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Class Notes

We continue to be inspired by our alumni. Each month, we highlight a selection of your achievements to share with our community. 

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April 2024

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Line Break imageProfessor Patrick Armstrong (BSc in Geography & Geology, 1960-63; MA in Human Geography, 1966, University College) has written short biographies of Alfred Russel Wallace, co-discoverer of the concept of evolution through natural selection, and Sir Richard Owen, a strident opponent of evolutionary ideas. He has previously published several books on Charles Darwin, for which he was awarded a DLitt from the University of Western Australia. He is currently writing a book on John Ray, 17th century naturalist and theologian.

Line Break imageKaren Charlton née James (PGCE in Education, University College Stockton, 1997-98) recently published her latest novel, 'The Resurrection Mystery', the seventh in her Detective Lavender Mysteries series. She is delighted that 24 hours after its release, it was ranked within the top ten books of Historical Mysteries in the UK and labelled 'hot new release' in Historical Fiction in the USA.

Line Break imageFelicity Cunliffe-Lister (Law, St Mary's College, 1989-92) has been revealed as the Liberal Democrats' candidate for the first mayor of York and North Yorkshire.

Line Break imageAndrew Dobson (Ecology, St Cuthbert's Society, 2000-03) is approaching the first anniversary of the publication of his book 'Flaws of Nature: the Limits and Liabilities of Natural Selection', which focuses on the quirks of evolutionary biology.

Line Break imageEd Gamble (Philosophy, Hatfield College, 2004-07) has embarked on his new UK-wide tour, 'Hot Diggity Dog', promising comedy involving classic Gamble ranting, raving and spluttering.  

Line Break imageJeremy Ho (Combined Arts, St Cuthbert's Society, 2015-18) has been hired by Aviva Investors as part of the Real Assets Responsible Investment Team

Line Break imageKeir McGovern (Law, St John's College, 2014-17) has been appointed to North East law firm Hay & Kilner as part of their award-winning private client team.

Line Break imageSimon Mold (English Language & Medieval Literature, 1976-79; PGCE in Education, 1979-80, University College) is celebrating the first anniversary of the global release of cantata, 'Passiontide'.

Line Break imageWaleed Noor (Business Finance, Stephenson College, 2001-04) has been appointed Managing Director and Head of Middle East Distribution at Monroe Capital.

Line Break imageKathy Spencer née Heap (Education, College of St Hild & St Bede,1970-73) and Jeremy Spencer (Education, College of St Hild & St Bede, 1970-73) have published two books - 'Sailing by on Sal Darago' volumes 1 and 2 - which detail their adventures and experiences from having sailed around the world twice.

Line Break imageSteve Tunnicliffe (Arabic with Middle East / Islamic Studies, Trevelyan College,1990-94; MBA, 1999-2003) has published 'Somalia: The Land of Camel Milk and Honey', which reflects on his peaceful childhood in the country prior to the outbreak of Civil War and subsequent conflict. Proceeds from the book go directly to Unicef's East Africa Crisis appeal.

Professionally, Steve has recently joined the Board of Commercis Plc focusing on strategy to support the company through its next stage of transformation. Steve also continues to offer mentoring to current students at our Leadership Academy and at Durham University Business School and was previously awarded 'Mentor of the Year 2017/18' at the Business School.

Line Break imageSally Wainwright (Sociology, Van Mildert College,1973-76) has co-edited 'Women's Rights, Gender Wrongs: the global impact of gender-identity ideology', which tackles the diverse ways that the global spread of gender-identity ideology has affected all aspects of women's lives.

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March 2024

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Line Break imageDr Adam Berlie (PhD in Physics, Ustinov College, 2008-13) has written an article on his career to date, what it's like to be a neurodivergent researcher, and embracing neurodiversity in neutron science.

Line Break imageDr Emma Bridges (PhD in Classics, Ustinov College, 2000-03) has published 'Warriors' Wives: Ancient Greek Myth and Modern Experience' with Oxford University Press. It compares the experiences of these mythical characters with those of contemporary military spouses. Listen to Emma discuss it in a dedicated New Books Network podcast episode.

Line Break imageAdam Brocklebank (Sport Health & Exercise, Collingwood College, 2014-17) has signed a new three-year deal with Newcastle Falcons rugby club as prop-forward.

Line Break imageMatthew Featherstone (Business Finance, Stephenson College, 2001-04) has been named as Newmark's new Head of Debt & Structured Finance in the UK and Europe.

Line Break imageJohn Hindle (Community & Youth Work, St Cuthbert's Society, 2000-03) has published 'Hidden Depths' poetry pamphlet following a three year collaboration and exhibition at King Street Arts in Lancaster.

Line Break imageSimon Lazenby (Natural Sciences, College of St Hild & St Bede, 1993-96) is named as part of Sky Sports motorsport presenting team for 2024.

Line Break imageRupert Lloyd Thomas (Combined Arts, University College, 1970-73) talks to Computer Weekly about his experience of IT decision making in the Post Office in the 1970s as a former employee.

Line Break imageDr Fiona Lovatt (PhD in Biological Sciences, 2002-08), sheep veterinary expert, has been awarded the National Sheep Association's George Hedley memorial award for outstanding contribution to the industry.

Line Break imageRevd Dr David Pennant (PGCE in Education, St Chad's College, 1973-74) has penned 'The Riddle of One Samuel', exploring wordplays in Hebrew text.

Line Break imageDr Anna Rae (MA in Counselling, Graduate Society, 2001-02) completed her doctorate in International Psychology in 2022 and has since taken up the position of Chair of the International Committee for Women within the American Psychological Association, alongside other roles.

Line Break imageKate Silverton (Psychology, St Cuthbert's Society, 1990-94) talks to the Mirror about quitting her position as a high-profile BBC newsreader to retrain as a child therapist and author of parenting advice books. 

Line Break imageOlivia Sparkhall (Music, Hatfield College, 1995-98) and her book 'A Young Person's Guide to Vocal Health' have been honoured as a finalist in the Music & Drama Education Awards 2024.

Line Break imageJames Stewart (Theology, St John's College, 1996-99) is currently on 'The Narrow Road' tour with Riding Lights Theatre Company. He also balances tour guide duties at The Real Mary King's Close in Edinburgh with speed coaching online and in-person with The Elocution Coach.

Line Break imageJames Timpson (Geography, Hatfield College, 1991-94) CEO of Timpson (best known for show repair and key cutting services), has been interviewed on BBC Radio 4's Profile show about his life as a businessman and philanthropist.

Line Break imageEdward Twiddy (BSc in Geography, 1988-91; PhD in Geography, 1992-97, Collingwood College) has been named as Board Chair at Northstar Venture. He retains his position as Director of Environment, Society and Government at Atom Bank.

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February 2024

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Line Break imageDr Peter Appleton (Psychology, St John's College & St Cuthbert's Society, 1967-70) will be releasing new book 'What Matters and Who Matters to Young People Leaving Care' in Spring 2024.

Line Break imageDr Nigel Aston (History, St Cuthbert's Society, 1976-79; current member of Hatfield College SCR) has published 'Enlightened Oxford: The University and the Cultural and Political Life of Eighteenth-Century Britain and Beyond'.

Line Break imageDr Emma Black (BA in Business Finance, John Snow College, 2005-08; MSc in Finance & Investment, Ustinov College, 2008-09; PhD in Accounting & Finance, Ustinov College, 2009-14) has become the new President of the Chartered Institute for Securities and Investment North East Committee. 

Line Break imageJack Edwards (English Literature, St Cuthbert's Society, 2017-20) is the subject of a profile for his work within the 'StudyTube' community on YouTube for his engaging, informative content focusing on academic study, productivity and university life as the self-proclaimed resident librarian of the internet. 

Line Break imageCallum Elson (History, Collingwood College, 2017-20) qualified for the GB squad and was selected as captain for the European Cross Country Championships in Brussels in December 2023.

Line Break imageGabriel Francis-Dehqani (Music, University College, 2018-21) has won the fourth edition of the International Contemporary Music Interpretation Competition (article in Italian).

Line Break imageDr Zulkifli Hasan (PhD in Government & International Affairs, Ustinov College, 2008-11) takes on the position of Religious Affairs Deputy Minister in Malaysia.

Line Break imageTess Howard (Geography, University College, 2017-22), who plays hockey for Team GB, has spoken to Olympics.com about her dissertation and how it has led to a 'kit revolution' in hockey.

Line Break imageDr Joanne Johnson (Geology, Hatfield College, 1995-98) was named as a recipient of the prestigious Polar Medal in the King's New Year Honours List 2023. The Polar Medal is awarded to a small number of individuals who have given outstanding achievement and service to the UK in the field of polar research each year. Joanne received her medal from Princess Anne at Windsor Castle in an investitute ceremony on 24 October 2023. She is the 21st woman to be awarded this medal of over 900 recipients.

Line Break imageSindhura Kalyanam (MBA, Ustinov College, 2019-20) has launched new YouTube channel, AnalytixSync, which has as its objective unravelling often unnoticed mysteries and insights across a wide range of spheres, from uncovering hidden destinations, to financial round-ups from across the world and FIFA World Rankings.

Line Break imageThomas Lister (Economics, University College, 1973-76) takes over as CEO of Global Ship Lease, an independent owner of containerships, after having held numerous senior executive roles since the company's establishment in 2007. 

Line Break imageProfessor Roger Little (BA in French, 1964; PhD in French, Hatfield College, 1970) celebrates the milestone 200th volume of his series of books 'Autrement Mêmes', which focuses on texts representing 'Other' peoples, especially those colonised by the French. The collection marked its 20th anniversary in 2021 with an interview with Roger (article and interview in French).

Line Break imageAmbika Mod (English Literature, St Mary's College, 2014-17) has been named as one of OK Magazine's women to watch in 2024.

Line Break imageRevd Canon Daniel O'Connor (English, University College, 1951-54) has published 'India and the End of Empire: Selected Writings of Daniel O'Connor', containing an introduction to his many writings throughout his career.

Line Break imageMatthew Stafford (Software Engineering, St Cuthbert's Society, 2003-06) co-authored 'Find Your 9others' alongside Katie Lewis last year, building on the success of the 9others network the duo founded in 2011. The network now consists of 5,000+ entrepreneurs in over 45 cities around the world. 'Find your 9others' focuses on questions to ask yourself as you start and scale your own start-up, and contains stories and insights that Matthew has learned since founding the network.

Line Break imageDr Leonidas Tzonis (MSc in Finance & Investment, Graduate Society, 1998-99; PG Certificate in Higher Education, Graduate Society, 2005; staff member in the Department of Economics, 2002-06) has been awarded the Office of Archon Ostiarios (Office of Lord Host) at the Patriarchal Church.

Line Break imageJack Williams (Law, University College, 2008-11) is the joint winner of the prestigious Fred Ebb award for song-writing.

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