We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. You can change your cookie settings at any time. Otherwise, we'll assume you're OK to continue.


Mr Robert Gillespie, BA ACA

Robert is the Chair of the University Council and also chairs the Governance and Nominations Committee. He is a member of Finance Committee and Remuneration Committee.

Robert is a non-executive director of the Royal Bank of Scotland Group plc and a non-executive member of the Partnership Board of Ashurst LLP. He is Chairman of the Boat Race Company Limited, the organisation that manages the Oxford and Cambridge Boat Race and is a non-executive Directors to the Social Finance Board. Robert was Director General of The Panel on Takeovers and Mergers from 2010-2013. He was also Chairman of the Board of Somerset House Trust from 2006-2015, was a member of the Stop Organised Abuse Board of the NSPCC from 2003-2012 and was a Vice-President of Save the Children from 2004-2009.

Following graduation from Durham with a BA degree in Economics in 1977 (Grey College) Robert qualified as a Chartered Accountant with Price Waterhouse in 1980.

He joined S G Warburg in 1981 and was successively appointed Managing Director responsible for the Advisory Business of S G Warburg and Co Inc, New York from 1989 to 1993; Head of UK Corporate Finance, SBC Warburg, London from 1995-1997, Head of European Corporate Finance, Warburg Dillon Read 1997-1999 and Joint Global Head of Corporate Finance, UBS Warburg from 1999-2005. In 2004 he was appointed CEO of the UBS Investment Bank, EMEA (Europe, the Middle East and Africa) a post he held until 2006. In 2005 he was also appointed Vice-Chairman of UBS Investment Bank, retiring from UBS in 2008.

Robert was a member of the Durham University's 175th Anniversary Campaign Executive Committee from its inception. He is an active supporter of sport in the University having been involved in the development of the University rowing club, and of University sport more generally, through the Friends of Durham Sport Steering Group since 2000.