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Management

Appointment

May 2019

Skills and experience

Alex Vaughan was appointed CEO in May 2019. Prior to this he was managing director of the Natural Resources division with responsibility for Costain’s services to water, oil and gas and power clients as well as the development of client facing technology solutions across the Group. He held this position from 2013. Alex is qualified as a chartered quantity surveyor. He has worked on infrastructure projects in the UK and internationally, as well as having held a number of corporate roles including Group HR director and corporate development director. In 2009 he completed the Harvard Business School Advanced Management Program (AMP). Alex was chair of the CBI regional council from 2019-2021.

Chief Financial Officer

Helen Willis
ACA, BSc

Appointment

November 2020

Skills and experience

Helen Willis was appointed CFO in November 2020. She has significant experience in senior finance roles, including most recently as chief financial officer of De La Rue. Prior to this, Helen worked at Premier Farnell between 2014 and 2017, including as chief financial officer from 2015. She has also held senior finance roles at Pelican Rouge, AZ Electronic Materials, and HSS Hire.

Chief Digital Officer

Matthew Higham

Appointment

December 2021

Skills and experience

Matthew Higham was appointed chief digital officer in December 2021. His experience has centred around leading digital business transformation and maximising the benefit of digital technology adoption across multiple industries, including infrastructure. Before joining Costain he was chief digital officer & sustainability lead for Microsoft UK. Prior to this Matthew worked across a range of markets including financial services, manufacturing, automotive, critical national infrastructure, travel, transport, local and national services. He has a solid background in design led thinking and has worked for companies such as McLaren Technology Group, Gatwick Airport and Equiniti (now called EQ).

External appointments

Member of the techUK Climate Strategy & Resilience Council and Net Zero Technology Centre Industry Advisory Board.

Appointment

September 2019

Skills and experience

Catherine joined Costain in 2006 and has performed a number of roles, most recently as director of learning and development and corporate responsibility and prior to that as investor relations director. Highlights of her career with Costain include developing and implementing the Group’s first Corporate Responsibility (CR) strategy, achieving Platinum status in Business in the Community’s CR Index in 2013 and driving change to achieve the Group’s recognition in the Times Top 50 Employers for Women 2018-2021, and being cited as a game changer in 2019 for our work on gender parity in early careers recruitment. Catherine graduated with an honours degree in Environmental Science.

Managing Director - Transportation

Sue Kershaw
BSc (Hons) Civil Engineering

Appointment

March 2020

Skills and experience

Sue Kershaw has a strong track record for driving complex, high profile transport and construction programmes to delivery. Before joining Costain she was managing director, Infrastructure Advisory Group at KPMG. Prior to that she was UK infrastructure head of programme management for KPMG Major Projects Advisory. Previous positions include director of rail-Europe at CH2M and deputy director of transport for the Olympic Delivery Authority. Sue is a civil engineer and started her career with Taylor Woodrow.

External appointments

President of the Association for Project Management, a member of the Mayor of London’s Infrastructure Advisory Panel and a Royal Academy of Engineering visiting professor at the Bartlett School of Construction and Project Management, University College London.

Managing Director - Natural resources

Sam White
MBA, BSc

Appointment

January 2022

Skills and experience

Sam White was appointed managing director of Natural Resources in January 2022. He has a strong track record in developing strategic client relationships and delivering enhanced business performance and growth, gained through a variety of challenging multi-sector roles in multi-national organisations. Sam joined Costain from Babcock International Group where he held various leadership roles across defence, energy and engineering services. Prior to this he held roles with BAE systems and General Dynamics. Sam is a qualified executive coach and is a passionate advocate of inclusion and diversity.

External appointments

Elected Councillor for the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) in London.

Group Commercial Director

David Taylor
FRICS, FIoD

Appointment

January 2015

Skills and experience

David Taylor joined the Company in 2009 and was appointed to the Executive Board as Group commercial director in January 2015. Hehas held a number of senior leadership roles within the business and is currently responsible for the commercial, supply chain and procurement functions. David is also executive sponsor for business improvement including the delivery of operational excellence across the Group’s portfolio of complex delivery projects. Since December 2020, David is the executive sponsor for wellbeing for the Group.

Prior to joining Costain, David acquired more than 25 years’ experience with Taylor Woodrow where he held the position of commercial director for its UK operations.

David is a Fellow of the Institute of Directors and a Fellow of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors.

General Counsel and Company Secretary

Nicole Geoghegan

Appointment

July 2022

Skills and experience

Nicole is a highly experienced General Counsel and Company Secretary with an extensive background in major/mega projects and infrastructure, covering the full asset lifecycle. Nicole spent six years on the HS2 project as General Counsel and Company Secretary prior to joining Costain. She has significant international experience in rail/transport, engineering and project services and is an expert in public sector procurement, fit-for-purpose governance and effective risk management.