Board of Governors

The Board consists of thirteen elected Governors plus two nominated Governors, one of whom is nominated jointly by the Senates of Glasgow and Strathclyde Universities, and one of whom is nominated by The Glasgow Academical Club (usually the Club President). The Board has the power to co-opt three further Governors, giving a maximum total of eighteen Governors. Ultimate responsibility for governance of the school is vested in the Board which normally meets seven times each year.

The Governors are both charitable trustees and directors of The Glasgow Academicals’ War Memorial Trust, the company limited by guarantee and registered charity which runs The Glasgow Academy. The Trust was set up in 1920 to honour the former pupils who died in the First World War, and for this reason the Articles of Association of the Trust prescribe that nine of the thirteen elected Governors shall be former pupils.

It is important that The Board of Governors attracts appropriately skilled individuals able to make a positive contribution to the running of the school, and that those individuals are drawn, as far as possible, from backgrounds which reflect the diversity of our school community. A Nominations Sub-Committee of the Board invites nominations for elected Governors each year from members of the Board and other interested parties, including members of staff and parents, on the basis of the Board’s specifications concerning eligibility, personal competence, specialist skills and local availability. Nominations are submitted to the Annual General Meeting each year for election.

Governors are normally elected to serve a maximum of two three-year terms.

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Mr Duncan Mackison (Chair of Governors)
Duncan was elected to the Board in 2015. He was a pupil at The Academy from 1982 until 1985 and currently has two children at the school: on their mother’s side, they are the fourth consecutive generation to attend. Following nine years as a Royal Marines Officer, Duncan developed a career in facilities services and strategic property management. He is currently the Group CEO of David Macbrayne Limited.

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Mrs Jane Gotts, M.A. Hons (Deputy Chair of Governors)
Jane was a pupil at Westbourne School for Girls from 1981 to 1993 and was in the first Sixth Form following the merger with The Glasgow Academy in 1994. Jane has a degree in Politics from the University of Glasgow. She has significant experience in business and economic consultancy, growing commercial revenue streams, strategic business planning and international business development. She is the founding partner of GenAnalytics Ltd - a specialist data and analytics consultancy focused on diversity and equality in the workplace.

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Mr Peter Brown M.A., C.A.
Peter was a pupil at The Academy from 1977 to 1989. He became a Board Member in 2020 and is the current President of the Academical Club. He qualified as a Chartered Accountant with Deloitte and worked in Corporate Banking, Credit Risk and Compliance & Conduct Risk with HBOS and Lloyds Banking Group for more than 10 years before joining the family steel stockholding business as Finance Director. He is married and has 2 daughters both educated at The Academy with 1 currently in the Senior School. He has also been a member of the GAWMT Investment Committee for the past 7 years.

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Mr Chris Cockburn B’Arch (Hons) RIBA RIAS
Chris is a former pupil who attended The Academy from 1977-1984 and has 3 sons who have also attended the school with one currently in the Senior School. A chartered architect with over 25 years’ experience, Chris is practice director responsible for architecture and master planning in Scotland, Northern Ireland and the North of England for global design and engineering consultancy Atkins. Chris is also a past president of the Glasgow Academicals Mini Rugby Section.

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Mr Paul Frame LLB (Hons), Chartered FSCI.
Paul is the Managing Director and Head of the Tilney Financial Planning and Investment Management business in Scotland. He also leads the UK Charities team and both advises and governs various external charitable bodies. He has been a member of the GAWMT Investment Committee for over 10 years. Paul attended The Academy from 1981-1989, and has 2 children who are current pupils.

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Mr David G Girdwood, DL, BSc (St And), MEd (Stirling), SQH
David retired as Rector of St Columba’s School in 2017 after 15 years in post. He previously taught at Stewart’s Melville College initially as Head of Chemistry and Science and then as Head of Upper School. He has also served as an Associate Assessor with Her Majesty’s Inspectors of Schools. David is married to Lisa who is a family law partner with Brodies LLP and they have two daughters. For many years, he has been a member of the Erskine Stewart’s Melville Governing Council and he has just concluded a three year spell as a governor of Lomond School. David has been a Deputy Lieutenant of Renfrewshire since 2009.

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Mr Gavin Halliday, FCBI, Chartered Banker
Mr Gavin Halliday was elected to the Board in 2019 and is a member of the Operational Committee. His two sons attended The Academy for 13 years and his wife Fiona teaches in The Academy Prep School. Gavin is a career Banker having worked extensively across the UK for several major banks. He is currently Chief Disruption Officer at Virgin Money UK PLC as well as Board member of Clydesdale Bank Asset Finance Ltd. He supports the Glasgow Caledonian University Student leaders programme and is a Chartered Banker and Fellow of the Chartered Bankers Institute.

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Mrs Margaret Khnichich B.Acc., C.A., C.T.A.
Margaret was elected to the Board in 2017 and is a member of the Finance Committee and Investment Committee. Her daughter attended The Academy for 13 years. Margaret was a partner in Ernst & Young for over 25 years, during which she advised many educational and charitable institutions. She is a Board member of SRUC (Scotland’s Rural College) and a member of the Audit and Risk Committee of the University of Stirling.

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Mr John Mason B.Acc., C.A.
John has a longstanding connection to The Academy and the Academical Club having attended school from 1975 to 1987 and playing rugby for Glasgow Accies between 1987 to 1998. More recently, John was President of the Academical Club from 2016 to 2018. He works with Johnston Carmichael, Scotland’s largest independent firm of Chartered Accountants, and has built a strong reputation for advising entrepreneurs and SME’s in the owner managed business sector. John also works with a number of charities including the Scott Foundation and the National Theatre of Scotland.

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Dr Kristeen Percival M.B., Ch.B, M.R.C.G.P
Kristeen was elected to the Board in 2015 and currently has two sons at The Academy. She is a General Practitioner in the East End of Glasgow where she been a partner since 1991.

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Mrs Anita Salwan LLB (Hons), Dip LP, CeMAP.
Anita attended Westbourne School for Girls from 1983 until 1989. She has three children who all attended The Glasgow Academy, two are still pupils at the school and one is in her honours year at university. After graduating Anita was a solicitor for 10 years specialising in charity law and latterly in transport projects. She then entered the world of banking as a risk professional. Having previously spent time with RBS and Virgin Money in Edinburgh. Anita is currently Head of Regulatory Policy and Conduct at Clydesdale Bank PLC, where has been for the last four years.

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Mr Andrew Sime B.A. (Hon)
Andrew was a pupil at The Academy from 1979 to 1985. He is married with two daughters. He works for IBM UK and is the Director responsible for the IBM Enterprise Business in Scotland. Andrew joined IBM in 1996 and has enjoyed being a part of the exciting transformation that has been so important to IBM, starting his career in hardware sales and today being part of the Global Cognitive and Cloud Platform company that is IBM. During his career with IBM, he has held a variety of sales and management positions across a number of sectors including Public Sector, Insurance, Banking and Energy. Andrew has also served as a member of the CBI Scotland Council and is currently a Council Director of the Glasgow Chamber of Commerce.

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Mr Richard I.C. Smith, LLB, DipLP, NP
Richard was a pupil at The Academy from 1976 until 1987. He is married and currently has two daughters in the Senior School. He is a partner in the law firm Brodies LLP specialising in real estate development and investment having worked in London after his traineeship and is qualified to practice law in Scotland, England and Wales. He regularly represents developers and funding institutions in leisure retail, investment and development work.

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Professor Matthew Walters MBE MBChB MSc FRCP MD
Matthew is an academic physician who has served as the Head of the School of Medicine, Dentistry and Nursing at the University of Glasgow since 2016. He holds an honorary consultant contract at the Queen Elizabeth University Hospital where he works in the regional acute stroke unit and the acute medical wards. His research interests lie in the treatment of stroke and he directed Scotland’s National Stroke Research Network between 2010 and 2016. In 2020 he was appointed MBE for services to the NHS during the Covid-19 pandemic. Both of his children attend the Senior School.

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Mr Tommy Gemmill LL.B., N.P.
Mr Tommy Gemmill was a pupil at The Academy 1964-1976 and is Secretary to the Board of Governors. He is the senior partner in a legal firm in Glasgow. He has had two children educated at The Academy.