The FireQual Board maintain oversight of the business acting as the ‘critical friends’ to management.
They support and assist in the strategic direction of FireQual reviewing our operations and ensuring we continue to meet our regulatory obligations.
Those on the Board bring a range of expertise, including, business operations, marketing, qualification development, industry and financial knowledge, giving FireQual the capability to develop and grow as the specialist Awarding Body for the fire safety industry.
Lewis Ramsay is the Chair of the FireQual Board with over 30 years’ experience within the fire safety sector most recently as the Assistant Chief Officer for the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service (SFRS) as the Director of Response and Resilience.
Lewis has a held a range of strategic positions within the Fire Service leading the reform of Community Fire Safety during the formation of the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service and in developing operational doctrine and policy which has been consistently accepted as best practice.
He has led a number of initiatives to promote better regulation and contributed on a UK national basis as CFOA's Director of Prevention, Protection and Road Safety. he has held a number of board positions and has contributed widely to the development of skills within the Fire Sector.
His long association with the Fire Sector has allowed him to develop a wide set of attributes based on experience of operational command, change management, project management and process reviews. He remains a keen supporter of firefighter and community life safety and has developed a number of systems to promote safe working through the acquisition of skills, good assessment and the maintenance of competence.
Lewis says, 'When asked to Chair the board of FireQual, I had no hesitation in accepting the role. FireQual presents a wonderful opportunity and one that will no doubt help the Fire Sector to develop its people and deliver better and stronger outcomes through accredited and recognised qualifications. I look forward to the months ahead and feel confident that we will work together to offer excellence in the years ahead...'
Stephen is the Chief Executive of FireQual, responsible for all aspects of oversight of the day-to-day management, regulatory oversight, marketing and for developing product markets in the Fire Safety industry.
He has a wide commercial background, together with Trade Association experience in the security industry as Membership and Marketing Director of BSIA. He was a regional General Manager of Thorn Fire and Security and also Divisional Managing Director of a specialist print company with wide export activity.
He seeks to ensure wide appreciation of the value of individual qualifications for fire protection services and to develop the recognition for FireQual quality and independence with its regulated provision.
Stephen says, ‘FireQual provides a comprehensive range of qualifications working with representatives and organisations across the whole fire sector ensuring core competencies remain at the forefront of the fire safety industry. We do this because we know that it’s the right thing to do in the interests of life safety and FireQual is uniquely positioned to play a major role within this.’
Douglas Barnett is Director, Mid-Market and Customer Risk Management, AXA Insurance (UK) plc and has over 30 years’ experience in risk management with an extensive global background focused on fire protection, modern methods of construction, flood, and overall business resilience.
He represents the Association of British Insurers and other commercial groups in consultations with Government bodies and technical groups. He also has several technical qualifications including the Post Graduate European Diploma in Fire Safety Management and is a member of a number of professional bodies.
Douglas has for many years called for improved competence for all stakeholders involved in the design and protection of the built environment as well as the safety of people with a specific focus on vulnerable persons.
Douglas says, ‘We currently have a once in a generation opportunity to address many issues and make the buildings in which we live and visit safe for all.
FireQual will provide the vehicle for professionals to demonstrate their competence and the specifiers/purchasers of fire safety products and services the confidence that they are selecting an appropriate person that has a proven background knowledge to suitably deliver products and services.’
Jim was a member of London Fire Brigade from 1974-1997, employed as an operational firefighter. Born Glasgow 1952 he moved to London in 1973. He was an elected lay official of the Fire Brigades Union at various levels over his 23 years in the Fire Service, finally being an elected member of the Union's National Executive Council.
He also held various positions in the London Labour Party, finally Chairing its Regional Council before being elected to Parliament in 1997.
He represented Poplar in East London in the Commons until 2019, and held various Ministerial positions including Fire Minister between 2001-2010, and served on several Select Committees between 2010 and 2019.
He re-joined the Board of the Fire Protection Association in 2020 - having been a member briefly previously.
He is Chair of Fire Aid, the UK Fire Sector's International Aid and Development Charity, set up in 2015.
Sarah is Chief Executive of IOEE, the UK Professional Body dedicated to providing recognition and support to enterprising individuals. She has been involved in starting and running small businesses throughout her life and understands just how critical quality enterprise education and support is to ensure UK small businesses start, survive, and thrive.
Sarah is passionate about the power of education in raising the expectations and maximizing the potential of everyone, particularly those held back by poverty, gender or academic discrimination.
She commissioned and led a 2019 research report, Unlocking Enterprise which provided insights and data as to the powerful value of enterprise education in reform and rehabilitation of ex-offenders. Sarah also led a review of the SFEDI national occupational standards for Business Support to ensure inclusivity for BAME, disabled, and female led businesses.
Sarah holds board positions at London South Bank University, Manchester Metropolitan University, and SFEDI, and contributes to a number of regional and national steering groups to influence policy and practice around enterprise education and support.
Sarah says, 'FireQual is uniquely positioned to drive real change and value within the sector through the implementation of accredited and quality assured qualifications.
I look forward to supporting FireQual in raising standards across the industry and providing credibility and recognition to professionals delivering services across the fire industry whilst also ensuring that those running micro and SME businesses within the sector are supported to start, survive, and thrive.'