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Virgin Active's Matt Merrick and GLL's Mark Sesnan win ukactive Board seats

By Jak Phillips    11 May 2015
Mark Sesnan has been managing director of GLL since its formation in 1993 and is also a CIMSPA Fellow

Virgin Active European COO Matt Merrick and GLL managing director Mark Sesnan have won seats on the new-look ukactive Board of Directors following a high-profile election.

Merrick will fill the commercial fitness seat and Sesnan will represent local authority activity, having been favoured by ukactive members over a host of other well-known industry names. The third elected seat, representing “broader physical activity,” will be filled by Dr Ewan Hamnett, who ran unopposed after the ukactive Nominations Committee agreed there was no other suitable application for this seat.

The new Board, which will be chaired by Tanni Grey-Thompson, has been built following a 12-month consultation with ukactive members and partners designed to ensure a governance structure that is fit for purpose and in line with best practice recommended by key agencies such as Sport England.

In addition to an appointed chair, the Board will be comprised of an appointed treasurer and up to five appointed non-executive directors drawing in experience from the sector and broader areas of specialism such as government policy making, healthcare and private sector delivery.

Merrick, who is responsible for operations, commercial products, customer services, facilities and investment across Virgin Active’s 150-strong European club portfolio, said: “The breadth and depth of my experience and leadership supports the broader governance agenda of the ukactive Board which I believe is key in meeting the needs of all its members invested in the vision [to make more people, more active, more often]”.

Sesnan has been managing director of GLL since its formation in 1993 and is also a CIMSPA Fellow, and a founder member of Sporta. Of his new position on the ukactive Board, he said: “I understand the challenges we face as well as those facing the nation. Ultimately my goal will be to support and help guide ukactive in its new cross cutting agendas, and I have the track record and experience to do this”.

The election of these three positions to the Board comes as the deadline approaches for nominations to the newly-formed Membership Council, which is to be chaired by former CEO David Stalker. The Membership Council, to be chaired by outgoing CEO David Stalker, will be the formal voice of the membership base in ukactive governance and take on topical sector challenges, such as the ongoing issues relating to skills and workforce development.

The deadline for members wishing to put themselves forward for a position on the Membership Council is Friday 15 May. The application form is available via the ukactive website. To apply or find out more, click here.

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