University Council & Committee Membership

External Members

Mr Chris J Brown - Chair of Council


Mr Brown is Chair of Thermal Energy Ventures Ltd (Brighouse) and Wakefield Acoustics Ltd as well as a Director of Bluestone Films Ltd and Ilkley Lawn Tennis and Squash Club Ltd. He is an active competitive swimmer with the City of Bradford Swimming Club. Mr Brown was appointed a member of the University Council in 1996 and elected Chair of Council in September 2004.


Mr Eric L F Nicholls - Vice-Chair of Council


Mr Nicholls is a retired Human Resources Consultant and former Head of Personnel for the Bradford & Bingley Building Society. He is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development and a former Fellow of both the Chartered Institute of Bankers and the Royal Society of Arts. Mr Nicholls was appointed a Member of the University Council in April 1999, Vice-Chair in September 2006 and Chair of the Estates Development Committee in November 2010.


Mr Mark Fisher


Mr Fisher is the Director of the Office for Civil Society and Innovation at the Cabinet Office and was previously the Social Justice Director at the Department for Work and Pensions. In January 2010 Mr Fisher received a CBE. He was appointed to the University Council in March 2006.


Mrs Virginia Lloyd DL


Mrs Lloyd is a business woman and has a manufacturing and property business based in Elland.  She stepped down as High Sheriff of West Yorkshire in April 2014 and was appointed President of the RNLI Leeds Business Branch in May 2014. Mrs Lloyd was appointed to the University Council in July 2014. 



Mrs Joanne Harris


Mrs Harris is a celebrated local author whose novels include ‘Chocolat’ which became an international best seller and was subsequently made into an Oscar-nominated film. Her books are now published in over 40 countries and have won a number of British and international awards. Mrs Harris was the recipient of an Honorary Award (Hon DLitt) from the University in 2003 and has recently become a patron of The Kirkwood Hospice in Huddersfield. In June 2013 Joanne Harris was awarded an MBE. She was appointed to the University Council in November 2010.


Baroness Pinnock of Cleckheaton

baroness pinnock Baroness Pinnock was elected as a Councillor for the Cleckheaton ward in 1987 and has served the Cleckheaton community as its Councillor ever since. She served as Leader of Kirklees Council from 2000 to 2006 and was also the leader of the Kirklees Liberal Democrat Councillors from 1991 to 2014. Baroness Pinnock was appointed to the University Council with effect from August 2016.  


Professor Isobel Pollock

Photo of Isobel Pollock

Professor Pollock is currently working with WISE (Women into Science and Engineering) and the Bloodhound Project to promote STEM to the next generation of engineers. She has been an active volunteer member of the Institute of Mechanical Engineers for over 30 years and was the 127th President of the Institute in 2012. In June 2014, Professor Pollock was awarded an OBE for services to mechanical engineering. She was appointed to the University Council in March 2015.


Dr Ingrid Roscoe


Dr Roscoe became the first lady Lord-Lieutenant in the north of England in 2004. She is a sculpture historian, responsible, among other publications, for editing and co-authoring ‘A Biographical Dictionary of British Sculptors, 1660-1851’, 2009, a 1,600 page tome described by critics as magisterial and an essential research tool in the field. In addition to being a trustee of the Yorkshire Sculpture Park and a Commander of the Order of St John, Dr Roscoe holds a number of voluntary positions including Patron of the Prince’s Trust for West Yorkshire, Patron of the National Mining Museum, President of the Royal British Legion in West Yorkshire and President of the Leeds Philharmonic Society. She was appointed to the University Council in November 2010.


Mrs Helen Thomson DL


Mrs Thomson, who is a registered nurse and midwife, began her nursing career at Leeds General Infirmary and moved to Huddersfield Royal Infirmary in 1989 . She became the Executive Director of Nursing for the newly-formed Calderdale and Huddersfield NHS Trust in April 2001 and has also held the post of Deputy Chief Executive since January 2006 until her retirement in March 2014. She is now an independent Healthcare Consultant. Mrs Thomson was appointed to the University Council in November 2010.




Mr Jonathan Thornton


Mr Thornton has retired from his position as Chairman of Thornton & Ross Ltd, a Healthcare Manufacturing Group based in Linthwaite. He has served as Vice-President of Euralliance Farma and as a Member of the Executive Committee of Proprietary Association of Great Britain.  He was appointed to the University Council in July 2006 and elected Chair of the Audit Committee in August 2012. 

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