22nd September 2021
IAN BEATTIE APPOINTED AS UK ATHLETICS CHAIR
Following the conclusion of an open recruitment process, UK Athletics is delighted to confirm the appointment of Ian Beattie as Chair to the organisation. This has been made after conducting an inclusive open recruitment process, in accordance with the Code for Sports Governance. With specialist input from Brewster McBride Executive Search, advertisement activity was significant and widespread, and specifically designed to attract a pool of diverse candidates. The appointment also received the unanimous recommendation of the Athletics Appointment Panel (AAP) and was approved by the UKA Board.
Beattie joins as Chair and will be working with outgoing Chair Nic Coward, the Board and the executive team on a managed transition over the next few weeks, taking the role on in full following the October board meeting.
Ian Beattie is the former Chair of Scottish Athletics having served a hugely successful term in that role. A member and endurance coach of Harmeny Athletic Club, Ian has previously been a member of Portobello, Strathearn Harriers, Central AC and Troon Tortoises, serving on the committee of most of those clubs. He is Race Director of the West Highland Way Race, having completed the event eight times, and has completed more than 100 marathons and 100 half marathons. He is also a Chartered Accountant and Chief Operating Officer of Lindsays Solicitors.
Ian Beattie said: “I am delighted to have been appointed to the Chair position at UK Athletics. It is an exciting time to be taking on the role, and I look forward to helping the organisation provide a positive environment for athletes, coaches, officials and everyone else involved in the sport. Having previously chaired one of the Home Country Athletics Federations, I recognise the importance of all the athletics’ bodies in the UK working together, with each of us performing our roles to the highest possible standard.
“My vision is for athletics to be a sport where everyone pulls in the same direction and feels proud to be part of the athletics family in the UK. It is encouraging that the structures are now in place to allow that to happen, and I look forward to helping UKA play its part in achieving this in the years ahead.”
Senior Independent Director Penny Avis, who oversaw the recruitment process said: “On behalf of the Board of UK Athletics, I am delighted to welcome Ian as our new Chair. Ian’s deep athletics knowledge and his passion and energy for the role, combined with his chair and business experience will be a fantastic asset for us. We are very much looking forward to working with him on the delivery of our part of the Athletics Unified strategy for the whole of the sport, in which Ian played a pivotal role, and the UK Athletics ‘Age of the Athlete’ Operational Plan.
“I would also like to take this opportunity to give our huge thanks to Nic Coward, who joined us first as interim CEO and then as Chair for the past eighteen months. Nic’s leadership, significant sports experience and wise counsel helped steer the organisation through a period of considerable change, such that we now have the platform and structures in place to build for the future. The Board wish Nic all the very best with his future endeavours.”
The appointment process was made after conducting an inclusive open recruitment process, in accordance with the Code for Sports Governance. With specialist input from Brewster McBride Executive Search, advertisement activity was significant and widespread, and specifically designed to attract a pool of diverse candidates.
The advert ran for over eight weeks, throughout the Olympic and Paralympic Games across a wide range of mainstream media, job websites, Home Country Athletic Federation websites, a number of sports, diversity and another relevant websites, and social media channels. Along with the Job Description, the Athletics Unified Strategy and the Age of the Athlete UK Athletics Operational Plan were linked to the advert and published on the website. Candidates were also able to discuss critical elements of the role with both Brewster McBride and Board members.
One of the specific remits of Brewster McBride was in relation to ensuring the advert was drawn to the attention of and approaches were made to potential candidates from a diverse range of backgrounds, with a significant focus on gender, ethnic diversity and relevant industry sectors.
Examples of diversity data provided by the candidates included:
- Of the individuals approached and contacted in relation to this role, 83% had experience at board level in sports organisations
- Of the individuals approached and contacted in relation to this role, 76% had previous experience of leading change initiatives across complex organisations
- Of applicants who completed the equality and diversity monitoring form, 3% identified as non-binary, 20% female and 77% male
- Of applicants who completed the equality and diversity monitoring form, 24% came from non-white ethnically diverse backgrounds