English UK announces new Chief Executive

27 January, 2014

English UK has announced Eddie Byers, a former director-level post-holder at the British Council, as its new Chief Executive, taking over from Tony Millns.

Eddie Byers, the new Chief Executive of English UK

Most recently, Byers held the position of Managing Director of the British Council’s Programmes & Projects arm, a contracting unit delivering services for clients including the EU, the UK and Scottish governments and other international agencies. During his time at the British Council, he was also Director of EducationUK, a body promoting over 300 UK universities and businesses overseas, and was responsible for the running of the Erasmus and Comenius scholarship and exchange programmes.

He also spent six years as Director of Industry Engagement for tourism body VisitScotland, where he helped to merge 15 area tourist boards before working across the industry and developing commercial activity.

Initially, Byers will work alongside Millns before formally taking over at the end of May. He said, “This industry already makes a powerful and positive contribution to the UK’s global reputation. English UK played an important role in this over the last decade as a great advocate and support for the sector. I would hope to continue this good work and help it evolve further.”  He added that a crucial dimension of the role would be to engage effectively with political structures over issues such as student visas. 

Sue Edwards, Chair of the English UK Board, which represents over 470 member institutions, said it was "delighted" to announce the appointment.

Byers added, “English UK’s members are the heartbeat of this organisation, and my first priority will be to meet and listen to them. I want to see what English UK does through their eyes.”

As previously reported, Millns is standing down after 15 years at the helm of English UK and its predecessor Arels.

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