Our Board of Trustees

Antibiotic Research UK is run by the Trustees (Chairman Mr Ashley Burgess), who are elected by the Members.

The charity has a Science Committee which lays out, commissions and monitors the charity’s scientific programme and the Chief Executive is Professor Colin Garner.

The organisational structure of the Charity is shown in this diagram.

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Meet Our Board of Trustees

  • Ashley Burgess (Chairman)
    Ashley Burgess
    Chairman, Board of Trustees

    Ashley Burgess is a Yorkshire based business man and is the founding Director and current Chairman of the family Burgess Group plc and a founding Director of Criddle Burgess Feeds Ltd and Burgess Diagnostic Veterinary Holdings Ltd. He has been Chairman of Scarborough and North East Yorkshire NHS Trust, Scarborough and Ryedale Macmillan Nurse Appeal, Ocean Youth Trust North and Governor Merchant Adventurers City of York.

    He is currently a member of Court University of York where he was awarded the Morrell Fellowship in 2008 and has funded two RNLI lifeboats based in Walmer and Cleethorpes and is an RNLI life governor.

    He supports an annual PhD studentship in the Department of Biology, University of York. Ashley has a keen interest in the problem of antibiotic resistance and believes that we need to act now to tackle this major health problem.

  • Yva Thakurdas
    MA (Oxon) LLM
    Trustee designate

    Yva brings thirty-five years of industry experience to the team. She started her career as a management consultant before moving into the financial services sector. Her extensive experience, working in nearly 30 countries on 5 continents, spans blue-chip, global corporations, professional service partnerships, private businesses, government, entrepreneurial start-ups and charities. She brings formidable, commercial expertise to the Board of Trustees as well as addressing key areas of corporate governance, business regulations, risk management plus financial and investment management.

    Yva says ‘I became a trustee of ANTRUK because I believe the time for action is now. Antibiotic resistance is not just a future threat, it is happening today and has been for the past 10 years+. It truly is the “silent tsunami” for which global solutions need to be urgently devised. ANTRUK will make a huge difference and I will be honoured to apply my skills and experience to its goals.’

  • Erin Lyon
    Trustee designate

    Erin is a sustainability professional with two decades of experience working with businesses and other stakeholders across the world to tackle the most pressing Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) challenges.

    Erin is a qualified lawyer by training and has spent her working life in Europe, Asia and the Middle East and is now based in London.

    During her career she has advised multinational companies, non-profits, charities, UN agencies and development banks about the impact of ESG issues on business and the impact of business on ESG issues.   She has also advised financial institutions and other listed companies about the charitable organisations they select to engage with and the measures they use to assess the impact of the partnership.

    Erin says “I became a trustee of ANTRUK as I believe it is imperative we take action on antibiotic resistance immediately.  A multi-sectoral approach is required to meet the global challenge that we face.  I believe that ANTRUK can be a catalyst for action and change”.

  • Professor Colin Garner PhD DSc FRCPath (Chief Executive)
    Professor Colin Garner
    BPharm PhD DSc FRCPath
    Chief Executive

    Colin Garner is both a university academic scientist and scientific entrepreneur. He graduated from Chelsea College, University of London (now Kings College) and did his PhD in biochemical toxicology at University College Hospital Medical School. After a two year postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Wisconsin, USA he returned to the UK to carry out cancer research at the University of Leeds and then for the majority of his career at the University of York. He headed up a cancer research laboratory in the Department of Biology for almost 20 years in which time he published over 200 scientific papers and 30 book chapters on the role of gene-environment interactions in cancer causation. Along with two surgeon colleagues, he created the York cancer charity York Against Cancer which provides funds for education, research and patient support.

    Colin founded three University of York spinout companies and is the founder of Antibiotic Research UK. He believe passionately in the new charity and says ‘there is an urgent need to develop new drugs to tackle antibiotic resistant infections as well as educating the public and professionals about antibiotic resistance. Antibiotic Research UK as a charity can make a substantial impact as it is a non-profit organisation. The Charity is working with some of the world’s experts in antibiotic resistance to reach its goal’. Colin was the founder and Director of the Jack Birch Unit for Environmental Carcinogenesis and was an Honorary Professor of Pharmacology at the Hull York Medical School, University of York.

  • Professor Chris G Dowson
    Professor Chris G Dowson
    BSc PhD

    Professor Chris G Dowson (School of Life Sciences, University of Warwick, UK) has, for many years, examined the emergence and evolution of antibiotic resistance across a wide range of bacteria. His recent focus has been to better understand how penicillin targets bacteria. This began during his postdoctoral time at the University of Sussex, in the laboratory of Professor Spratt (1986-1990) and subsequently with his Lister Institute Centenary Fellowship (1991-1996). He currently holds a personal chair at Warwick University and is a past member of the Medical Research Council Infections and Immunity Board.

    Chris’ research is highly collaborative, involving teams of biologists, chemists, engineers and physicists across universities in the UK, worldwide, and all importantly with industry, to help drive innovations from this research forward to a commercial outcome. He is involved with Antibiotic Discovery UK (AD-UK) and has been involved with research fundraising regionally across Warwickshire for the past 16 years with the Medical and Life Sciences Research Fund (MLSRF). He looks forward to brining all of this experience to help develop activities within Antibiotic Research UK (ANTRUK).

  • Nick Stalbow of Ashurst LLP
    Nick Stalbow
    Partner, Ashurst LLP

    Nick, a graduate of the University of Oxford, is a partner at international law firm, Ashurst LLP, based in the London office. Nick has over twelve years’ experience advising sponsors, commercial banks and funds on major infrastructure projects. He brings his strong, commercial background and experience to the Board of Trustees and, to the extent that the charity needs legal support in its day to day activities, he oversees advice provided by Ashurst on a pro bono basis.

    Nick has a long-standing interest in antibiotic resistance and has been involved with campaigns against the misuse of antibiotics in intensive livestock farming.

  • Tony Farmer
    Partner, Garbutt-Elliott
    Honorary Treasurer Designate

    Tony is Corporate Finance Partner with Garbutt & Elliott, a major regional firm of Chartered Accountants in Yorkshire.  He specialises in mergers and acquisitions, fund raising and financial advisory work.  He has acted as a trustee for many years in education, health care and charitable sectors and has acted as corporate adviser to companies in antibiotic research.  He believes strongly that Antibiotic Research UK is carrying out a vital role in scientific research and development to combat the threat of antibiotic resistance and is delighted to take part in this as a trustee.

  • Dr Rebecca Bowden
    Dr Rebecca Bowden
    BSc PhD

    Dr Bowden’s first career was as a scientist investigating the exchange of antibiotic resistance genes between bacteria in the environment. She left research after her postdoctoral time at Newcastle University and joined the UK Government, working initially for the Department of Environment in the development and implementation of regulations on Genetically Modified (GM) Food and GM organisms. She supported the Government’s Advisory Committee on Releases to the Environment in drafting the first legislation for regulating Genetically Modified Food in the UK, and worked with EU and overseas colleagues to support the development of global regulations.

    Rebecca subsequently left Government to go and work for the Royal Society, the UK’s national science academy, working with science academies from around the world on a number of complex science policy issues including risks associated with GMOs, Stem Cells, Complementary Medicine, Climate Change and Radioactive Waste. She returned to Government in 2001 and worked on issues related to risk analysis and communication across Government, culminating in a number of years working to ensure that counter-terrorism work was supported by world-class science and technology.

    In 2008 Rebecca started a new career running a small youth charity that inspires young people about careers in Science Technology Engineering and Maths (STEM), after managing to grow and develop the charity considerably she joined Heathrow Community Fund, a grant-making charity, and now she works to help and support charities and community groups in the boroughs neighbouring Heathrow Airport. She is a Trustee of Engineering Development Trust and Headway Surrey, is an Independent Custody Visitor for the Police & Crime Commissioner of Surrey and is convenor of the UK network for Corporate Foundations. She is also an associate member of ICSA, the governance institute.

    Rebecca says ‘I became a Trustee of ANTRUK because I believe that the issue of antibiotic resistance is one of vital importance to the human race as a whole, and one which everyone should try and do something about. I hope that I can bring my experience and skills to give whatever help I can to ANTRUK’s vital mission‘.

  • Dr Mark Taylor
    Dr Mark Taylor
    BSc MSc PhD

    Mark is currently Head of Impact for the Central Commissioning Facility of the National Institute for Health Research. His work at the moment includes looking at ways to incorporate the patient experience into the evaluation of clinical and health research impact. Before that he has worked, amongst other places, for Oxford University Hospitals NHS Trust, the NHS Institute for Innovation and Improvement and Oxford University Innovation (the University’s knowledge transfer arm). He has been a trustee for two other medical charities including the MS Society and was diagnosed with relapsing remitting multiple sclerosis in 2003.

    Mark says ‘I became a trustee of ANTRUK because of the urgent need to address issues around antibiotic resistance and knowing this will need to be a collaborative effort. The work of ANTRUK can make a difference and I hope I can help’.

  • Professor Christine Bond
    Professor Christine Bond
    Professor of Primary Care and immediate past Head of Centre of Academic Primary Care, University of Aberdeen

    From 1996-2012 Christine was part time Consultant in Pharmaceutical Public Health (NHS Grampian) where she established and chaired the Grampian Primary Care Antibiotic Strategy Group’. She has been awarded well over 100 grants (approximate total grant income >£13million) and has over 250 peer reviewed publications relating to a large portfolio of research on the evidence based cost effective use of medicines (prescribed and ‘OTC’), drug misuse, professional collaborations in primary care and the wider health care agenda.

    Christine is Editor of the International Journal of Pharmacy Practice, was an elected member of the Scottish Board of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain (RPSGB) for 10 years and has served on many national Research Panels eg the Health Service Research Committee of the Scottish Office, the MRC College of Experts, the Scottish Ethics Committee, the RPSGB Pharmacy Practice Research Trust Award panel, the Health Services and Pharmacy Practice Conference Panel.

    She is currently, a member of Pharmacy Research UK Steering Group, and Chair of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain Expert Advisory Panel for Science. In 2010 she was awarded the Pharma’s Lifetime Achievement Award.