Our Governors provide support and guidance. They come from a variety of backgrounds and, through their expertise, assist the School in delivering our vision for a 21st century education.

CPatricia Alexanderhair
Patricia Alexander
Managing Director, Shared Interest

I have been Managing Director of Shared Interest Society, an ethical lending organisation since 2006. Prior to this, I was MD of Saint-Gobain Quartz Group having held various roles within the manufacturing sector over my career. I am passionate about fair trade and am a Trustee and Treasurer for the Fairtrade Foundation.

I am a member of the UK Fair Trade Leaders’ Forum, a member of the Institute of Directors (IoD) and sit on the Newcastle Business School Advisory Board. I am treasurer of my Parish Council and have been involved with several local charities having also served on the CBI Regional Council and the Industrial Development Board at One North East. I am a qualified accountant with an MBA from Durham Business School. I am working to widen links between the School and other organisations world-wide and to share my passion for fair trade with the girls.

n-blagburnNatalia Blagburn
Senior Lecturer in Entrepreneurship, Northumbria University

I am a Senior Lecturer at Northumbria University where I have designed and now run several courses in Entrepreneurship. I am also a business coach to a team of student entrepreneurs on the University’s first undergraduate programme in applied entrepreneurship. Outside work, I support the Finance Committee of Northern Stage, the largest theatre producing company in the North East, mentor several founders of technology startups helping them raise Venture Capital funding, work on my allotment and run. Over the past couple of years I have supported Young Enterprise North East as a judge.

Prior to academia, I managed Venture Capital investments into early stage companies at the national £100m Angel CoFund and the regional £7.5m North East Angel Fund. I am a member of the Institute of Directors (IoD) and as investor-observer, I was on the board of directors of six startup companies. My background also includes supporting hundreds of early stage technology entrepreneurs with business mentoring and investor readiness training, which I ran in Germany, France, the Netherlands, Sweden, Poland, Croatia, Bosnia and Slovenia. My early career was spent as a technology consultant at Accenture PLC, a leading global consultancy firm.

Born and raised in Russia, I have a joint Russian-British degree in International Business Management from Northumbria University and the State University of Management at Moscow. I also hold a Masters in European Union Politics from Newcastle University and I am currently working on my doctorate in startup corporate governance.

Having supported hundreds of startup founders, I am very much interested in and enjoy working with first time entrepreneurs. As a new Governor, I am delighted to bring to the school my international experience, insights and my passion for cultivating entrepreneurial skills in young people.

Gillian Hall
Gillian Hall Consulting

I was educated at Central Newcastle High School (one of the founding schools of Newcastle High School for Girls) and Newnham College, Cambridge, where I achieved a first class degree in Law. I was awarded a BA Hons in Law and subsequently an MA (Cantab) and then trained as a corporate lawyer at Lovell White & King (now Hogan Lovells) in the City of London, returning to the North East on qualification. I joined Watson Burton in 1985, and became its first female Senior Partner in 2010, having led the firm’s national Corporate Group for many years. Retiring from the partnership in 2014, I now have a variety of interests. I remain a consultant to Watson Burton but work as an investor, advisor and mentor with a number of local companies – mainly through my consulting business, Gillian Hall Consulting. I hold a number of non-executive board positions including the Port of Blyth and the North East Local Enterprise Partnership, where I am vice chair of both the North East Investment Fund Board and the Innovation Board; I am also vice chair of the North East Combined Authority’s Economic Development and Regeneration Advisory Board. In addition, I am a board member of the Advisory Board of Newcastle Business School.


yousaf_khalid_crop_rgbYousaf Khalid
Group Managing Director, Everything Different

A marketeer who’s always looking to challenge the status quo and has brought this purpose to life for brands like Benfield Motor Group, Balance drink cessation campaign, Redrow Homes, Land Securities shopping centres.  Graduated in media and communication, Yousaf is an all rounder from strategy development to client servicing.  Yousaf’s other roles as Group MD are talent development, he is on the IPA’s (the  industry advertising body) talent leadership group, business strategy and managing a busy agency group day to day.


hena-website Hena Zaman

My school years were spent at Mt Hermon School, Darjeeling, an American boarding school in the foothills of the Himalayas. I obtained my medical degree from Manipal University in India following which I completed my medical internship in both rural and hospital settings before moving to the UK. After two years in London and Cardiff I moved once more with my family to Manhattan, New York for a further two years before finally settling down in Newcastle.

I’m a mother of four. Of my three daughters, Zara and Zoya are NHSG alumnae and Zeah is currently in Year 5.

One of the pleasures of having spent 15 years with the School is the interaction with the whole School community – staff, pupils and parents. My family now has a special relationship with the School which I hope will continue long after Zeah finishes Sixth Form.

I am already involved in School life and have a good working knowledge of the School. I would love to help NHSG continue to build on its successes and bring ever evolving ideas to the School.


The Trustees of the school are the Trustees of the GDST, details of whom can be found on this page of the GDST website. The Chairman of the Trustees, Juliet Humphries can be contacted via Alison Smith at the GDST office – a.smith@wes.gdst.net