As the Thales Group’s global Vice President Operations & International for Cyber, Gareth Williams oversees the operations of Thales’s global cyber business in 12 countries across Europe and the globe including the UK, the US, and Australia.
In Wales, Gareth leads the development of the National Digital Exploitation Centre (NDEC) and ResilientWorks, a partnership development between Welsh universities, the Welsh Government, and global technology leader Thales that has created a technology campus in Ebbw Vale. The initiative has already created over 30 full time jobs, PhD studentships, and apprenticeships as well as major R&D programmes on the site of the former steelworks. Gareth is one of the founding tech company leaders who joined together to develop the Cyber College Cymru initiative, an industry partnership with FE colleges in Wales which now educates over 100 students a year from former industrial communities for careers in cyber. He sits on the CBI Wales Council, the Cyber Management Committee of TechUK, and the board of Technology Connected, the trade organisation for technology in Wales.
Gareth has a fundamental commitment to enabling young people from non-traditional backgrounds to access careers in STEM and engineering. He began his career as an apprentice engineer at Rolls-Royce, one of 20 selected from over 1000 applicants. He rapidly moved to a key cost estimating role in the Test engineering team working on the Tornado, Eurofighter and Concorde. After asking for a meeting with Rolls Royce’s local Finance Director to press his interest in management positions traditionally open only to graduates, Gareth proved his ability to become the factory accountant for Precision Foundry, producing specialist blades for aircraft engines, at the age of 22. He studied and gained his CIMA qualifications in while working in progressively senior operations roles for some of the UK’s leading technology companies.
After developing a major addition to South Wales’s industrial landscape as Operations Director for General Dynamics in the UK, Gareth was promoted to key operations roles in the corporation’s European business, living and working in both Spain and Austria, working on the integration of US and European vehicle technology companies.
Returning to the UK and joining Thales, firstly as Purchasing Director then Operations Director for a division of Thales UK, on promotion to Vice President Secure Communications & Information Systems UK, Gareth led the accelerated growth of the UK cyber business, before taking up his current role in 2021.
Gareth is a keen follower of rugby and qualifies to play for Wales through both his family roots in Aberkenfig, and residency of over two decades living and raising his two young sons in South Wales.
This event is open to all who wish to attend the lecture, and members can book for the dinner after the lecture. The event will start at 18:00 with a drinks reception, the lecture will start at 18:45 and the dinner will take place from 19:45-21:30.
We do hope you can join us!