LED BY INDUSTRY

The NEAA is led by a strong Executive and Advisory Board, who represent the diverse nature of the automotive industry.

Professor Matt Boyle OBE, Chairman, NEAA

Professor Matt Boyle OBE, is the Director of PEMD Innovations.

Matt was appointed as Professor of Practice in Engineering at Newcastle University in 2021. As a professor of practice, he provides the leadership required of the University in its national role as lead for the Driving the Electric Revolution Innovation Centre (DER-IC) project.

He is the executive chair of the Driving the Electric Revolution Innovation Centre (DER-IC) project, of which Newcastle University is the lead partner, overseeing four cutting-edge DER innovation centres.

Matt has a wealth of industrial experience from having worked for engineering companies for more than 30 years. Until November 30, 2017 Matt Boyle was President and CEO of Sevcon; a Nasdaq listed, Global, North East England Headquartered company which is at the forefront of the global electrification. During Matt’s Presidency Sevcon grew from a $20M industrial business in 1997 to a Company acquired by BorgWarner for $200M in September 2017 which was predominately automotive focused. Matt consults for German, Italian, US, Chinese and UK companies all associated with electrification.

Matt is a member of the IET Industrial skills policy group and is the Chair of the North East Automotive Alliance (NEAA). Matt was awarded an OBE for services to Engineering and Skills in the 2018 New Year honours list.

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Alan Johnson, Nissan Motor Manufacturing UK

Alan Johnson is Vice President of Manufacturing for Nissan Motor Manufacturing UK (NMUK). Based at Nissan’s Sunderland plant in the UK, he is responsible for all manufacturing aspects of the plant. On a day-to-day basis he oversees the plant’s entire operation, from strategic planning, to liaising with global functions, and coordinating with supply chains and design teams on all elements of Nissan’s vehicles. Alan joined Nissan’s Sunderland plant in 1991 as a Graduate Engineer – Trim and Chassis. He was then promoted to Trim and Chassis Engineering Manager where he helped launch the next generation Micra and Almera. He then worked in numerous roles for Nissan around the world including Spain, Russia and France and then assumed his current role in May 2020.

North East Automotive Alliance Chairman Matt Boyle Picture: DAVID WOOD

Prof. Matt Boyle OBE, PEMD Innovations and NEAA Chairman

Professor Matt Boyle OBE, is the Director of PEMD Innovations and was appointed Professor of Practice in Engineering at Newcastle University in 2021. As a professor of practice, he provides the leadership required of the University in its national role as lead for the Driving the Electric Revolution Innovation Centre (DER-IC) project. He is the executive chair of the Driving the Electric Revolution Innovation Centre (DER-IC) project, of which Newcastle University is the lead partner, overseeing four cutting-edge DER innovation centres.

Paul Butler, Chief Executive Officer of the North East Automotive Alliance Picture: DAVID WOOD

Paul Butler, North East Automotive Alliance

Paul Butler, an experienced cluster practitioner, joined the North East Automotive Alliance (NEAA) as Chief Executive Officer in March 2015. Paul is also the only UK based Cluster Benchmarking Expert for the European Secretariat for Cluster Analysis (ESCA), who are mandated by the EU to support the creation of more world-class clusters across the EU. Using his experience and knowledge of clusters Paul has overseen the development of the NEAA, quickly establishing it as the largest automotive cluster in the UK and as the exemplar automotive cluster. He holds a Master of Business Administration (MBA) from the University of Durham.

Martin Kendall 2

Martin Kendall, Vantec Europe Limited 

Martin Kendall is Managing Director of Vantec Europe Limited. Based in Sunderland Martin is responsible for the Vantec Operations at Nissan Motor Manufacturing, Komatsu UK, Thorn Lighting, Rolls-Royce Motor Cars (R-RMC) and AESC Envision, as well as being the Global Safety and GK Leader Vantec Overseas Operations. Martin started his career at Nissan when the plant opened in 1986 working in Material Handling before moving into Material Handling Engineering. Martin joined Vantec in 2002 and became Managing Director in 2011 and during this time has overseen the design and construction of two logistics centres in Sunderland, the Innovation Centre, the launch of business with R-RMC, as well as launching Vantec business in Russia, Mississippi, and Chennai.

Phil Wood

Phil Wood, Marelli UK

Phil Wood is the VP and Regional Leader of Interior Experience & Director of Marelli Automotive Systems UK Ltd. Phil has spent his entire professional career working in a variety of Technical and Commercial roles within some of the major North East Tier 1 to Nissan supply base including Yazaki and Sumitomo Wiring Systems. He has a BEng (Hons) in Automotive Engineering from Loughborough University of Technology.

Stephen Irish 2

Stephen Irish, SMART ORIGIN

Stephen Irish is an engineer turned entrepreneur with a passion for technology and delivering great projects. He is the co-founder of Hyperdrive Innovation, a low carbon vehicle technology company, and during this time he oversaw overall management responsibility as well as lead the business development activities. Stephen is now the Director of start-up company, SMART ORIGIN, supporting businesses and other organisations to help them with strategy, growth, technology and funding. He is a Chartered Engineer with a Degree in Mechanical Engineering from Warwick University.
  • Catherine Auld, Sunderland City Council 
  • Chris Brown, MI-King
  • Chris Caygill, Envision AESC 
  • Colin Bell, North East LEP 
  • Colin Herron, Zero Carbon Futures, Newcastle University 
  • Colin Simpson, Tomlinson Hall & Co.
  • Craig Thomas, Cummins 
  • Darren Creasy, Adient
  • David Brander, SNOP 
  • David Cooke, Magna
  • Jill Usher, Kasai UK 
  • Jim Casey, Nifco UK 
  • Jonathan Phillips, Gestamp Tallent  
  • Kevin Christie, Minth Group
  • Paul Blanchard, Komatsu UK 
  • Paul Robson, NA College
  • Rob Potts, Unipres (UK)
  • Ryan Maughan, eTech49 Limited
  • Stephen Braithwaite, ElringKlinger GB 
  • Steve Hopper, ZF 
  • Stephen Wright, GT Group 
  • Tony Adams, Unipres (UK)
  • Wayne Reynoldson, Lear Corporation

BECOME A MEMBER

Members will immediately benefit from the promotion of the North East automotive sector’s capabilities on regional, national and international levels and the network’s ability to connect the supply chain to business opportunities.