Ash is a former British civil servant, business consultant, mentor, facilitator, social entrepreneur, and Non-Executive Director, with fifty years of experience and expertise in many aspects of British Government policy, funding, design and delivery of public, private, and voluntary sector partnership projects, programmes, and initiatives. These include inner cities regeneration; economic development; enterprise and entrepreneurship, education and skills, international trade and investment; community development and cohesion, race relations and equal opportunities, healthcare and wellbeing, especially for isolated and vulnerable people and those with learning disabilities.
His passion to bring business and communities together, create meaningful legacies and help to introduce responsible business practice, is longstanding. Ash was included in the first ever publication of the Asian Power 100 in September 2005 and again in September 2007 as one of a select number of key influencers on Asian matters in the UK, as well as for his overall contribution to regeneration, economic and community development, equal opportunities, and international trade.
An Honorary Fellow of Brunel University London, Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts (FRSA), a Member of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (MCIPD and the Automated Customs International Trade Association (ACITA), and one of the founder members of West London Business, Ash was the co-author of the report on the former Employment Department Group’s “Policies, Practices and Procedures on Race Relations in Employment”.
Ash Verma held a wide range of leadership positions during his thirty-five-year professional career between 1973 and 2008, including:
Chief Executive, Heathrow City Partnership, a private, central, and local government regeneration initiative, where he led £50m investment in complex regeneration, economic development, enterprise support, workforce skills and transport projects, like Hayes Business Studios, Southall Business Centre, and Routes to Work. November 2000 to June 2010.
Leader of West London Task Force, a £10m inner cities regeneration and community cohesion initiative. November 2000 – June 2010.
Business Development Director, May 1996 – October 2000 for the former Government Office for London (GOL), where he managed over £150m of public funds in economic development, enterprise and entrepreneurship and economic and social regeneration programmes, delivered by various partners in West London, as well as managing the London Business Link Network.
Project Director for the former Government Office for London (GOL), March 1995 to April 1996, being responsible for the £15m refurbishment and fit out of the new premises at Riverwalk House and the co-location and introduction of new systems, working practices and common services for the 350 staff from different Government Departments.
Leader, West London Task Force (North Kensington and Shepherds Bush and surrounding areas), October 1989 – July 1992, being accountable to Ministers for the formulation, management, and delivery of a long-term economic development strategy and £15m investment in one of London’s most deprived and disadvantaged inner cities areas.
Training Quality Advisor, August 1992 – April 1995 for the Government Office for London (GOL), responsible for the London region’s policy, procedures, and standards for auditing the then Training and Enterprise Councils (TECs) and Business Links (BLs) Quality Assurance Systems.
Senior Race Relations Employment Advisor to Ministers, August 1985 – September 1989 for the then Employment Department Group, where he was the Joint author of the report commissioned by Ministers on the “Review of the Employment Department Group’s Policies, Practices and Procedures on Race Relations”. He was also architect of bespoke Diversity Training Programmes for leading national, private and public-sector organisations.
Group Manager of East Berkshire Job Centres, May 1981 – July 1985.
Advisor and Inspector in the Pay Board and Health and Safety Executive respectively. August 1973 to April 1981.
Since 2008, Ash has designed Gateway Asia, (now part of Ash Verma Consulting), a business led, knowledge driven B2B bi-lateral trade support model that helps businesses to enter growing overseas markets, launched a pilot “Bollywood Acting School” and supported infrastructure and business development projects in a strategic, consultancy and facilitator capacity for various organisations in the UK and other countries, such as India, South Korea, Nepal, Sri Lanka, and Mauritius.
Other current and/or recent roles include:
Chairman and Trustee of Community ConneX, an organisation dedicated to campaigning and delivering services for people with learning disabilities across North and West London, and Chairman of its subsidiary company, Enterprise Wellness, which manages Healthwatch Harrow, the consumer champion for healthcare services in Harrow, and Engagement ConneX, which designs and delivers a range of campaigning, community outreach and engagement services.
Chairman and Trustee of Capable Communities, a social enterprise that supports the welfare of disadvantaged adults in North-West London.
Sponsor partner with the British Ethnic Diversity Sports Awards (BEDSA) and the Asian Viewers TV Awards (AVTA).
One of several judges on the West London Business Awards.
Advisor and facilitator for the design and delivery of Brunel University’s Co-Innovate Programme’s of B2B events and mentoring services for London’s SMEs looking to navigate the road to recovery out of the current COVID-19 pandemic and move forward in the post-Brexit era.
A Governor of the former Ealing, Hammersmith and West London College and Chairman of local primary schools in Slough, Berkshire, Ash enjoys watching cricket, football, and rugby, but above all spending as much time as possible with his family and three grandchildren.
A target and outcomes-oriented person, Ash believes in justice, fairness and equality as these encourage him to challenge the status quo. Ash believes that one needs to have inspiration from within and those around you, as well as having a vision/goal, and pride in one’s ethnic and cultural heritage.