Former UHR Chair recognised in Queen's Birthday Honours

Former UHR Chair, Veryan Johnston, has been recognised in the Queen's Birthday Honours with an MBE for services to higher education.

Veryan was UHR Chair from from October 2012 - September 2014, whilst she was working as Executive Director of Human Resources at Newcastle University. She retired in 2015. 

Veryan has also held a range of key positions during her time in the higher education sector including as Chair of Russell Group HR Directors, Member of the 2015 Universities UK Review into Efficiency and Effectiveness of HE and a member of the EU review on Recruitment of Researchers.

UHR Executive Officer, Helen Scott, said: “Veryan was one of the ‘go-to’ HR Directors in the sector, to whom colleagues would turn for expertise and advice when facing new or challenging problems. 

“She was also acknowledged to be exceptionally collegial and generous in sharing her time, experience and expertise, for the wider benefit of the HE sector and the HR profession. This is particularly significant in today’s climate, where some people of her standing are less willing to do this than previously. She was also a valued mentor to other, less experienced HR professionals beyond her own university."

Veryan said, “I am delighted, but it is a real surprise, I couldn’t believe it when I received the letter.

“I don’t think the honour is just for me, it’s for everyone I worked with. It was a real joy and a privilege to work at Newcastle University. It was challenging too of course, but I enjoyed it all.”