Movers and Shakers May 2020

Professor Dame Nancy Rothwell has been appointed as Chair of the Russell Group. Professor Rothwell, President and Vice-Chancellor of The University of Manchester, will take over on 1 September 2020 from the current Chair, Professor Sir Anton Muscatelli, Principal and Vice-Chancellor of the University of Glasgow. Professor Rothwell will be eighth Vice-Chancellor to Chair the Russell Group and the first woman to take on the role.

Professor Stuart Corbridge, Vice-chancellor of Durham University, will be stepping down from his role on July 31, 2021 due to health reasons. The university says it has now started an international search for a new leader that will be led by its governing body, Durham University Council. In a statement to staff and students, Professor Corbridge said he would continue to lead the university at full capacity until that date.

Anglia Ruskin University has appointed Dr Mark Norrish as Pro-Vice-Chancellor for International and Partnerships, a role that involves strengthening ARU’s links across the globe. Dr Norrish has been working in Higher Education for more than 20 years and joins ARU from Coventry University where he was Associate Dean for Global Engagement in the university’s Faculty of Health and Life Sciences.

Paul Inman has been appointed as Pro-Vice-Chancellor (International) for the University of Reading. He joins the University on 1 August 2020 from Oxford Brookes University, where he is currently Pro-Vice-Chancellor (International Recruitment) and Dean of the Faculty of Technology, Design and Environment.

The University of Reading has also appointed Carol Fuller as its new Head of the Institute of Education (IoE). She will take up her new role on 1 September 2020, replacing Cathy Tissot who is stepping down from the role after six years. A Professor of the Sociology of Education, Carol is currently the Research Division Lead for the IoE.

Professor Chris Pitelis joins the University of Leeds as Head of the International Business Division, Professor of International Business, Organization and Strategy and member of the Centre for International Business at University of Leeds (CIBUL). Chris is a Life Fellow at Queens’ College, Cambridge, and Director of the Cambridge-founded charitable Centre for International Business and Management.

Siobhan O’Reilly has been appointed as the new, permanent Director of Human Resources (HR) at the University of Sussex. Currently the Chief People Officer at the charity Christian Aid, Siobhan previously spent a decade as Deputy Director of HR at Loughborough University. She will take up her role at the University of Sussex at the end of June.

The Faculty of Health and Medicine at Lancaster University has announced that Dr Marina Anderson will be joining Lancaster Medical School as the new Head of Medicine. She will be starting in the role as of July 1. Dr Anderson joins from the University of Liverpool where she is currently Senior Lecturer (Clinical)/Honorary Consultant Rheumatology, at the Liverpool School of Medicine.

Marios Politis has been appointed Professor of Neurology and Director of the Mireille Gillings Neuroimaging Centre at the University of Exeter Medical School. Marios and his Neurodegeneration Imaging Group are moving to Exeter after six years of leading Neuroimaging research at King’s College London. They will conduct much of their research at the University’s brand new Mireille Gillings Neuroimaging Centre, which Marios will lead.

Professor Dame Ottoline Leyser DBE FRS, the distinguished plant scientist and Director of the Sainsbury Laboratory at the University of Cambridge, has been named as the new Chief Executive of UK Research and Innovation (UKRI), the national funding agency investing in science and research in the UK. Dame Ottoline will take up her position on 29 June 2020, replacing Sir Mark Walport, who is standing down.


That’s all for now. We’ll see you next month for another round of Movers & Shakers.

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Posted by Sarah Walker

Sarah Walker

Higher Education


Emma Wilkins of Dixon Walter, led the recruitment campaign for this key appointment. It follows successful academic leadership appointments elsewhere for the University. Emma has taken much time to understand the institution and provide key advice on how to market the opportunities to ensure the best talent is found.

Higher Education


Hands up who’s ready for half term! Phew what a busy start to the academic year it’s been. At Dixon Walter, we’ve been busy working on some fantastic appointments with existing clients and new. Thank you to all those who continue to support us.