John Ainsworth is a Chartered Secretary by profession and recently retired as Chief Executive and Secretary of the Institute of Chartered Secretaries and Administrators after eighteen year in post. Before this, he studied at the University of London, Goldsmiths' College and the City of London Business School. He commenced his career as Assistant Clerk to the Governors and Bursar of Dulwich College and went on to accumulate an immense wealth of experience as a high level administrator in the Central Electricity Generation Board and the British Transport Docks Board, before becoming Secretary and Finance Director of the British Printing Industries Federation and Secretary General of the Institute of Administrative Management. In parallel with these activities, he is currently Chairman of the Open and Distance Learning Quality Council; Council Member and Board Director, Commonwealth Association for Corporate Governance; former Chairman of the Consultative Council for Professional Management Organisations and former Chairman of a number of ICSA companies engaged in computer software, publishing, seminar and corporate services. John is also involved in a number of organisations concerned with professional standards. He was appointed OBE in the Queen's Birthday Honours list in June 2008.
In 2006 John Ainsworth was awarded the honorary degree of Doctor of the University.