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New CEO for CEA

The UK based Construction Equipment Association (CEA) has appointed Suneeta Johal as its new chief executive, replacing Rob Oliver who retires in October after 20 years with the association, haven been its first chief executive. She will officially start the role on October 4th,

Johal joins the CEA from the Association of Independent Professionals and the Self-Employed (IPSE), where for the past two years she has been director of commercial development, responsible for the commercial strategy of the organisation, including driving membership growth and ensuring value for money for existing members. She joined the organisation in 2012 as a research manager, taking over as head of research, education and training three years later, and moving into her current position in 2019.
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Suneeta Johal

She began her career in 2008 as a researcher for St Georges University in London, moving to a similar role at the National Centre for Social Research in 2009. A couple of years later she joined Maritz Research as a senior research executive, carrying out customer satisfaction surveys for companies such as Volkswagen etc… In 2012 she moved to IPSE, initially as a research manager, followed by a promotion to head of research, education and training in 2015 and then her current role in 2019.

She was selected from 50 candidate applications, mostly from professional trade association managers.

The CEA executive board chairman Paul Ross said: “The recent year has been challenging for the entire industry but as we head out of the pandemic and look towards the future, I feel very excited about the numerous opportunities and changes that are taking place. The appointment of Suneeta as chief executive is a significant move and I feel that her experience and capabilities will be key assets in strengthening and developing the CEA for the future. It is important that the association continues to truly reflect the wishes of all its members and one of her key actions will be to reflect this as part of the ongoing strategy.”

“Whilst announcing that Suneeta is our new chief executive I must acknowledge all the efforts and dedication of Rob Oliver, our long serving chief executive, who has led the CEA over the last two decades and has passionately supported and championed the industry and the needs of all our members. A huge thank you to Rob on behalf of all our members.”

Caterpillar UK’s Sam Mottram, who chairs the CEA’s Management Council, added: “Rob has led the association with vigour and diligence for 20 years. While we’ll all be sad to see Rob depart, we are grateful that he has brought that same diligence in the search for his replacement, and it is with great pleasure that today we announce Suneeta Johal as his successor as chief executive. We have been impressed by her energy to take the CEA into a new era with her strong background in association leadership and research and we’re all tremendously excited to support Suneeta as she begins her new appointment.”
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Rob Oliver

Speaking of her appointment, Suneeta Johal said: “I am delighted to be joining the CEA as the new chief executive. It has been a tough 18 months for many trade associations and as we move forward, I hope that my skills and experience can bring a fresh approach to develop the future strategy of the CEA. I am looking forward to building on the successes that Rob has achieved to take the CEA from strength to strength.”

Rob Oliver added: “The original plan was that I should step down a year or so ago, but Covid-19 struck, and I agreed to stay a little longer. Now the time seems right to step aside and let Suneeta bring a fresh, and younger, approach to what is undoubtedly a great job to have. I am pleased that on my watch we were able to grow our membership and international activities and create the Plantworx construction exhibition. More recently, my idea of introducing an emissions compliance verification option to the CESAR scheme is proving to be a winner.”


I wish Suneeta Johal plenty of success in her new role.

Sep 2, 2021
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