Mark Pendlington

Chair and Independent Director of the University of Suffolk Board,

Vice-Chancellor's Office

Mark was sworn in as Suffolk's new High Sheriff at a ceremony at Ipswich Crown Court on 30 March 2023.

Mark recently retired early from a career in business. He has extensive experience of working across the public and private sectors including in industry, national and regional voluntary organisations, further and higher education, economic development bodies, local enterprise partnerships, and academia, many with UK, EU and international dimensions.

He now devotes his time to helping and supporting a number of organisations in Suffolk and the east of England, including as Chair, University of Suffolk; Non-Executive Director and Chair of the Centre for Fisheries and Aquaculture Science; Patron of the Green Light Trust; Chair of Governors at The Royal Hospital School; and a Trustee of the British Racing School in Newmarket. Mark is Deputy Lieutenant of Suffolk and chairs the Lieutenancy Business and Enterprise Group that promotes The Queen’s Awards for Enterprise in recognising business excellence across the county. 

Mark was previously Chair of the New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership between 2014 to 2017, and his business career included board level appointments in the aviation, energy and utility sectors. Where his focus was on on the strategic expansion of the various businesses, which included working with business leaders, local authorities, politicians, academics and local communities on the impacts and benefits of sustainable growth on the regional and UK economy. He also served as Chief Executive of the Country Land and Business Association (CLA), a national membership organisation dedicated to the economic health and social wellbeing of the diverse rural economy. His work included campaigns for better broadband, rural regeneration, farm diversification, improved training and skills provision and better access to affordable housing and public services for rural communities.

Mark was appointed to the University Board in January 2014, became Deputy Chair in October 2019, and then appointed to Chair in August 2021.