Alexandra Burslem has been a member of the Governing Body since 1999. She was Vice-Chancellor of Manchester Metropolitan University from 1997-2005, the culmination of a 32-year career in Higher Education. She was then a Civil Service Commissioner. She also Chaired the Education Honours Committee, and was the first Independent Chair of the British Council’s Education UK Partnership.
Other former academic appointments included Deputy Chair of the national Learning and Skills Council; Chair of the Capital Committee; Chair of the National Quality Assurance Framework Review Group for Higher Education; and a member of the HE Funding Council’s Quality Assurance and Learning and Teaching Committee, and Audit Committee. She was an elected member of the Executive Board of Universities UK.
She also sits on the Boards of a number of educational institutions, including the Royal Northern College of Music, where she also Chairs the Audit Committee; the Welsh Funding Council for Higher Education; the new University of Cumbria; and City College, Manchester. She was a member of the Bench of Manchester City Magistrates from 1981-2010. She was awarded an OBE for services to Higher Education in 1992, and became a Dame Commander of the British Empire in the New Year Honours in 2004. She was High Sheriff for the County of Greater Manchester in 2006-7.