Ali is Principal and Chief Executive of Central Bedfordshire College.  He was appointed CBE in the Queen’s New Year Honours list in 2011, for services to the Further and Technical Education sector in the UK and in Iraq. Previously, Ali was the Principal of Southend Adult Community College. Ali’s leadership was recognised by OFSTED when SACC was judged to have outstanding leadership and management and for SACC to become the first LSIS Beacon. Ali has a deep and passionate belief in the impact of learning on individuals, communities and the economy. He is committed to improving the Further Education sector through evidence based research. Ali believes that it is imperative for academics researching Further Education to engage with practitioners and for the practitioners to engage in research. He is currently involved in a Professional Doctorate researching organisational culture in Further Education colleges.