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SFC Council Board reappointments

Photo of Lesley Yellowlees, Mhairi Harrington and David Alexander

1 Sep 2021

Higher and Further Education Minister, Jamie Hepburn, has announced the reappointment of Professor Lesley Yellowlees, Mhairi Harrington and David Alexander as members of the Scottish Funding Council Board. Their new terms of office will begin on 3 October and last for four years.

Professor Lesley Yellowlees is a former vice principal and head of the College of Science and Engineering at the University of Edinburgh. Lesley was the first woman president of the Royal Society of Chemistry and was awarded an MBE in 2005 for services to science, and a CBE for services to Chemistry in 2014. Lesley is passionately interested in research; equality; diversity and inclusion; and career development. 

Mhairi Harrington was principal and chief executive of West Lothian College between 2008 and 2018. As well as further and higher education, Mhairi’s career spans primary education; youth and community work; and adult education. Mhairi has served on boards at national, regional and local level and has chaired national reviews. In 2016 she was awarded an OBE for services to education.  

David Alexander has held a number of senior roles in local government, colleges and with the General Teaching Council for Scotland, and has been a member of the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy since 1996. A passionate advocate of lifelong learning, David is currently principal and chief executive of Gateshead College. He brings extensive knowledge and experience of the education sector.

Welcoming the reappointments, Mike Cantlay, chair of the Scottish Funding Council said: 

“Mhairi, David and Lesley contribute an enormous amount of knowledge, experience and energy to our Council Board and I am delighted they will be serving for a further four years. 

“Looking ahead to the important work SFC has in implementing our Review of Tertiary Education and Research, and also at the challenges we face following COVID-19 and Brexit, it is important we continue to have people of their talent and commitment on our board.”