Professional Services Executive
This page gives short biographies for each director in the Professional Services Executive, along with links to full profiles and their professional service area.
Professional Services departments are managed by:
- Provost & Deputy Vice-Chancellor - Professor Shearer West
- Chief Financial Officer - Bob Rabone
- Chief Operating Officer - Andy Dodman
- University Secretary and Strategy, Planning & Governance - Tony Strike
The professional services departments are:
- Academic Services - Rob Sykes
- Accommodation and Commercial Services - Caryn Masters
- Corporate Information and Computing Services - Geoff Kendall Smith (Interim Director)
- Development, Alumni Relations and Events Office - Miles Stevenson
- Estates and Facilities Management - Keith Lilley
- Finance - Helen Dingle
- Global Engagement - Malcolm Butler (Interim Director)
- HR and Corporate Communications - Tracy Wray
- Research and Innovation Services - Deborah McClean (Interim Director)
- Student Services Department and University Secretary - Andrew West
- Student's Union - Jaki Booth
- The University Library - Anne Horn
- Faculty Directors of Operations - Susan Bridgeford, Valerie Cotter, Michelle Nolan, Jo Mallows and Jo Marriott
Professor Shearer West
Provost & Deputy Vice-Chancellor
Professor Shearer West took up the role of Deputy Vice-Chancellor at the University of Sheffield on 1 September 2015.
Working closely with the Vice-Chancellor Professor Sir Keith Burnett, Professor West serves as a member of the University executive team and leads areas of strategic importance to the University in the region, nationally and internationally. She has responsibility for delivering a number of the University's key aims and priorities, working collaboratively with academic and professional colleagues and students to shape a strong future for the University and all those who benefit from its work.
Previously Head of the Humanities Division at the University of Oxford, Professor West is an art historian and the author and editor of nine books and many articles. She has also been Head of the School of Historical Studies at the University of Birmingham and was Director of Research at the Arts and Humanities Research Council.
Chief Financial Officer
Bob is the Chief Financial Officer of the University of Sheffield and is responsible for four Professional Services: Accommodation and Commercial Services, Corporate Information and Computer Services, Estates and Facilities Management, and Finance and Commercial. Bob has a particular emphasis on strategic financial and policy matters and commercial activities and is a director of several University subsidiaries.
He is a Chartered Accountant and qualified with Coopers & Lybrand (now part of PricewaterhouseCoopers) after graduating at Imperial College as a Mechanical Engineer. After several years of management consultancy, he gained a wide range of commercial experience as a Finance Director with both private and public companies. Just before joining the University of Sheffield in 2005, Bob was Finance Director and a member of the senior management team at the international law firm Eversheds LLP.
Bob represents Finance Directors on sector bodies and working groups, including being a member of the Financial Sustainability Steering Group since 2013.
Chief Operating Officer
Andy joined the University in 2004 and was appointed Director of Human Resources on the 1 April 2011. He is responsible for leading the University's staffing and employment strategy and activities, which includes operational HR services, training & development, employee relations and staff health and well-being.
Andy is a member of the University Executive Board. He was educated at the University of Bath (BSc) and the University of Leeds (MBA) and is a Chartered Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Personnel & Development (CIPD).
University Secretary and Director of Strategy, Planning and Governance
Tony’s remit includes responsibility for advising and supporting the President and Vice-Chancellor and the Chair of Council on institutional strategy, policy, governance, projects and external liaison with and representation to external bodies including leading on liaison with HEFCE and its successor bodies. Tony provides strategic advice and governance support to the University's Council and Senate and their respective committees including on their powers and procedures. He attends and works closely with the University Executive Board as Secretary to the Council and to the Senate.
Before his current role Tony was University Secretary and Director of Strategy, Planning and Governance at the University of Southampton. Prior to that Tony was Director of HR at Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust and then with the University of Southampton. He has a PhD from Southampton in higher education management and policy.
Director of Academic Services
Rob was appointed as Director of Academic Services in May 2017, providing overall leadership and coordination of a number of key professional services. Immediately prior to this appointment, he had been the Director of Operations in the Faculty of Social Sciences since August 2008 He is a member of numerous University bodies and committees including Senate, Council, Estates Committee and the Strategic Group on Student Numbers and Fees.
His previous roles include working in postgraduate student admissions, progression and examination, scholarships, research support and research management, during which time he held external secondments to the HEFCE and to the UK research councils, in addition to being an elected non executive Director of the Association of Research Managers and Administrators (ARMA).
Rob has a BA in Social History from Sheffield and has undertaken several CPD and executive education programmes, most recently a strategic leadership programme at Said Business School, University of Oxford.
Director of Accommodation and Commercial Services and UNICUS
Caryn joined the University in 2011 bringing with her 20 years' experience gained in both the private and public sector, within the UK and South Africa.
As Director of Accommodation and Commercial Services, Caryn is responsible for the teams who provide a range of services and facilities to staff, students and visitors across the University, including student accommodation, catering and delivered hospitality, conferences and event management.
In addition, Caryn is a Director of UNICUS, a wholly owned subsidiary company of the University. UNICUS was set up in 2012 to develop a commercial proposition to enhance the offer to the University. UNICUS operates a boutique hotel, a village store for the community, a high end restaurant, a number of retail outlets and a staffing agency.
Geoff Kendall Smith
Interim Director of Corporate Information and Computing Services
Geoff joins the University in January 2017 for a six-month period. He will provide leadership and direction to CiCS as we carry out the recruitment process for a new director.
Geoff has considerable experience in both the public and private sectors. His most recent position was with the University of Leeds where he has been part of the leadership team in the IT department for the past two years, and as interim IT Director from August 2015 to December 2016. Within the higher education sector Geoff has advised Bournemouth University and the Institute of Education on their IT strategies.
Prior to this recent higher education experience Geoff had accumulated over 15 years’ experience with leading consultancies in IT and systems advising a wide range of public and private Sector organisations.
Geoff is a member of a number of professional bodies, including the Institute of Consulting and a senior member of the Society of IT Managers.
Director of Advancement
Miles established the Development and Alumni Relations Office at the University of Sheffield in 2002. The office is responsible for raising philanthropic funds for the University, for its alumni relations programme and includes the Events Team which organizes 23 UK graduation ceremonies, a programme of public lectures and special events (such as H.M. The Queen’s visit in 2010). Miles is one of the University’s Public Orators for honorary graduates.
Prior to Sheffield, Miles spent nine years at the University of Bristol working in their Development and Alumni Relations Offices. Miles was educated at the University of Durham where he took a bachelors degree in History and a masters degree in Mediaeval History, specialising on the crusades.
Miles is married with two children. He is a Governor of the Sheffield High School and is also a trustee of the Sheffield Botanical Gardens.
Director of Estates and Facilities Management
Keith started work as Director of Estates and Facilities Management (EFM) at the University of Sheffield in September 2010.
He started his career with the NHS as a management trainee. Keith has held a number of senior positions, including Director of Facilities at Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust and latterly at the University of York where he worked as Director of Facilities Management.
EFM is responsible for estates management and maintenance, facilities management, Sport Sheffield, Safety Services, Portering, Cleaning, Transport and Logistics, energy and environment. Keith is passionate about delivering services of the highest quality and best value. Central to this is the need to support our students and ensure that they become our ambassadors for the future.
Keith holds a first degree, is a member of the Chartered Institute of Purchasing and Supply, has an MBA from Warwick University and is a Member of the British Institute of Facilities Management.
Director of Finance
Helen joined the University in 1997 and held a number of different roles within the Finance Department before being appointed Director of Finance in 2012. Prior to joining the University she held a number of roles in further education and the private sector.
Finance are responsible for developing and implementing dynamic and future focussed financial strategies to support the University's aims, whilst maintaining sound financial oversight and administration in managing the University's financial affairs.
Helen is a member of the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants and has an MBA from the University of Sheffield. She also has a non-executive role with Sheffield Money.
Interim Director of Global Engagement
Director of HR and Corporate Communications
Tracy joined the University in 2011 and was appointed HR and Corporate Communications Director on 1 May 2016. She is responsible for the operational leadership of the HR function and leads the Corporate Communication department which covers all Media & PR, Digital/Social, Marketing and Internal Communications.
Tracy works closely with the senior leadership team to drive reputation and engagement in a global market.
Tracy is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Personnel & Development (CIPD).
Interim Director of Research & Innovation Services
Deborah joined the University in 2005, having enjoyed a varied career in the private sector, including periods in travel, legal services and manufacturing.
She is providing interim leadership in Research and Innovation Services during a time of significant change. She is responsible for teams offering research support services to postgraduate research students, researchers and other members of the Professional Services. R&IS supports researchers to develop their careers, to win grant funding and publish high quality outputs, to supervise research degrees, to translate their research into impact beyond the academy and to commercialise intellectual property.
Deborah works closely with the Vice-President for Research & Innovation and with his deputies, contributing to the development and of research strategy and implementation of its operational delivery. She also works closely with academic leaders in the faculties on a range of postgraduate researcher and research developments.
Student Services Department and University Secretary
Andrew has a broad remit with responsibility for Student Services - this is a wide scope covering the student journey including student recruitment, admissions, registry, student administration, learning and teaching support and a broad range of student support services.
Andrew is a past Chair of AMOSSHE – the professional association for Student Services in the UK, and a former Vice-Chair of AUA. Andrew has also served as member of the Executive of IASAS, a global professional organisation for student services, and as a member of the governing Council of Westcott House, Cambridge. From Summer 2016, Andrew will be a member of the Board of Trustees of AUA.
In the role of University Secretary, Andrew provides advice and support to the University's Council and governance structure, working closely with the University Executive Board and acting as Secretary to the Council and to the Senate
Chief Executive, Student's Union
Jaki joined Sheffield Students’ Union in 2014 having worked in Chief Executive roles for over 25 years, mostly in Higher Education Students’ Unions in various midlands Universities and most recently for 5 years at Southampton Students’ Union. She was also General Manager at mac; one of the Midlands’ leading arts centres.
As Chief Executive of the Students’ Union Jaki reports to the Trustee Board and works with colleagues to support the aspirations of our student members for their organisation. She loves the possibilities and variety of working in Students’ Unions and is especially proud to now work at the UK’s top Students’ Unions regularly placed first for student satisfaction by our students.
Jaki is something of a volunteer and networking junky, having been a trustee and chair of a number of arts organisations, active within her own professional network and now an external trustee on the Girlguiding UK Board.
Director of Library Services and University Librarian
Anne joined the University as Director of Library Services and University Librarian in March 2015.
Faculty Director of Operations for Medicine, Dentistry, and Health
Susan joined the University in 2008 from the University of Strathclyde following a 15 year career in HE including senior management roles in the Faculties of Engineering and Arts and Social Sciences and a stint supporting the University Executive Board.
Susan’s role involves responsibility for Estates and Facilities, strategy and budget management, leadership of projects at Faculty and University level and providing leadership for professional services across the Faculty. Susan chairs the Faculty Excellence Through Inclusion Committee and is a Trustee with the Sheffield Womens Counselling and Therapy Service.
Susan studied French and German to Masters level at the University of Aberdeen and later obtained an MBA from the University of Strathclyde.
Faculty Director of Operations for Arts and Humanities
Valerie Cotter joined the University in 2008 after more than twenty years of working in local and national government in a diverse number of roles which shared a strong focus on diversity, inclusion and excellent service delivery. As Director of Operations for Arts and Humanities, Valerie leads professional staff in supporting the delivery of the Faculty's academic strategy. She is a member of the Faculty Executive Board as well as being active in the Faculty's Learning and Teaching and Research and Innovation Commmittees.
As well as leading Faculty level projects, Valerie's current University roles include membership of the Student Systems Programme Board, Business Continuity Operations Group, the Sheffield Professional Steering Group and the Public Realm PEG. She is also an active member of the National Network of Faculty and College Directors and Secretaries.
Faculty Director of Operations for Science
Michelle joined the University of Sheffield as Faculty Director of Operations in 2014, prior to which she spent five years as Head of Professional Services at Sheffield Hallam University. Michelle has extensive experience of working in the higher education sector having held a variety of roles covering the areas of academic administration, examinations, registry services, student services, planning and knowledge transfer.
Michelle’s role is to support the Faculty Vice-President with both the strategic and operational development of the Faculty and to ensure the effective running of one of the largest science faculties in the UK. The Faculty of Science provides a home for seven of the University’s departments spanning the life sciences and physical sciences.
Michelle holds a BSc in Chemistry and Chemical Technology and an MBA, both from Bradford University.
Interim Faculty Director of Operations for Social Science
Jo takes on the interim role of Faculty Director of Operations in Social Sciences, having been Deputy Faculty Director of Operations with responsibility for HR, Change Management and Learning and Teaching since 2012. She has also been Departmental Manager in three of the Faculty's 13 diverse departments, having worked at the University of Sheffield for a decade.
Her role is to support the Faculty Vice-President in the leadership and management of Social Sciences, helping ensure its ongoing success through effective business coordination and working in partnership with colleagues across the institution.
Prior to working at The University of Sheffield, Jo was a manager at the University of Leeds for eight years, where she is also an alumnus with an MEd in Higher Education, and a first degree in Geography from Loughborough University.
Interim Faculty Director of Operations for Engineering
Jo was appointed as Interim Director of Operations in March 2017. She is responsible for leading activities and initiatives to ensure the strategic development and operational delivery of the Faculty's aims and objectives. This role involves working in partnership with colleagues across the University's professional services departments, working alongside Heads of Departments and other academic leaders from the Faculty's departments, and providing overall leadership for the Faculty's 400 professional administrative and technical staff.
After graduating, Jo started her career as a management trainee in an energy company and since then, has worked in a variety of roles in Higher Education at King's College London and The University of Sheffield, with a focus on policy and strategy development and delivery. She is a member of numerous University bodies and committees including Senate, Business Continuity Operations Group, Registration Strategy Group and the Sheffield Professional Steering Group.