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Stephen Willis, Chief Financial Officer

Photo of Stephen Willis


The Chief Financial Officer is responsible for the financial strategy of the University, providing direction and oversight, and driving financial and operating performance to ensure the financial sustainability of the University.

The Chief Financial Officer advises on major capital projects and other investments, and provides oversight following our success in securing £225 million of borrowing through a private placement, our first capital markets issue.

Professional background and expertise

Stephen joined Durham University in April 2019 from the University of Hull, where he served as Chief Financial Officer.

Before that he was Director of Finance and Resources at Leeds Beckett University and the Head of Group Financial Planning at the University of Leeds. He has also worked in the printing and computer software industries.

Stephen was named Finance Director of the Year 2018 at the Yorkshire Accountancy Awards, having won the Finance Director of the Year (not for profit organisations) award at the Northern Finance Director Awards in 2017.

Education and qualifications

Stephen has been a member of the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA) since 1996, having qualified whilst working for the University of Leeds.