The English Women’s Golf Association (EWGA) has chosen the four women it will nominate to sit on the board of a new national governing body if the merger of the association and the English Golf Union (EGU) is approved.
The nominated stakeholder non-executive directors are: Margaret Berriman, Judi Walker and Julie Wright, who are all prominent figures within EWGA, and businesswoman Judith Hanratty.
They have been nominated by the EWGA management board after consultation with the operational board, whose members proposed the candidates. They will take up their positions if the merger is approved by voting members of both organisations at general meetings, expected to take place in November 2011.
Sylvia Perrins, the interim chairman of the management board, commented: “This is an important time for the future of golf in England and the new board will be key to realising the vision of the new organisation. I am confident that the nominated women non-executives have the right skills, competencies and experience to ensure that amateur golf will thrive and grow in the years to come.”
Margaret, who was publishing director at Heinemann until her retirement in 2008, has been chairman of the EWGA operational board, which looks after the core golfing activities on the association.
She joined the board in 2008 when she chaired EWGA’s South regional committee, which represents Hampshire, Kent, Middlesex, Surrey and Sussex. Previously, she had represented the south-east on the executive of the English Ladies’ Golf Association, which was replaced by EWGA.
Margaret, who plays off six, took up golf as a teenager and has been Berkshire county captain, a first team player and senior champion. She is an R&A referee and a member of Goring and Streatley Golf Club, where she is the first woman chairman of the management committee.
She commented on her new appointment: “This is a very exciting challenge and one which says that golf really does want to be part of the 21st century. We are not being dictated to by gender but working together for the best possible outcome for golf.”
Judith was a New Zealand international who has maintained her interest in golf – and a single figure handicap – throughout a high-profile professional and business career.
Judith is a barrister whose career, in addition to the law, has followed three main strands: energy; insurance and financial services; and education. In 2002 she was appointed OBE for services to the oil and gas industry and in 2007 was appointed a Commander of the Royal Victorian Order.
She is currently a non executive director of companies listed on the New York and London stock exchanges and is chairman of the Commonwealth Education Trust. She was company secretary and counsel to the board of BP plc until her retirement in 2004 and among many City and public appointments she has been a Bank of England nominated member of the Council of Lloyd’s of London; a member of the Competition Commission and of the Gas and Electricity Authority. She is also an honorary fellow of Lucy Cavendish College, Cambridge University.
Judith has been involved in many mergers in business and commented: “I am very enthusiastic about being part of the proposed merger of the EWGA and EGU, having knowledge of a similar process being successfully implemented in both Australia and New Zealand.”
Her handicap has ranged over the last 53 years between +2 and her current level of 8. She has competed in national and international events in Australia, New Zealand and the United States and is a member of the Royal Wimbledon and Royal Mid Surrey clubs.
Judi sits on the EWGA operational board as the chairman of the East region committee, which represents Bedfordshire, Cambs & Hunt, Essex, Norfolk, Suffolk and Hertfordshire.
Judi has played golf for over 30 years and is a member at Stowmarket, Suffolk. She has played for her county, been involved in golf administration at all levels and helped to establish the Suffolk County Golf Partnership. She currently sits on the EWGA rules committee, is an R&A referee and takes on the role of championship chairman at national events.
In her business life, Judi has worked as a recruitment manager in the nuclear industry, run her own retail outlet and trained as a couture dressmaker and set up a sewing school.
She commented about her nomination: “This is a great honour and I hope I can bring a common-sense, down to earth view of what the lady club golfer really wants. I am a people person and I feel that’s my strength.”
Julie is the 2011 chairman of the EWGA operational board and also sits on the management committee of the EWGA Trust, the charity for girls’ golf.
She joined the operational board last year when she was chairman of EWGA’s Midlands North committee which represents Derbyshire, Leicestershire & Rutland, Lincolnshire, Nottinghamshire, Shropshire and Staffordshire. She also sits on the management committee of the Staffordshire ladies’ association.
Julie, a chartered accountant, is a member of Trentham Golf Club, where she is finance director. She was also treasurer of the Midlands Division of the former English Ladies’ Golf Association and was responsible for winding-up its accounts after it ceased to exist.
She took up golf in her late 30s, after retiring from hockey, plays off a handicap of 14 and believes she is typical of the average lady golfer in her enjoyment of the sport at club level.
Julie commented: “I am very enthusiastic about this new role and feel my background gives me relevant experience in finance whilst still keeping me in touch with the issues facing clubs and the needs of club golfers.”
English Women’s Golf Association www.englishwomensgolf.org