Advisory Council Biographies

Huw Edwards

huwHuw Edwards has been known to millions of viewers as presenter of the BBC's Ten O'Clock News and he accepted an invitation to become the Patron of the National College of Music in 2005. As a result of his acceptance, he was elected as an Honorary Fellow of the College.

Formerly Chief Political Correspondent for BBC News 24, Huw spent 12 years reporting politics at Westminster. He combined this with presenting a range of programmes on classical music on BBC TWO, Radio 3, Radio 4 and S4C. He is an organist, pianist and oboist, and in his youth had hopes of becoming a concert pianist before deciding to focus on things academic.

Huw has presented a wide range of BBC programmes, including Newsnight, Panorama and Breakfast News, and the annual Festival of Remembrance from the Royal Albert Hall.

He graduated, with a first class honours degree in French, from the University of Wales, Cardiff. He is also a Fellow of the University.

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Jennie Younger

ladyy1Jennie Younger is Vice President Global Corporate Affairs of AstraZeneca, effective from 18 April 2016. Based in the company's global headquarters in Cambridge, UK, Jennie has global responsibility for all internal and external communications and government relations.

Jennie joined AstraZeneca with a broad range of communications experience gained over 25 years, primarily in healthcare, financial and professional services. With a track record of senior corporate communications, investor relations and marketing positions in global organisations, Jennie leads AstraZeneca's Global Corporate Affairs function to shape and deliver an enterprise-wide strategy.

Most recently, Jennie was Senior Managing Director and Partner at FTI Consulting in London, where she was seconded to a leading international law firm to support the implementation of a new global strategy. Jennie previously held senior communications roles at Deutsche Bank as Global Head of Communications and Client Marketing for Investment Banking, and at GlaxoSmithKline as Global Head of Communications and Community Partnerships, where she was also a member of the company's Corporate Executive Team. Jennie was previously at Glaxo Wellcome as Head of Investor Relations, playing a key role in the company's merger with SmithKline Beecham. Prior to joining Glaxo Wellcome, Jennie was Head of Investor Relations at British Gas after spending ten years as an Equity Research Analyst with Barclays de Zoete Wedd and Kleinwort Benson.

Jennie has a BA in Psychology from the University of Exeter, UK.

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Dr Ralph Townsend


After brief teaching appointments at  Dover College and Abingdon School, Ralph Townsend proceeded to further study at Oxford University. An ordained Anglican priest, he was curate at the University Church of St. Mary. He also taught in the Theology Faculty at Oxford. In addition he was first Senior Scholar at Keble College, then a Junior Research Fellow, Tutor and Dean of Degrees at Lincoln College, where he was the Anglican chaplain. He resigned from this post in 1985 when he decided to join the Roman Catholic Church. He took up a teaching post at Eton College in 1985. He left as Head of English in 1989 to become Headmaster of Sydney Grammar School. Whilst in Sydney, Townsend was Patron of the Australian Musicians' Academy and President of the New South Wales Classical Association. After ten years in that post, he returned to England to become Headmaster of Oundle School. In 2005 he was appointed Headmaster of Winchester, the first Roman Catholic to hold that post since the Reformation.

He has written books, articles and reviews in the areas of church history, religious literature and education.

From 2005-2011 he was a Trustee of the United Church Schools Trust and an adviser to the United Learning Trust. From 2005-2013 he was a Governor of St Swithun's School (Winchester). From 2005-2014 he was a Governor of The Pilgrims' School (Winchester). He is currently a Governor of Midhurst Rother College.   He is Chairman of the Academy group The Education Fellowship and on the Council of St George's House, Windsor Castle. He is a member of the Global Advisory Council of the African Leadership Academy.

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Pam Wedgwood

pwedgewood1Pam’s musical career began with the recorder and piano, and Tenor Horn and Euphonium through the brass band tradition at her school. She then took up the Cello and French Horn, entering Trinity College of Music in London to study Piano, Horn, Cello and composition at the age of sixteen.

After graduating she began a career as a professional French Horn player, working with the Royal Ballet Touring Orchestra, The Royal Opera, the BBC Concert Orchestra and many West End shows. Marriage and a young family led her to take up an appointment as a peripatetic instrumental music teacher in Surrey in the late 1970s, and she began composing pieces for her pupils.

In the UK she has led many workshops for the European Piano Teachers’ Association and has inspired teachers in workshops as far afield as Singapore and Malaysia, Australia and New Zealand. Pam now concentrates on composing and teaching, though she is also a keen sportswoman and international traveller!

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Raphael Rowe

raphaelrowe1Raphael Rowe is an investigative journalist with the BBC. He was imprisoned erroneously for many years, having been found guilty, with two others, of a series of murders on the M25. He was acquitted in 2000. During his time in prison he learnt the trade of journalism and, once released, he was approached by the BBC to join their journalistic team. He has investigated many matters in which injustice has been involved and his rigour and attention to detail have earned him a fine reputation as a high-profile and eminent broadcasting journalist. He appears regularly on Radio 4’s ‘Today’ programme and on BBC television channels 1, 2 and 3.

Raphael Rowe was invited to join the Advisory Council of the NCM because his understanding and appreciation of those whose lives may not get off to the best of starts is second to none, and he is able to offer unparalleled relevant counsel and insight that is invaluable to the College.

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Patrick Russell

patrick-russellPatrick Russell was formerly a partner of Charles Russell LLP from 1982 until his retirement from the firm in 2013. He was Senior Partner from 2006 to 2013 and Managing Partner from 1993 to 1999. He is now the firm’s principal consultant lawyer and has a reputation as 'a charming and courteous professional and regarded as a safe pair of hands that provide cutting edge advice.'

He is Chairman of Solicitors Indemnity Mutual Insurance Ltd and a trustee of the Association of Sail Training Organisations. In addition, he is the principal legal advisor to The Jockey Club and the BHA in the field of regulation, and discipline from 1989 until his appointment as the BHA's independent Disciplinary Officer in 2009, a position which he still occupies.

Although Patrick is not a practising musician, he has a comprehensive knowledge and appreciation of music of all genres, gleaned largely from his vast collection of recorded music. His other interests are golf, sailing and motor sport. He has four children and lives in Northamptonshire.

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Maxine Thevenot

mthevenot2An accomplished, respected, and dynamic choral conductor much in demand, Maxine Thévenot has directed ensembles across North America. She also maintains an active career as an international recital organist, a visiting lecturer at universities, a recording artist, and is a published writer and photographer. Maxine Thévenot was the Founding Director of the women’s ensemble, Concentus while serving on the faculty at the Manhattan School of Music in New York City in 2005. Dr. Thévenot also served as the Associate Conductor for the Manhattan School of Music Chorus comprised of 120 freshmen and sophomore students from 2002-2004. From 2003-2005, Ms. Thévenot served as the Associate Choirmaster at The Cathedral of the Incarnation in Garden City, New York where she was the Director of the Cathedral Girls Choir and the Schola Cantorum. Other past choral experiences have included working as Senior Accompanist and Assistant Conductor, Calgary Girls Choir; Calgary Philharmonic Chorus, rehearsal pianist and Assistant Conductor; Assistant Conductor, Cathedral Church of the Redeemer Cathedral Choir, Calgary, AB; rehearsal pianist and Assistant Conductor, University of Saskatchewan, University Chorus, Saskatoon, SK.

Dr Thévenot has received the Bachelor of Music in Music Education with distinction from the University of Saskatchewan, and the degrees, Master of Music and Doctor of Musical Arts in organ performance from the Manhattan School of Music, New York, where she was twice awarded the Bronson Ragan Award for ‘most outstanding organist.’ She also holds the Associate diplomas from the Royal Canadian College of Organists and the Royal Conservatory of Music. In December 2006, Dr. Thévenot was awarded an Honorary Fellowship by the National College of Music, London, UK for her services to music.

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Gregg Redner

gregg-rednerGregg Redner is Director of Music and Arts at Metropolitan United  Church, Ottawa.Prior to his current post Gregg held academic and  church positions in New York City. He holds a PhD from Exeter University in England, a double Master of Music degree (Organ and Harpsichord) from the Juilliard School in New York City and is a Fellow of the Royal  Canadian College of Organists (FRCCO) and the National College of Music (FNCM). Gregg also holds the Professional Diploma in Choral Conducting (Ch.RCCO - John Sidgwick Scholarship) from the RCCO. He is an Associate of The American Guild of Organists (AAGO) and holds the Choirmaster Certificate (ChM - S. Elmer and Choirmaster Prizes)  from that same organization.   In April 2013 Gregg was awarded an Honorary Fellowship for Services to Music by The National College of Music & Arts, London.

Gregg is an active member of The Royal Canadian College of Organists, serving as Director for Region V of the RCCO, a member of the National Examinations and Membership Committees, President of the London Centre and Chair of the 2014 RCCO National Convention Organizing Committee.

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Tim Brumfield

tim-brunfieldTim Brumfield is an organist, composer, and arranger. He currently serves as the Director of Music and Organist at St Gregory’s Episcopal Church, Boca Raton, Florida. He also tours as a soloist and featured musician and is often asked to lecture on the art of improvisation. A gifted composer and arranger, Tim hails from Richmond, Kentucky. His father, a self-taught pianist and fiddler, first introduced him to music at age three. At the age of just twelve, he landed his first position as a church musician at Red House Baptist Church where he mastered the art of hymn improvisation. Tim served as Cathedral Organist at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine in New York City from 2002-2009, and served as Associate Organist there from 1997. He has toured with the Cathedral Choristers, performing throughout the Northeast United States, Canada, and England. A member of the Grammy Award winning Paul Winter Consort since 1998, he has collaborated with such renowned artists as pianist Dave Brubeck, drummer Max Roach, legendary folk singer Judy Collins, the American Spiritual Ensemble and The New York City Gay Men’s Chorus. He has had the special honour of performing for His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama and the renowned Monks of the Drepung Loseling Monastery. Tim recently received the distinguished award of Honorary Fellow of the National College of Music in London. Most recently his composition “A Place Called Old Kentucky” (part of his CD entitled “Kentucky Serenade”) was featured as part of the Alltech World Equestrian Games in Lexington, Kentucky.

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