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About the CREST Team

Our dedicated team delivers services such as accreditation, examinations, certification, business development, governance and communications to our members around the world.

We also work closely with trusted contractors in the UK and internationally to deliver other services such as finance, marketing and events.

The accreditation team audits almost 300 members across a range of regions and cyber security disciplines. Accredited companies enjoy a range of benefits that support their businesses in the marketplace.

Our certifications team manage qualifications for thousands of cyber security professionals globally, supporting capabilities and competencies within the industry and helping to grow capacity to meet the rising demand for services.

The team also provides strategic leadership, business development, governance, communication and finance services to the CREST organisation. In this we work closely with our Regional Councils, which represent our members and cyber security disciplines globally, and the International Council which is our senior governing body.

Our team is here to help, and we welcome enquiries and input from members and stakeholders. Please see below and the contact page for details.


Meet the Senior Leadership Team

Rowland Johnson


Rowland is focused on driving initiatives to deliver increased engagement across the 290+ CREST members and all CREST qualified individuals globally. He is responsible for working internationally with governments, regulators and other key industry stakeholders to build stronger technical cyber security ecosystems.

A former member of the CREST GB Executive, serving between 2014 and 2020, he has been a dedicated supporter of the organisation for many years. He was instrumental in CREST’s international growth, playing an integral role in the creation of CREST chapters in Singapore, USA and Hong Kong.

Rowland was a founding director of cyber security company Nettitude and oversaw its acquisition by Lloyd’s Register in 2018. Following the acquisition, he worked with the leadership team as a strategic advisor focusing on global growth.

Rowland has worked closely with international governments and regulators to bring about increased levels of capability in the Penetration Testing, Threat Intelligence, Incident Response and Security Operations Centre markets. He is able to talk about these from a government and strategy perspective as well as sharing real-world examples from what is seen in the field. Rowland presents at many international events and is a passionate cyber security leader that is actively trying to professionalise the industry.

Contact: [email protected]

Nick Benson

Chief Executive Officer

Nick has a track record of building and leading teams through transformation, having previously been the Chief Operating Officer of ORX, the largest global trade association supporting operational risk management in financial services (FS). In this role at ORX, Nick led a programme of fundamental organisational change whilst delivering strong growth and improved service quality.

Before ORX Nick worked in executive roles across finance and risk management divisions at Nationwide Building Society, one of the UK’s largest retail financial services providers.

Nick started his career at KPMG in their IT advisory divisions in London and Sydney, also qualifying as a Chartered Accountant (ICAS) in 2005. Nick earned a BA degree in accounting and finance from Exeter University.


Jonathan Armstrong

Head of Accreditation

Jonathan is an experienced relationship manager having worked for over a decade in the banking industry. He has experience of quality assurance and internal auditing. Within CREST Jonathan leads the accreditation team and manages company audits and membership enquiries. Jonathan read Criminology at university and has a keen interest in cyber security.

Contact: [email protected]

Jo Cains

Finance Director

Andrew Collinson

Head of Marketing & Engagement

Andrew has nearly 20 years’ experience in user-focused communications and engagement for some of the UK’s most high-profile and complex organisations and projects.

Most recently he developed and led the international communications offer for WRAP, a global sustainability and climate action organisation tackling the drivers of climate change, working with businesses and governments across the world to deliver programmes and citizen-focused campaigns, and launching their Asia-Pacific office in Adelaide –  their first overseas office.

Previously, Andrew helped deliver the digital platforms and communications for the London 2012 Olympics legacy programme and Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, and for five years was Head of Digital at High Speed Two, where he combined brand development and data-driven insights to build the organisation’s digital and social media presence. He also delivered the digital communications for UNBOXED: Creativity in the UK, a once-in-a-lifetime, nationwide festival celebrating the UK’s creativity and innovation sector, as part of the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games.

Establishing and leading his own agency, We Are Compass, over a six-year period saw Andrew delivered promotional marketing and engagement projects for London City Airport, Thames Water and the National College for Advanced Technology and Infrastructure. He also led the communications team for the 2018 Street Child World Cup in Moscow for the sport-led charity, Street Child United, who work with street-connected children and organisations across the world.

At CREST, Andrew is responsible for delivering our marketing and engagement strategy, our membership engagement, raising CREST’s global profile and promoting our international products and services.

Contact: [email protected]

Mark Grigg

Head of IT & Change

Elaine Luck

Head of Governance & Legal

Elaine has worked at board level in industry for over 40 years, predominantly for the leading trade association in the defence and public security sectors but latterly in the facilities environment. Her roles have included company secretary, business and operations management, membership management, event organisation and personnel management. Within CREST she is responsible to the International and Local Councils for all legal, compliance and governance matters and also for aspects of day-to-day operations.

Contact: [email protected]

Andy Woolhead

Head of Cyber Skills & Certifications

Andy served in the Royal Navy for 24 years with most of his career at sea in a variety of roles including navigation, anti-submarine and command. Latterly, he was responsible for developing the uniformed cyber profession in terms of training, culture, infrastructure and supporting operational capability. As Head of Information Warfare, he was responsible for the development of Naval Cyber doctrine.

Andy left the military in 2017 to join SANS as a Business Development Director working closely with the UK Ministry of Defence, law enforcement and broader government. He has an MBA in Cyber Security and GIAC qualifications in Security Leadership, Security Fundamentals Security Awareness Professional.

Contact: [email protected]

Core contractors

We work with a dedicated team of contractors providing additional services and support to CREST and its members and stakeholders.

Finance services are provided by Silverleaf Advisory Limited. Contact [email protected]

Marketing and PR services are provided by PRPR. Contact [email protected] or [email protected]

Examinations marking, development and delivery is supported by the CREST Assessors.