From education to employment

Lisa Capper MBE, newly appointed CEO and Principal of Sandwell family of colleges.


Sandwell family of colleges(@sandwellcollege), which includes Sandwell College, Cadbury Sixth Form College and Central Saint Michael’s Sixth Form, has announced the appointment of Lisa Capper MBE as its new CEO and Principal, who will take up post in November.

Lisa takes up the position from Graham Pennington, who has held the post of CEO and Principal at Sandwell College since 2014, transforming the family of colleges into one of the largest providers of education to young people in the country.

Lisa joins from her role as CEO and Principal at Stoke on Trent College where she was instrumental in transforming the quality of provision and financial health of the college, securing significant partnerships and profile for its continued success in meeting the skills needs of learners and employers.

Prior to her role at Stoke on Trent, Lisa led a large provision at Nacro, the social justice charity, including transforming Totton College. She was a Vice Principal of North Warwickshire and Hinckley College group and Executive Director of the Academies Trust.

Previously, she served in the senior civil service as a specialist in FE at the Department for Education and the Department for Business Innovation and Skills leading on initiatives such as Skills for Life and Worldskills.

Lisa has been an independent governor of De Montfort University supporting apprenticeships and was the first female chair of the National Deaf Children’s Society. In January 2021 she was awarded the MBE for services to young people.

Commenting on her appointment, Ms Capper said,

“I am delighted to be joining the Sandwell family of colleges at such an exciting time. The college offers great opportunity for the young people and residents of Sandwell and Birmingham to achieve their education and skills’ ambitions and develop their careers. I am looking forward to working with the talented and dedicated teams across all sites and hope that I can bring my skills and experience to build on their tremendous achievements.”

Alan Taylor, Chair of the Governing Board at the College said,

“Lisa brings extensive experience of senior leadership and governance in further education, and through the roles she has held in colleges, charities and in government, a demonstrable commitment to the learners we serve. We are delighted to welcome Lisa to the Sandwell family of colleges and look forward to her joining us in the autumn.

“On behalf of the Board, I should like to extend our thanks to Graham for all his work and contribution to the progress of the colleges over the past decade. Under Graham’s leadership and by working collaboratively, we have seen the colleges go from strength to strength.

“Graham’s tenure as Principal has brought about a transformation of the Sandwell family of colleges, becoming one of the largest providers of education to young people in the country, with improved quality and our best Ofsted outcome, outstanding finances, a multi-million-pound investment programme and the best pay and conditions for college staff in the Midlands. Graham leaves us in a strong position with considerable optimism for the future.”

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