His appointment underlines ACT's commitment to drive growth across all areas of the business and strengthen its position in the sector to deliver even more opportunities for young people and support the growth in skills required by employers.
Richard Spear has 20 years of professional experience within the education and training sector and has held many senior leadership roles, including Chief Executive of Careers Wales, Director of NIACE Dysgu Cymru and Head of Programme Funding at the Welsh Government.
Founder of ACT Andrew Cooksley will continue to lead the company in the position as chief executive, determining the company’s vision and mission and setting the pace for change. Andrew will hand over the responsibility of the day-to-day running of the company to Richard Spear.
Commenting on the significance of such an appointment, Andrew Cooksley said: "Richard represents a significant appointment and development in our ambitious plans for the years ahead. We continue to grow as a company so it is important that we put a strong executive team in place to ensure this development can be sustained. Richard is an outstanding candidate and we could not have appointed anyone more perfect for this role. He is a tremendous asset to our team and I am delighted that he is now in post.”
“Our performance this year has been outstanding. In addition we are delighted that we have recently been awarded ‘gold’ accreditation for the Investors in People as well as the Matrix Standard, a quality mark for the information, support and guidance we offer our staff and learners. Richard’s appointment and his ability to lead teams towards innovation will be instrumental in ensuring that we continue to lead the way in our sector.”
Speaking about his new role, Richard Spear said: “Andrew and I have developed a strong working relationship that is founded on a shared vision and values based around providing high quality support that makes a positive difference to people’s lives.
“ACT’s commitment to delivering outstanding training with an exceptional service, whilst also ensuring staff are happy and supported, has established the company as Wales’ leading training provider. I am excited to join such a fantastic team and I look forward to working with them to drive future development across the company.”
Cardiff and Vale College and ACT, the two largest providers of apprenticeships and skills training in the capital, joined forces in October 2016 to drive forward support for young people, communities and businesses across the South East Wales City Region. ACT joined the CAVC family as a wholly owned subsidiary and continues to operate as a strong and successful company.
Chief Executive of the Cardiff and Vale College Group, Mike James, said:
“I am delighted to support ACT’s plans to further strengthen their talented team, and would like to officially welcome Richard to the CAVC Group. As a Group we are looking to increase the opportunities for young people throughout South East Wales , providing multiple and seamless programmes and progression routes with the goal of ensuring no young person becomes not in employment, education or training. I look forward to working with Richard in working towards our ambitious plans and in furthering our support for business, sharing data, collaboratively planning for future needs and looking for skills gaps that need to be addressed.”