The Board of Exeter Science Park has announced the appointment of Dr Sally Basker as its new Chief Executive Officer (CEO). Dr Basker will take up the new role on 3rd April.
Dr Basker is a qualified engineer with 15 year’s senior level research and innovation experience in the aerospace, defence, energy and navigation sectors over her 25-year career.
She has been responsible for crafting business cases, attracting funds and procuring multimillion-pound research facilities, as well as creating and implementing growth and diversification strategies for high-value technology products and services.
Dr Basker also has extensive international experience working with decision makers in the European Union, US, Russia, the Far East and South Africa. Recent roles have included leading business development for a new, private-sector space-based service in South Africa and Head of Business Development at the UK Atomic Energy Authority, where she established and incubated five technology special business units.
Established in 2013, Exeter Science Park has appointed the new CEO to take the Park through its next stage of development. Chair of the Exeter Science Park Board, Professor Sir William Wakeham said:
“Sally was selected for her experience in international business and a proven track record in delivering public and private sector programmes and strategies, securing funding and stakeholder engagement at the highest level. She impressed the Board with her experience and understanding of the local knowledge base as well as her past successes in growing businesses and leading research and development programmes”.
“It was clear from the outset that Sally had the vision to drive the business here at the Science Park, to continue attracting new tenants and supporting the growth of start-ups and entrepreneurs.”
Sir William Wakeham added: “With the Science Park Centre now at over 70% capacity, the Met Office High Performance Computer (HPC) Collaboration Suite open for business and the start of the next phase of development imminent, now is the time for us to build strong relationships with the local knowledge base and drive the Park’s ambition to be a world-leading facility for science and technology based businesses.”
This new role will see Dr Basker developing Exeter Science Park as a hub for innovative science, technology, engineering, maths and medical enterprises across the region and beyond, to deliver new jobs, enhanced productivity and economic growth.
Dr Basker said: “Exeter Science Park is becoming recognised as a leading hub for science and technology, and the opportunity to take the helm and drive this organisation further was something I couldn’t refuse. I want to see the Science Park recognised as more than just a collection of buildings. It is about the people within it; the innovation, the knowledge, the data and the talent.
“We have some extraordinary work going on here, and there is extraordinary work happening all over the south west. I want to see more people coming here, sharing knowledge, collaborating, pushing the boundaries and trying new things.”
Dr Basker added: “We have a great opportunity to build on the excellent reputation that the Science Park has already achieved. I aim to maximise the offering of the Park; to bring more people and communities together and to achieve great things.
“I’m calling on business owners, entrepreneurs, inventors and scientists to come together to make Exeter Science Park the best it can be. We will not only host science-based businesses and organisations, but we will connect them, support them and inspire them to deliver growth.”
Having recently completed an MBA, Dr Basker has also led and delivered a number of successful projects for organisations such as the General Lighthouse Authorities of the United Kingdom and Ireland, the Royal Institute of Navigation (RIN), Traxis Ltd and Helios Technology Ltd.
If you would like to meet Dr Sally Basker to discuss how the Science Park can support your business or project, fill out your details here to arrange a meeting (www.exetersciencepark.co.uk/make-an-appointment).
The building of the Science Park Centre has been made possible with shareholder equity from Devon County Council, East Devon District Council, Exeter City Council, the University of Exeter; the Heart of the South West LEP which committed £4.5m loan from the Growing Places Fund; and a £1 million grant from the Regional Growth Fund.
Image: Sally Basker