Movers and Shakers June 2019

Dixon Walter have recently assisted the Royal College of Art (RCA) with a key appointment: Director of Building Operations. Following a thorough campaign, we are delighted to announce that Angela Mitten has been appointed. Angel joined the College on 3 June from Newham College London, where she was Executive Director/Vice Principal, Estates & Operations.

We have also assisted ucisa in the appointment of their very first Chief Executive Officer – Deborah Green. Deborah has a wealth of marketing and Higher Education experience, most recently as Director of Student Recruitment at the University of Hull following five years as Chief Executive of Marketing Leeds and 5 years at Leeds Beckett University, where she was a member of the Executive Board as Director of Marketing and Corporate Communications.

Queen Margaret University has announced that Sir Paul Grice, Clerk and Chief Executive of the Scottish Parliament, will be appointed as the University’s new Principal and Vice-Chancellor. Sir Paul has an outstanding record in governance and leadership at a national level, including high-level experience in academic research policy and university finance.

Matthew Blain has been appointed as Executive Director of UCL Human Resources. Matthew will be taking up his new post from 29 July 2019. He joins UCL from Boots UK, where he has been Director of HR Operations since March 2015.

Professor Nora de Leeuw has been appointed as the inaugural Executive Dean of the Faculty of Engineering & Physical Sciences at the University of Leeds. Professor de Leeuw is a distinguished scientist, currently the Pro Vice-Chancellor (International & Europe) and Professor of Computational Chemistry at Cardiff University, where she has also led the Doctoral Academy. Professor de Leeuw will take up the post on 1 January 2020.

Sonita Alleyne was elected Master of Jesus College, Cambridge, making her the first black person to be appointed to lead an Oxbridge college. Alleyne will take over from current Master Ian White this October. She is also the first woman to lead the college since its establishment in 1496. Alleyne is currently the chairwoman of the British Board of Film Classification’s management council. She previously held roles in production and media companies, including various board roles.

Professor Momna Hejmadi has been appointed as Associate Dean for Learning and Teaching at the University of Bath. Momna has recently been promoted to Professor of Bioscience Education and Technology on the basis of her outstanding contribution to both Teaching and Management and Leadership. She will be starting her role as Associate Dean for Learning & Teaching on 1 August 2019.

Professor Julia Bennell has been appointed as the new Executive Dean of Leeds University Business School. Currently Deputy Dean at Leeds University Business School, Professor Bennell will take up the post from 1 January 2020.

Following an internal recruitment process, the University of Sheffield has appointed Faculty Vice-Presidents for Arts and Humanities, Science and Social Sciences. Professor Susan Fitzmaurice has been appointed to the role of Vice-President and Head of the Faculty of Arts and Humanities. Professor John Derrick has been appointed to the role of Vice-President and Head of the Faculty of Science. Professor Craig Watkins has been appointed to the role of Vice-President and Head of the Faculty of Social Sciences. Susan, John, and Craig have already been successfully carrying out these roles.

The University of Leeds has appointed Professor Edmund Linfield as the first Director for the Bragg Centre for Materials Research. Currently Chair of Terahertz Electronics at Leeds, Professor Linfield has helped establish the University as a global leader in terahertz technology.

Caroline Quest will take up the role of Director of Research Innovation Services (RIS) at the University of Bath from 19 August. A former Director of Research & Enterprise at the University of Leicester and Director of Enterprise & Innovation at Queen Mary University of London, Caroline has been a higher education, research commercialisation and knowledge exchange consultant since 2016, working for a wide array of clients.

Coventry University has appointed John Quirk as a new associate pro-vice-chancellor for international development as part of the institution’s ambitious plans to grow its global engagement agenda. John also becomes director of the university’s Academic Partnership Unit and brings with him a wealth of experience of internationalisation in higher education from his previous role as director of international affairs for the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan).

In September 2019, Professor Ed Wilding will be joining the University of Birmingham as Head of the School of Psychology. Professor Wilding is currently a Professor in Psychology in the Faculty of Science at the University of Nottingham and prior to that, he was Head of the School of Psychology at Cardiff University.

The University for the Creative Arts (UCA) has appointed Professor John Pymm as Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Global Engagement and Portfolio Development). John joins UCA from Wolverhampton University, where he was Dean of the Faculty of Arts, on 1 July 2019.

Jenny Tucker has been appointed Chief Operating Officer at the University of Liverpool after serving in the role on an interim basis since June 2018. Jenny joined the Senior Management Team last year when she was appointed interim Chief Operating Officer. Jenny’s appointment follows an external recruitment process and takes effect immediately.

Dr Natalie Wilmot has been appointed as MBA Director at the University of Bradford and will join the university on 2 September 2019. Natalie has been a member of the International Business subject group at Sheffield Hallam University for the past seven years, during which time she held a number of roles including Admissions Tutor, and most recently, Executive MBA Course Leader.

The University of Glasgow is delighted to announce the appointment of Professor Sara Carter OBE as Vice-Principal and Head of the College of Social Sciences. She will move from the University of Strathclyde, where she is Associate Principal (Learning & Teaching) and Professor of Entrepreneurship at the Hunter Centre for Entrepreneurship, Strathclyde Business School. Professor Carter will take up her appointment at the University of Glasgow with effect from 1 October 2019.

Professor Dame Elan Closs Stephens DBE has been appointed Pro-Chancellor of Aberystwyth University. The honorary role centres on ambassadorial and ceremonial duties, including presiding over the University’s annual graduation ceremonies. A graduate of Oxford’s Somerville College, Professor Dame Stephens is Emeritus Professor of Communications and Creative Industries at Aberystwyth University and former Head of the Department of the Theatre, Film and Television Studies. She is currently the BBC Board member for Wales and the Electoral Commissioner for Wales. Professor Stephens will take up the role of Pro-Chancellor in January 2020.

The University of Sussex has appointed Professor Jeffrey Hill as the new Director of the Sussex Drug Discovery Centre (SDDC) within the School of Life Sciences. Professor Hill will take up his post in August 2019. Professor Hill is currently Head of Biology in the Experimental Therapeutics Centre (ETC ) within the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) in Singapore.


That’s all for now. Good luck to all those embarking on new challenges! We’ll see you next month for another round of Movers & Shakers.


If you would like to chat to our team about an opportunity you may need help with, or perhaps you are seeking your next challenge please contact us on 0191 500 5500 /

Posted by Sarah Walker

Sarah Walker

Higher Education


With Spring well and truly sprung (can someone please tell the weather forecast!), we take stock of the current landscape of Senior Recruitment within HE and certainly it has not been without its challenges of late.

Join us as we take a snapshot of the big topics affecting HE Leadership and Talent Acquisition.

Higher Education


The winners of the AUDE Awards for 2024 were announced at the association’s annual conference at Northumbria University on 17 April 2024. As ever the standard of the nominations was so strong, and to find one winner amongst such high quality submissions was extremely tough for our judges. Nevertheless a winner there must be, and in eight categories! Every single participant should be very proud, for the work done as well as the initiative and energy and drive shown, and we hope they will feel boosted for the whole of the coming year by the acknowledgement from their peers of the great work involved. Gold, silver and bronzes prizes were awarded as shown below