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Board of governors

Dr Muhammad Safwan Akram

Dr Muhammad Safwan AkramPrincipal Lecturer in Biological & Process Engineering in the School of Health & Life Sciences. Safwan obtained his PhD in Analytical Biotechnology from the Department of Chemical Engineering and Biotechnology, University of Cambridge where he also did his post-doc developing low cost diagnostics. Prior to that he completed his M.Phil in Bioscience Enterprise under the auspices of Cambridge/MIT Partnership. His work has been published in reputed journals like Nature Biotechnology, Lab on a Chip & Annual Reviews of Analytical Chemistry. He has been awarded Medimmune Award and CambridgeSens Innovative Idea award for research excellence. He provides consultancy to venture capital funds, biotech and pharma companies. In 2018, Safwan was voted by students to win a University Star Award for most outstanding teaching . Safwan is also an Associate Director of the University’s state of the art research and innovation facility, National Horizons Centre.


Dean Benson

Dean BensonCEO, Visualsoft


Paul Booth OBE, Deputy Chairman

Paul BoothChair of Tees Valley Local Enterprise Partnership; former resident, SABIC-UK Petrochemicals; former Vice President of Huntsman Petrochemicals UK; ICI Teesside Sites Engineering Manager; Deputy chairman of NASPI (National skills academy for the process sector); Director of TTE (Apprentice and adult training college); Deputy chairman of NEPIC (north eastern process cluster); Board member of the CIA (chemical industry association); former chairman of Redcar and Cleveland college.


Ada Burns

Ada BurnsAda was Chief Executive of Darlington Borough Council until 2018 and prior to moving to the north east in 2005, occupied senior positions in London Councils. She has played leadership roles in the Tees Valley and in the North East, and has experience in governance of FE and Sixth form institutions. Ada is currently an Associate with the Local Government Association, and Vice Chair of public policy think tank, The New Local Government Network.


Dann Cooley

Senior Technician: School of Health & Life Sciences.


James Cross CDIR FInstD

James CrossFounding Chief Executive of Urban Green Newcastle, a pioneering new charity which has taken over all of Newcastle’s 33 parks and over 60 of its allotments from the city council. Chair, Newcastle Parks Enterprises. Founder and Chair of Teddy’s Towers Charitable Association. Board Director, Environment Bank. Managing Director, Westgate Consultancy. Trustee, th Redcar and Cleveland Voluntary Development Agency. Former: Chief Executive of Natural England, Chief Executive Marine Management Organisation. Former Member of Defra’s Executive Committee with responsibility for Strategic Leadership and Governance of The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.


Professor Paul Croney

Professor Paul CroneyVice-Chancellor and Chief Executive of Teesside University.


Nick Johnson

Nick JohnsonCommercial Director, CPI


Professor Philip Jones

Professor Philip JonesFormer Vice-Chancellor: Sheffield Hallam University


Yasmin Khan

Yasmin KhanDirector/trustee of the Teesside-based Halo Project charity; National Advisor to the Welsh Government on Violence Against Women, Domestic Abuse & Sexual Violence; Alumna of Teesside University.


Sue Kiddle

Sue Kiddle, Consultant and Director of Advantage Business Coaching LtdConsultant and Director of Advantage Business Coaching Ltd. Performance coach, mentor and senior business leader in the service sector. Former Area Corporate Director at Barclays in the North East.


Alan Lofthouse

Alan LofthousePresident Education, Teesside University Students' Union. Alan is originally from Richmond in Yorkshire and has completed both undergraduate and postgraduate courses at Teesside University. He has played a key role in revitalising Teesside University Cricket Club during that time and is in his second year as President Education having been re-elected by students in March 2020. He is one of the three lead members of the Teesside University Students' Union Board of Trustees. In his role, he works closely with senior academic staff at the university to ensure the highest standards of learning and teaching, he also gathers feedback from School and Course Reps and runs campaigns around academic issues amongst many other responsibilities. He is one of two Student Officers on the Board of Governors ensuring all students' voices are heard when top-level decisions are being made.


Alastair MacColl, Chairman and Pro-Chancellor

Alastair MacCollChairman, Umi Ltd. Non Executive Advisor to a number of companies. Previously led several high profile organisations in the contract services and media sectors.


Fiona Macleod

Fiona MacleodManaging Director, Billions Europe


Michael Poole

Michael PooleSenior Partner, Michael Poole Property Consultants. Magistrate, currently Deputy Bench Chairman of Cleveland Magistrates Court and former Chair of Lord Chancellors Advisory Committee for Cleveland. Chair of The Teesside Family Foundation. Former Chair of The Hospital of God at Greatham. Honoured Fellow of The National Association of Estate Agents. Deputy Lord Lieutenant County Durham.


George Reeves

George ReevesPresident Activities, Teesside University Students' Union. George is originally from Aldershot and has completed both undergraduate and postgraduate courses at Teesside University. He has been heavily involved in student life working as a member of student staff, chairing the influential Athletic Union body and successfully leading Teesside University Men's Rugby Union Club. He is in his second year as President Activities having been re-elected by students in March 2020. He is one of the three lead members of the Teesside University Students' Union Board of Trustees. In his role, he also works closely with sports clubs, societies, and individual students to improve various aspects of the student experience including recreation and employability skills amongst many other responsibilities. He is one of two Student Officers on the Board of Governors ensuring all students' voices are heard when top-level decisions are being made.


Dermot Russell

Dermot RussellGroup Chief Financial Officer, PD Ports. Formerly: Northumbrian Water Group; Grainger Trust plc; Deloitte Haskins & Sells (later Coopers & Lybrand Deloitte)


Steve Tonks

Steve TonksFormer Group Executive and Board Director Hertel BV, Managing Director of Hertel UK and Board Director The Banks Group. Governor of Galley Hill primary trust.


Claire Vaughan

Claire VaughanSenior Corporate Counsel, Establishment Labs


Godfrey Worsdale OBE

Godfrey Worsdale OBEDirector, Henry Moore Foundation. Formerly: Director, Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art, Gateshead; Founding Director, MIMA, Middlesbrough; Director, Southampton City Art Gallery; Director, Cultural Instructions, London