Excellence & Certification for Board Directors

The Governance Advisory Council (GAC) promotes excellence in boards through education and certification of directors. GAC is a unique collaboration to ensure that you are receiving the very latest and the best thinking in corporate governance.

The GAC comprises leaders from boardrooms across the globe, along with educators, industry influencers, employers and pedagogical experts. This ensures that the programmes that we deliver are exactly what is required of the modern board director. The GAC serves as our direct connection to the people that we certify, playing a pivotal role in the shaping of the courses and membership programmes that are delivered.

About the council

About the Council

The GAC promotes and encourages the highest standards in the education and certification for company directors.

The GAC provides validation and guidance on the programme and courses created and delivered by the Corporate Governance Institute.

The GAC ensures that graduates and members of the Corporate Governance Institute have the most up-to-date and relevant skills necessary to grow and prosper as company directors.

Setting a Global Standard

The Governance Advisory Council, along with our university accreditation, forms a globally recognised standard for our educational programmes. Boards can now have the confidence that directors educated by the Corporate Governance Institute have achieved the level of qualification required for today’s boardroom director.

The Governance Advisory Council (GAC) comprises global and local boardroom leaders, advisors to boards, executive search professionals, academics, as well as private and government advisors to boards.

Members of our Governance Advisory Council have held leadership positions at firms such as:

McKinsey & Company
Spencer Stuart
JP Morgan

Meet some of the members of the advisory council


Loretto Callaghan

Loretto is an accomplished CEO and experienced chartered director with many years of country leadership in the biopharmaceutical and healthcare sectors. She has a deep understanding of governance and regulatory environments.

Stefan Peij

Stefan is founder and managing director of the Governance University, a training institution for non-executive directors and company secretaries, established in the Netherlands. He is an experienced researcher, teacher, boardroom consultant and board member.


Gréag Purcell

Gréag is a successful entrepreneur and business leader with a proven record of delivering major programmes of change, including, strategy, cost reduction, balance sheet review, transaction growth, culture change and organisational redesign.

Dermot Hanley

Dermot is an experienced independent non executive director (INED) and investment banker. He is currently a non-executive board member of numerous private equity backed companies and regulated financial (PCF-2) investment funds (ICAVs).


Kingsley Aikins

Kingsley has an extensive career in trade and investment, philanthropy, education, diaspora and tourism. He has worked for major organisations, and governments and is an expert in the field of networking, which he views as the ‘glue’ that makes everything happen.

George Vlachos

George is an international director who provides corporate governance services across Europe. He was previously regional managing director for Mattel. His expertise is in helping organisations with their strategy and organisational development.

George Vlachos
John Koopman

John Koopman

John leads SpencerStuart’s industrial practice and co-leads the financial officer practice in Canada. During his career, John has completed more than 400 executive officer and board level searches and helped place more than 250 senior finance leaders.

Bob Semple

Bob Semple has more than 40 years’ business experience working as an accountant, auditor and management consultant.

For 36 years, he worked in PricewaterhouseCoopers where, most recently, he was partner responsible for governance and risk management services.  He now works as a director and as an independent consultant – specialising in governance, risk management and board effectiveness reviews.  Bob is a science graduate, a Chartered Accountant, a Chartered Director and a Certified Psychometric Evaluator.

Margot Slattery

Margot Slattery

Margot was appointed managing director of Sodexo in 2012, followed by country president in 2015 and the global diversity and inclusion chief in 2019. Margot’s role includes corporate governance and directorial responsibility for growing the various business segments.

Dr. Robert Straw

Before joining China Europe International Business School (CEIBS), Robert was Head of Talent Management, Leadership and Organisational Development Europe at Oerlikon AG. Robert has also been Professor of Finance and regularly teaches on the topics of leadership and financial leadership at corporate universities and university executive programmes.


Hedwige Nuyens

Hedwige Nuyens is the CEO of the International Banking Federation, representing the banking industry at international level. In addition, she is serving as Chair of European Women on Boards. Previously she was Head of Group Prudential Affairs at BNP Paribas, Chief Financial Officer of the Catholic University Louvain and Chief Risk Officer of ABN Amro Bank in Belgium. Hedwige holds a Faculty of Law and a Master’s in financial sciences from the Catholic University Louvain, a Master’s in business administration and finance from the EHSAL Brussels.

Who we are

Corporate Governance Courses created and delivered by board directors for board directors, the Diploma in Corporate Governance provides access to the latest thinking and methodologies being used at the world’s most admired boards.

About us

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