David Clarke becomes technical director at RIA
David ClarkeDavid Clarke has been appointed technical director of the Railway Industry Association, where he will represent members’ interests in the areas of safety, technical standards, technical strategy, research and innovation.

David has over 30 years’ rail industry experience. Prior to joining RIA he was the innovation director at RSSB and responsible for the cross-industry Future Railway Programme. His earlier career includes deputy director, rail technical at the Department for Transport, and director for two of the major rail infrastructure contractors.

David is currently working for the University of Birmingham, a number of other universities and the Rail Supply Group to pull together the case for rail centres of excellence in the UK, and will continue this for up to 4 days a week while picking up his RIA responsibilities. He will go full time at RIA from 18 April when his work with the Universities and RSG is completed.

Jeremy Westlake takes up the financial reins at Network Rail
Jeremy WestlakeJeremy Westlake has joined Network Rail as chief financial officer. He brings a wealth of experience in senior leadership roles across transport, engineering and manufacturing both in the UK and overseas, including a strong focus on driving continuous improvement, reducing costs and maximising efficiency. He comes from the post of senior vice president of finance at Alstom Transport in France, and replaces Patrick Butcher, who moves to the Go-Ahead Group in March.

Jeremy will lead Network Rail’s finance function, which includes group finance, treasury, internal audit and risk, planning and regulation, and long-term planning and funding. A member of the company’s executive committee, he will report to chief executive Mark Carne and will sit on Network Rail’s board as an executive director alongside the chief executive and the non-executive directors.


New strategic rail director for Atkins
David BrewerDavid Brewer has been appointed market director for the strategic rail market at Atkins.

In this role, he will be responsible for leading the strategic rail client team in delivering a portfolio of services and projects ranging from strategic advice through to large EPC schemes. He will also lead the development and delivery of Atkins’ long term market strategy both in the UK and overseas, which utilises new technology and innovations placing Atkins at the centre of the future digital railway.

David joins Atkins from Highways England where he was the network delivery and development director, leading a team of six directors each running a regional business unit as well as the traffic technology division. He was a member of the executive committee and formerly a board director of Highways England, and has a wealth of experience in leading multiple large complex programmes.

McNaughton to chair UIC rail forum
Andrew McNaughtonHS2’s technical director Prof Andrew McNaughton has been appointed chair of the Paris-based International Railways Union (UIC) inter-city and high speed rail forum.

Prof McNaughton’s appointment is recognition of his expertise in the world of high speed rail. He is the first Briton to hold the post.

HS2 Ltd’s role in designing the UK’s new high speed rail network has pushed forward the sector’s understanding in a number of areas including integration of high speed rail with urban development and regeneration; environmental assessment and mitigation measures; and in the area of technical advancement delivering high reliability on what will be an intensively used high speed railway.

Welcoming his appointment Prof McNaughton said: “I’m delighted and honoured to be appointed chair for the UIC inter-city and high speed rail forum, which is where the world’s high speed rail experts meet to exchange best practice and develop new advances.”

Will Whitehorn appointed president of CILT
Will WhitehornWill Whitehorn, director of Stagecoach and chairman of Transport Systems Catapult, is to become the next president of the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport (CILT). Having served as vice-president for the past four years, he takes up the one-year position on 20th May.

Will began his transport career with British Airways before moving to Virgin Group where he worked for 25 years. He helped establish Virgin Atlantic on the global stage and spearheaded Virgin’s move into rail. He was a founding director of London and Continental Railways and went on to lead Virgin’s bid for the West Coast Mainline franchise. In 2004 Will became president of Virgin Galactic, a spaceflight company within the Virgin Group, overseeing the construction of the world’s first commercial spaceship.

He takes up the new post during a period of technological change, with the emergence of artificial intelligence and autonomous systems.

Bombardier engineer to chair the Young Rail Professionals
Sabrina IhaddadenSabrina Ihaddaden, who works as a signalling systems engineer for Bombardier Transportation in Derby, has been elected chairman of the Young Rail Professionals and takes up the position on 8 March. Having graduated from Lancaster University and the French engineering school Arts & Metiers ParisTech, she joined Bombardier Transportation as a graduate engineer in 2013. The following year, she gained recognition as Young Achiever of the Year by the Chartered Management Institute. Filled with confidence and belief in what YRP could achieve, she put herself forward to chair YRP’s first ever regional committee, the East Midlands committee. Since 2015, she has played a leading role as national vice-chair to cement the regional structure before being elected national chair.

Sabrina succeeds Stephen Head, who is stepping down after 1 year in the role.