Derek Wilson appointed Chair of SGSA

Derek Wilson has been appointed as the new Chair of the Sports Grounds Safety Authority (SGSA) with effect from 1 April 2021.

Derek has been a specialist sports architect for 30 years. His career in stadium design and Olympics and Paralympics forged his special interests in safety, accessibility and major events. His extensive experience of stadium design, both in the UK and around the world, has included winning several major design awards. His knowledge spans private and public sector roles, having owned and run successful architectural practices.  Along with being a former Board member of the SGSA, he has contributed to numerous standards and safety guidance.

He has also worked on five Olympic and Paralympic games since Sydney 2000, including helping bring the 2012 Olympics to London, going on to be the Head of Design and Overlay for London 2012. Additionally, he brings operations experience from being part of the team that delivered nine NFL Super Bowls.

Speaking of his appointment, Derek said: “Over many years I have seen first-hand the fantastic and important work of the SGSA in leading sports grounds safety not only in the UK but around the world.  I will use my 30 years of experience to help support and lead the organisation as it delivers the next stages of its important work. I feel privileged to be joining the organisation as Chair and look forward to being part of this exceptional team.”

Derek will be taking over the role from Alan Coppin, who was appointed in 2015 and has completed two three-year terms in the role.  Derek was appointed by the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.

Alan Coppin, current Chair of the SGSA, said: “I am delighted that Derek Wilson will succeed me. Derek and I worked really well together when he was a member of the SGSA Board when he added significant value. He understands the organisation, its culture and strategy and he will bring an added skill set to the Board as an architect. I am sure that Derek will be a great success and he will lead the SGSA to achieve its strategic plan goals.”

Martyn Henderson, Chief Executive of the SGSA, said: “Derek brings a wealth of experience from both the UK and around the world.  As a former Board member he is well aware of the role of the SGSA.  His knowledge will be invaluable to the organisation as we progress through the return of spectators to sports grounds and our wider priorities.  I look forward to working closely with him from April.”