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Governance and Structure

​​​​​The University Executive Committee is responsible for all matters associated with the development and management of the university.

Council members

Last updated: 12 February 2024

Members of Council as of December 2023

Paige Archer

Student Member of Council
Member of Remuneration and Human Resources Committee

Paige was born in Birmingham. She was raised and educated in the south of Ireland, before returning to the UK at the age of 15. She has always been a creative person, particularly interested in photography and sport. At university, she studied Business and Marketing Management. Paige joined multiple Sports Clubs and Societies whilst at university and was elected as Club Captain of the Women’s Football and Futsal Club in her final year.

Being so involved with the Students’ Union, Paige felt she wanted to help shape the way extracurricular activity was ran at the university, so ran for the role of Activities and Opportunities Officer and was successfully elected in March 2022. Paige intends to use this opportunity to help as many students as possible to have a fulfilling student experience at UoG, as well as supporting students with regards to the Cost-of-Living crisis, through her campaign work.

Paige is Vice Chair of the SU’s Board of Trustees. She works with the other elected officers at the SU to represent all students; hearing student concerns and raising these to the appropriate places, organising events to build create a sense of belonging and representing the student voice at many committees, groups and panels.

Ingrid Barker

External Member
Member of Governance and Nominations Committee

Ingrid Barker is Chair of Gloucestershire Health and Care NHS Foundation Trust. She has been Chair of Gloucestershire Care Services NHS Trust since April 2011. She was previously a Non-Executive Director on the Board of NHS Gloucestershire for 5 years.

She is a Trustee and board member for NHS Providers, elected to represent the Community Trusts across the country. Ingrid has undertaken national policy and service development roles through the Centre for Mental Health Services Development. She was Deputy Chief Executive of an NHS Trust in Surrey and led Croydon Mental Health Unit as Unit General Manager, transforming institutional services to community provision. A qualified social worker, Ingrid established a service for young homeless people in Central London and was Regional Director of MIND. She also led the creation of the first mental health Patients Councils and Advocacy projects in Britain.

Thomas Chambers

External Member

Thomas is a director of several public and private companies, including Chairman of Propel London Ltd (digital new media recruitment), Director of Kings Arms Yard VCT plc (venture capital trust) and Senior Independent Trustee of The Universities and Colleges Admission Service (UCAS). Until March 2018, Thomas was Chairman of First Utility (now Shell Energy) and until January 2018, Thomas worked with the University of Surrey, having been Treasurer for four years until 2016, and a member of Council for nine years, also until 2016.

Thomas has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics from Durham University. He is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants, an Associate of The Association of Corporate Treasurers, and a Fellow of the Institution of Engineering and Technology. In 2015 he was awarded an honorary Doctor from the University of Surrey.

Having trained as an accountant with Price Waterhouse, he worked in corporate finance with Kleinwort Benson, and with the European Bank for Reconstruction & Development. Thomas was Chief Financial Officer for Robert Walters plc, for First Telecom plc, and then for Symbian plc. Symbian was the creator/developer of the first mass market smartphone operating system, being a joint venture between the major mobile phone handset manufacturers. Whilst at Symbian, Thomas led the software engineering development, and then the sale of Symbian to Nokia Oyj in 2008.

James Cooper

External Member
Member of Audit and Risk Committee

James is a Partner with Gate One, a digital and business transformation consultancy. He started his career with Ernst & Young where he trained as a Chartered Accountant before moving into advisory services working across London and Melbourne, Australia. He joined Gate One in 2015 and has helped grow the business from 30 staff to nearly 300 today with offices in the UK, Ireland and the US.

James has always worked with multiple clients across both public and private sectors, and he now leads Gate One’s Higher Education practice. A career highlight was winning the 2019 MCA Award for Strategy Project of the Year – for his work done with the leadership team at UCAS to redefine the 5-year strategy.

James has held various Board positions over the last 10 years, his most recent being the Board Member (without portfolio) for the UK National Governing Body of Ultimate Frisbee – a sport for which he has represented Great Britain and still remains a passionate supporter of.

James is a values-driven leader who is passionate about coaching and mentoring to create high performing teams.

Paul Crichard

External Member
Member of Audit and Risk Committee

Member of Honorary Awards Committee

Paul has been around the University since it transitioned from College of Higher Education. He was a student back then and has supported the development of the business and cyber schools since leaving. He has been awarded a Fellowship of the British Computer Society, and is a Fellow of the University as well as an External Member of Council.

He has lived and breathed the world of Information Security for most of his working career dealing with Incidents across the globe with many companies, driving strategy for BT Security Globally and has recently joined Serco UK and Europe as their CISO.

Paul spends a lot of time working towards a world that benefits from the neural diversity at all levels and understand how we can develop our ways of working and learning can be maximised.

Outside work his family is top of the agenda being a family man and part-time cricket coach.

Nicola de Iongh

Chair of Council
Chair of Governance and Nominations Committee
Member of Honorary Awards Committee

Member of Remuneration & Human Resources Committee

As Chair of Council at the University of Gloucestershire, Nicola is an advocate for education as a means of transforming people’s lives so that they can make the world a better place, and for the civic role the University plays in our community.

Nicola sits on the Board of the Gloucestershire Health & Care Foundation Trust, and also serves as Vice Chair of the Gloucestershire Counselling Service, a charity dedicated to improving mental health in the county. In addition, she is Senior Independent Director of Connexus Housing, a social landlord based in Shropshire & Herefordshire. She serves on the Lord Chancellor’s South West Advisory Committee for magistrate selection and is a Member of Court for the Honourable Company of Gloucestershire. She is Vice Chair of the Committee of University Chairs.

In the private sector, Nicola chairs the Reference Committee for the Premier Miton UK Responsible Investment Fund, with a remit to advise on the fund’s investment policy and scrutinise investment decisions from the perspective of sustainability and ethics.

Previously, Nicola worked in the financial services sector as a global change lead. She also spent several years working as a freelance management consultant majoring in complex, strategic change across different sectors, both in the UK and internationally.

Nicola has lived in The Cotswolds for 20 years with her husband Julian, two sons, two cats and a dog.

Ruth Dooley

External Member
Member of Finance & General Purposes Committee

Ruth is a Chartered Accountant who has been in practice in Gloucestershire for over thirty years.  She was a tax partner in Grant Thornton before she joined Hazlewoods where she now heads up the forensic accounting team.  Ruth has been part of GFirst LEP since its inception in 2011.  This has involved many roles including being on the Growth Hub Board and Chair of the GFirst LEP Board since 2021.  She is also on the Board of the Western Gateway.

She read modern history at Pembroke College Oxford where she also coxed the women’s Blue boat.  After a ski season, Ruth joined Mars Confectionary as a Key Account Salesperson.  She changed course to accountancy when moving to Gloucestershire to get married.  Her first three years were in audit, but she has been a tax practitioner for most of her career until moving to forensic accountancy.

Ruth has had considerable involvement with the University of Gloucestershire due to her roles at Hazlewoods and at GFirst LEP, especially those relating to the Growth Hub.  She has lectured to undergraduates on forensic and tax accountancy as well as giving talks on her own career to students.  She was appointed as a Visiting Fellow in the School of Business and Technology on 1 May 2019.

Ruth has done several marathons and triathlons as she likes a challenge. She also enjoys sailing, diving, skiing, snowboarding, field sport, music and the theatre.

Chris Fung

External Member of Council
Member of Remuneration & Human Resources Committee

Chris is the Co-Founder of Lunch.Co, a peer-to-peer marketplace platform for colleagues to buy and sell home-cooked lunches from each other in the workplace. Lunch.Co is reinventing the workplace lunch and unlocking the potential of togetherness by connecting colleagues through the passion of food and cooking.

He is also the former CEO of Crussh Fit Food & Juice Bars, London’s leading juice, smoothie and healthy eating chain with over 30 sites and a NED/Board Advisor/Investor in a number of disruptive high-growth potential Food/FoodTech and Education/Edtech businesses.

His background spans consulting at Bain & Co across the Sydney, Stockholm and London offices to having previously studied Manufacturing Engineering and Industrial Design.

Alongside a number of Board Advisor/NED roles in Food and the Food Tech space he has joined the University of Gloucestershire as an External Member of Council with his longstanding interest in education and using education as a force for good.   He joins the University of Gloucestershire as an External Member of Council with a longstanding interest in education and using education as a force for good. With his two young children, the future of education and the way we shape extraordinary educational experiences for the next generation of young adults is an area of high interest

He attended the University of New South Wales in Sydney studying Manufacturing Engineering winning a full scholarship as a Co-Op Scholar for his undergraduate degree and also completed his Master of Science (Industrial Design) at UNSW with an exchange semester at the University of Illinois in Urbana Champaign within the Master of Fine Arts (Industrial Design) programme.

Steve Gardiner

External Member
Vice-Chair of Finance and General Purposes Committee

After beginning in the Hospitality industry Steve quickly moved into Retail management where he has spent the majority of his career, firstly with Marks & Spencer, then Safeway then joining The John Lewis Partnership In 1996 as a Senior Management Trainee for Waitrose. Steve has led many branch operations, as well as taking on multi-site roles. He assesses, coaches and mentors senior leaders throughout the business.

In addition to his operational leadership role in Waitrose & Partners In Cirencester, Steve had his first experience of Governance in a Parent Governor role at his daughter’s school in Stroud, since then he has now spent nine years as an Elected Director on the John Lewis Partnership Board as well as taking on additional roles in Remuneration, Nominations and Audit & Risk sub committees. 

Steve also worked for the past five years with University of Gloucestershire supporting the Business School and has been recently recognised by University of Gloucestershire with an Honorary Fellowship.

Steve has a passion for the employee ownership model and because of this he joined Useful Simple Trust In 2018 as a Trustee Director and now Chairs the Trustee Board.

After multiple moves around the South of England and London, Steve very much now enjoys living in Stroud and has done so for nineteen years. He is married to Lisa and has two daughters, both of whom are still in education.

Dr Louise Livesey

Academic Staff Member of Council
Member of Honorary Awards Committee

Member of Academic Board

Louise is a Senior Lecturer, an active trustee for a number of charities (serving as both Chair and Treasurer in recent times), she campaigns for social justice and women’s rights, and against prejudice and hate crime, for peace and freedom and volunteers as an anti-genocide educator with a particular interest in 1990s Bosnia.

Her passion, and her career to date, focuses on addressing marginalisation, prejudice and stigma whether in relation to young people Gloucestershire and in deprived areas of London, creating successful grassroots women’s and LGBTQI+ campaigning organisations or in training people on issues regarding sexual violence.

Clare Marchant

Member of Finance and General Purposes Committee
Member of Governance and Nominations Committee
Chair of Honorary Awards Committee

Clare joined the University in September 2023 following six years as UCAS Chief Executive. She is passionate about delivering reform and value in public services, and particularly, the benefit education can bring to both an individual’s overall life chances, and creating a more productive society. She is privileged to lead the University during this time of considerable change in the education sector and have the opportunity to work with so many brilliant colleagues to further build its reputation in enabling great student careers and demonstrating how it can drive skills development in Gloucestershire, the UK and internationally.

Clare started her career within manufacturing, before moving to management consultancy with Deloitte, then central and local government, latterly as Chief Executive of Worcestershire County Council. She graduated from Hull University in 1993 and gained a MSc from the Open University in 1998. She has lived with her family in the region for nearly 20 years and loves running.

Pam Sissons

External Member
Chair of Audit and Risk Committee
Member of Remuneration and Human Resources Committee

Pam is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Secretaries and Administrators and a Fellow of the Chartered Insurance Institute. She has strong governance, financial and commercial experience having worked for a high profile publicly listed company with well-known brands and aspirational products.  She has significant legal, intellectual property and corporate social responsibility experience.

Pam started her career in the insurance sector. On relocating to Gloucestershire in the mid 1990s, Pam studied at Cheltenham and Gloucester College of Higher Education graduating in Business Management and Human Resources Management in 1998. This enabled her to forge a career in the engineering and manufacturing sector with Glynwed International plc and she subsequently became company secretary of Aga Rangemaster Group plc in 2004. She worked on a number of merger and acquisitions transactions, including the sale of the company completed by a scheme of arrangement in September 2015. She is a pension scheme trustee.

Pam has a real passion for education and is a trustee of a local secondary school. She has other charitable and community interests in Gloucestershire.

Elonka Soros

External Member of Council
Member of Governance and Nominations Committee

Member of Remuneration and Human Resources Committee
Member of Honorary Awards Committee

Elonka is a diversity and inclusion specialist who works with companies in the broadcast media and associated creative industries. She is a former BBC journalist and programme maker. As Editor Diversity and Communities, she ran the BBC English Regions network of specialist community programmes and partnerships with Arts Council England and the Community Media Association.

Elonka left the BBC in 2016 having spent two years working in the Director General’s office developing and delivering an innovative Corporation wide diversity action plan. She is currently engaged in projects with UK and European creative organisations where her particular interest is in the portrayal and media participation of minority communities.

David Soutter

External Member of Council
Chair of Finance and General Purposes Committee
Vice-Chair of Remuneration and Human Resources Committee

David is a chartered accountant – a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales.

He trained with Deloitte, Haskins and Sells in London and qualified in 1981. He worked in practice for 10 years after qualifying in 1981 in the audit and then consultancy practice and then back in the main audit and accounting practice in London, Southampton and finally Birmingham offices.

For the last thirty years he has worked as an executive director responsible for Finance, but also Strategy and Planning, Legal, Procurement, IT, Estates, Commercial Services at the following universities: Gloucestershire, Hull and Coventry as a full-time employee and more recently at Liverpool, Manchester and Durham as an interim on a part time basis.

Since retiring from full-time employment in 2016 until earlier in 2023, he ran a consultancy business, Soutter Associates providing business and financial consultancy to the education and charitable sectors.

At the University, to which he is delighted to reconnect, he chairs the Finance and General Purposes Committee.

David is a graduate of Trinity College, Oxford University where he studied Literae Humaniores and achieved first class honours in both stages. He also has an honorary MA.

He is married and has lived in Cirencester since 1991 with his wife Julie and two dogs. Their two daughters live in London. He has volunteered with Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust and the Corinium Museum and is a keen sportsman.

The Rt Revd Robert Springett

Vice-Chair of Council
Chair of Council, Foundation, and Chaplaincy Committee
Chair of Remuneration and Human Resources Committee
Member of Honorary Awards Committee

Robert is the Bishop of Tewkesbury sharing with the Bishop of Gloucester in the oversight of the work and ministry of the church in diocese which covers the whole of Gloucestershire and parts of South Gloucestershire. He is chair of the Diocesan Board of Education overseeing the work of its 116 church schools. In the wider church he is chair of the Archbishop of York’s Youth Trust.

Before moving to Gloucestershire Robert, who studied business before reading Theology at Nottingham and undertaking postgraduate studies at Kings College London, was Rector of Wanstead, in East London.  He was also Area Dean of the London Borough of Redbridge and an Honorary Canon of Chelmsford Cathedral.  Prior to this he served as a curate in Colchester and then Basildon, parish priest in South Ockendon, Thurrock and as Area Dean of Thurrock.

Robert is married to Helen, who is a primary school teacher and they have two adult daughters.

Joe Sucksmith

General Staff Member of Council

Joe has worked at the University for over 16 years across a variety of student support roles. His current role is within the International Student Services team, where he specialises in the provision of immigration advice and guidance to international students. In addition, in his capacity as Convenor for the workplace trade union, UNISON, Joe provides specialist help to Professional Services staff and leads on negotiations with university management regarding staff terms and conditions.

Joe has degrees from Cardiff University and University of Bristol, and is passionate about the vital role higher education can play in advancing public purpose and democratising society.

Outside work, Joe enjoys spending time with his family, campaigning on a range of local and international issues (notably in support of Palestinian rights), long walks in the countryside, and pretending he can still play competitive football.

Julie Walkling

External Member of Council
Vice-Chair of Audit & Risk Committee
Member of Council, Foundation, and Chaplaincy Committee
Member of Governance and Nominations Committee

Julie has worked in higher education since 1995. Originally starting as a University Counsellor, she worked at the University of North London /London Met, ARU, the Royal Agricultural University and the University of the West of Scotland. She has been a senior manager with oversight of the student experience in a range of professional services and cross institutional roles at Director, Executive and Board levels since 1999. She has also served on a number of Boards and was on the AMOSSHE Executive for 9 years including 2 as Chair. She is currently Deputy Chair of Exeter University Students’ Guild, a role that supports the President/Chair.

Julie is Executive Director of Academic Partnerships for the JS Group, a company that partners with universities to provide study-related resources and services for their students. Prior to working in HE, she worked in the voluntary and private sectors, was an LGBT activist and co-founded a community therapy centre that is still thriving in Holloway, London.

Peter Warry

External Member of Council
Senior Independent Governor

In attendance at Governance and Nominations Committee

Peter is a former chairman of several PLCs, private companies and public bodies, most recently he was chairman of The Royal Mint and Cobalt Health. He is a past chairman of the Particle Physics and Astronomy Research Council and of the Science and Technology Facilities Council. Previously in his executive career he worked in a variety of industrial sectors finishing as Chief Executive of Nuclear Electric (based in Gloucester).

Peter read Engineering and Economics at Oxford University and is an Honorary Fellow of Merton College, Oxford. He is also a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering.

Peter was a member of the original Cheltenham & Gloucester College Advisory Board which supported the College’s application for university status. He was awarded an Honorary Doctorate by the University in 2017.

Peter is married with one daughter and has lived in Cheltenham for the last 25 years. He spends his spare time doing Archaeology (in which he holds a PhD).

Ibby Williams

Student Member of Council
Member of Council, Foundation and Chaplaincy Committee

Ibby is currently the Education and Community officer at the University of Gloucestershire Students’ Union, where she works to improve the educational experience of students, as well as lobbying student concerns to the university. She also runs her year long priority campaign, “Disabled Students: Accessibility and Adjustments” focusing on improving disabled students’ access to reasonable adjustments.

Ibby graduated from the University of Gloucestershire after studying Drama and Performance Practice, where she learnt a wide range of skills such as performance, stage management, directing, and writing. She is passionate about all things involving theatre and loves getting involved in creative work. During her time as a student, she threw herself into work at the Students’ Union, being a course rep, Student Subject Co-Ordinator, and Mental Health Network Lead.

Outside of her role at the Students’ Union, Ibby enjoys crafts, video games, and exercise. She also cares deeply about climate change and animal welfare and enjoys involving herself in research surrounding those topics.


Academic Board Member of Council

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