Board Members

Dr Godfrey H H Ainsworth, BSc, PhD, FCA                 


Executive Chairman

Following a Ph.D at Cardiff University, Dr Godfrey Ainsworth qualified as a Chartered Accountant and was employed by Coopers & Lybrand before becoming an audit partner and then corporate finance partner with Spicer & Oppenheim. He founded Gambit Corporate Finance in 1992, a practice specialising in the provision of corporate finance services where he was Managing Partner until his retirement from the firm in November 2009. He has held several Non-Executive Directorship appointments, including assignments for 3i plc, The Business Growth Fund and the Welsh Development Agency. He was appointed to the Board of EPI (prior to its merger with QED Inc to form IQE plc) in 1997. He was appointed to the Board of IQE Plc in April 1999, and was appointed Non Executive Chairman in February 2002 and took up the role of Executive Chairman in April 2018.


Dr Andrew W Nelson OBE, BSc, PhD, FREng  


President and Chief Executive Officer

Dr Drew Nelson has over 30 years experience in the semiconductor industry in a variety of research and managerial positions. Following a PhD in Semiconductor Physics, he joined BT Research Laboratories in 1981, leading the group responsible for the development of advanced optoelectronic devices for optical fibre communications. He subsequently managed the technology transfer from BT to Agilent for mass production. He co-founded EPI in 1988 (which became IQE in 1999) and was appointed Chief Executive Officer of IQE Plc in April 1999. Dr Nelson has held several Non-Executive Directorship appointments, and served on several Government and Industry bodies. He received an OBE in 2001 for services to the Electronics Industry. He is currently a member of the High Level Group appointed by the EC to oversee the implementation of Key Enabling Technologies (KETs) throughout Europe.


Dr Howard Williams BSc, PhD, CEng, MIMechE, MCIBSE          


Operations Director

Dr Howard Williams has held a number of positions within both Manufacturing and Service industry sectors, with roles ranging from Engineering Management to General Management. He was a member of the founding team of EPI in 1988 and was appointed Operations Director for EPI in 1996. He was appointed General Manager of IQE Inc in 2002 and General Manager of IQE (Europe) Limited in 2003. He was subsequently appointed Chief Operations Officer in 2004 and was appointed to the Board of IQE Plc as Operations Director in December 2004.


Sir David Grant CBE PhD FREng FLSW CEng FIET


Non-Executive Director, Chair of Remuneration Committee, Chair of Nominations Committee

Sir David Grant has a background in engineering and technology and was appointed to the Board of IQE Plc in September 2012. He was Vice-Chancellor of Cardiff University from 2001 to 2012. Previously he held leadership positions in a number of international businesses including United Technologies Corp., Dowty Group plc and GEC plc. He has been a Vice-President of the IET, and was a Vice-President of the Royal Academy of Engineering from 2007 to 2012. He was awarded the IEE's Mensforth Gold Medal in 1996 and in 1997 he was made a CBE for his contribution to the UK's Foresight Programme. He has a PhD in Engineering Science from the University of Durham. Sir David was knighted in the 2016 Birthday Honours for services to engineering, technology, and skills.


Phil Smith, BSc, Hon LLD, DUniv., CEng, FIET


Senior Independent Director

Phil Smith BSc, Hon LLD, DUniv. FIET, became Chairman of Cisco for the UK and Ireland in August 2016, after eight years as Chief Executive. Mr Smith is also the Chairman of Innovate UK and Chairman of the Tech Partnership. Additionally, he sits on the Board of the National Centre for Universities and Business (NCUB). Mr Smith has a thirty- five year track record in the technology industry in leading companies including Philips Electronics and IBM. As Chief Executive and now Chairman of Cisco, he leads around 5,500 people in the UK and Ireland. He created Cisco’s British Innovation Gateway (BIG) programme, as a legacy of London 2012 to spark nationwide ingenuity, ambition and growth through technology entrepreneurship. In September 2014 he was awarded an Honorary Doctorate by Birmingham City University, cited for his outstanding contribution to the IT industry, a “leader among leaders”. In March 2015 Mr Smith was awarded an Honorary Degree of Doctor of Laws by the University of Warwick and in 2016 an Honorary Degree of Doctor of Science by his alma mater, Glasgow University.


Sir Derek Jones KCB

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Non-Executive Director, Chair of Audit Committee

Sir Derek Jones KCB previously held the post of Permanent Secretary of the Welsh Government, responsible for a wide range of policy and operations including economic development, trade, investment, transport, education, science, health, social care, local government, energy and the environment. As Permanent Secretary he led an organisation with an annual budget of some £15 billion; and a staff of 5,000 located in Wales, London, Brussels, the USA, Middle East and Far East. He was also a member of the UK Civil Service Board and its Senior Leadership Committee. Sir Derek spent the earlier part of his government career in Whitehall, working at HM Treasury and the then Department for Trade & Industry, where he headed the Far East Trade Desk.  In government in Wales he has also served as Director of Finance and Director of Economic Affairs, during which time he was instrumental in securing major inward investment projects, particularly from Japan and the USA. Sir Derek is the Chair of the Prince's Trust in Wales and is a Vice President of Cardiff Business Club.  He was made Companion of the Order of the Bath (CB) in 2009 and subsequently Knight Commander (KCB) in 2014, for services to economic and social conditions.