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College Council members

Council is the governing body for the College. The accountable body is St John’s College Charity and Limited Company – Charity number 1141701 and Limited Company No 113496 (England and Wales) VAT No 334 6364 57. Council members are company directors registered with Companies House and charity trustees as defined by section 97 of the Charities Act 1993.

St John’s College Council meets four times a year in September, December, March and June. The September meeting is usually devoted largely to student matters. The December meeting is extended to include a strategy workshop with other members of College. The March meeting is largely Cranmer business and June is when draft budgets are agreed for the following year.

Meet College Council members

Ex Officio Members

  • The Principal, Rev Prof David Wilkinson
  • The Director of Finance and Adminstration, Mrs Angela Cook
  • The Warden, Rev Dr Philip Plyming
  • The Vice Principal, Dr Rebecca Bouveng
  • The St John’s College John’s Common Room President, Alice Butler
  • The Cranmer Common Room President, Jasmine Barber
  • The Vice-Chancellor of Durham University

Elected Members

Mrs Susanne Bradley

Susanne has over 20 years’ strategic and operational Human Resources Management experience gained in the Post Office, Policing, Local Government and for 13 years’ in Higher Education. She enjoys supporting managers to meet their business and legislative needs and requirements, using her proficiency across the full range of HR services/interventions. These include HR strategy, role analysis, staff recruitment and selection, developing occupational health units and restructuring to enhance organisational change.

With employee relations experience, Susanne has a strong interest in engaging collaboratively with students and trades unions, employee engagement and diversity and equality. Areas of particular interest include: building professional networks that facilitate success within the HR and pensions fields; project management; implementation of job evaluation and graded pay structures; organisational restructuring and role design; pensions auto enrolment and developing behaviours/competency frameworks to support staff development and their rewards and recognition. Susanne has strong links with the NE of England as well as Malaysia and volunteers at an animal sanctuary and drama club when time allows. She hopes to contribute to College Council business by addressing opportunities and challenges flexibly and with students in mind at all times.


Bridget Cass

profile portraitBridget Cass is the Executive for The Jerusalem Trust, one of the Sainsbury Family Charitable Trusts. She has been a director of Jerusalem Productions since 1991. Previously Bridget worked for Thames Television as its Community Education Officer, and also worked on its adult education programmes. In the 1990s she worked for a number of media groups, including the Campaign for Quality Television, Public Voice and the Media Trust.



Clare Louise Curran

Clare had a career in People Management spanning some 40 years, working in both public and private sector organisations, including B&Q, Automobile Association, National Government - National Care Standards Commission, NHS – Newcastle Hospitals and North Tees and Hartlepool, and Higher Education Institutions: Teesside, Northumbria and Durham.  Clare led many Regional and National activities and negotiations during her career.

Clare’s last role prior to retirement was that of Director of Human Resources and Organisational Development at Durham University.    Clare was a member of the Vice Chancellor’s Strategy Group, and was asked alongside two senior academics to lead on stakeholder presentations for the launch of the University’s new strategy.  Among her achievements in this role, she introduced the University’s first HR Strategy, and HR IT System, new methods for recruitment and selection, developed new pay structures including the living wage and led a review of the University local pension scheme.  

Clare’s roles have seen her engage in a plethora People Management activities, including Strategy, Recruitment and Retention, negotiation with Trade Unions, Pay and Reward, and Employment Law. Since retiring in 2017, Clare continues to support organisations voluntarily with her HR expertise, also giving back to the local community by volunteering. 


Dr Michael Gilmore

Michael was Academic Registrar at Durham University from 2009 to 2021. As Academic Registrar he was responsible for a very broad range of institutional-wide responsibilities and functions, which touch every stage in the student lifecycle from initial applicant inquiry to graduation, and include support for the development of academic strategy and policy. Michael has played national roles as chair of the Academic Registrars Council (ARC) and chair of the national Student Finance Operations Stakeholder Group at the Student Loan Company, which was responsible, on behalf of the sector, for overseeing the operational changes required to introduce the new student fee regime.

Prior to coming to Durham, Michael was Director of Governance, Planning and Registry at the University of Leicester. He progressed to this role having previously been the head of the Academic Secretariat and Quality Assurance Office at Leicester. Before that he taught philosophy at the Pontificia Università Gregoriana in Rome and served as the Vice-Rector of the Venerable English College there.


Dr Jamie Harrison

Vice-President of St John’s College Council and Visiting Fellow in Healthcare and Religion, Jamie is Chair the House of Laity of the Church of England General Synod, is an appointed member of the Clergy Discipline Commission and an ex-officio member of the Archbishops’ Council. He is also a Lay Canon of Durham Cathedral.

For over 30 years Jamie worked as a GP, initially in Cambridgeshire but spent the majority of his career in Durham City. Here he combined clinical practice with medical education, notably as Deputy Director in the Postgraduate School of Primary Care for the region. During this time he was a GP Adviser to the English Department of Health, leading on GP recruitment and initiation for doctors arriving from Continental Europe, and was also a part-time medical officer at the high-secure Frankland Prison in Durham. He continues to work in teaching and consultancy for the NHS. He was until recently a GP Specialist Adviser to the English Care Quality Commission.

Jamie has published works on topics of vocation for doctors and clergy, governance, the nature of healthcare systems and trust between doctors and their patients. He received the Baxter Award from the European Health Management Association for the book Clinical Governance in Primary Care.


Professor Mike Higton

Mike Higton is Professor of Theology and Ministry in Durham University's Department of Theology and Religion. His post was created in 2013 as part of the ‘Common Awards’ scheme, in which the University became the validating body for most of the institutions around the country offering ordination training (and some other kinds of training) for the Church of England and the Methodist Church, and various ecumenical partners. He provides academic leadership for the partnership, working closely with all the institutions involved and with the Church of England’s Ministry Division, while also teaching in the Department and pursuing his own research.

For the first year of the job, while Mike’s family continued to live in Cambridge, the College provided him with accommodation – so he has had the experience of ‘living in’, and seeing something of the College’s life. He was not the first in his family to do so: he follows in the footsteps of his grandfather, who lived in College in the 1930s while training for ordination.

Rt Revd Robert Innes (President)

Bishop Robert was born in Wolverhampton. He studied engineering at Cambridge University and worked in the electric power industry until 1989 when he went to train for the priesthood at Cranmer Hall. Following his BA (in Theology) in 1991 he stayed to complete a PhD graduating in 1995.

Bishop Robert served in Durham for many years. He was made a deacon at Petertide in 1995 and ordained a priest the next year. He has been a lecturer in systematic theology at St John's College, Durham while serving two titles/curacies: he was ordained to the title of St Cuthbert's Church, Durham and then served a curacy at Sherburn, Pittington and Shadforth from 1997. He remained in these posts until 1999, when he was appointed as vicar of St Mary Magdalene Church in Belmont.

Bishop Robert moved to Brussels, taking his first Diocese in Europe post in 2005, as Chancellor and Senior Chaplain (i.e. the priest-in-charge) of Holy Trinity Pro-Cathedral, Brussels; he was additionally appointed a Chaplain to the Queen (an honorary post) in 2012. He was appointed Bishop in Europe in 2014; he was consecrated as a bishop on 20 July 2014 and installed at Gibraltar Cathedral on 4 September 2014. As Bishop in Europe, his residence is in Waterloo, Belgium.


Bishop Libby Lane

Libby is Bishop of Derby, an alumna of Cranmer Hall (1991-93), and Chair of the Cranmer Committee. She was the first woman to be appointed as a bishop by the Church of England after its General Synod voted in 2014 to allow women to become bishops. From January 2015 to 2019 she was the Bishop of Stockport, a suffragan bishop in the Diocese of Chester, before moving to her present role leading the Diocese of Derby.

Libby studied theology at St Peter’s College, Oxford. After studying for ordination at Cranmer, she was engaged for a number of years after ordination in teaching in Cranmer on gender and family life. Libby has served in the Dioceses of Blackburn, York and Chester in parochial, sector and chaplaincy posts. She has been in part-time, full-time and self-supporting ministry. In 2015 Libby was awarded an honorary Doctor of Divinity (DD) degree by the University of Wales Trinity Saint David. In 2016 was made an honorary fellow of St Peter's College, Oxford, and in 2017, she was awarded an honorary Doctor of Laws (LLD) by the University of Bath, and an honorary Doctor of Divinity (DDiv) by the University of Chester.

Libby has been a Lord Spiritual in the House of Lords since July 2015, and is Lead Bishop for Sport, and for Young Offenders. She is Vice Chair of The Children’s Society and Chair of The Derby Multi Faith Centre. Libby is passionate about supporting future generations of clergy training and has served on College Council and as Chair of Cranmer Committee since 2016.


Professor Geoff Moore

Geoff’s first contact with St John’s College was many years ago when his wedding reception was held there! His wife-to-be, Alison, was a member of the SCR and as a result they were able to use the old Haughton Dining Room (many years before its renovation and extension). Since then, Geoff and Alison have both been members of the SCR – meaning that Geoff’s association with the College has now lasted over 35 years. In 2004, Geoff was appointed as Durham University Business School’s first Professor of Business Ethics. This led to a closer association with the University in general and St John’s in particular, and in 2012 Geoff became President of the SCR. In addition to a general understanding of organisations from his academic work, Geoff has been a non-executive director of two organisations both in the Fair Trade movement – Shared Interest and Traidcraft – so he brings commercial and non-executive experience to his role on Council. He is also a member of the Finance Committee.


Cathrine Ngangira

Born and raised in Chinhoyi, Zimbabwe, Cathrine moved to the UK for a one-year experience of monastic life for young people in London. She moved to Durham to train for ministry at Cranmer Hall.  Cathrine has a background in purchasing and logistics, and administration.  Ordained a Priest in July 2021, Cathrine is serving her curacy in the North downs Team in the Diocese of Canterbury. She has contributed to the Modern Believing Journal (Autumn issue) on Ubuntu and Leadership. Cathrine is currently a member of the Lambeth Conference 2022 Design Group.


Kelly Pattinson

Kelly began working at St John's College in 2007 as a part time administrator for the Catering Department. Thanks to the College's commitment to encouraging staff development and progression she now works full time across three job roles in two departments, continuing the role as Catering Administrator and extending the role to Conference Administrator as well as becoming a Finance Assistant in the Finance Office in 2011.

This combination of roles gives a unique perspective of College life. As a member of the Catering Department Kelly is directly involved with how College works for our students from ‘the ground up’, whilst her Finance and Conference roles mean she is also concerned with how the College operates as a business as well as an educational institution.


Revd Canon Smitha Prasadam

Smitha is the chaplain of St Alban's Church, Copenhagen. Equipped with a BA in English and Language Studies from Leeds and an MA in Applied Theological Studies from Birmingham, she began her career as a teacher in various London and Birmingham schools from 1988 until 2001. She then turned to ministry, serving as Assistant Curate and then Incumbent at St Paul Blackheath, Birmingham, before becoming chaplain at St Alban's Church, Copenhagen in 2018.


Nigel Robson

Nigel is a former lawyer in an international law firm, and his positions included International Head of Engineering and Construction, Global Head of Energy, and Managing Partner. He was an accredited Mediator, and Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators. He has been a trustee and Chair of many organisations, bringing legal support, governance expertise, financial awareness, HR and educational experience.

As Chair of the Chamber of Commerce in the North East he focussed upon the issue of historic underperformance of many of the regions LEA schools. In addition to the issue of social injustice, he believes that education is one of the keys to breaking the cycle of social and economic deprivation. In 2003 he first joined the Board of an Academy in the North East. His involvement grew as he became Chair of a small Multi Academy Trust. He then joined the Board of United Learning Trust in 2010, and was elected Chair. During this time the Trust grew from 16 Academies to over 60. The Trust concentrated upon taking over failing schools in areas suffering from the greatest disadvantage. After completing his terms in 2019, he continues as Chair of challenging secondary academies in the North. He is a Member of the Good Shepherd MAT and of the Emmanuel Schools Foundation MAT. He was recently appointed to the Board as Chair of the Western Excellence in Learning and Leadership in Cumbria.