The Governing Council is responsible for establishing the strategy for the school, as well as ensuring the effective management of the school through the Senior Leadership Team.
The Council is made up of respected individuals who are all specialists in their field, with extensive experience in education, business and the professions. Many are OGs (former Glenalmond pupils) or have had children at the school. We are very fortunate to have an active, committed and highly professional Council, led by the Chairman Niall Booker.
If you need to contact Council Members, please do so by emailing The Bursar (as Clerk to the Governors) on his email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Most Revd Mark Strange - President of Council
Most Rev Mark J Strange, Bishop of Moray, Ross and Caithness and Primus of the Scottish Episcopal Church. Bishop Mark was brought up and educated in Aberdeen, he read Divinity at Aberdeen University before completing his studies at Lincoln Theological College. Bishop Mark served his Title at St Barnabas Church in Worcester before becoming Vicar of St Wulstan’s, Worcester. Bishop Mark returned to Scotland and served as Rector of Elgin, Lossiemouth, Aberlour and Dufftown as well as Synod Clerk of Moray. He was elected Bishop of the diocese in 2007 and was elected Primus in 2017. Bishop Mark is married to Jane and has three children; Bishops House is on the Black Isle at Arpafeelie.
Niall Booker - Chairman of Council
Niall was educated at Glenalmond College (Patchell's 1971-1975) and Gonville and Caius College Cambridge. He spent 31 years working for the HSBC group in many parts of the world culminating in being Chief Executive of their North American operations and a member of the
Group Management board. Until December 2016 Niall was the Chief Executive of the Cooperative Bank where he spent three and a half years dealing with the fall-out from that institution's issues in 2013. He is a non-executive director of Non Standard Finance PLC where
he chairs the audit committee. He has two sons who are both OGs. He lives in London and continues to play golf from time to time for the OG Golfing Society. As well as being a benefactor to the College he has been a member of the College Council since 2012 and was Chairman of the Committee of Council from 2013 until July 2017.
Keith Cochrane CBE - Chairman of Committee of Council
Keith was the Chief Executive of the Weir Group PLC, a global engineering solutions provider. He joined the Group as Finance Director in July 2006 and was appointed Chief Executive in November 2009. He is also a member of the Board of Carillion plc, one of the UK’s largest infrastructure companies, where he serves as Senior Non-Executive Director.
Keith grew up in Dunblane and graduated from the University of Glasgow in 1989 with a first class honours degree in Accountancy. Following a number of years at Arthur Andersen, Keith joined Stagecoach Group plc in 1993. He became the Group’s Finance Director in 1996 and Chief Executive in 2000. He joined Scottish Power plc in 2003 and served as Director of Group Finance.
In 2015, Keith was appointed as the UK Government’s Lead Non-Executive Director for the Scotland Office and Office of the Advocate General. He is a Chartered Accountant and a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Scotland. Keith was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh in 2016.
Living in Perthshire, Keith is married with two children; one currently in Home and the other in Reid’s. Keith is the Chair of the Committee at Glenalmond.
Ian Gray OBE
Ian was educated at Glenalmond (Patchells 1963-67) followed by Durham University. Although an FCMA, he converted to become a Marketing Director many years ago before being appointed CEO of various Thorn EMI subsidiaries. Subsequently he was CEO of the FTSE listed companies Brown and Jackson plc and later General Cable plc. Ian joined Vodafone in 1998 as Managing Director of the UK Retail business and served on the Board of Vodafone Egypt from 2000 to 2017 as Managing Director, CEO then Chairman, living in Cairo until 2007 when he also became Regional Director, Central Europe. Ian retired from his executive role in 2010 but returned to the front line from late 2015 until 2018 as CEO of Vodafone Qatar, a company listed on the Qatar Stock Exchange with a market cap of around $2.5bn, and led the company through a turnaround. His links to Egypt remain and he has been Chairman of the Egyptian-British Chamber of Commerce since 2014 and also, since 2010, UK Co-Chairman of the Egyptian-British Business Council which was set up by the Egyptian and British Governments to facilitate trade and investment links between Egypt and the UK. Ian now lives in rural Oxfordshire with his wife Karen.
The Earl of Home CVO CBE
David Douglas-Home was educated at Eton and Christ Church, Oxford. He inherited the title of the Earl of Home in 1995. Lord Home was appointed Chairman of Coutts & Co on 1 June 1999. His directorships include: RBS Coutts Bank Ltd, Grosvenor Group Ltd (Chairman), Grosvenor Estate Holdings, Wheatsheaf Investments Ltd, British Malaysian Society (President), RBS Asset Management Ltd, Ditchley Foundation (Governor), Douglas & Angus Estates, Dubai Financial Services Authority, and the Royal Agricultural Society of England. Lord Home is an active member in the House of Lords. He is married with two daughters and one son. He has been a Member of Council since 1995..
David was educated at Glenalmond College (1961-66) a pupil in Skrine's House. He studied Architecture at Edinburgh College of Art/Heriot Watt University graduating in 1973 joining Robert Hurd & Partners in Edinburgh and founding his own Architectural Practice in 1977 in Edinburgh before joining with the London practice of Carl Fisher and Partners 1979. He continues to work in the commercial sector for Private Developers and Public Companies, and was recently elected a Fellow of the Royal Incorporation of Architects in Scotland. He has been a member of the Council since 2005 and sits on the Committee of Council. He is married with a grown up son, also educated at Glenalmond and lives in Edinburgh.
John was educated at Glenalmond College (Cairnies 1976-1981). He studied law at Aberdeen University, graduating in 1985, and after training in Edinburgh, returned to Perth where he is now Chairman of his law firm. John specialises in private client work, is a Convenor of the Mental Health Tribunal for Scotland and a Trustee on various private and charitable trusts. John is married, lives in Perth, with two sons, one of whom is an OG and the other is a current pupil at the College. John sits on the Committee of Council at Glenalmond.
Prof Alison McCleery
Alison McCleery is Professor of Geography at Edinburgh Napier University and a graduate of St Andrews and Glasgow Universities. She sits on both the Universities Scotland and the Scottish Funding Council's Research & Knowledge Exchange Committees and is immediate past chair of Award for Outstanding Support for Early Career Researchers. Alison is an active cultural geography researcher and recently completed a major Arts and Humanities Research Council-funded project in collaboration with Museums Galleries Scotland. Her three OG sons were all in Skrine's, Rory finishing as Head of House and Sandy as Captain of Coll, while Neil now teaches at the English boarding school where Warden Skrine himself was a master prior to his appointment at Glenalmond. Alison sits on the Education and Welfare Committee at Glenalmond.
Tim teaches French at Secondary level in the Perth area having completed his PGDE at Moray House in Edinburgh in 2015. He left the Army in March 2014 having joined The Black Watch (Royal Highland Regiment) from Sandhurst in 1979, subsequently serving in the Royal Regiment of Scotland. He frequently served abroad including Hong Kong and Germany and 3 ½ years at the French Military Academy of ST Cyr Coëtquidan. He repeatedly served with the UN in Africa with a final tour in 2013, in Mali, and also completed an OU degree in Modern Language Studies the same year. Married to Elspeth and living near Glenalmond they have three children, two of whom are OGs. His interests include France, fishing for almost anything, skiing and most of the great outdoors.
Linda White was born in Glasgow and brought up in a small village in South Lanarkshire. She was educated at state schools before attending Strathclyde University, where she graduated with a Law Degree in 1974. After completing her legal apprenticeship in Glasgow, she went on to specialise in Criminal Law. Known in her professional life as Linda Smith, she worked for twenty years as a defence solicitor in the Glasgow courts, mainly in Sheriff and Jury trials. The arrival of her first of three daughters necessitated a career change and subsequently, in 1995, a house move to Comrie in Perthshire where she and her family still live. Linda then began her career in the Civil Courts, primarily dealing with all aspects of Family Law. Presently, she works full-time as the Court and Staff Partner in the long-established Stirling firm of Hill & Robb. Since 2006, she also sits as a Part-Time Sheriff.
Jamie Oliver - Chairman of the OG Club
Jamie attended Cargilfield School and then Glenalmond (1965-1969) before joining the Royal Bank of Scotland, at his home town of Hawick followed by a move up to Edinburgh in 1974 to their Trustee and Investment Department, where he remained for seven years. This was followed by a transfer to RBS Commercial Banking with periods in: Internal Audit, managing Branches, and a two year secondment to Scottish Enterprise. Additionally, he performed Head Office roles as Executive Assistant, dealing with Small Business organisations, including the Bank of England Small Firms Sub Committee and became Director of the Professional Sector in 2006, responsible for managing Professional Firms and large Charities, until retirement in 2016.
Currently living in Edinburgh, Jamie is enjoying his role as Chairman of the OG Club and Trustee of the Charity ‘Trefoil House'. His hobbies include fishing at home and abroad, and spending time in the Western Isles. His family have had connections with Coll for a long time - his grandfather left in 1879 and his daughter (Maria Oliver-Smith) is also an OG
Chris Nicholson is a Senior Client Partner in Korn Ferry’s London office where he is a member of the firm’s Global Industrial Market, specialising in energy and natural resources.
His career began as a field engineer in the North Sea, West Africa, Gulf of Mexico and Canada. This was followed with a recruitment role for another leading firm, before joining Korn Ferry in 2012 where he operates across the energy value chain covering Europe, Africa and the Middle East.
An OG, Chris left Glenalmond in 2004 and now lives in London with his three children and his wife Jo. He has a Bachelor’s degree from Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh and is interested in rugby, skiing, boxing, family, and travelling.
Anna was educated at St Columba’s School, Kilmacolm, Robert Gordon University and Stirling University. She began her career at Dunedin Fund Managers as a junior portfolio manager before moving to London with Dresdner Kleinwort Benson as a Telecoms Specialist Salesperson. Anna moved into Investor Relations and served as Director of IR for TeleWest, Rank Group and SABMiller. Taking a career break to raise her family, she moved to Knysna, South Africa for a decade, building up a small farming interest. The family moved back to Edinburgh in early 2016 and Sacha joined Patchell’s virtually straight from the airport in Cape Town! Ariel joined him last year in Lothian and Calia is eagerly looking forward to moving up from Cargilfield to Glenalmond in September 2019. Anna is an Investment Director with Adam Investment in Edinburgh and she is involved with delivering the Enterprise programme for the Princes’ Trust. A keen horse-rider, walker and (slow) returner to 5k Parkruns!
Kate was educated at Craiglowan Prep School, Perth and then at St Leonards’s School, St Andrews. After a jam packed gap year where she picked olives in Greece, worked on a Kibbutz in Israel, travelled through Asia and worked in the Northern territory of Australia, she went on to Napier University in Edinburgh where she attained a diploma as a Staff Nurse and then went on to do a Bsc in Nursing.
Having worked in the respiratory department at Edinburgh Royal Infirmary, she went on to marry OG James Porter (at Glenalmond chapel!) and gave up nursing to bring up her four children, three of whom are at Glenalmond, and one who is on her gap year and off to Bath University in September.
Kate now runs a farm shop/café at home on their farm; she is a member of the Children’s Panel.
The Rt Rev Ian Paton, Bishop of St Andrews, Dunkeld and Dunblane
The Right Revd Ian Paton has been Bishop of St Andrews, Dunkeld and Dunblane since October 2018. He was elected by the Diocese, having served as Rector of Old St Paul’s, Edinburgh since 1997, where he was also honorary Anglican Chaplain to the University of Edinburgh University, and a Canon of St Mary’s Cathedral. He originally comes from Liverpool, but has served most of his ministry in Scotland, and with extended family in Perth and Fife he has a life-long association with communities in this Diocese.
David Fox-Pitt MBE
David Fox-Pitt MBE has been inspiring young people to embrace adventure for over thirty years. When living in Hong Kong he participated in the MacLehose Trail - an endurance event in the New Territories - and this prompted him to start his own events business, WildFox Events. WildFox is behind many of the UK’s most iconic adventure challenges and has enabled fundraising in excess of £40m for charities at home and abroad.
David encourages resourcefulness and resilience along with a healthy attitude to fear and failure. He is the author of Positiverosity: 7 Golden Principles, and is an experienced public speaker. Additional commitments include his involvement of the cross-party think-tank ‘Inspiring Scotland’ and his support for the apprenticeship scheme he set up in Aberfeldy, which teaches practical skills such as woodwork, metalwork, and laser cutting. He and his wife, Joanna, have also hosted over a decade of Glenalmond College Leadership camps at and around their base at Loch Tay. His most recent endeavour was to cycle from Lands End to John o’ Groats - on a Penny farthing, covering 80 miles a day, which raised over £30,000 for Mary’s Meals. He is also Chair of the Friends of Glenalmond (FOG) Events Committee.
Christopher was educated in England at Cranleigh School, Magdalene College Cambridge, the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst and is a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society. He served in the British Army for 19 years before joining Gemini Consulting in 2000. He founded a management consulting company with two colleagues from Gemini and ran that successful business until he joined CH2M Hill (now Jacobs) in 2017, where he is a programme director for major infrastructure programmes around the world. Christopher lives in Perthshire with his wife and two Labradors; he has two sons, both of whom went to Glenalmond.