Friday 21 June 2013

Operations engineers have new Patron!

The Society of Operations Engineers (SOE) has announced that former FirstGroup chief executive Sir Moir Lockhead OBE has been named the organisation’s next patron.

Sir Lockhead will take on the role when current SOE patron and co-founder of the Ratcliff Group, John Ratcliff CBE, retires from his duties later this summer.

Sir Moir Lockhead
He was previously awarded an Honorary Fellowship of SOE for services to transport, and will be responsible for representing the membership organisation in promoting the advancement of engineering and supporting engineering professionals. Sir Lockhead will join incoming SOE chief executive Peter Walsh, who joins the Society at the beginning of July.

Commenting on the appointment, current SOE chief executive Nick Jones says: “We are honoured Sir Moir has agreed to take on the patronage of SOE. With an illustrious career in transport to his name, I have no doubt that he will help to shape the future of the Society and further our pursuit of excellence in engineering.”

Sir Lockhead left school at 15 to become an apprentice mechanic, joining Grampian Regional Transport in 1985 as general manager and going on to lead the successful employee buy-out of the company. Since then, as founding director and CEO of FirstGroup, he saw the company grow to be the largest provider of rail and bus services in the UK, USA and Canada.

On accepting the position, Sir Lockhead says: “It is an honour and a privilege to become patron of the SOE, especially having spent all of my working life in transport starting as an apprentice more than 50 years ago.

“It is hard to believe how much things have changed for our new engineers as technology continues to progress with more and more stringent safety requirements; the SOE have a crucial role to play.”

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