North West Regional College appoint new CEO

North West Regional College have appointed Leo Murphy (left) as its new CEO and Principal. Chairperson of NWRC Gerard Finnegan is also pictured. Photo: Lorcan Doherty Photography
North West Regional College have appointed Leo Murphy (left) as its new CEO and Principal. Chairperson of NWRC Gerard Finnegan is also pictured. Photo: Lorcan Doherty Photography
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The North West Regional College (NWRC) has announced that Leo Murphy will take over as Principal and CEO in August this year. The announcement comes after a public competition run by independent recruitment experts Clarendon Executive.

Leo comes to NWRC from South West College where he has held a broad range of portfolios over a 14 year period at senior management level including Curriculum and Economic Development, Client Services and most recently Strategy and International Development.

Chair of the NWRC Governing Body, Gerard Finnegan said:

“Leo Murphy has been chosen to lead the College because of his experience and contribution in making South West College the outstanding FE College in Northern Ireland and within the top 5% in the UK. He brings a drive, energy and freshness to the task and, working with a refreshed Governing Body, he will add momentum to the College Improvement Programme begun during the past year.

“I know that Leo is looking forward to the challenge of engaging the whole College in this programme, creating opportunities for management and staff to contribute to an exciting new phase in the College’s development.

“He has a track record of maximising the potential of teams that he leads. He has also built extensive external relationships with the public, private and voluntary sectors.

“Leo takes over from Seamus Murphy who is retiring from the role after 7 years in charge. Seamus leaves the college in good shape financially, with many of the efficiencies necessary for running a successful college already embedded. This, together with the much improved infrastructure across all campuses, lays the foundation for building what the Governing Body has set as its primary goal – to be the best Further Education College in these islands.”

Leo Murphy said:

“It is a privilege and honour to take on the leadership of North West Regional College at this crucial juncture in its development and at such an important time for the economy and development of the North West generally. I know how strong the staff and structures are at NWRC and their total commitment to the student body. I’m really looking forward to bringing the experiences I have with me in this new challenge. The Governing body has a clear vision of where it wants NWRC to be and I aim to take it there – alongside my new colleagues, the students and with the support of all our stakeholders in the North West. The spirit and commitment to be the best is there, I’ll be working very hard to ensure that our full potential is realised.”

Gerard Finnegan concluded:

“I am convinced that Leo is the person who will create the space for management, staff and Governors to maximise our contribution to the development of the College and the wider region. This is an important time for both and I know that Leo is keen to build on what we have started so that we can be the best College possible and, in doing so, make a real difference to our students and the economy of the region.”

Leo Murphy (52) is a graduate of Economics who holds an MBA together with post graduate diplomas in Education, Accounting and is a qualified Member of the Chartered Institute of Marketing. He has almost 25 years of experience in further education in both the classroom and in a managerial capacity. Leo resides in the Waterside area of Derry with his wife Siobhan who is a Lecturer in Marketing at NWRC. He has an interest in local history and is a qualified Tour Guide. He has also completed a number of marathons in which he has raised funds for local charities.