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Biographies of members of Council 2023/24

Prof Jon Gluyas


Prof John Gluyas

I am a geologist with 41 years’ experience in industry and academia. I became a Geological Society Fellow in 1978 and have served the society on Publications, Awards and Remuneration committees as well as Council (2004-2007, including Strategic Planning Committee). I compiled and edited Memoirs 20 and 52 as well as serving as organiser and proceedings editor on several Barbican and Society applied geoscience conferences. In 2000 I was awarded the Aberconway Medal.

As a leader, I have been Chair of the BGS Board, President of the Petroleum Exploration
Society of Great Britain and Earth Science Teachers Association, and am now the founding President of the Geothermal Energy Advancement Association. From 2011-2014, I served as Head of Department in Earth Sciences at Durham University.

Since joining Durham University in 2009, I have helped drive the national agenda on carbon capture and storage, and have led both the research and deployment of geothermal energy in the UK. Other research has included the co-creation and testing of the first ever exploration strategy for helium and the beginnings of the same for natural hydrogen.

April 2023 saw me step down from my role as Executive Director Durham Energy Institute having led it for six years. It is time for a new challenge, and I relish the opportunity to lead our wonderful Society, a society which should and will play a critical role in the global energy transition as well as helping ensure the global-society gets to live on a sustainable planet where resources are used and reused wisely.

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Prof Mark Anderson

Prof Mark AndersonCurrently Professor of Geology in the School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences at the University of Plymouth, where he has worked since 1991, Mark was Head of Earth Sciences for 8 years and then Head of School for 7 years, stepping down from that role in July 2020. His active research projects and teaching fall under the broad umbrella of plate boundary deformation processes, and all incorporate significant elements of fieldwork.

Mark has been a Fellow of the Society since 1985, a Chartered Geologist since 2015 and has served as Secretary and Chair of the Society’s SW Regional Group, Executive Secretary of the Committee of Heads of University Geoscience Departments and Executive Secretary and Chair of University Geoscience UK. In 2021, he chaired the review panel for the Society’s university degree course accreditation scheme. He was awarded a Coke Medal in 2017 in recognition of his contributions to science and significant service to the geoscience community.

As a member of Council, Mark will use his experience to help the Society serve its members and wider society as the main voice for geoscience in the UK. He is also committed to make the membership more diverse by removing barriers to inclusion at all stages in the academic and professional development of future generations of geoscientists.

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Dr Anna Bird

Dr Anna BirdAnna Bird, a Reader in Earth Science at the University of Hull, has worked in academia since 2007. Her broad research interests mean she has the opportunity to interact with a wide spectrum of the geoscience community from Quaternary scientists to members of MSG, TSG, and industry partners. She is also active within UKRI, serving on NERC standard grants panels and a Future Leaders Fellowship sifting panel.

Anna became a Fellow of the Society in 2014 when she won membership for the Young Author of the Year Award. Before becoming joining Council, she was already sitting on the Science Committee, and had been serving on SiG committees since 2011 holding the role of chair of MSG (2015-2018).

Anna is keen to work to strengthen the link between the Society and universities to ensure that we build a clear picture of Earth Science career pathways to attract and retain students to reverse Earth sciences’ declining student numbers. In addition she is passionate about increasing outreach and diversity and eager to further these agendas within the Society and beyond.

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Prof Sian Davies-Vollum

sian davies-vollumI am environmental geoscientist with a background in fluvial and coastal systems. Recently I have focussed on climate change and environmental hazards in coastal environments and I co-lead the international Resilient Lagoon Network. I was previously Head of Built and Natural Environment at the University of Derby and am now Professor of Environmental Geoscience and Deputy Dean at University of Northampton.

Since 2016, I have been a member of Universities Geoscience UK (UGUK), serving as Executive as Secretary and Vice Chair. In those roles, I have worked closely with Society on geoscience education and contributed to development of the Geological Society - UGUK university recruitment strategy.

I led the 2022 revision of the subject benchmark statement (SBS) for Earth/Environmental Science degrees, which guides their content and delivery. I am on Society’s Joint Higher Education Committee and Degree Accreditation Panel and played a large role in revising the accreditation, enabling its alignment with the new SBS. I am also a member of the trailblazer group developing a degree apprenticeship in geoscience.

I want to bring my experience to Council to raise awareness of geology as a subject critical to our sustainable future and to ensure it attracts a diverse mix of next-generation geoscientists.

Dr Natasha Dowey

Dr Natasha DoweyNatasha Dowey is a senior lecturer in geoscience and environmental hazards, and Course Lead of BSc Environmental Science, at Sheffield Hallam University. Natasha’s research specialisms include volcanic hazard analysis and action research to improve equity, diversity and inclusion in the Geosciences. She is an advocate for sustainable, equitable geoscience and is founder and Editor of Geoscience for the Future, an initiative that highlights how geoscientists are making the world a better place and connects geoscientists with schools for outreach events. She is EDI Champion trustee for the charity Geology for Global Development.

Prior to her academic career, Natasha spent seven years as a research geoscientist in the oil and gas sector following her PhD in volcanology at the University of Liverpool. She has an MPhil in igneous geochemistry and a BSc in Environmental Earth Science from Aberystwyth University.

Natasha has been a Geological Society Fellow for almost 20 years. She wishes to support the Geological Society in leading the way to make geoscience more equitable, for both those studying and working within it, and for the communities geoscientists serve. She is keen to explore how best the Geological Society can use its respected voice to engage the public in a sustainable geoscience agenda that makes the discipline more relevant and attractive to geoscientists of the future.

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Miss Hollie Fisher

Hollie FisherHollie Fisher is a Senior Engineering Geologist with over seven years’ experience with Atkins, working on a variety of water and infrastructure projects across the UK and abroad. Prior to starting her career, she studied BSc Physical Geography and Geology and MSc Engineering Geology.

Treasurer and Trustee for the charity Diversity in Geoscience, an Enterprise Advisor for local schools and an active STEM Ambassador, Hollie is a keen advocate for diversity and inclusion within the geosciences, with a focus on outreach to secondary school children within deprived areas in the UK. In 2019, she won the Rising Star Award at the EMAP

Ground Engineering Magazine Awards due her contribution to STEM initiatives and her passion for advocating that a career in the geosciences is available to all.

She is the current Chair of the South-East Regional Group and has been active on the committee since taking part in the Early Careers Geoscientist Competition. As a member of Council, Hollie hopes to use her experience to further diversify the Society and make it more visible and approachable to future geoscientists from variable backgrounds.

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Dr Neil Frewin

neil frewinNeil Frewin has 27-years of industry oil & gas experience as a geoscientist, much of that time with Shell, but also periods with Hess UK Ltd and BG Group. Neil has spent much of his recent career in exploration asset management and new business development, with roles in Oman, China, Australia, Mexico and Canada.

Neil is currently leading a regional geology team with Shell in London, a role that has a global basin search remit. Neil was a recent President of the PESGB (2017-2019) and a founder of the “Exploring the Energy Transition” special interest group. He is a fellow, a member of council and trustee of the Geological Society. He is also a Trustee of The Etches Collection, a museum of Jurassic marine life located in Dorset. Neil is a member of several advisory boards, including the UK Centre of Masters Training, Royal Holloway University of London School of Life Sciences & the Environment, and the Haliburton STEPS research program.

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Dr Jennie Gilbert

Jennie GilbertI attended my initial Society meetings as a geology undergraduate while at Imperial in the 1980s. Inspired, I became a Fellow in 1986. While a PhD student in volcanology and geochemistry at Cambridge, Society meetings – in particular Volcanic and Magmatic Studies Group (VMSG) meetings – were highlights because these were opportunities for me to present my work, extend my network and learn beyond my discipline.

I continued into academia via post-doctoral positions in volcanology at the University of Bristol and later secured a permanent post at Lancaster University, which is where I am currently based. I have previously served the Society as a committee member and secretary of VMSG, and a member of the organising committee of two VMSG meetings held in Lancaster and other meetings sponsored by the Society.

As an academic, I offer knowledge and skills in research and teaching in Earth sciences; I hold a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy qualification. In addition, I am deeply interested in equality, diversity and inclusivity issues, and geologic conservation. I have benefitted from opportunities with the Society and am ambitious to help others do similarly.

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Dr David Giles

David GilesI am an engineering geologist with over 40 years’ experience in academia and industry. I am a Chartered Geologist, RoGEP Adviser and currently Technical Director of Card Geotechnics (CGL) Ltd. I graduated from the Portsmouth Engineering Geology and Geotechnics degree and my experience includes 28 years lecturing in Engineering Geology at Portsmouth having previously worked for the BGS and Mott MacDonald.

My geological interests include Quaternary engineering geology, engineering geomorphology, geological hazards, and remote sensing. My PhD focused on computer-based modelling and analysis in engineering geology. I have published over 65 papers and supervised seven PhD theses. Externally, I am a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, Member of the British Geotechnical Association and Quaternary Research associations and Member of Ground Engineering Editorial Advisory Board.

I am an active member of the Engineering Group, a past Chair, and member of Geological Society Working Parties including chairing UK Geological Hazards and contributing to the Engineering Geology and Geomorphology of Glaciated and Periglaciated Terrains. My role within the Engineering Group focuses on convening the annual field meeting undertaken for the past 25 years. I remain passionate about geology being principally a field-based discipline for all aspects of the subject.

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Mr Martin Griffin

martin griffinI am a Principal Geotechnical Engineer with COWI. I am dyslexic, dyspraxic, autistic and partially sighted. These are the conditions which have shaped me, but they don’t define who I am. I am a workplace Equality Diversity Inclusion (EDI) Office Champion advocating disability awareness in our sector. I have 20+ years professional experience with consultancies working on national and international projects.

I promote and advance equality, celebrate diversity and stand up for people who are from underrepresented groups within the geoscience community. I am on External Relations Committee and also

represent perspectives of those who are on the periphery of the geoscience community and be a positive and proactive voice for such people in decision making at the Geological Society.

I graduated from Exeter University in 1995 with a 2-1 in Industrial Geology. In 2008, I became an active Fellow of the Geological Society and a member of the Engineering Geology Group. I became a Chartered Geologist in 2017 via the 20-year route. I am also a European Geologist, Chartered Engineer and a Fellow of the IOM3 awarded for my dedication to EDI. Currently, I am Geological Society Scrutineer, journal peer reviewer for QJEGH and IAEG, STEM Ambassador, a Ground Forum Mentor and a National Executive Committee Member of the Association of Geotechnical and Geoenvironmentalists.

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Dr Michael Kehinde

Michael KehindeI want to serve on Council, working with others, to help the Society achieve its outcomes and enhance its public brand. I bring onboard experience as trustee, school governor and as EDI champion in the Environment Agency as Founder/ex-Lead of the B.A.M.E. Network and as Steering Group member of Defra’s Project Race.

I want to focus on improving the way we communicate the critical role of the geosciences in attaining the global Sustainable Development Goals and in securing resources for the future; and on stretching EDI to include empowerment.

Prior to joining the Environment Agency, I worked in the water resources and environment management sector in Europe and Africa as consultant to industry, to national government and to UNICEF on various local, national and international projects; and I was a senior university academic involved in teaching and research at the University of Lagos.

I have been a Fellow of the Society for six years, became Chartered in 2014 via the 20-year route, and belong to the Hydrogeology Group. I hold an MSc in Applied Geology and PhD in Hydrogeology and speak German fluently. Additionally I am a Prince2 certified project manager with good track record of managing successful projects.

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Prof Daniel Le Heron

Prof Daniel Le HeronDaniel Le Heron is Professor of Sedimentology at the University of Vienna whose main research area lies in the understanding of ancient glaciations and their deposits.

Dan has been a Fellow of the Society since 2000 and has had a close association with many of its activities, particularly in publications. He was awarded the JGS Early Career Award in 2008, and over the past 10 years has organised and co-organised several major conferences and published outputs in three Special Publications. He has served on the Energy Group Committee, and since 2018 on the Books Committee. In addition, he is an Associate Editor of the ‘Journal for Sedimentary Research’, and has acted as guest Associate Editor for ‘Sedimentology’.

Dan is excited to serve as a member of Council and keen to use his extensive experience both in publishing and on Society committees to support the Society grow and face any forthcoming challenges, in particular the increasing complexity of the publications model.

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Mr Ben Lepley

Ben LepleyBen has worked for SRK Consulting since graduating from Cardiff University; first as a mineral resource geologist for 12 years and since early 2021 as an environmental consultant.

He is a Fellow since 2008, a Chartered Geologist since 2014 and also served on the Southern Wales GSL committee between 2009-2011. Ben is co-chair of the public perception of mining committee with the Critical Minerals Association and as part of this role engages with a number of organisations including school and university education, academia, exploration and mining industry.

Whilst on Council he would like to build on opportunities for industry-academia collaboration, multi-disciplinary thinking and public outreach. Geoscience is fundamental to understanding and tackling climate change but there is a lack of public understanding of what it is and why we need it and the Society is well placed to push this message further. In addition, as a Council member he is keen to improve the perception of geoscience in the public eye, particularly with the aim of encouraging more students to study and choose a career in this diverse and rewarding area.

Dr Keith Myers


Keith Myers

I am Head of Research at Westwood Global Energy, a global oil and gas research company, responsible for research across the business. I graduated in Geology from the University of Edinburgh and went on receive a PhD in Sedimentology from Imperial College.

I joined BP as a geologist in 1987 where I had both senior technical and commercial roles. 

After leaving BP in 2000, I was the managing director of an energy software company and an advisor to numerous energy companies on strategy and partnership issues. I was the co-founder and managing partner of Richmond Energy Partners, providing research and advice to investors in smaller oil and gas companies. REP went on to launch the Wildcat exploration intelligence service which is now relied upon by E&P companies globally. REP became part of Westwood Global Energy Group in 2015 following its sale to Energy Ventures private equity.

I have been a Fellow of the Geological Society since graduating. I have published papers on a range of topics, including in five Geological Society Special Publications, and co-authored a textbook on Sequence Stratigraphy.

I have a keen interest in the oil sector's governance and have been an Associate fellow at the foreign affairs think tank Chatham House. I have led capacity building initiatives for the parliaments of several emerging oil and gas-producing countries and I serve on the advisory group for the Natural Resource Governance Institute.

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Dr Chiara Maria Petrone

Dr Chiara Maria PetroneThe Geological Society plays a fundamental role in supporting, advancing and promoting Earth Science in UK and worldwide. As an active researcher in the UK, I strongly believe that it is my duty to contribute to raise the profile of Earth science via my research and my expertise at the service of the community. I strongly value a fair, inclusive and transparent environment, where everybody can thrive and inclusion, collaboration, supporting careers and education is at the core. I care about inclusivity, fairness and making science accessible and relevant to people. I believe that as a woman that also belongs to the LGBTQ+ community and as a non-UK born, I can offer a different perspective to the Council enhancing the relevance of Earth science in our society.

I am Principal Researcher and head of the Volcano Petrology group at the Natural History Museum of London. I am also Co-Editor-in-Chief for Earth and Planetary Science Letters (EPSL) and Science Officer of the EGU Geochemistry, Mineralogy, Petrology &
Volcanology (GMPV) Division. I was committee member of Mineralogical Society and of Volcanic and Magmatic Specialist Group (VMSG). My research focusses on fundamental questions on the tempo, architecture, origin, evolution, dynamics and impact of magmatic systems and their eruptions.

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Ms Gemma Sherwood

Gemma SherwoodI am a Senior Geologist for EDF Energy, working on the construction of Hinkley Point C Nuclear Power Station. I read for a Geology MSci (University of Bristol) and later studied for a MSc in Geotechnical Engineering (University of Birmingham). I became a Fellow of the Geological Society in 2008, achieving Chartered Geologist status in 2016 and was listed on the RoGEP in 2017. I am proud to have won the Glossop Award in 2017.

I have been on the Western Regional Group committee for five years; serving four years as Programme Coordinator and currently as Chairperson. While on the committee, I have restarted our regional heat of the Schools Geology Challenge, organised multiple field trips and lectures, and promoted entrants for the Early Career Geoscientist Award.

I am passionate about promoting STEM subjects, regularly volunteering as a STEM ambassador at schools and science festivals, aiming to promote and encourage Earth science careers. I believe that I can help Council to realise the Geological Society’s Strategy 2017-2027, particularly engaging with schools and stimulating public awareness.

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Elizabeth Withington

Elizabeth WithingtonGrowing up in in the West Midlands, my formative years were spent amongst pit banks, mining subsidence and quarries. Blessed with inspiration from my A-Level geology teacher I subsequently studied Earth Sciences at Oxford Brookes, followed by an MSc in Foundation Engineering from the University of Birmingham. On graduation, I was fortunate to work on the BGS summer fieldwork program and then gain my first position within a consultancy specializing in land reclamation. From here I have worked as a local authority officer, a geotechnical consultant and a GI contractor for the past 30 plus years. I became a Fellow of the Geological Society in 1988.

I am the current Secretary of the Western Regional Group and a former committee member and Chairperson of the Midland Geotechnical Society. My current focus is to encourage Earth Sciences as a career by talking to students and parents in schools, and by supporting those with influence to policy makers to effect change. Furthermore, within my industry I am passionate about encouraging professional development and support towards Chartership. I have a particular interest in helping geologists working within the ground investigation contracting industry to gain a route to Chartership.

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