CIOB appoints leading advocate for women as vice president

Sandi Rhys Jones (Image: Women in Property)

The Chartered Institute of Building (CIOB) has appointed Sandi Rhys Jones, a leading advocate for women in construction, as its vice president.

In 2023, Rhys Jones will become the 120th president of the CIOB, following current president Mike Foy, and Datuk Seri Michael Yam, who will become president in 2022.

Rhys Jones is a businesswoman and non-executive director. She started in the industry as a journalist for Construction News and then worked for technical and professional organisations before co-founding RhysJones Consultants.  

She was appointed OBE in 1998 for promoting women in construction. She became a fellow of the Chartered Institute of Building in 2002, was awarded an honorary doctorate by Sheffield Hallam University in 2005 and became a Fellow of the Women’s Engineering Society in 2015. 

She has been a member of many government and industry initiatives, from chairing a working group to implement the Latham recommendations on diversity in 1996 through many others including Egan, the Movement for Innovation, the Housing Forum and the Wolstenholme Review ‘Never Waste a good Crisis’.

For the past ten years, she has led the national mentoring programme of the Association of Women in Property, which has a focus on working across disciplines in the construction world, including clients – improving corporate as well as individual performance and increasing understanding between the various roles and responsibilities in the construction and development process. 

She has also worked for a cross section of businesses and organisations in construction, both in the UK and overseas, including many years for FIDIC, the International Federation of Consulting Engineers, and Local Authority Building Control. She has held several non-executive director positions in commercial, public and not for profit organisations and as an employer appreciates the need and the challenge of delivering Social Value in a competitive industry.  

Rhys Jones said: “I am privileged to be part of CIOB, an organisation that combines a broad and open culture with professional commitment, and to be given the opportunity to help carry forward its objectives. Construction is a people business, as well as a technical one, that affects the lives and wellbeing of everyone – including ourselves.

“We must find a way of bringing about the changes that attract and keep more people, from all backgrounds, particularly younger people who feel passionately about the major challenges of climate change and inequality.  We also need the story tellers, who can change the narrative about the positive role of building, not only within the industry but on wider platforms.” 

Caroline Gumble, chief executive of CIOB, added: “I’m very much looking forward to working with Sandi and to welcoming her, not just as our new vice president, but as the 120th CIOB president, taking on the role from Michael Yam in 2023. Sandi will make an incredibly valuable addition to CIOB’s community, leading the way on many important issues for CIOB and the wider industry.

“With her breadth and depth of knowledge of the industry and her understanding of its place in society, her contribution will be key in helping to deliver CIOB’s ambitions for improving sustainability, diversity and quality standards for the construction industry worldwide.”

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  1. this is a most welcome step. More women in the industry means a safer and more inclusive industry that will hopefully, in time, increase productivity through better and safer ways of working.
    iain Mowatt FCIOB

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