University of Wales Lampeter in 2008.
Senior Responsible Officer: Dr Rhodri Llwyd Morgan, Pro Vice-Chancellor, Welsh Language and Culture and External Engagement
A graduate of Aberystwyth University and Cardiff University, he has worked for BBC Wales, the Welsh Language Board and Ceredigion County Council where he was Assistant Director of Education responsible for Cultural Services, Youth Services, Adult Community Learning, Work-Based Learning and the Welsh Language. He joined Aberystwyth University in September 2013 as Pro Vice-Chancellor for the Welsh Language, Culture and External Relations. He is Vice-Chair of Mudiad Meithrin, the main voluntary sector provider of Welsh-medium early years care and education and a member of the First Minister’s Welsh Language Partnership Council, advising Welsh Government on its Welsh Language Strategy.
Dr Morgan is a member of the Project Board and the University Executive Team. He will be supported by a range of skill sets that already exist within the organisation, including the Director of Estates Development, the Director of Finance, together with a dedicated Project Director assigned to the project in line with the University’s other Major Projects.
Daniel Benham, Director of Finance, Aberystwyth University
Daniel Benham is a graduate of Imperial College, London and joined Aberystwyth in March 2015 and was formerly Chief Financial Officer for the International Baccalaureate Organisation for 8 years.
Prior to this Daniel had a 15 year progressive post qualification career in business with Schick Wilkinson Sword (Energizer, Pfizer and Warner lambert) and Oral B (Gillette). During this period he held a number of director roles including Global Finance Director (Strategic Planning) for Schick Wilkinson Sword, UK Finance Director for Wilkinson Sword and UK Finance Controller for Oral B. He trained and worked as an audit senior with Grant Thornton from 1987 to 1990.
Louise Jagger, Director of Development and Alumni Relations
Louise has over 30 years’ experience in fundraising within the UK, having led major capital appeals, fundraising campaigns and regular giving programmes for a range of charities, including Scope, NCH and NSPCC. Leads the department and works in partnership with alumni and supporters to maximise their contribution to the University's strategies and goals.
Andrea Pennock, Directors of Estates Development Department, Aberystwyth University
Andrea Pennock joined the university as Director of Estates Development, on December 1st. She was previously a Senior Category Lead at Crown Commercial Service, Cabinet Office, London, managing FM spend for Central Government; prior to that role she was head of Estates and FM at DVLA, responsible for a team of 90 in house staff as well a large team of contractors via a 20yr PFI contract. In addition to doing Estates related jobs, she also has many years of experience in public sector procurement.
Born in Belfast, Andrea moved to Swansea in her early teens, then following a number of years travelling and working in various locations across the UK, she moved back to Swansea to take up her role at DVLA.
Lauren Marks, Student Union President
I did my undergraduate degree in Genetics, and graduated in 2015. I first got involved in the Students’ Union as an Academic Representative and being on a sports club committee, and this involvement really motivated me to run to be an officer. As President it is my job to make sure that myself and the officer team work to represent you and all students in Aberystwyth. I meet regularly with the university executive team, as well as attending university committees, on behalf of the student body; ensuring your voices are heard at every opportunity given. I also chair the Students’ Union Board of Trustees and have a big role in Students’ Union governance, lead the officer team in our day to day activities and strategic aims, and represent you on a national level. As an officer, I also co-ordinate and facilitate campaigns for Aberystwyth students, making sure that your experience at Aberystwyth is the best that it can be.
Councillor Ellen ap Gwynn, Leader of Ceredigion County Council
Councillor Ellen ap Gwynn is the first woman to lead Ceredigion County Council and has been Leader of the Plaid Cymru Group on the Council since 2006.
Born in Scotland and brought up in Borth-y-gest near Porthmadog, Ellen ap Gwynn has been a County Councillor for the Ceulanamaesmawr ward in the north of the County and a Community Councillor for 14 years. She holds the WLGA Equalities and Ageing Well portfolio, is Chairman of the Local Service Board and past Chairman of the Aberystwyth Strategic Regeneration Board.
A past National Chair of Plaid Cymru - The Party of Wales, she stood for parliament in the Montgomeryshire constituency in 2005.
She is a past Chairman of the Mudiad Ysgolion Meithrin and Wales Association of the Performing Arts.
She worked professionally in arts management and is a founder of Cwmni Theatr Arad Goch. She also served as Director of CYD and General Manager of Radio Ceredigion.
A past member of the Arts Council of Wales, she had a leadership role in establishing the National Theatre of Wales and was Chair of Arts Training Wales. She is a past member of the boards of eco-dyfi, Tai Ceredigion and the Council of Aberystwyth University, from where she graduated and gained a postgraduate certificate in education.
Councillor ap Gwynn was recently appointed Vice-Chair of ERW (Education through Regional Working) - the Regional Board for Education Improvement.
She has also served as a Governor of Coleg Ceredigion and still serves on both the Talybont Community Primary School and Llangynfelyn Community Primary School Boards of Governors. She is also a member of the Ceredigion 14-19 Strategic Education Board.
Stephen Lawrence, President of the Old Student’s Association for Aberystwyth University
Stephen Lawrence is the current President of the Old Student’s Association for Aberystwyth University. Stephen Lawrence has been Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Chawton House Library, the Hampshire centre for early English female writers for the past several years. He previously held the position of director of development and external affairs at Aberystwyth University in Wales for 16 years. He now oversees writers, researchers, and historians along with an estate over 400 plus years old, is on the board of Trustees and has an ongoing relationship with the British National Trust.
Alun Williams, Aberystwyth Town Council, Bronglais Ward
Alun Williams represents Aberystwyth Town Council on the Board. He is also a Plaid Cymru County Councillor for Aberystwyth Bronglais ward and Cabinet Member for Transport, Waste & Carbon Management. He is involved in a wide range of community initiatives and takes a special interest in the environment.
Bryn Jones - Penparcau Community Forum Co-ordinator
Bryn is a first language Welsh speaker born in Ruthin and raised in Caernarfon, North Wales, who in 1971 moved to the Aberystwyth area (Borth) and is where he now considers to be home. Growing up with a passion for the Arts led Bryn to study Sculpture at Carmarthen School of Art and dedicate over 30 years of his professional life to utilising the Arts to influence positive change through empowering individuals and local communities.
Bryn brought this extensive knowledge of community development to his more recent work as the Communities First Co-ordinator for Penparcau & West Aberystwyth, managing the Welsh Government’s tackling poverty programme engaging with disadvantaged groups through community participation and inclusion initiatives.
With the demise of Communities First, Bryn helped the people of Penparcau to re-establish a Community Forum which 3 years on is thriving and where he continues to help to empower people within their own community, acting as their co-ordinator and helping to secure over one million pounds in funding since its inception in 2013. Penparcau Community Forum is now well-established as a Company Limited by Guarantee and earlier this year it was registered as a Charity with three full and part-time employees.
In July 2015 and in recognition for his contribution to the community and his work across Wales, Bryn was awarded an Honorary Bachelor of Arts Degree by Aberystwyth University. He is the first man to be awarded an ‘honorary degree’ by the University which was established in 1872.