Jane Hamilton elected as Chair of the Committee of University Chairs

  • Date

    Thu 3 Nov 22

Protrait of Jane Hamilton, smiling, wearing a grey jacket and colourful scarf

Congratulations to Jane Hamilton, Chair of our University Council, who has been elected to the prestigious role of Chair of the Committee of University Chairs (CUC).

Jane, who describes her role as Chair of Council at Essex as “one of the best roles of my career” will take on her new role in November, replacing Michael Queen who is stepping down after the CUC November Plenary. The CUC is the representative body for Chairs of UK universities. It supports the advancement of education, providing information and guidance on best practice in the governance of higher education institutions. It is a charitable organisation which promotes the highest standards of governance across the UK higher education sector.

Jane has been Chair of the University of Essex Council since 2019 and is proud to be associated with Essex. She said: “I am immensely proud to be part of the Essex community, to be part of a values-led organisation with a diverse student and staff population that puts students at the heart of everything it does. A university education is a wonderful thing, and it can be transformational. I attended university as a mature student, and it changed my life. Education opened a wealth of opportunities to me, both in work and socially, and I know at Essex we want as many students as possible to experience that kind of transformation.”

And Jane believes a university education is as useful now as ever. She added: “Life is becoming increasingly complex, and I believe a university education allows you to navigate a more challenging world and to thrive in it. It saddens me that the benefit of a university education is being increasingly undervalued and in my new role as Chair of the CUC, I hope I can help raise the value of higher education, help it get greater recognition and ensure that it is truly appreciated by government and the wider community.”

Jane also underlined the important role universities play in offering a safe place for debate, she said: “I believe the role of the university is to foster debate and brave discussions. To challenge ideas and hold a mirror up to society. I am enormously proud of our efforts to do this at Essex, and I will use my experiences and all that I’ve gained, to ensure that I do my best for universities across the UK as chair of the CUC.”

Jane Hamilton has over 30 years of experience in the property, education and government sectors. She is currently the Chair of NHS Property Services Ltd as well as being Chair of Council of the University of Essex. She is a Non-Executive Director of the Government Property Agency and a previous member of the Board of Trustees at the Institute of Cancer Research.

Formerly a trustee of the Committee of University Chairs (CUC) Jane chaired the CUC S10 Universities Group. Prior to these appointments, she was the European Head of Corporate Real Estate for HSBC. Before moving to the United Kingdom in 2009, Jane lived in Australia and held the roles of Global Head of Corporate Real Estate for ANZ Bank, Managing Director of Commercial and Industrial Management at AMP Henderson Global Investors as well as senior property leadership roles with Jones Lang LaSalle and Lend Lease Corporation. Jane has a passionate interest in good design and its positive influence on business performance, staff engagement and the surrounding community. During her career, she has also been actively involved in managing organisational change, talent development and environmental sustainability and the promotion of diversity in the workplace. She is a coach and mentor to developing executives. Jane has a Bachelor of Commerce from the University of New South Wales and is Fellow of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (FRICS).