We are delighted to announce that Caroline Bull has been appointed as the next RCNDE Director, taking over from Professor Robert Smith. In order to ensure a smooth transition, Caroline is RCNDE Director Elect with immediate effect, taking over the role of Director by September 2022. In the interim Caroline will work with Robert and the team to gain an understanding of RCNDE’s priorities (particularly in relation to offering added value to members and influencing Industry 4.0) in addition to developing ideas for the future.
Caroline, who will continue to work as the Product Engineering Technical Outreach Lead for nuclear defence experts AWE, brings over 35 years’ of industrial experience in addition to a strong technical background in NDT and engineering. Her extensive leadership experience – including connections to the national and international NDT communities, academia, industry and a multitude of professional engineering organisations – made her the ideal candidate for the role of RCNDE Director.
Since starting her career at the age of 17 at UKAEA and studying Physics and Maths at the University of Reading under UKAEA sponsorship, Caroline has participated in many research programmes and travelled the world completing NDT inspections, both on and offshore. She was registered as a Chartered Engineer in 2003 and became President of the British Institute of Non-Destructive Testing (BINDT) in January 2017. As the now ex-President, Caroline continues to support and represent BINDT as required and is a member of BINDT Council, the NDT Technical Committee, NDE 4.0 Working Group, Diversity and Inclusion Advisory Group and Engineering Council Working Group. She is also a member of the American Society of NDT (ASNT) Women in NDT Group supporting equality, diversity and inclusion.
This breadth of experience and knowledge, together with a keen interest in enabling innovation, research and knowledge transfer will ensure that Caroline is well-placed to lead the RCNDE in the future.
Finally, we wish to thank Robert for his vision and leadership, and for steering the ‘RCNDE ship’ over the last three and a half years. He has played a significant part in ensuring that we remain relevant and forward-thinking, particularly in relation to on-going work to transition our research into industry and to influence the strategic direction of the NDE sector. He has also been pivotal in supporting our transition to a stand-alone, sustainable, ongoing partnership between industry and academia, in spite of the COVID-19 pandemic and the challenges it brought.