Kevin Streater FLPI CITP FBCS

Kevin StreaterKevin Streater joined ForgeRock in October 2012 as Director, Global Training and Academic Sales. In this role Kevin is leading the development of an innovative open source training business to provide skills in ForgeRock’s Open Identity Stack.

Prior to joining ForgeRock, Kevin spent three years at The Open University as Head of IT Industry Engagement after 18 years in various service delivery, project management and training leadership roles at Sun Microsystems.

Kevin is a Chartered Fellow and vice-chair of Council of the BCS, The Chartered Institute for IT, Fellow and Member of the Advisory Board of the Learning and Performance Institute and Freeman of the Worshipful Company of Information Technologists.

Kevin holds a BSc. (Hons) in Computer Science from City University, London, and a Postgraduate Certificate in Business Administration from The Open University.

Mark Palmer

Mark PalmerMark has had a varied career working for commercial (Sun Microsystems, QA Training, Arch Apprenticeships), academic (Open University) and membership (BCS) organisations, in a variety of service orientated roles. Starting as a Hardware engineer and moving into learning and development as a consultant, business manager and account management.

More recently Mark has been involved in apprenticeships initially at the Open University and latterly as an assessor and now as a Learning & Development Coach for apprentices working on the standards. He also works as a Subject Matter Expert for both the BCS and City & Guilds on the apprenticeship standards. He has worked on skills frameworks SFIA and SFIAplus.

Secretary / Membership Secretary
Gary Thornton CEng MBCS MIET 

Gary ThorntonGary started his career in High Power Electrical Engineering, and moved across into Telecommunications & IT 30 years ago. He has been involved in the development & support of some very large data networks and in the roll-out of European cellular networks.

Until 2013 he was a major shareholder in the leading independent global provider of data centre & telecommunications training where he played a central role in the development of internationally recognised qualifications such as Certified Data Centre Design Professional (CDCDP), Certified Data Centre Management Professional (CDCMP) and Certified Data Centre Energy Professional (CDCEP), as well as working with the European Commission and the US Department of Energy (DoE) on piloting new data centre energy efficiency initiatives.

He is currently involved in attracting young talent into the IT & communications sector and in developing learning & development programmes to meet the present & future needs of the industry.

Events Organiser
Michelle Kaye MBCS FLPI Tap.Dip

Michelle KayeMichelle's career has spanned, officially, 20 years - working from a training company, to in-house trainer, and finds her currently working as a contract trainer with her own company.

The work covers many aspects, from the training lifecycle (talk to people, design a course, write the course, write the notes, setup the room, run the course, take down the room, talk to people again), to supporting staff (answer calls, fix problems, move kit around etc).

During her 'life' outside of work, she’s an avid reader (sci-fi, fantasy, romance), sadly she's now hooked on Facebook and some other social networks. TV and Films are also a love, but Michelle doesn’t have time to sit and watch too much at the moment.

Education Liaison
Ken Gaines 

Ken GrainesKen has been “in” the ICT industry since leaving school and classes himself more as a super-user rather than a techie. Having worked in computer operations, supervisory skills training for the IT world, software sales and marketing, Ken became involved with education as a part-time lecturer for Weston College during which time he also undertook a Business Administration degree that took him into marketing – with a bank.

From there he has been pulled back to learning, first with training CRM and marketing systems for a legal accounts firm, then as a Curriculum Manager back at Weston College. This was followed by a brief foray into the world of IT Management with a firm of solicitors before joining City & Guilds in 2008 as a Product Manager for IT user qualifications, where he developed their ITQ offering and introduced new “standards” for Entry Level 3. During a restructure in 2010 he became a Portfolio Manager, taking on responsibility for all aspects of Digital and ICT plus Finance and Health & Safety. Working with centres, employers and other stakeholders the portfolio has become a significant part of the City & Guilds family of products.

Since 2015, Ken has been a Technical Advisor initially for Business and Digital, but for the last 3 years concentrating on the digital and ICT skills with the growth of Apprenticeships Standards. He was a lead in the successful bid to become one of the first End Point Assessment Organisations for Digital and helped develop the Assessment Plan for Actuarial Technician, more recently working with the latest Employer Groups where the Standards are being revised.

Ken has an International remit, which has lead to him doing work in Mauritius to have them adopt the City & Guilds ITQs, as well developing a Vocational Proposal in Qatar that saw the Ministry for Education and The Ministry for Work provide money to do in depth research into what was need and could be delivered in digital and ICT. He has also worked with the lead organisation in Ireland to develop a programme to get unemployed graduates in digital/ICT jobs that he helped turn into their Software Developer and Network Apprenticeship programmes that are part of Irish legislation.

Inclusion & Diversity officer
Anne Thornton

Anne ThorntonAnne graduated from Newcastle Upon Tyne Polytechnic with an Honours Degree In Electrical and Electronic Engineering more years ago than she cares to remember. She started her career as a Graduate Apprentice Engineer with the Yorkshire Electricity Board (now part of Northern Power Grid), where she was the first female Distribution Engineer and moved on to be the first female Senior Authorised Person. After a brief flirtation with Technical Management Consultancy, she joined Siemens (now Siemens Energy) and has worked in the Service arena for over 20 years. Her current responsibilities are for the Transmission Service Organisation in Northern and Central Europe. She has a particular interest in HVDC Interconnectors, educating young people and in the promotion of Inclusivity. When not working she watches Bradford City and enjoys gardening and reading.


Committee member
Cliff Edwards

Cliff trained at I.B.M. in Assembler, then started as a designer of both
computer systems and skills training programmes, designed and
successfully run IT training for decades, mostly in Europe coding in 20
computer languages, MS software, graphics, systems design and analysis.

He has a degree in Psychology to support design of IT instruments for
behavioural research, user interface design and crude ML programmes. He also designed and ran over 50 different skills programmes in industry and for Master’s courses and ran I.T. departments in London.

Committee member
Richard Hind

Richard HindAfter graduating from York with a BSc in Computer Science Richard worked for almost 10 years in the industry. In 2002 He joined York College and has been teaching FE (BTEC, A and T-levels) and HE (Access, HND and FD) courses since then. He is the award leader for the Foundation Degree Digital Technologies (Cybersecurity).

Committee Member
Jonathan Smoes

Jonathan is a Board and C-Level expert advisor in the areas of strategy, growth, assurance, innovation, disruption, and transformation. He is an experienced business leader, assurance professional and management consultant with over fifteen years of multidisciplinary and multi-industry experience, having partnered with market leading clients in over thirty countries.