Heather Goldstraw has been appointed Director of Defence at Cranfield University, and will join the institution in January 2023. Heather joins from the UK Ministry of Defence (MOD) where she is currently Director of the Defence College for Military Capability Integration (DCMCI), leading on technical and acquisition education at the Defence Academy of the United Kingdom. 

A graduate of the Civil Service Science and Engineering Fast Stream, Heather brings extensive experience of working across the defence environment, with the UK MOD and its key government, regulatory, industrial, academic and international partners. She has driven the MOD’s innovation strategy and focused on improving science and technology exploitation as well as driving transformation across the defence acquisition system. 

Heather will work closely with Dr Annette Southgate who joined Cranfield as Director of Security in August, on a secondment from the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office.

Heather Goldstraw said: “I’m delighted to be joining Cranfield and particularly excited to be working alongside Dr Southgate as the Director of Security. Her secondment highlights the special relationship between Cranfield and the UK government that I hope to deepen further.

“Recent events in Ukraine have brought defence and security back into everyone’s consciousness and highlighted the inextricable links between defence and security and national prosperity. I’m pleased to be joining Cranfield at this critical time to build on its proud heritage in solving real-world defence and security problems and making a major national contribution.”

Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Defence and Security at Cranfield University, Professor Mark Richardson said: “It’s a pleasure to welcome Heather to Cranfield University to work alongside Dr Southgate. Heather knows us well and shares our deep commitment to defence, bringing extensive knowledge of the whole sector. Her appointment provides a great opportunity for Cranfield to develop our position as a trusted partner working across public and private sector boundaries in the UK and allied nations, to develop the people needed to solve some of the world’s most challenging problems.”