David J Hardman MBE - Chairman

Dr David Hardman

David is Chief Executive Officer of Birmingham Science Park Aston’s Innovation Birmingham Campus. Since arriving in late 2008, he has led the rebranding of the Park and the creation of the Campus strategy, in order to pave the way for the £35 million Digital Plaza development. Key to the strategy is integrating Innovation Birmingham’s activities into the city’s economic development plans

By embracing the opportunities offered by the latest ICT collaboration platforms, David is driving the concept of the ‘Science Park Without Walls’ by bringing in global support to drive Birmingham’s knowledge economy

Previously, David spent 10 years based in Cambridge leading the commercial development of the Babraham Research Campus, focused on support for healthcare and biotech translation and bio-ventures. David was awarded an MBE for services to science in 2009.

As a PhD microbiologist, his research interests were directed towards the application of microbes in what is now called clean technology, and as part of this work he co-founded a start-up biotech venture based on the application of biocatalysts to the paper industry. This experience developed into a wider interest in the translation of science into good and applicable technologies and creating appropriate partnerships and infrastructures to promote the development of knowledge-based businesses.mercial development of the Babraham Research Campus, focused on support for healthcare and biotech translation and bio-ventures. David was awarded an MBE for services to science in 2009.

David is also on the board of Birmingham Science City and Greater Birmingham and Solihull LEP’s Business Support sub group.

Dr Mark Tock, Honorary Secretary and Treasurer

Dr Mark TockMark leads University of Nottingham Innovation Park (UNIP) which, uniquely, is both on one of only four University Enterprise Zones and one of 6 UK Space Agency pilot incubator sites. UNIP is a profitable business supporting the growth of a community of over 100 tech-driven and knowledge-intensive organisations based within 11,000m2 of office space co-located with university research facilities.

Mark’s current responsibilities cover all aspects of property and facilities management, strategic development, developing business support, stakeholder management, business development, marketing and events.  Mark also provides advisory and mentoring support to developing incubators in Malaysia and China.

Since 2005 Mark has been led a number of incubation and science park projects and has been responsible for soft infrastructure, tenant relations, and strategic development at Liverpool Innovation Park (LIP), and Sheffield Bio incubator. He also briefly operated his own business support consultancy for Biotech and Healthcare start-ups.

Initially trained as an Applied Biological Scientist, mark holds a PhD in Biology (Genetics) from Leeds and followed a research career until gaining his MBS from Edinburgh Management School. Mark also holds a PG Cert for Business Incubation, Coaching, and Mentoring from Huddersfield. 

Dr Sally Ann Forsyth - Director

Sally ann Forsyth

Sally Ann was appointed as Chief Executive Office of Norwich Research in September 2013.  The aim of the role is to bring the Partners together, develop the proposition and grow the Park to its full potential as a world class science park.

Her previous role was Director of Science Parks for Goodman Limited, the major Business and Science Park developer in the UK.  As part of this role, she is Director for Harwell Oxford, a joint venture between STFC, UKAEA and Goodman and Colworth Science Park, a joint venture between Unilever and Goodman.  At Harwell she was responsible for the establishment of the Oxford Enterprise Zone, inward investment by Element 6 (De Beers) and the European Space Agency that led to the establishment of the UK Space Satellite Catapult Centre.

Prior to joining Goodman, Sally Ann was Principal with Unilever Ventures where she focused on technology spin outs and led Unilever’s activity to develop best practice in open innovation. 

With more than 19 years experience within Unilever operating companies Sally Ann has undertaken a range of roles including Head of Technology Licensing and Strategic Alliances for Unilever Bestfoods, Internal Consultant and External Research Programme Leader.

Sally Ann holds a BSc (Hons) in genetics from Edinburgh University and a PhD in molecular biology from Cambridge University.  She started her career  through the Unilever management trainee scheme and is a qualified Chartered Global Management Accountant.  

Graham Hewson - Director

Graham HewsonGraham joined Imperial Innovations as the Incubator Manager in 2010. He is responsible for the day to day running of the facility working closely with spinouts and companies renting laboratory and office space from the College.

Graham organises events to support the businesses while also helping connect companies with industry experts to help their businesses grow. He provides support to the organic growth spin outs through the Innovations start up packages, helping these companies set up bank accounts, branding and websites.

He has been working in Incubation for over 10 years and has previously managed a successful digital media Incubator in London’s Tech City. Graham has a MBA from the London Metropolitan Business School.

Tracey Smith - Director

Tracey Smith is managing director of York Science Park Ltd (YSPL) and her tenure their spans eight years, three of them at the helm.

Tracey manages a growing team and 137,000 sq.ft. of specialist space including the Innovation, Bio and IT Centres and grow-on space for larger companies at Enterprise House.

I addition the portfolio has grown to include The Catalyst, embedded space on University of York's new Heslington East campus, which provides space for digital, IT, media and creative companies, and Springboard which is located within the Ron Cooke Hub and provides a low cost start-up solution for early-stage companies.

As a memTracey Smithber of the Institute of Directors, and committee member for the North Yorkshire branch, Tracey completed the Diploma in Company Direction, and has mentoring experience with a passion for facilitating the growth of business, improving performance and developing people.

Tracey is a director of York Professionals and is also a member of the Young Enterprise North Yorkshire Board supporting Young Enterprise within York and North Yorkshire.

Tracey's role as MD involves working with the YSPL board on the strategy and direction for YSPL in order to facilitate the development and management of the space. Opportunities for knowledge- sharing and transfer are actively promoted ensuring collaboration between the commercial companies and the University of York.

Professor Patrick Bonnett - Director

Patrick is Deputy Director of the National Innovation Centre for Ageing and Professor of Practice, Innovation Environments at Newcastle University. He has worked widely across the applied research and innovation arenas for the past 33 years in organisations ranging from small technology start-ups tinternationally recognised translational research laboratories.

Prof Patrick BonnettHe is particularly interested in the construction and operation of innovation environments – physical and virtual; their organisational structures and functions and how they operate at regional, national and international scales.  Over recent years he has developed a particular interest in deep collaboration co-location models where innovation and research assets sit alongside ‘users’ of such research expertise to drive open innovation, commercialisation and economic growth.

Patrick is a member of the Satellite Applications Catapult Advisory Board and served as a Board member of the UK Science Park Association for five years. He has represented UKSPA at events in Bulgaria organised by the FCO Science & Innovation Network and worked in Australia and New Zealand advising on the development of an Alliance of Agri-Food Science Parks (supported by funding from the BIS Global Partnerships Fund).

Bob CushingBob Cushing - Director

Bob Cushing has been delivering Broadband services to multi-tenanted buildings for over 10 years and a member of UKSPA for eight. 

After over 10 years in senior management for US network technology companies, he joined the main board of Redstone Telecom plc and put together the strategy that enabled the company to float on the London Stock Exchange in 1999. After a short period as Head of Broadband for BT Business he took over as MD of The Wired Workplace in Sheffield. W2 provided Broadband to a range of Science Parks and Business Centres in South Yorkshire. He co-wrote the PAS700 BSI standard that defines infrastructure in multi-tenanted buildings, developed the ICT Active building accreditation scheme and successfully ran is own Broadband consultancy for 10 years. Earlier in 2017 he merged the consultancy business (Broadband Vantage) with Bridge Fibre where he is Commercial Director 

Bob has attended every UKSPA meeting bar two in his period of membership and co-wrote the UKSPA Telecoms and Broadband Best Practice Guides.

Mike Herd - Director

Mike Herd

Mike Herd is the Executive Director of the Sussex Innovation Centre, a business incubator that is based on the University of Sussex campus in Brighton. Another opened  at No1 Croydon in 2015 and a third site will open in central Brighton in 2017.

Mike has worked closely with the centre’s members since it was formed in 1996, building relationships with local investors, academics, funding bodies and technical experts.

Mike won the Queen’s Award for Enterprise Promotion in 2013 and has worked to develop over 300 businesses based at the centre and supported many hundreds more.  In that time over 30 of these busineses raised investment of more than 1 million GBP, with many more achieving healthy exits through trade sales or flotation.

Dave Hockton - Director

Dave Hockton is Senior Operations Manager at MIRA Technology Park an 842 acre transport cluster based in Leicestershire.  Dave manages the day to day operation of the park, the management of the property portfolio and the rapidly increasing tenant base.

MIRA Technology Park is home to some of the world’s leading transport based vehicle manufacturers and tier 1 and tier 2 suppliers to the automotive, aerospace, rail and defence industries including the Horiba-MIRA Engineering and Testing businesses

Dave Hockton

With outline planning permission for 2M ft2 of development and Enterprise Zone status the park has been transformed over the last six years into a campus style environment attracting investment from both private and public sectors.

With 20 years’ experience in the MIRA, Horiba-MIRA and MIRA Technology Park businesses with a professional background in IT followed by a career change into Property and Estate Management in 2009, Dave has led the operational development of the park including speculative developments creating office, laboratory and workshop spaces with occupancy levels in excess of 98%.

Prior to joining MIRA Dave spent time running IT departments in the Higher Education sector at DeMontfort University and in the telecoms industry at GEC Plessey Telecommunications and also a spell as a self-employed IT consultant during the dotcom boom.

Dave holds a Master’s degree in Computing from DeMontfort University, is a member of the British Computer Society and a Chartered IT professional.