Since 2008, OSS Retail (now part of BRC Learning) has been led by Dominic Prendergast, a lifelong retail leader who spent over 20 years in the boardroom at companies such as Jessops, Thorntons, and Allders. Having led the successful transition of OSS into BRC, Dominic will now be stepping away at the end of this month.
Dominic’s involvement with OSS Retail, originally known as Oxford Summer School, began when he attended as a delegate at the tender age of 19. He returned to fulfil roles as a Group Director, Vice-Chair and Chair before being appointed Managing Director. Many former delegates will remember his powerful presence as he welcomed them to the school every year. No one can deny Dominic’s undying passion for OSS Retail and all it stands for. More than just a series of development programmes, Dominic viewed the schools as an opportunity for successful retail leaders to give something back by getting involved either as a speaker, by leading groups or by sending their next generation of talent to share the experience. BRC Learning are committed to honouring and maintaining the incredible programme standards that Dominic helped to set.
When we launched BRC Learning just over 18 months ago our aim was to be ‘the go-to organisation for careers and professional development in Retail’. As part of this we acquired OSS Retail due to the reputation it had built over a 90-year history as the leading series of development programmes by retailers for retailers.
Since then Dominic has been supporting its transition into BRC Learning and welcoming Lucy Crowther, BRC’s first Director of Learning, who joined in May of this year. Dominic has ensured that Lucy has all the support she needs in order to carry on the proud legacy of OSS Retail whilst thinking about modernising the programmes and getting them ready for 2021 when we hope we will be back to a normal.
I personally want to thank Dominic for everything he has done both for OSS Retail and the many leaders in our sector who have attended or been a part of the various programmes. Being the unstoppable character he is, I have no doubt that Dominic will remain in retail and not spending all his time on the golf course and I wish him and his family all the best in the future.
To find out how Lucy and the team are taking the OSS Retail programmes forward please visit brc.org.uk/learning.