Mr Latham, who was the University’s deputy vice-chancellor for business development prior to stepping into the interim role in December last year, has taken over the position following the departure of Professor Madeleine Atkins who joined the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) as chief executive.
Mr Latham joined the institution as a lecturer in the Department of Computer Science in 1984, before becoming a research fellow and research programme supervisor. He has held a number of senior management positions at the University including managing director of Coventry University Enterprises Ltd and pro vice-chancellor.
During his time as pro vice-chancellor Mr Latham was the driving force behind the development of the award-winning Coventry University Technology Park, which has been a crucial driving force behind the success of the University’s engagement with business start-ups and SMEs.
Most recently he played a key role in securing the creation of the University’s £32 million Institute for Advanced Manufacturing and Engineering, in partnership with Unipart, which will open its doors in September to give students a ‘real world’ experience on industry’s front line while they study.
In the last twelve months Coventry has been ranked in the top 10 of UK universities for student satisfaction and become the ‘Modern University of the Year’ in the Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2014; it intends to build on these achievements under the leadership of Mr Latham.
John Latham said: “I am delighted to be appointed as the University’s vice-chancellor.
“Coventry University has a tremendous opportunity to grow and develop its wide-ranging, world-class activities over the coming years and I’m privileged to be able to lead the institution along this exciting path.
“There are challenges ahead, for the higher education sector as a whole and for individual universities adapting to change. For Coventry our priorities remain to uphold and improve our impressive track-record of league table performance, teaching quality and student satisfaction, and business engagement whilst developing our research profile.”
Professor Alan Richardson, chair of the Board of Governors, said: “I would like to congratulate John on his appointment as the vice-chancellor.
“He has shown exceptional leadership qualities and has over 30 year’s experience of working in academia, research, international development, industrial collaboration and government engagement at a regional and national level.
“The breadth of John’s experience has been pivotal to the University securing many of its successes, and the board is confident that under his leadership the institution will continue to excel, growing its reputation as an outstanding provider of education, global business collaboration and world-leading research.”