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Joan Concannon

Director of External Relations



The Department of External Relations has been tasked with creating an integrated and comprehensive external relations strategy for the University bringing together Student Recruitment and Admissions, Communications, Development and Alumni Relations, International Relations and Centre for Lifelong Learning.

My aim is to work with colleagues to develop and implement an external relations strategy to enhance the University’s reputation regionally, nationally and internationally.

The outcome will be to attract world-class staff and students, meet the University’s fundraising priorities and develop and extend our stakeholder relationships to enhance an understanding of the University’s impact across the world.

Biography in Brief

Before coming to York I was Director of External Relations at the University of Dundee for seven years. There I was responsible for a similar mix of activities.

My main achievements

  • Developing an external relations strategy to enhance the University’s reputation, nationally and internationally
  • Increasing the quality and quantity of student applications
  • Developing a fundraising strategy and implementing an events strategy up to, and including, the University’s 40th anniversary
  • The launch of a Literary Festival and public affairs programme

During my time in Dundee

  • National media coverage increased by more than a third
  • Dundee recorded the highest number of student applications in Scotland in 2008/9
  • More than £20m was raised for a number of key university fundraising priorities over a five year period

My most recent achievement has been to lead a project to persuade the V&A to work with Dundee partners to create a new £50m building on the city’s waterfront housing contemporary collections from the V&A and developing a showcase for Scottish applied arts. The project received the public backing of the Scottish Government with a promise of significant financial support in August 2009.

Roles and responsibilities

What is your day job?

My main role is to develop and maintain an external relations strategy for the University of York.

I direct and co-ordinate the work done by my teams and colleagues around the University to enhance our reputation and strengthen the impact the University of York has around the world.

Role on The Board

I bring knowledge and experience of embedding at every level of an organisation, an understanding of the importance of reputation building, relationship management and consistent and truthful marketing and communications.

Other responsibilities

I am still relatively new to York and have not yet had the opportunity to expand into other areas. I’m sure this will soon change.

About me

What makes me tick?

I love the fact that the University is consistently strong in so many fascinating academic disciplines but has maintained a close collegiate atmosphere.

I am new to Yorkshire but look forward very much to spending any spare time getting to know York, its people and the surrounding areas in the coming years

My vision for the University

I believe strongly that the friendly and collegiate atmosphere that permeates through all levels at the University of York must be preserved. 

I also believe there is huge potential for extending and enhancing the University’s already excellent reputation regionally, nationally and internationally by presenting a coherent and integrated external relations strategy.

Register of interests

Register of interests (Sept 2017)


  • Make It York - Board member
  • Joseph Rowntree Foundation - member of York Committee
  • Company of Merchant Adventurers, York - member
  • The Mount School, York - parent governor/member of School Committee
  • UCAS Media Marketing Advisory Committee - member

Nick Hex (husband)

  • York Health Economics Consortium - Associate Director

2015-16 expenses

Below are the travel and expenses for Joan Concannon covering the period September 2015 to July 2016.

Joan Concannon expenses Sep 15 - Jan 16 (PDF , 9kb)

Joan Concannon Feb-Apr 2016 (PDF , 104kb)

Joan Concannon Expenses May - July 2016 (PDF , 11kb)


Contact details

Personal assistant