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Executive Team


Christoph Wiesner

Christoph Wiesner OBE
Chief Executive

Christoph joined TWI in 1991 after obtaining a materials science degree in Germany and a doctorate in Switzerland. He spent 12 years in the Structural Integrity Technology Group at TWI, specialising in structural integrity assessment and crack arrest. In 2003 he became Director of Research and Technology, overseeing the growth in value of TWI's Technology Programme through publicly funded programmes from the UK and EU. With a clear business and innovation strategy, Christoph was appointed Chief Executive of TWI in July 2010.

Christoph sits on a number of BSI and CEN Standardisation Committees and UK Technical Advisory Boards. He is a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering, Fellow of IoM3, and Fellow of The Welding Institute. In 2017, he received an OBE for services to engineering and innovation.


The Directors

Aamir Khalid

Aamir Khalid
Director of Technology

Aamir graduated in Applied Physics from University College, London, and pursued a career in NDT, inspection and automated and robotic inspection technologies, gaining a doctorate from Cranfield University in 1992. Joining TWI in 1999, Aamir became Manager of the NDT Group before being appointed Director of Technology in 2010.


Gillian Leech

Gillian Leech
Director of Finance

Qualified in accountancy, Gillian came to TWI in 1996 as a Financial/Business Analyst. Her business analysis expertise quickly established her in the role of Group Manager for the Business Services and Finance Department. Gillian became an Associate Director in 2004 and was appointed Director of Finance and Support Services in 2010.


Paul Woollin

Paul Woollin
Director of Research

Paul joined the Materials Department at TWI in 1992, earlier graduating and gaining a doctorate from the University of Cambridge. He specialises in the metallurgy, weldability and weld properties of stainless steels and nickel alloys. In 2000, he became Head of the Materials Department and was appointed Director of Research in 2010.


Mike Russell

Mike Russell
Operations Director

An expert in friction welding, Mike Russell began working at TWI in 1999 as part of a government-supported postgraduate studentship programme. He headed the friction and forge processes section for over ten years, becoming group manager of TWI’s joining technologies team in 2014 and Operations Director in 2016. Mike is a Chartered Engineer and recipient of The Welding Institute’s Lidstone Medal and the Larke-Lillicrap award. He has authored over 60 technical papers and represents the UK in ISO standards development for friction processes.

For more information, please email:


contactus@twi.co.uk