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Woodard Schools has today announced the appointment of its new Chairman. Richard Morse has been chosen, following a competitive selection process, to the lead the board of The Woodard Corporation.  He becomes a Director of Woodard Corporation with immediate effect and will assume the role of Chairman from 1 August 2016.

With a financial and commercial background, Richard brings over 30 years’ experience as an investment banker, specialising in energy and infrastructure, to the role. He is, among other things, presently Chairman of John Laing Environmental Assets Group Limited and Deputy Chairman of Bazalgette Tunnel Limited.  He also has extensive knowledge of the education sector having previously been Vice Chairman of Ripon College Cuddesdon and Chairman of the Wykeham Campaign, which raised endowment funds for Winchester College.

Richard’s foremost responsibility will be to lead the Woodard Board with the aim of ensuring that Woodard Schools, one of the largest and most diverse educational groups in the UK, continues to be at the forefront of development and performance in education. He will also liaise closely with the Chairman of the Woodard Academies Trust.

“With over 30,000 pupils across our 47 schools – which consist of 22 wholly owned independent schools, 17 state schools affiliated to Woodard, three independent schools that are associated to, but not owned by, Woodard and five academies – we required an extremely knowledgeable Chair to not only maintain our reputation, but to build on it. We are confident that Richard is just the person to achieve this for us,” explains Chris Wright, Director of Education at Woodard Schools.

“Also, despite being the 16th largest charity in the UK, the Woodard brand is still a relative unknown.  We believe that Richard, with his extensive experience in both the financial and educational sectors, will be able to shine a spotlight on Woodard Schools and highlight the fantastic work we do within so many communities across the UK,” adds Chris.

Richard Morse, the new Chairman of Woodard Corporation, explains what attracted him to the position: “Woodard’s long history of pioneering education together with the sense of community it instils amongst its pupils and its staff and its strong spiritual emphasis are among the many reasons I decided to apply for the role of Chairman.

“Woodard Schools has an enviable reputation amongst those who are already aware of the organisation. My aim is to spread this repute to a wider audience, drawing attention to the charity and its amazing work.  The future of Woodard Schools is full of exciting potential and it’s a privilege to be a part of it,” adds Richard.

Richard’s first role following his appointment as a Director will be his attendance at the launch of “Schools for Human Flourishing”, which has been created in partnership with Woodard Schools, SSAT, and The Church of England Education Office. This event takes place on Tuesday, 10 May at Lambeth Palace.

For further information about Woodard Schools, visit www.woodard.co.uk or call 01283 840120.