Our Senior Leadership Team is responsible for the CIPD's strategic development and day-to-day operational management. The team works closely with the CIPD Board, which governs and directs the Institute's affairs in accordance with its Charter and charity law.

Peter Cheese

Peter Cheese: Chief Executive

Peter is the CIPD’s chief executive. He writes and speaks widely on the development of HR, the future of work, and the key issues of leadership, culture and organisation, people and skills.

Peter is a visiting Professor at the University of Lancaster, a member of the Board of BPP University, and sits on the Advisory Board for the Open University Business School. He holds an honorary doctorate from Kingston University, and is a Fellow of the CIPD, AHRI (the Australian HR Institute) and the Academy of Social Sciences. He’s also a Companion of the Institute of Leadership and Management, the Chartered Management Institute, and the British Academy of Management.

Prior to joining the CIPD in July 2012, he was Chairman of the Institute of Leadership and Management and a member of the Council of City&Guilds. Up until 2009 he had a long career at Accenture holding various leadership positions and culminating in a seven year spell as Global Managing Director, leading the firm’s human capital and organisation consulting practice.


Ken Cooke

Ken Cooke: Director of Digital and Marketing

With 20 years’ experience within information businesses, Ken leads the Digital and Marketing Directorate, responsible for the CIPD's customer experience and marketing programmes.

His teams are focused on building our digital capabilities and transforming the CIPD into a modern, adaptable organisation so that we can deliver an excellent experience for all our members and customers while delivering sustainable revenue streams to support the CIPD's charitable purpose.

Ken has held senior roles across major international media businesses such as The Economist and the Financial Times, as well as working on HR titles like Personnel Today and XpertHR. He has extensive experience in delivering on modern marketing approaches focused on the customer’s experience and building digital products and services.
Laura Harrison

Laura Harrison: Director of Strategy and Transformation

Laura is the CIPD’s Strategy and Transformation Director and leads the CIPD’s strategy, research and public policy teams. She has particular interest in the future of work and HR, organisation development and change.

Laura passionately believes that the future of work is human and is interested in exploring how organisations can create value for all their stakeholders for long term societal advancement as well as economic growth.

She holds a first degree in chemistry and postgraduate qualifications in law and tax. Laura has worked at the CIPD since February 2011. Her earlier career was spent at Aviva, where she was a HR Director in its European business and in various consulting roles with Ernst & Young and PwC.


Warren Howlett: Head of HR Content

Warren is the CIPD’s Head of HR Content. He is responsible for our professional development and learning products, digital content, tools, resources, platforms and qualifications for HR, OD, reward, recruiting and law. As a member of the Senior Leadership Team he also plays a key role in leading the direction and delivery of the CIPD’s strategy.

Before joining the CIPD in November 2015, Warren was Senior Director at CEB where he authored more than 20 research studies and built numerous HR products and services across a broad spread of HR terrains.


Vanessa Robinson

Vanessa Robinson: Director of Membership Services and Operations

Vanessa is Director of Membership Services and Operations for the CIPD. Her teams include Finance, Planning and Performance, Facilities, ISS, Customer Services, Assessment, Membership and Qualifications. She is responsible for the overall effectiveness and efficiency of our operations and providing financial and performance insights to deliver our operating surplus.

Vanessa joined the CIPD in 2004, in the Research Team, which she led for a number of years, before taking up her current role. Vanessa’s earlier career was in a variety of consultancy and finance roles, including PwC, Cap Gemini and WPP. She is a Chartered Accountant, holds a first degree in Psychology and a Masters in Organisational Behaviour.


Brad Taylor

Brad Taylor: Director of People

Brad is the CIPD’s Director of People. He leads the CIPD’s own HR and people development function, ensuring that the organisation is able to achieve its strategic aspirations through attracting, developing and retaining great people.  He is interested in people strategy, culture and organisational development. In particular, he is enthusiastic about enabling all CIPD people, both employees and branch volunteers, to collaborate effectively to achieve the CIPD’s purpose of championing better work and working lives.

Brad joined the CIPD in June 2016. He holds a Postgraduate Diploma in Personnel Management and is a Chartered Fellow of the CIPD.  He started his career with Barclays Plc, working across both HR and non-HR roles, before moving into the not-for-profit sector, where he was Director of HR & Workplace with CIMA. 


Sam Whittaker: Director of Brand and Communications

Sam is the CIPD's Director of Brand and Communications. As a member of the Senior Leadership Team Sam plays a key role in leading the direction and delivery of the CIPD’s strategy, leading specifically on building our external brand and reputation, as well as our overall communications approach.  

Inspired by the idea of creating a future of work that is human, Sam is focussed on ensuring that our evidence-based research, thought leadership and key messages create an activist brand that aligns to our purpose of championing better work and working lives.

Prior to joining the CIPD in 2013, Sam spent over twenty years working in a variety of roles in knowledge businesses including Thomson (now Thomson Reuters), McGraw-Hill and John Wiley & Sons. During her career Sam has honed her passion for connecting customers and communities with great content, research, stories and ideas. 


Gill White

Gill White: Director of Commercial and Capability

Gill is the CIPD's Director of Commercial and Capability. Her teams are responsible for translating our strategy, research, thought-leadership and customer proposition work into world class solutions for our members and customers. Having a direct relationship with all of our customers is hugely important, as it allows us to ensure we are building exactly what they need to support their organisations. We do this through our Employer Engagement teams in the UK, Ireland, Singapore and Dubai.

Gill joined the CIPD in July 2012 as Head of CIPD Training and was appointed in September 2013 to head up the newly formed Directorate of Knowledge and Capability. Her role has since grown to encompass all of our commercial areas. Prior to working for the CIPD, Gill held a variety of Head of L&D roles at Vodafone, Xchanging and SSP as well as operational roles including Managing Director of the consultancy IDology and Operations Manager for Whitbread, Greenalls and Vodafone.

Gill is one of just 1,000 directors in the UK to hold the prestigious Chartered Director status, awarded by the Institute of Directors.


Victoria Winkler: Head of Membership and Qualifications

Victoria is Head of Membership and Qualifications, with overall responsibility for the CIPD’s membership framework. She leads both the design and implementation of membership, assessment and qualifications strategy and is responsible for ensuring that our professional designations and qualifications are of the highest standard and quality. 

Victoria joined the CIPD in 2003, initially leading CIPD research in the field of learning, development and talent management. Prior to joining the CIPD, Victoria held a number of roles across the charity and publishing sectors, with a focus on learning and professional skills development.


Marianne Wyles: Institute Secretary

Marianne is the CIPD’s Institute Secretary, directing the smooth operation of its governance, legal, risk and Code of Conduct arrangements.  This includes ensuring the Board has the relevant information to provide both insight and oversight as charitable Trustees, that our members maintain the highest standards of professionalism and stewardship, and that our legal solutions are commercial and pragmatic. She is committed to promoting exemplary governance and risk management practices and a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Secretaries and Administrators.  

Marianne joined the CIPD in 2009, prior to which she was a company secretary for 12 years in the social housing sector. 

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