Peter Tavernor will rise to the rank of "super-principal" this week, after the announcement that he is to take charge of the country's second largest further education college.
The principal of Manchester College of Arts and Technology (Mancat) takes on the new role as it merges with City College Manchester on August 1.
The new institution - to be known simply as The Manchester College, with a budget of around pound;130 million - will be outstripped in terms of annual spending only by Newcastle College, which now has an estimated budget of pound;150m after it bought a large slice of the failed training company Carter and Carter.
Mr Tavernor said: "I am honoured to accept this role. As principal of Mancat, I have had an exciting and challenging time over the last 11 years. I'm now really excited at the prospect of working with the new governing body and staff within both colleges to ensure that The Manchester College builds on existing excellence and becomes the best in the country."