Mike Foster has been appointed the new Chair of Professional Game Match Officials Limited (PGMOL).He will take up his new position on 1st February, succeeding John Williams.
PGMOL is the referees' body which trains, manages and selects Match Officials across the EFL, The FA and Premier League competitions.
Foster, formerly the Premier League’s Director of Football and General Secretary, will provide guidance and direction to Managing Director Mike Riley and his team. His appointment was unanimously agreed by the EFL, FA and Premier League members of the PGMOL board.
Foster is one of the most experienced administrators in English football. He began his career at the EFL in 1973 and spent 19 years there during which time he played semi-professional football for Barrow, Morecambe and Fleetwood Town.
In 1992 he joined the Premier League as General Secretary and played a pivotal role working alongside Rick Parry to establish the new League.
Mike Foster said: “It is a great privilege and honour to be entrusted with this position. Having been involved at virtually every level of the game, be it as a player, administrator, or fan I have always appreciated the vital role performed by our Match Officials.
“I am an advocate for new technology which can assist with decision making provided it does not alter the dynamics of the game or undermine the role of the referee.
“I look forward to playing my part in the continued development of refereeing and to ensuring that PGMOL’s Match Officials continue to be recognised as being the best in the world.”
Shaun Harvey, EFL Chief Executive, said: “Mike is one of the most experienced and effective administrators in football and I have no doubt that he will have a positive and lasting impact at the PGMOL.
“He brings with him a wealth of experience to the position and is well versed in dealing with the varied challenges that modern-day football faces and in particular those of our Match Officials.
“I look forward to working closely with Mike and the PGMOL team as we look to further improve refereeing standards and build on the positive changes that were introduced into EFL competitions this season.”
Andy Ambler, Head of Professional Game Relations at The FA, said: "Having had the pleasure of knowing Mike and working with him for a number of years, I've first-hand experience of his infectious passion for the game together with a dedication and depth of knowledge which is unrivalled.
“I congratulate him on his appointment in this new role and look forward to continuing the work being done together to ensure English match officials remain amongst the best in the world.”