Director/Advisor to the Board of Futsallers Foundation
Vivienne has over 20 years of experience working across public, not-for-profit and commercial sectors working at a senior level as a Management Consultant/Business Advisor, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Specialist. She wears many hats incuding Director/Advisor to the CEO of the Global Sport Digital Platform for Futsal called E-Sports Inc Ltd, Chair of the Footballer’s Anti-Discrimination Disciplinary Panel for the FA, Sport Resolutions’ Panel Member of Arbitration and Mediation and Non-Executive Director of Football at the London FA portfolio includes Chairing Women and Girls Advisory Group and the Inclusion Advisory Group. Also an Advisor (Equality, Diversity and Inclusion) to the Metropolitan Police Commissioner and Senior Leadership team. A mentor for young people and women in leadership, a public speaker, judge for events and experience of sitting on numerous committees.
CEO, Bristol City FC
Phil is one of the longest serving and highly respected CEO’s in the game having served 25 years at Crystal Palace FC. and is currently CEO at Bristol City FC. Phil has also served on The FA Council, representing the Premier League and sat on the FA’s Professional Game Board.
In his past he played professional football for Norwich City and was the placekicker for the London Monarchs American Football team, winning the World Bowl at Wembley in 1991.
Chief Executive & Deputy Chairman, Brighton & Hove Albion FC
Paul Barber joined the board of Brighton & Hove Albion FC as Chief Executive in June 2012.
Previously, Paul became the first British football executive to lead a team in to Major League Soccer when Vancouver Whitecaps FC entered the league in March 2011. He joined the Vancouver Whitecaps from Tottenham Hotspur FC, where he was the Club’s Executive Director for 5 years.
In addition to 25 years working in professional football, Paul has held senior positions in major international companies such as Barclays Bank PLC, where he was a member of the retail board, Ogilvy & Mather, the US-based advertising and communications group, where he was Chief Executive for Europe, Middle East and Africa, and Abbey National PLC, now part of Santander, the Spanish banking group.
Richard Bevan OBE
Chief Executive, League Managers Association
Richard was appointed Chief Executive of the League Managers Association in January 2008. Richard is a prominent character in the world of sport and business with a strong track record of devising and achieving strategic visions, implementing long-term business plans and growing sports organisations nationally and internationally across different cultures.
He joined the Professional Cricketers’ Association in 1996 & became Chief Executive in 2001 to 2007, developing the profile and business of the organisation to becoming a major player in world of cricket. Richard was also a founding Director of the Federation of International Cricketers’ Associations.
Richard has been a Trustee of the Team England Player Partnership since 2002 which provides contractual, financial, commercial representation to all England Cricket players. He also represents the LMA as a member of the Professional Players’ Federation, the umbrella body for all players’ associations.
Richard was also appointed Chairman of The board of The Caribbean Premier Cricket League (CPL) in November 2013. Within two years the CPL has been confirmed as the number one sports event in the Caribbean, second only to the IPL in International T20 Cricket. CPL has an economic impact in the Caribbean of US167m.
Chair, Kick It Out
Sanjay is the Chair of Kick It Out, football’s equality and inclusion charity. In this role, he is a frequent public commentator and recognised thought leader on issues related to discrimination and equality.
Sanjay is also a Board member at the Lawn Tennis Association and Greater Sport (the Local Active Partnership for Greater Manchester) and is part of the Government-sponsored Parker review into the ethnic diversity of UK boards (focusing on FTSE 100 and FTSE 250 companies). Sanjay was also a member of the Premier League’s Equality Standard Independent Panel for four years.
Sanjay enjoyed a 30 year business career in law, technology and compliance including 12 years as a Partner at international consultancy business EY where he was also the partner sponsor for award winning race strategies. Since 2019, Sanjay has been pursuing a portfolio career. Sanjay is a Board Member at the law firm Travers Smith and the Serious Fraud Office as well as a number of charities. Sanjay is also Chair of the Satellite Applications Catapult which acts as a hub for innovation in the UK space technology industry.
Former Chief Executive, Wigan Athletic FC
Malachy Brannigan has held senior executive and board positions in all four divisions of English professional football as well as Managing Director positions in both Scottish and Irish football across a 27-year career in football administration.
Mal has been a member on both the commercial and finance working parties of the English Football League (EFL) and was one of the Founding Trustees of the EFL Trust, a charity whose focus – through the network of the EFL’s Club Community Organisations – is on improving health and wellbeing, raising aspirations and realising potential, and building stronger, more cohesive communities.
Mal graduated from Manchester Metropolitan University, with a master’s degree for Sporting Directors and has also been a Board Director at GreaterSport as well as guest lecturing on a number of post-graduate and master’s degree courses on matters such as leadership, change management, fan engagement and governance.
In March 2021, he was appointed Chief Executive by Phoenix 2021 Limited to oversee Wigan Athletic FC and to work with the Club’s management team to drive Wigan Athletic forward in a new era under new ownership. Having survived the 20/21 season by a single point, the Club achieved promotion as Champions in 21/22 and won the Fan Engagement Award at both of the prestigious Football Business Awards and the Sports Industry Awards events, in conjunction with Stadimax.
Mal is also a previous FC Business Overall CEO of the Year Award winner.
CEO, Leyton Orient FC
With over 20 years in professional football, Mark is one of the most experienced and long standing CEO’s in English Football, having been CEO at Swindon Town, QPR, Brentford and Huddersfield Town AFC .
From 2011-2018, Mark oversaw the rise of Brentford from a mid-table League One club, to a financially stable, Championship club challenging at the top of the League. Mark was also involved in the development and planning for the new Brentford Community Stadium which opened earlier this year.
Devlin enjoyed a spell in The Republic of Ireland, with the Champions, Dundalk, in 2019. During his time, Dundalk not only retained their title, but also included experience of both the UEFA Champions League and Europa League, before returning to England to take on the CEO role at Huddersfield Town in January 2020.
Mark was also a member of the EFL Commercial Committee between 2014-2018 as one of three Championship representatives.
Chief Executive, Scottish Professional Football League
NeNeil Doncaster has been involved in football for the last 25 years. He joined Norwich City in 1997 as Company Secretary and, four years later at the age of 31, became their Chief Executive. In his twelve years at City, the Club re-built its reputation with supporters, with season ticket numbers trebling over the period to 20,000 and the Club receiving a number of awards for community, business development and innovation.
While with Norwich, Neil was elected to the Board of the English Football League and subsequently to that of the Football Association. Neil joined the Scottish Premier League in 2009 and, following the merger of the Scottish Premier League and Scottish Football League in 2013, Neil became the first Chief Executive of the Scottish Professional Football League (“SPFL”). Neil is the only person ever to have sat on the Boards of both The FA and The Scottish FA.
Earlier this year, the SPFL announced new long-term and record-breaking live broadcast rights contracts with Sky Sports and Viaplay. In summer 2022, the senior women’s leagues were brought into the SPFL’s governance structure, with the creation of the Scottish Women’s Premier League.
Despite the disruption caused by Covid-19, the SPFL has recently announced record fee payments to the SPFL’s 42 member clubs for 2021/22.
Former Chief Executive/Secretary, Port Vale FC
Colin Garlick is a football administration executive with almost 40 years of experience ranging from grassroots to elite level.
Garlick’s career began on a voluntary basis as a representative on the Macclesfield District FA in 1983, in 1998 he was named as a Life Member of the Macclesfield District FA and remains a Life Member of the North East Cheshire District FA following the merger of Stockport, Macclesfield and Stalybridge & Hyde respective District FAs in 2020.
In 1993, Garlick joined Macclesfield Town FC as a voluntary club secretary before becoming the club’s full-time chief executive and club secretary during a period in which the club won back-to-back promotion from the Conference to the then Second Division. In 2005, Colin joined Rochdale AFC and spent 11-and-a-half years at Spotland, during which time Dale twice won promotion to League One, having also reached the League Two Play-Offs on two occasions.
In September 2016, Garlick joined Port Vale as chief executive and club secretary and played an important role in the Shanahan family’s acquisition of the Valiants in May 2019. The Vale were named EFL Community Club of the Year in 2020 for their community outreach work during the COVID-19 pandemic, when Garlick and other club staff rallied together with chair Carol Shanahan OBE to provide 300,000 meals in a heroic effort to support fans and local residents.
In 2018, Garlick became Cheshire County FA’s representative on the FA Council, before he enjoyed a fifth promotion of his career when Port Vale returned to League One after a five-year absence by winning the League Two Play-Off final at Wembley in May 2022.
In April last year, Garlick was named as the fcbusiness League Two CEO of the Year at the 2022 Football Business Awards for his leadership throughout the 2021/22 season.
CEO, Bristol Rovers FC
Tom has worked within the professional game for over a decade. He started at Portsmouth FC as an intern, working in every department before settling in the marketing department in a full-time role.
During his time at the club he experienced two relegations, two administrations and an FA Cup Final. The highlight of his time at the club was receiving the Family Club of the Year award in 2012. This achievement marked a stark change from the clubs failure to achieve the Football League’s family Excellence standard just a year earlier.
From Portsmouth, Tom moved to Cardiff and in the first year, he oversaw increased matchday hospitality revenue by over 200% from the previous season as well as leading us to the 2013 Family Club of the year Award.
He then moved to Brighton & Hove Albion as Head of Marketing where he was responsible for our sales strategies for all club commercial channels including ticketing, commercial, retail and non-matchday events. Tom worked at the club during their promotion to the Premier League and was responsible for overseeing their sales and marketing strategy on their multi-million pound five year hospitality renewal project.
In 2015, he received the Rising Star Award at the Stadium Business Awards in Barcelona and in 2016 he was part of the inaugural Sports Industry Next Gen programme.
Last year, Tom was promoted to the post of Chief Executive Officer at Bristol Rovers Football Club becoming one of the youngest CEO’s in professional football. He lead the club to promotion back to League One with a 7-0 victory on the final day elevating Rovers into the top three by a single goal, whilst also driving standards across all parts of the business.
CEO, Women in Football
Yvonne became Women in Football CEO in January 2022. Equality is a huge passion for Yvonne, from grassroots participation to the boardroom, and with over 20 years in the sports industry, she has experience across the board, in sport, health and business.
She began her career with Manchester-based charity GreaterSport, where she later became CEO and led the charity to unprecedented success, helping to put Greater Manchester firmly on the map as innovators, driving impact and changing lives through sport and physical activity. During her tenure she was awarded The Charity Times Awards – Rising CEO star, the Northwest Institute of Directors, Director of the Year for Public and Third Sector and was added to the Northern Power Women’s top 50 Power List, alongside the charity securing multiple awards.
In 2018 Yvonne became Managing Director for Project 92, overseeing the sport and education portfolio for the Class of 92, which included a game-changing higher education institution in Greater Manchester, UA92.
In late 2020 Yvonne established StryveUK, a sports consultancy which has worked with professional sports franchises, clubs, national governing bodies and charities as well as supporting individuals through executive coaching and mentoring. In addition to this, Yvonne is actively involved with several organisations in a Non-Executive Director capacity, and is Chair of Trustees for Foundation 92.
CEO, Hibernian FC
Ben Kensell joined Hibernian FC in the summer of 2021 as Chief Executive. He is one of the most highly regarded leaders in football, who spent three years as Chief Operating Officer at Norwich City before joining the Hibees.
The Englishman shares a vision with Hibs owner Ron Gordon – to take Hibs to the next level both on and off the field at Easter Road. Kensell is eager to make Hibernian FC an industry leader in Scotland and has a strong plan to take the Football Club to the next level.
Before joining the Hibees, Ben helped successfully guide the Canaries to promotion to the Premier League and oversaw a significant growth in turnover and commercial income during his three years as COO. Working in football for over 16 years, Ben enjoyed spells at Charlton, Arsenal and Norwich and has previously worked across a multitude of different sporting events including Wimbledon, the British Grand Prix and Royal Ascot.
COO, Birmingham City FC
Lungi has worked in professional football for just under a decade, leading several operational departments. Forming part of a senior management team that supports the board of directors, she is efficient in planning, organising, and working collaboratively to influence, design and deliver initiatives, essential to the accomplishment of the business.
She is currently the Chief Operating Officer at Birmingham City Football Club, having spent several years at Charlton Athletic. Her responsibilities vary from looking after the women’s team to safety operations across company sites.
She is a Director with Women in Football, having joined the board in May 2018 and has been an integral member in moving the organisation into its next phase of growth, influencing the industry at a truly revolutionary time.
In October 2018, she was named as a NextGen Leader for 2019 – one of 30 rising professionals from across the UK sports industry.
Lungi is especially interested in developing people and believes in the balance of diversity and representation at all levels of football.
Chief Executive, Fulham FC
Alistair Mackintosh joined Fulham Football Club as Chief Executive in the summer of 2008. He was previously Chief Executive at Manchester City Football Club and over a ten year period saw the Club travel from the Second Division back to the Premier League and from its Maine Road home to the City of Manchester Stadium.
Having trained as a Chartered Accountant with PWC, Alistair spent a number of years working for Sony before entering the football business. He has also held Board positions at a radio station, a museum, a leisure centre group and a charity.
CEO, Blackpool FC
Ben Mansford was appointed CEO and a Director of Blackpool Football Club in November 2019.
A graduate in Law, Ben is a qualified solicitor who specialised in sport, prior to becoming a Vice President at global sports management and media group Wasserman for many years.
He was appointed Chief Executive of Barnsley in 2013 and spent three years in the role at Oakwell, with the club achieving promotion to the Championship and a Football League Trophy success in his final season. Ben’s switch to Leeds United in 2016 then resulted in him playing a major role in the Whites’ resurgence.
In June 2017, he became CEO of Maccabi Tel Aviv, with the Israeli giants winning the championship in record-breaking fashion during his time there, as well as qualifying for the group stages of the Europa League.
Chief Executive, Heart of Midlothian FC
Andrew is the Chief Executive of Heart of Midlothian FC and won the Football Business Awards Scottish CEO of the year in 2022. A lawyer by profession, prior to working at Hearts, Andrew also spent 6 years at the Scottish FA ultimately becoming the organisation’s Chief Operating Officer and Deputy Chief Executive.
Paul Monekosso Cleal OBE
Chair, Equality Diversity and Inclusion Standard, Premier League
As Equality Advisor to the Board of the FA Premier League, Paul led the development and implementation of the No Room for Racism Action Plan. He chairs the panel which assesses the progress of Clubs against the requirements of the Premier League Equality Diversity and Inclusion Standard.
Prior to that he was a partner at PwC, the global professional services firm, where he served on the Management Boards of the firm in both the UK and in Africa and provided corporate finance advice on a wide range of projects including the financing of stadiums at Arsenal, Wembley and Ascot Racecourse.
Outside football he is a Non-Executive Board Member at Metropolitan Police. He has for many years been involved in diversity and inclusion in business and was awarded the OBE for his work in that area in the 2020 New Year’s Honours List.
Ambassador and Former Chairman, AFC Bournemouth
There have been few constants in AFC Bournemouth’s incredible rise to the Premier League.
Aside from the sight of ithe inspirational perfromances from the team, achieving the almost impossible by reaching the Premier League in 2015, it is an almost unrecognisable club from just ten years ago.
But its fairy tale success wouldn’t have been possible without the boardroom backing of Global ambassador and former Chairman Jeff Mostyn following his purchase of the club in 2007. The club has now become one of the most progressive and admired clubs, both on and off the field within the English football pyramid.
Mostyn now stands as an immensely well-respected figure not only in the English game but also on the Global stage due to his unparalleled knowledge of the Football Pyramid.
He has held places on the board of the Football League and the Football Association Council and is just as influential in the local area, constantly contributing to the club’s Community and Commercial work, as well as being a trustee for the Club’s Community Sports Trust.
Mostyn is also part of a small group of Football Chairman to have held the position at the same club in the top four divisions, along with Swansea City’s Huw Jenkins and Dave Whelan at Wigan Athletic.
CEO, Lewes FC
Maggie is the CEO of pioneering football club, Lewes FC in Sussex, a community-owned non-profit football club and the world’s first to distribute revenue equally between its male and female teams. Maggie was elected to the FA Women’s Super League and Women’s Championship Board in July 2021. Maggie held a senior global advocacy role at Transparency International, the world’s largest anti-corruption organization for six years and human rights roles in Amnesty International and Minority Rights Group International. She became a ‘BBC Expert Woman’ in 2017.
Managing Director, Rangers FC
Stewart qualified as a Chartered Accountant with Ernst and Young before moving to PricewaterhouseCoopers where he spent eight years in the corporate finance team.
He then became a partner in a private investment firm where he served as a non-executive director on the boards of several companies in various industries, including 12 years as a director of Motherwell Football Club.
He joined Rangers in 2015, overseeing the recovery of the club and its return to financial sustainability and on-field success. He has served on the Board of the Scottish Professional Football League (SPFL) on several occasions since 2003 and is currently a member of the SFA’s Professional Game Board.
Chief Executive, Wrexham AFC
Wrexham AFC CEO Fleur Robinson is an accomplished commercial leader with a huge passion for putting football at the heart of the community and making a positive difference to people’s lives.
Fleur joined Wrexham in June 2021 as the Club’s new high-profile co-chairmen, Rob McElhenney and Ryan Reynolds, sought an experienced footballing person to help deliver an ambitious mission statement, growing the Football Club in tandem with their targets for success on the pitch. Previously, Fleur spent more than 25 years at Burton Albion – holding the position of Commercial Director as the Brewers’ rose up through the Football League and spent two years playing in the EFL Championship.
A major highlight of Fleur’s career was becoming a founding Trustee of the award winning Burton Albion Community Trust, a thriving community involvement programme which inspires, engages and educates local people and welcomes 8000 participants a week. She is also proud that the club was awarded for three consecutive years, the Family Excellence Award which recognises “the extraordinary quality of the family experience”. During her time with Burton, she also led the huge transformation of the commercial side of the business. This included the launch of the club’s corporate hospitality and conference facilities, initiatives to increase match day attendance and sponsorship opportunities to bring increased funds into the club.
Fleur is currently elected to the 120-member FA Council and, having been involved in football since the early 1990s, has seen a great deal of diversification over the years. Fleur is an Ambassador for BTEC and supports education particularly the transition for further education through her own development ‘Inspiring Your Future’ workshops. In December 2021 Fleur received the Football Black List award for Administration for the second time.
CEO, Lincoln City FC
Liam has more than 20 years of experience working in football and communities, having started his career via an apprenticeship and working his way up to become chief executive of Lincoln City. He is also Chair of the EFL Trust.
He is responsible for the day to day running of the Imps on behalf of the fans, directors and investors, including heading up a seven-man senior management team, and more than 150 employees. He joined Lincoln City in the summer of 2017 as they returned to the EFL, helping guide the club to a further promotion to League One where they reached the 2020-21 play-off final.
Prior to joining Lincoln, Liam spent 16 years in various roles at Doncaster Rovers and the wider Club Doncaster group – starting as an apprentice funded by the Professional Footballers Association (PFA) and graduating to a spell as Foundation chief executive then chief operating officer of Club Doncaster.
That rise through the ranks culminated in Liam being inducted into the National Apprenticeship Hall of Fame in 2007. The Hall of Fame recognises outstanding achievement in enterprise and business from those who started off their working life through an apprenticeship scheme.
Liam also holds voluntary offices including chair of the English Football League Trust (EFLT), director of Lincolnshire County FA, trustee of Lincoln City Foundation, along with ambassador roles at the Asian Sports Foundation and XP Free School Trust. He has underpinned his public and private sector service with high-quality education and training: with a postgraduate certificate in strategic leadership (University of Chester), Diploma in Leadership and Management (ILM), along with being a graduate of the Kennedy Senior Leaders training programme
Liam is married to Jenna, who also has a distinguished career within sport and education. They have two children, Arthur and Jonah. His interests include football, golf, motorsport and spending time with his family.
Chief Commercial Officer, Arsenal FC
Juliet is currently Chief Commercial Officer at Arsenal Football Club. Previously, she was Chief Commercial Officer at Ascot Racecourse from 2012 to 2020, and prior to that has worked as MD at Pitch Media, MD at Haymarket Network, on the London 2012 bid and at Advantage International (now trading as Octagon). She has also been Sales and Marketing Director at Fulham for 5 years and worked at adidas for 5 years. She has sat on many boards during her career and is currently a non-executive director at the British Olympic Association.
CEO, Bradford City AFC
Ryan Sparks was appointed Bradford City AFC chief executive officer in November 2020, after being promoted from the role of director of communications and commercial.
At 29, he became the youngest in his role in the EFL, which he remains today. He has spent over four years at the University of Bradford Stadium, having joined the club ahead of the 2018/19 season.
Club President, Director of Football & External Affairs, Exeter City FC
20 years lecturing at Exeter College in all aspects of Physical Education. Specialized in Sports Psychology and Acquisition of Skill
Exeter City football club career started as a ball boy, later becoming a player, then a coach. Took control of ECFC 2003 at insolvency (- £4.8 million)
Head of Academy, Director of Football, Vice Chairman, CEO and Club Chairman.
Currently, ECFC’s President Director of Football and External Affairs. Chairman of the Exeter CITY Community Trust Charity.
Chief Marketing & Fan Experience Officer, City Football Group
Nuria is Chief Marketing & Fan Experience Officer and joined the City Football Group in November 2015. Her role encompasses Content and Digital platforms, Fan Relationship Management (FRM), Fan Data and Insights, Retail and Brand. Nuria joined CFG after 19 years of experience in the telecommunications, aviation and tourism and leisure industries. Her previous position was as CEO of the biggest ski resort in the Pyrenees, Grandvalira.
Chief Commercial Officer, Crystal Palace FC
Chief Commercial Officer at Crystal Palace Football Club. An experienced Sports, Entertainment and Venue Executive empowering high performance results. With over 20 years of demonstrated history of delivering against steep revenue targets and driving growth for some of the most respected rights holders in the world of Tennis, Sports Entertainment and Football.