He was Chief Executive of the Higher Education Funding Council for England from 1995-2001. Prior to that he was Vice-Chancellor of Keele University (1985–95), Associate Director and Director of the Institut Laue-Langevin in Grenoble, France and Chairman of the Science Board of the UK's Science and Engineering Research Council. He is a graduate and Fellow of Imperial College.
Sir Brian is currently a member of the University Grants Committee, Hong Kong, President of the National Foundation for Educational Research, Chairman of the National Council for Drama Training and a Director of Higher Aims Ltd, a private consultancy involved in higher education and research management. Sir Brian is a Fellow of the Institute of Physics, the Royal Society of Chemistry and a Companion of the Chartered Management Institute. He has honorary degrees or fellowships from eleven universities and colleges.
Fender has been married twice, and has a son and three daughters.
- "Obituaries: Birthdays". Guardian Obituary Pages. The Guardian. 2009-09-15. p. 37.
- FENDER, Sir Brian (Edward Frederick), Who's Who 2012, A & C Black, 2012; online edn, Oxford University Press, Dec 2011; online edn, Nov 2011, accessed 27 Oct 2012
- Hodges, Lucy (2001-10-18). "Education: Howard's Way; Stylish and Open; The University Funding Council's new boss wants public debate. Will this be good for higher education?". The Independent. pp. Education, 9.
- "Appointments". The Times. 1990-09-25.
- "IKT - Institute of Knowledge Transfer - Executive Committee - Sir Brian Fender CMG MInstKT". www.ikt.org.uk. Archived from the original on 14 January 2010. Retrieved 25 January 2010.
- "Review of higher education in Cumbria". News. Higher Education Funding Council for England. 15 May 2003. Retrieved 9 February 2012.
- Swain, Harriet; Williams, Lynne (5 March 1999). "Brian Fender". Times Higher Education. TSL Education. Retrieved 9 February 2012.
Sir David Harrison
| Vice-Chancellor, Keele University
Professor Dame Janet Finch
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