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University Council member profiles

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Denise Jagger

  • Pro Chancellor, Chair of Council

Council - Denise Jagger

Register of interests (August 2017)

  • Eversheds Sutherland LLP - partner
  • Bellway plc - non-executive director
  • Pool Reinsurance Ltd - non-executive director
  • Y2019 Ltd - non-executive director
  • St Giles Trust - Chair



Denise Jagger is a partner with international law firm Eversheds. Originally from Yorkshire, Denise studied law at Warwick University before undertaking postgraduate EU Studies at the University of Nice, France. Denise qualified as a solicitor and in her early career practised as a corporate finance lawyer in a major London law firm before embarking upon a career in industry. Denise was Company Secretary, General Counsel and a Director of Asda Stores during its rapid growth period and remained with the business once part of US retailer, Wal Mart.

Denise now divides her time between Eversheds where she focuses on client service and a portfolio of non executive appointments. She stepped down from her role as Chairman of the York Museums Trust in September 2012 and was also formerly a member of both the Council and Court at Leeds University. Denise has been a member of Court at the University of York since 2009 and was awarded an honorary Doctorate of Laws from Leeds Metropolitan University in July 2013.

Denise is married with two sons and lives in York.

Philip Carpenter

  • Pro Chancellor

Register of interests (August 2017)

  •  Kortext Ltd - Senior Adviser (paid)
  • Thieme Verlag - Senior Advisor (paid)
  • International Association of Scientific, Mechnical and Media Publishers - consultant (paid)
Katherine Carpenter (spouse):
  • British Psychological Society - Chair, Division of Neurpsychology (unpaid)

Council - Philip Carpenter

Philip Carpenter is by background a publisher for Higher Education with an interest in the ways in which publishing and digital technologies can support the development of teaching, learning and research to enhance student outcomes and enable the impact of the research community. 

After leaving Oxford University, where he was awarded the Beddington Prize for English, he joined Blackwell Publishers in 1979, where he published extensively across the Humanities and Social Sciences.  Following the merger with Blackwell's sister company in Science and Medicine in 2000, he took responsibility for the company's combined book publishing across the whole academic spectrum for the global market, including particularly its development in the United States and Asia.  When John Wiley Inc. acquired Blackwell Publishing in 2007 he took on the leadership of the combined journal and book publishing of the merged company in the Social Sciences and Humanities.  He subsequently became Senior Vice President for Wiley's journal programme, then in 2014 Executive Vice President, Research  with responsibility for all the company's digital products and services for the global research community.

He has taken an active interest in how the publishing industry can support universities and governments in the development of Higher Education and served on the Board of the International Association of Scientific, Technical and Medical Publishers from 2013 to 2017.  He remains active in the field of publishing and related technologies, serving as an adviser and consultant to a number of organisations.


Professor Charlie Jeffery

Register of interests (September 2019)

  • Vice-Chancellor & President

Professor Charlie Jeffery has been the Vice-Chancellor & President at the University since September 2019.  Prior to his appointment he was Senior Vice-Principal at the University of Edinburgh, a role he  served with distinction since 2014. Prior to that, he was Vice-Principal (Public Policy) at the University of Edinburgh, and he has been Professor of Politics at Edinburgh since 2004.



Professor Saul Tendler

Register of Interests
(September 2017)

  • Royal Society of Chemistry - Fellow
  • Royal Pharmaceutical Society  - Fellow
  • York Science Park Ltd - Chair of Board
  • The Conversation - Editoral Board Member
  • HEFCE Healthcare Education Advisory Committee - Member
  • Higher York - Chair of Board
  • Yorkshire Universities - Member, Executive Management Board
  • Deputy Vice-Chancellor and Provost

Council - Saul Tendler

Professor Tendler was appointment as the University's Deputy Vice-Chancellor and Provost from September 2015.  

Professor Tendler gained a BSc in Pharmacy at the University of Manchester in 1982 and was awarded a PhD from the University of Aston in 1986. From 1986-1988 he was a Medical Research Council Training Fellow at the National Institute for Medical Research, Mill Hill, before being appointed to a Lectureship at the School of Pharmacy at the University of Nottingham. He was subsequently promoted to Reader and Professor of Biophysical Chemistry in 1998. From 1999 to 2003, Professor Tendler was Dean of the University of Nottingham's Graduate School. For the next six years he headed Nottingham’s School of Pharmacy before becoming a Pro-Vice-Chancellor in 2009.

Professor Tendler has significant experience of research and technology transfer. He was a founding director of Molecular Profiles Ltd. His research has resulted in more than 200 peer-reviewed publications, the award of a DSc and has been recognised through a number of prizes. He has served on many funding council and research council boards and committees and was Chair of the MRC/BBSRC/EPSRC Discipline Hopping Panel. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry, and was designated a Fellow of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain in 2000.


Professor Deborah Smith

Register of interests (December 2017)

  • Royal Society of Biology - Fellow
  • Higher Education Academy - Fellow
  • Richard Smith (MI) Ltd - Company Secretary (non-remunerated)
  • Research England - Council member (remunerated)
  • Royal Society/Wellcome Trust - Henry Dale Fellowships interview Committee (remunerated)
  • elected by and from Senate

Deborah Smith trained as a biochemist at the University of Southampton and held post-doctoral fellowships at MRC Mill Hill, NIH Bethesda (USA) and Imperial College London before appointment to the academic staff of the Imperial Biochemistry Department. Following promotion to a Personal Chair and serving as Associate Head of Department and Chair of the Graduate School of Life Sciences and Medicine, Deborah moved to the University of York in 2004, as a founder member of the Centre for Immunology and Infection, thereby furthering her research interests in neglected tropical diseases.  She has published over 120 research papers to date in this field, working with a range of national and international collaborators.

Deborah served as Head of the York Biology Department from 2010-2013, while also directing the University’s first Wellcome Trust Four Year PhD programme.  She was appointed Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Research on 1st January 2014.  Externally to York, Deborah chaired the MRC Infections and Immunity Board (2007-2010), was a member of MRC Strategy Board and more recently, Co-Chair of the Wellcome Trust Science Funding Interview Panel (2011-2014).  She has participated in research reviews for international organisations including Genome Canada, the Institut Pasteur Paris, the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, the Copenhagen Research Forum, FCT Portugal and, most recently, the Canada First Research Excellence Fund.  Deborah was awarded an OBE for Services to Biomedical Sciences in 2010.



Chris Thompson

Register of interests (August 2017) 


  • Harrogate & District NHS Foundation Trust - Non-Executive Director & Chair of Audit Committee (paid)
  • NHS Audit Yorkshire - Chair (upaid)
  • Nevill Holt Opera Ltd - Non-Executive Director (unpaid)
  • Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales - Fellow 



  • Treasurer

Council - Chris Thompson

Chris is a chartered accountant who was Chief Financial Officer at the University of Nottingham from 2007 to 2013, where he was responsible for finance, procurement, IT and research administration. His career has largely been spent in the retail and food manufacturing sectors. After working for KPMG for 10 years at their Newcastle and London offices, he went on to work in senior financial positions in a number of retailers, including Asda and Woolworths before joining the Co-operative movement where he worked for eight years. During this time he was responsible for the management of a number of large businesses in the funerals, pharmacy, retail, distribution and manufacturing sectors. Chris is a non-executive director of Harrogate District NHS Foundation Trust, where he also chairs the Audit Committee, and is also a director of Nevill Holt Opera Limited. Chris is married with 4 children and lives in Harrogate.

Professor Caroline Hunter

Register of interests (September 2017)

  • York Travellers Trust - Board member
  • First Tier Tribunal (Property Chamber) - part-time Judge
  • elected by and from Senate

Council - Caroline Hunter

‌Professor Caroline Hunter is head of York Law School. After working in housing advice, she trained as a barrister and developed a specialist practice in housing and local government. She moved into academia in 1990 and, prior to moving to York Law School in 2008, worked at the University of Nottingham, Sheffield Hallam University and the University of Manchester.

Her research focus has been on the boundaries between law, policy and practice in the area of housing, with funded research from diverse government and charitable funders: Office of the Deputy Prime Minister (now DCLG), Department for Constitutional Affairs, Home Office, Housing Corporation, Nuffield Foundation, Joseph Rowntree Foundation and the ESRC.

Caroline is a part-time Judge of the First Tier Tribunal (Property Chamber). She was a board member of Chevin Housing Group between 2004 -14 and is currently a trustee of York Travellers Trust.

Professor Duncan Petrie

Register of interests (October 2018)

  •  nil return





  • elected by and from Senate

 Council - Duncan Petrie

Duncan Petrie joined the new Department of Theatre, Film, Television and Interactive Media at the University of York in 2009 and has since played a key role in its development and expansion. He was deputy head from 2014 and became Head of Department in January 2018.

After graduating from the University of Edinburgh where he gained an MA and then a PhD in Sociology, Duncan became Research Officer at the British Film Institute in 1990. Five years later he took up a senior lectureship in the Department of English at the University of Exeter, where he also established and directed the Bill Douglas Centre for the History of Cinema and Popular Culture, a public museum and research facility. In 2004 Duncan became a Professor and Head of the Department of Film, Television and Media Studies at the University of Auckland in New Zealand.

Duncan’s research has focused on various aspects of British, Scottish and New Zealand film history, Scottish culture and identity, the history of cinematography and the development of film schools and moving image education. He is the author or co-author of eight monographs and has edited a further ten books. Since 2011 he has been co-principal editor of the Journal of British Cinema and Television. His most recent research project was ‘Transformation and Tradition in Sixties British Cinema’, funded by the AHRC.

Having worked closely with external industry partners at the BFI, Duncan subsequently chaired the South West Media Development Agency, was a trustee of the South West Film and Television Archive, a board member of South West Screen and served on the Scottish Screen Lottery Panel.    


Professor Neil Audsley

Register of interests  (September 2018)

  •  nil return
  • elected by and from Senate
 Council - Neil Audsley
Professor Neil Audsley is Head of the Computer Science Department since 2017, having been led strategic planning the renewal the Department since 2016 as Incoming Head of Department. 
Professor Audsley graduated from the University of York in 1988 with a BSc in Computer Science, and in 1993 with a PhD. During this time, he spent a year at GEC and at the Electricity Council Research Centre. From 1993 he worked as a post-doctoral researcher within the Computer Science Department, working extensively with industry. He was subsequently appointed to a Senior Lectureship within the Department in 2000. Following this, he was promoted to Reader in 2011, and to a personal chair in 2013. 
His research interests are in the broad area of high performance real-time embedded systems, including both software and hardware aspects. This research has attracted funding from UKRI, EU and UK industry, and has resulted in over 150 peer reviewed publications and a significant number of industrial reports. 


Dr Karl Dittrich

Register of interests (September 2017)

  • nil return 


  • co-opted lay member
Council - Karl Dittrich
Karl Dittrich (Maastricht, the Netherlands, 1952) is President of the European Quality Assurance Register for Higher Education (EQAR) since July 2017. He was chair of the Association of Universities in the Netherlands (VSNU) until September 2017.
He started his career as a political science researcher and lecturer in Leiden, Florence and Maastricht, and received his PhD in Leiden in 1978. He was member of the Executive Board of Maastricht University since 1986 and chaired the Board from 1994 until 2002.
Karl was the inaugural chairman of the Dutch-Flemish Accreditation Organisation (NVAO) from 2005 to 2012. In that capacity, he also held functions on the Board of the European Association for Quality Assurance in Higher Education (ENQA) and in the European Consortium for Accreditation (ECA). As VSNU Chairman he was member of the Council of the European University Association (EUA).

Lindsey Fussell

Register of interests   (September 2018)

nil return

  • Deputy Treasurer

Council - Lindsey Fussell

Lindsey Fussell is Group Director of Consumer and External Relations at Ofcom, the independent telecoms and media regulator.  Lindsey is responsible for leading Ofcom’s consumer policy and enforcement functions and also represents Ofcom internationally. 
Prior to joining Ofcom in April 2016, Lindsey’s career was mostly in the Civil Service.  From 2012 to 2016, she was the Director of Public Services at HM Treasury, responsible for oversight of public spending on defence and security, education and criminal justice.  She is a qualified accountant. 
Lindsey joined the Council at the University of York in July 2018.


Nicola Inchbald

Register of interests (December 2017)

  • Rooftop Housing Group - Group Chair (paid)
  • The Inchbald Maxted Partnership - Principal (paid)
  • Worcester Telecare - Board member (paid)
  • Matrix (Development Co-operative) - Board member (unpaid)
  • The Ripple Trust - Trustee (unpaid)
  • co-opted lay member 

Council - Nicola Inchbald

Nicola is a Chartered Town Planner with over 30 years experience of the property development industry. She was a partner at CB Hillier Parker (now CBRE) where she ran the Development Land team advising on projects as diverse as selling Bankside Power Station to Tate Modern and Farnborough Aerodrome to TAG Hauer. She has extensive housing development experience and advised The Commission for the New Towns, English Partnerships and Ministry of Defence on major land disposals and was a founder member of the Residential Development Agents Society (RDAS).

Having retired from CBRE in 2003, Nicola moved to her husband’s family home in Worcester where she cared for her elderly parent-in-law and two young children. This gave her direct experience of the joys of intergenerational living as well as coping with the pressures many families face over care provision.

Nicola joined the Board of Rooftop Housing Group in 2011 and became Group Chair in 2013. She also sits on the Board of The Matrix Housing Partnership, a development cooperative between Rooftop, Accord, Trent & Dove, Trident and Pioneer Housing Associations and Worcester Telecare.


Richard Sommers

Register of interests (August 2018)

  • nil return
  • lay member

Council - Richard Sommers

Richard enjoyed a 29 year career with the Barclays Group, and held senior positions in retail and commercial banking, including Chief Financial Officer for Barclaycard and Risk Director of Retail Financial Services. For 8 years, he was Treasurer and Fellow of Lady Margaret Hall, a college in the University of Oxford, before retiring in 2016, and is now an Emeritus Fellow. As a non-executive director, he served on the board of the West Bromwich Building Society between 2009 and 2018, chairing the Risk Committee. Currently he is a non-executive director of Al Rayan Bank PLC, where he chairs the Risk Committee and is a member of the Audit Committee. 

Richard is married to Judy, has two sons and lives in Devon. He is keen on sports, particularly cricket and rugby; his playing days are long over, so he watches, scores and helps with the administration of his local teams in Sidmouth!

Sam Bayley

Register of interests
(August 2017)


  • Association of University Administrators - Trustee
  • York City & District Referees' Association - Chair
  • Halifax College Council  - member

Charlotte Bayley (spouse):

  • University of York - employee (Space Management)
  • YUFund Disbursement Group - member
  • elected by and from non-academic staff

Council- Sam Bayley

Sam Bayley is an alumnus of the University of York, graduating in 2007 with a BA in Management, Information Technology, and Language. He also holds a Postgraduate Certificate in Higher Education Management.

Sam rejoined the University in 2010, holding a number of roles in the Space Management team. In 2016, he moved to the Department of Sociology to take up the position of Department Manager. Alongside this, Sam holds a seat on the Halifax College Council, and also operates as a workplace mediator within the University.

 Sam is a member of the Board of Trustees for the Association of University Administrators (AUA). He was recognised with a Fellowship of the AUA in 2014 for his work supporting development of university professional services staff.

 Away from work, Sam is a football referee operating within the semi-professional game, and is Chairman of the York City & District Referees' Association. Sam lives in York with his wife Charley (a York alumna and staff member), and cocker spaniel, Jack.


Rachel Curwen

Register of interests 

  • nil return
  • elected by ‌and from non-academic staff

Council - Rachel Curwen

Rachel Curwen started her time at the University of York as an undergraduate in the Department of Biology in 1994. A PhD and Wellcome Trust-funded post-doctoral positions followed, where she used mass spectrometry to study the secreted and surface proteins of human parasites with the aim of identifying new vaccine and drug targets.

She moved into research management as a Research Strategy and Policy Officer in 2008, again at the University of York, where her primary responsibility was as Business Systems Manager for a new Research Information System.  She also acted as Operations Manager for the UoY REF submission and was seconded to HEFCE as a REF Panel Secretary 2011-12. In January 2014, she moved into the Research Development Team, becoming the first overarching Head of Team in 2015.  She has overseen a doubling in size of the team and its embedding as a successful part of the University’s research support infrastructure. Amongst other things, the team has responsibility for supporting the Research Themes and Champions, oversight of substantial research priming funds, relationship management of a wide variety of non-academic partners, supporting the University’s approach to GCRF and the development of multiple multi-million pound research applications each year.  Rachel particularly enjoys facilitating interdisciplinary discussions of new research ideas.

Away from work, Rachel lives in York with her partner and three lively teenage girls.  She is a very keen cook and is currently considering running a supper club from her home!


Samara Jones

Register of interests 

  •  York University Students' Union (YUSU)- President (elected office) 


  • President, Students' Union

Council - Samara Jones

Samara is the President of YUSU, the York University Students' Union. This means that she is the lead representative for all students at the University. This requires her to sit on a variety of University committees to ensure the student voice is heard. 

Purnur Altay

Register of interests (September 2018)

  • Graduate Students' Association (GSA) -
    President (elected office)
  • President of the Graduate Students' Association‌‌

Purnur is the President of Graduate Students' Association (GSA).Her key role is to voice the opinions of all postgraduate students in all senior level committees of the University.