Alasdair Coates BEng(Hons) MSc CEng FICE MCIHT CMIOSH has been appointed the Engineering Council’s new Chief Executive Officer and will step into the role on 13 March 2017. In the interim Deputy CEO Paul Bailey will provide continuity as Acting CEO, a role he has been carrying out since the end of January when former CEO Jon Prichard left to become Chief Executive at the Institution of Chemical Engineers.
Alasdair was Route Managing Director, South East, at Network Rail having commenced in 2015 and leaving at the end of 2016. He will join the Engineering Council after completing an interim assignment for the new National College for High Speed Rail in Birmingham, to help develop and write the course material for the civil engineering component.
He says: “I am delighted to join the Engineering Council and take forward the organisation’s crucial work of regulating and promoting the engineering profession. Having worked on international infrastructure projects for over three decades, I know how essential it is for engineers and technicians to be competent and constantly developing and improving their skills, particularly with the pace of change in today’s industries. Without this lives are put at risk. This message is at the heart of professional registration.”
Alasdair has more than 30 years’ experience in the planning, design, management and implementation of infrastructure projects. Having started out as an engineer for Husband and Company Consulting Engineers, he subsequently joined Sir William Halcrow & Partners in 1987 and progressed to manager and director roles, including as Operations Director at Water & Utilities Business Group. In 2003 he was appointed Managing Director of the Transportation Business for Halcrow Group Ltd and over the following years appointed Group Board Director and Regional Managing Director for Europe. Following Halcrow Group’s acquisition by CH2M IN 2011, Alasdair was the International Operations Director, Transportation, before joining Network Rail.
Alasdair is a Fellow and active member of the Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE), having previously been chair of the Graduate and Student section and member of his local ICE membership committee. He has also been a member and meeting secretary of his local Chartered Institution of Highways and Transportation (CIHT) committee, and has been a Chartered Engineer for 30 years. He is also a Chartered Member of the Institution of Occupational Safety & Health (IOSH), which is the Chartered body for health and safety professionals.
Engineering Council Chairman Rear Admiral Nigel Guild CB CEng FIET FIMarEST MIMA FREng, adds: “We look forward to welcoming Alasdair, who will be a great asset to the Engineering Council. His extensive industry experience, combined with his commitment to the work of professional engineering institutions, make him the ideal professional to take the organisation forward.”
The new CEO joins at a time when a new strategic plan is being developed, setting out the objectives and key work streams for the organisation from 2018 to 2020.