North West branch conference speaker biographies

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Posted by APM on 16th Jun 2016

A world in which all projects succeed - but not without risk management
Date: Monday 10th October 2016
Location: Macclesfield 
For more information about the conference and to book please click here

Current list of speakers (subject to change)  
There will be a choice of presentations, workshops and round table sessions run by the following speakers 

Keith Gray
Keith is a risk management consultant and trainer and has worked in project risk management for over 20 years. In this time he has helped organisations develop, implement and embed their project risk processes across most sectors in regions including North America, Europe, Middle East and Africa, and Australia.

Dr Keith Harrison
Keith is Secretary of the APM Risk SIG and the Risk Subject Matter Expert (SME) for the Defence Mission Systems (DMS) in Thales.  DMS is split into two areas MMS (Maritime Mission Systems) which is one of the world’s leading producer of sonar and ISR (Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance) producing cutting edge radar and the Watchkeeper unmanned air vehicle. Keith provides ‘best practice’ guidance and advice on risk management across a number of the divisions projects

Peter Simon
Peter Simon has nearly 40 years of experience as a project management consultant and practitioner across all industries and business sectors.  He has built a professional reputation as a particularly knowledgeable and skilled advisor and trainer, particularly in those areas related to programme management, project planning, risk management and resource management. 

In his early career he worked for a variety of organisations across the Oil and Gas, Nuclear, Utilities and Transportation sectors as a project management and project services practitioner and was responsible for all aspects of project planning and control and risk management for projects based in Europe, USA and the Middle East.  In his later career he has achieved significant success in building the project management consultancy and training arms of the PMProfessional group of companies in addition to many years as a successful freelance project management consultant and a period as European Technical Director for ESI International.  He is a Director of Lucidus Consulting Limited.

Peter consulted with, and developed and delivered training and development programmes in programme, project and risk management for numerous companies across many industries including Royal Dutch Shell, Talisman, BG Group, AMEC, Wood Group, Horizon NUlcear, ABP, AXA Insurance, Hofmann la Roche, Pfizer, Quintiles, BAE Systems, Transport for London, Costain and the UK Government’s Department for Work and Pensions

Peter is co-author of two books; ‘Starting Out in Project Management – Study Guide for the APM Introductory Certificate in Project Management’ and ‘Practical Project Risk Management: the ATOM Methodology’; both of which are in their second editions.  This second book was awarded the 2013 PMI David I. Cleland Project Management Literature Award for the best project management related book in 2013.

Mike Ward
Mike is a Business Change Manager with knowledge and experience of a wide variety of best practice methods for the management of projects, programmes and portfolios. His experience as an assessor, change practitioner and consultant in portfolio and programme management has been used to assist a number of major clients undergo business change. Mike has considerable experience in managing enterprise scale international collaborative programmes and has recently spent a number of years assisting clients improve their programme and portfolio management.Mike is an APM Fellow and chairs the SIG Steering Group; he has spoken at various APM events and published books on maturity modelling and risk management, which contain many examples of industry best practice. Mike is currently employed as a Consulting Director within RSM.

Ben Fry
Ben is one of the Risk Managers responsible for assessing, managing and assuring risk across EDF’s £18bn Hinkley Point C nuclear power station construction that will be responsible for generating 7% of the UKs electricity supply. After over 12 years working in a wide range of roles on several multi-million pound defence projects, Ben has developed a wealth of experience across all aspects of project controls. This experience has given him an integrated and comprehensive view on how the different elements and techniques within project controls can work together to allow effective decision making and maintain control over a project’s execution. Whilst Ben has worked in a variety of project roles throughout his career, he specialises in risk management and assessment having both led risk teams on major projects and been responsible for rolling out major risk initiatives.

David Shearer
David has worked within the engineering consultancy sector for around 20 years. He has worked on numerous infrastructure projects within the UK and across the Middle East region, with a key focus on water, energy and primary infrastructure. David is a member of the APM and is a Registered Project Professional (RPP), as well as a Member of the ICE and CIWEM. His current role is Project Management and Commercial Lead within a global consultancy where he supports the business with risk management.

Dr Ruth Murray-Webster
Ruth is currently Director, Change Portfolio at Associated British Ports where she is responsible for coordinating the approval and delivery of an ambitious portfolio of change to processes, systems, behaviours and ways of working.  Prior to this appointment, Ruth was Director of the Risk in the Boardroom practice for KPMG LLP following 10 years as a Director of Lucidus Consulting Ltd.  Her work on risk appetite and risk attitude with David Hillson is widely published. Her doctoral research focused on the accomplishment of planned change from the perspective of the recipients of change rather than change agents.  Ruth was awarded Honorary Fellowship of APM in 2013 for her contributions to risk and change.

Micheal Lawrence 

Mike is a senior manager at Rolls-Royce, where he is responsible for Group wide enterprise risk management and reporting to the Group’s risk committee.  Prior to joining Rolls-Royce Mike held senior roles with npower, AMEC and ICI where he accumulated a range of risk management expertise including:  strategic risks, financial risks, risk modelling, technical and safety risks, and project risks.

Kimberley Hart 

Kimberley has been a risk practitioner for the last 10 years and has supported Manchester’s implementation of the Civil Contingencies Act, working with key partners to increase capabilities for emergency preparedness, business continuity planning, incident response and recovery. She believes in the strength of a collaborative approach and has been fortunate in her career to work with a wide range of stakeholders on a number of high profile events, such as political party conferences and the Olympics in 2012, as well as major emergencies and more localised disruptions, such as failure of core ICT systems. 

Within her current role, Kimberley supports the delivery of the Council’s risk management framework, working closely with Senior Managers and external partners to provide specialist advice and influence new ways of working as part of the Public Sector Reform agenda.

With a background in education, Kimberley is passionate about sharing good practice, knowledge and experience to improve outcomes.  To help support the development of the risk management profession she Chairs the National Core Cities Business Continuity practitioner group, is a member of the Committee for the Institute of Risk Management (IRM) in the North West and also leads the Manchester Business Continuity Forum, a local partnership focussed on multi-disciplinary networks to help build and embed resilience.

Anne Parker
Anne has always been interested in human behaviour and success, with a career spanning Education, Training, HR and Sales and Marketing.  She is a Fellow of the CIPD, a qualified trainer and coach and has recently gained a PG Cert in Mindfulness from the University of Aberdeen which she has integrated into her work as a Consultant, trainer and coach. A previous speaker for APM as well as other professional organisations, she has delivered talks, training, briefings and individual coaching in organisations including: Vattenfall Energy, United Utilities, Liebherr GB, Finning Caterpillar, Adidas, MNA Media, Bank of America, MBNA. 

Anne was a speaker at the 2nd ‘Mindfulness at Work’ conference at Cranfield University 2014 and has been accepted as a speaker at the World Building Congress 2016, Finland. She has also run courses for the general public as well as NW organisations such as Lancashire County Council and Uclan. She has a section in a book on sustainability published by the Royal Institute of British Architects released July 1st 2016. She aims to make her talks, stimulating and well researched but also practical, real and relevant. Her website is

Simon White
Simon is a risk management consultant with over 20 years’ experience in helping organisations to understand and manage risk to their projects’ schedule and cost.  He has worked in a wide variety of industries and major projects, and spent two years as UK Risk Analyst for ConocoPhillips, before which he was Senior Consultant and trainer for Pertmaster, Primavera and Oracle.

Simon is recognised as one of the leading practitioners of risk management and analysis, and strives for clarity and pragmatism in his work.  He uses methods that allow probabilistic models to be interrogated and understood by project teams and senior management, which helps ensure that risk assessments are reasonable representations of reality, and that they add value by setting and justifying reasonable expectation and positive management action.  Simon has also designed and built commercial risk software (including as a contributing architect to Primavera Risk Analysis / Pertmaster), and continues to develop tools for more practical valuable project and business risk management.

Phil Hardy
Phil has 40 years of industrial experience comprising national and international process plant design and engineering, construction, operation and commissioning services. This includes project and contract management activities in the UK, Europe, the Middle East and North America.

Phil has worked in a wide range of industries including: minerals, paper & board manufacture, fine chemicals, pharmaceuticals plus the water and nuclear industries.  Commencing with project management roles in the early 1980’s Phil gained 20 years of process design and project management experience with a design and contracting company. This experience included management and construction projects for BNFL, Shell, BP Chemicals, SABIC, Clariant and Novacor Chemicals in Ontario.  Subsequent roles for Atkins included projects in the UAE, Dounreay, Sellafield and for United Utilities.

Following recent retirement from Atkins Phil has maintained professional links with the I Chem E and the APM and is currently Chair of the North-West Branch. Phil also acts as a Dissertation supervisor for the Management of Projects MSc course at the Manchester University School of MACE and promotes Chemical Engineering to school students particularly those about to choose an undergraduate course.

Lynn Stalker 

Lynn started Sellafield in 1988.  She has supported a number of facilities on the site in a technical role gaining site knowledge and experience prior to joining the Planning Department in 1996 where her interest in Risk Management was awakened.  She has been undertaking a risk management role ever since.  Lynn is now a Risk Management Subject Matter Expert working in the Independent Performance Assurance Group (IPAG) after spending 8 years in the Central Risk Capability.  

Throughout her time on the nuclear site Lynn has undertaken a number of risk management qualifications, including IRM Diploma in risk Management (gaining Subject Prize Winner in Occupational Health and Safety) and latterly gaining a Masters with Distinction.

Lynn has taken the Sellafield Risk Management Team to the finals, in Berlin, of the IRM Awards and is an active member of the IRM, being a committee member of the North West Region, speaking at Region Seminars and running risk related workshops. 

Lynn is currently chairperson of a new group, Nuclear Industry Risk Management Association, looking at the risk management service provision and professional standards across the nuclear industry as a whole.

Stewart Wragg
Stewart has over 20 years experience in delivery complex multidisciplinary projects and programmes both in the UK and overseas.  Stewart is an APM Committee Member for the North West Branch and an APM Committee Member for the Risk SIG. 

John MacGregor (details to follow)

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