Our executive committee

Executive matters are delegated to the executive committee which is chaired by the chief executive

Mark Carne head shot

Mark Carne, Chief Executive

For full bio see our board.

Appointed to the board: 2014


Whilst the board is ultimately responsible for the success of the company, operational management is also delegated to the chief executive and the executives working for him. Mark is accountable to the board for all elements of the company's business, and specifically for safety performance.

Susan Cooklin head shot

Susan Cooklin, Route Services Director

Skills and experience

Susan was previously group chief information officer at Network Rail. She has a wealth of industry knowledge and extensive experience in leading large and complex change programmes. Susan has developed strong relationships with stakeholders across a number of industries, including rail, financial services and technology.


The Route Services Directorate supplies services that the route managing directors collectively decide are best provided from a single support team. This allows routes to benefit from economies of scale and allow Network Rail to optimise resources on a national basis. It will initially include group business services, the national supply chain and Network Rail consulting.

Graham Hopkins head shot

Graham Hopkins, Group Safety, Technical & Engineering Director

Skills and experience

Before joining Network Rail in June 2015, Graham was executive vice president of Engineering and Technology Aerospace Component Engineering at Rolls-Royce. He started on the graduate apprentice programme at Rolls-Royce after graduating from City University, London. Graham is a Chartered Engineer and Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering; the Royal Aeronautical Society; the Institute of Mechanical Engineers; the Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining; and the Royal Society of Arts.


Graham leads the Safety, Technical & Engineering (STE) function, which encompasses asset management, engineering, rail technology strategy, safety, health and wellness, and sustainable development, together with Network Rail’s key national change programmes including business critical rules, level crossing risk reduction, risk based maintenance and safety culture change.

Phil Hufton head shot

Phil Hufton, Managing Director, England and Wales

Skills and experience

Phil joined Network Rail in January 2015. He was chief operating officer at London Underground from June 2013, joining together the asset performance responsibility, which he had led since 2008, with operating the underground network. He also led the reliability programme across London Underground leading up to the 2012 Olympic Games and until he left delivering significant improvements as well as the material strategy for London Underground.

Phil's career before London Underground included manufacturing and engineering around the world, mainly in the rail industry.


Phil leads the Network Operations function across England and Wales, which is responsible for the safe running of the railway every day. In addition to the safety of passengers and workforce, Network Operations is responsible for train paths, train movements, improving performance and meeting the needs of our customers. This function is split into routes, each led by a route managing director, and owns and manages the business relationships with the passenger and freight operators and external commercial stakeholders.

Alex Hynes, Managing Director, Scotrail Alliance

Skills and experience

Alex Hynes was appointed Managing Director of the ScotRail Alliance on 1 June 2017.

Before joining the ScotRail Alliance, Alex was Managing Director of the Northern franchise for three and half years where he successfully delivered their best-ever customer satisfaction scores as well as record levels of employee engagement.

An experienced transport professional, Alex has almost 20 years of industry experience and a proven track record of delivering rail improvement and investment programmes.

Having spent his early career as a consultant for Halcrow Fox, Alex worked with the Office of Rail Regulation before joining the Go-Ahead Group in 2005 as Strategic Planning Manager and, in 2007, as Commercial Director at London Midland, and finally as Managing Director – Rail Development.

Alex is Chair of the Institution of Railway Operators and is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport.


Alex is the Managing Director of the ScotRail Alliance, a close working relationship between Abellio ScotRail and Network Rail's Scotland Route. The aim is to improve Scotland's Railway for our customers by working collaboratively. While remaining separate companies, both organisations work to achieve common aims and objectives under Alex's leadership.

Jo Kaye head shot

Jo Kaye, Managing Director, System Operator

Skills and experience

Jo joined the rail industry graduate training scheme in 1995 and worked in a number of operational management roles in Network Rail for the first years of her career. Jo has been route managing director for London North West route, and then more recently a director in the strategy and planning team. Jo was appointed director, Network Strategy and Capacity Planning. Jo holds an MSc in passenger transport management.


Jo leads the Network Strategy and Capacity Planning function, which is responsible for capacity planning and developing medium and long-term strategy and plans for Network Rail and Britain's rail network.

Caroline Murdoch, Group Communications Director

Skills & Experience

Caroline brings over 20 years’ experience from national communications, public affairs, crisis communication management, marketing and internal communications within both public and private sectors. Caroline was most recently deputy director (and director of corporate affairs) of the National Crime Agency and has previously held the posts of director of corporate affairs at Transport for London and Chief of Staff to the Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police. 


Caroline leads the corporate communications function, which is responsible for ensuring that Network Rail presents a consistent narrative about the company and its strategy. One of Caroline’s key accountabilities is to continue to integrate Network Rail’s long-term business strategy with its external stakeholder communications and internal employee engagement.

Francis Paonessa head shot

Francis Paonessa, Managing Director, Infrastructure Projects

Skills and experience

Francis joined Network Rail in 2014, having most recently been managing director UK, Bombardier. He started his career with shipbuilder Vosper Thornycroft in 1992, initially as a mechanical design engineer, and joined Bombardier in 2010 as president of UK rolling stock. Francis is a Chartered Engineer and a Fellow of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers.


Francis is leading the delivery of £25bn of infrastructure renewals and enhancements, comprising thousands of projects around the country aimed at delivering a bigger, better railway enabling more trains to run, at higher speeds with more seats and better facilities at stations up and down the country.

Alison Rumsey

Alison Rumsey, Group HR Director

Skills and experience

Alison joined Network Rail in 2015. She is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development, and has more than 25 years' of HR experience across a number of different sectors including retail banking, Government and infrastructure. Before joining Network Rail, Alison worked in a number of government departments, more recently as Group HR Director on the Executive Committee at the Department for Transport.


Alison leads the Human Resources function, which provides support and leadership for our people and creates the right environment to attract and engage high-performing employees to deliver engineering and operational excellence. This covers recruitment, training and development, employee relations, diversity and inclusion, and succession planning.

David Waboso head shot

David Waboso, Managing Director, Group Digital Railway

Skills and experience

David joined Network Rail in June 2016. He is an engineer and project manager who has worked for engineering and consulting firms on infrastructure programmes in the UK and internationally. David led the upgrade of the Docklands Light Railway and the completion of the trains and signalling systems for the Jubilee Line Extension.

David worked on the Thameslink and train safety programmes. He has led cross-industry programmes on ERTMS and system integration. From 2005 to 2016, David was the director of Engineering then Capital Programmes at London Underground, where he led the £10bn Tube upgrade programme – the biggest in that company’s history.

A Chartered Engineer, he is a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering, of the Institution of Civil Engineers, of the Institution of Railway Signal Engineers and of the Association for Project Management. He also holds a Fellowship to the City and Guilds Institute. In 2015 David became president of the Association for Project Management. He was awarded a CBE for services to transport in London and was named as Leader of the Year in the Manufacturing and Infrastructure section of the Black British Business Awards in October 2014.


David leads the Group Digital Railway programme at Network Rail, a rail industry initiative to organise and accelerate the changes needed to modernise signalling and train control using digital technology to improve capacity, connectivity, and reliability for customers.

Jeremy Westlake, Chief Financial Officer

Appointed to the board: 2016

Skills and experience

Jeremy leads the finance, property, legal, regulatory and corporate commercial functions for the Network Rail group. Jeremy was formerly senior vice president for finance at Alstom Transport in France and previously spent 14 years at Rolls-Royce in a range of senior finance and supply chain roles in the UK and the United States. Jeremy is a fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales and has a master’s in manufacturing from Cambridge University.


Jeremy leads the Finance function, which includes: group finance, treasury, internal audit and risk, planning and regulation, and long-term planning and funding.

For more in depth information about the role and authority of the executive committee, you can read our terms of reference.