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THE former editor of the Sunderland Echo Rob Lawson has been appointed Chair of the Board of Governors at Sunderland College.

Sunderland born and bred, Rob will take over from outgoing Chairman Ian Forster who has stepped down after four years.

One of the attractions for Rob, 47, was the chance to help young people get a good start in life – and a foot on the employment ladder.

“I’ve always been interested in education – I come from a family of teachers, my mum and dad, Robina and Bob were deputy head and head-teachers in the city, and my sister is also a head teacher.

“I’m really excited by the prospect as I’ve long admired the set up and I’m looking forward to working with new Principal Anne Isherwood.

“It is key for the next generation to have top quality education as they move into the very competitive world of work – and the College has a huge role to play in that. The better educated the workforce, the better for them and for the city.”

After leaving Southmoor School he trained as a journalist at Darlington College of Technology. He started his career as a reporter at the Driffield Times before moving back to Sunderland – where he worked for the Echo on three occasions!

Rob was editor of the Sunderland Echo for ten years and was also editorial director of North East Press and Tweeddale Press. He decided to leave for a new challenge last year and now works as Associate Director at Callaghan Marketing and for the University of Sunderland.

Principal Anne Isherwood paid tribute to Mr Forster: “Sunderland College owes a debt of gratitude to Ian – he has devoted a lot of time and energy to helping ensure the College is best placed to offer a fantastic educational experience to students.

“We will miss his valuable input but are delighted to welcome on board Rob who has the interests of the city and its people very much at heart.”

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