Renishaw expands leadership with new non-executive director

Professor Karen Holford CBE FREng
Professor Karen Holford CBE FREng

Renishaw, a world leading global supplier of measuring and manufacturing systems, has appointed a new non-executive director.

Professor Karen Holford CBE FREng joined the Board of Directors of the FTSE 250 company on 1st September 2023, where she will contribute more than 43 years of expertise in the engineering sector.

Professor Holford, who is chief executive and vice-chancellor at Cranfield University, will also join Renishaw’s audit, nomination and remuneration committees.

As well as her extensive engineering, technical management and governance experience, Professor Holford has previously helped to address a lack of diversity in organisations by challenging perceptions and working with underrepresented groups.

Professor Holford began her engineering career at Rolls-Royce as an undergraduate apprentice,  graduating from Cardiff University with a BEng (Hons) in Mechanical Engineering. She returned to academia to pursue a passion for research, gaining a PhD in Materials Science/Acoustic Emission.

She then continued her interest in research and development in industry at AB Electronic Products, eventually becoming a senior engineer leading a large mechanical design team. This role gave Holford hands-on experience in a variety of engineering applications.

Professor Holford then returned to academia again, specialising in industry-led teaching, research and development and progressing to Professor of Mechanical Engineering.  She served in leadership roles such as Head of School of Engineering, Pro Vice-Chancellor of Physical Sciences and Engineering, and spent five years as Deputy Vice-Chancellor of Cardiff University, before taking up her current position at Cranfield University.

Holford is a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering and was named as one of the 50 most influential women engineers in 2016. In 2017 she received a CBE for services to engineering and the advancement of women in engineering.      

“We are delighted to welcome Karen to the Board,” said Sir David McMurtry, executive chairman at Renishaw. “She has a wealth of engineering and R&D experience, bringing vital skills to the business.”




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