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Habia CEO Alan Goldsbro to step down after 23 years

Posted: Thursday 31 May 2012

Alan GoldsbroHabia Chief Executive Officer Alan Goldsbro has announced he is to retire after more than 23 years of leading the organisation.

Alan will be reducing his hours to focus on a number of projects and developments with Habia international partners over the next few months.

Appointed in 1989 as Training and Development Director to the then Hairdressing Training Board, Alan became CEO in 1991 and led the company through various transitions, culminating in the formation of Habia in 1998.

In that time, the organisation achieved a number of significant milestones, including the first ever National Occupational Standards for hair, beauty, nails and spa, the launch of NVQs and SVQs for the sector, and the development of frameworks for what were originally called Modern Apprenticeships, now Apprenticeships.

Habia likewise played a significant role under Alan's leadership in putting the industry on the agenda of the ministers and government departments of five Prime Ministers - from Margaret Thatcher through to David Cameron - significantly raising the profile and reputation of the industry in terms of training and professionalism.

The move comes as Habia further develops its partnership with SkillsActive, the Sector Skills Council for the active sport, leisure and wellbeing industries. Habia will continue its work in the hair and beauty sector, including the recently launched Habia Skills Academy (HSA) with founder sponsor VTCT; its partnership with one of the world's leading education publishers, Cengage, and the continued development of occupational standards.

Habia's Senior Management Team will continue to manage the company, with extra input from Habia Chairman and SkillsActive Board Trustee Suki Kalirai, and Bill Shaw, Habia Treasurer, until a different leadership structure is agreed to take advantage of Habia's relationship with SkillsActive.

Alan Goldsbro said, "I have mixed feelings about retiring. I'm confident that with the strong management team at Habia the transition will be seamless. I remember first starting here when we had a small office in Doncaster and two staff, so to be where we are now is incredible. I have met and worked with some amazing and inspirational people and organisations over the last 23 years, and I will miss them all. I feel incredibly lucky and grateful to have been a part of this wonderful industry and to have played my own small part in helping develop the training systems that have helped its success."

Bill Shaw, Habia's longest serving director and Treasurer, said, "Alan has not just been my colleague but my friend over the past 23 years, so it is with great sadness we say farewell. The industry today is in a far better position than it was when he started because of the work that Alan has led with the Hairdressing Training Board, establishing the Beauty Industry Authority and then Habia. Alan started with just a secretary and part-time book keeper, and grew the team to forty staff and nine partners around the world. And as an industry we are now admired and looked-up to for the work we do in the training sector, particularly by other professions and by government and its agencies. Alan got the hair and beauty industry to stand up for itself and ask to be taken seriously, and in turn, people listened and noticed."

Suki Kalirai said, "I'd like to thank Alan for the tremendous work he has done over the last 23 years. Alan has created an incredibly strong team at Habia who will carry on his work, and the organisation has more projects in the pipeline and is continuing to take on more ambitious projects that will contribute further to the success of the hair and beauty sector. The partnership between Habia and SkillsActive promises to be a fruitful one, and I look forward to Habia bringing some of its expertise to the sport and leisure sector whilst maintaining the hair and beauty industry at its heart."

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