Council members

You can find the full names, qualifications and biographies of our members of Council here. Please note, our newly appointed Council members biographies will be published in January 2021.

All our members were appointed following an independent appointments process. 

Dame Clare Marx

Chair of Council and registrant member, England

GMC Ref No: 2387293

Dame Clare Marx is Chair of the GMC.

Clare joins a growing body of women leaders in healthcare. She became a Consultant Trauma and Orthopaedic Surgeon at St Mary’s and St Charles’ in 1990 before moving to work at Ipswich Hospital NHS Trust in 1993 for the next 20 years, becoming Associate Medical Director for appraisal and revalidation in 2013. 

Clare chaired the Trauma and Orthopaedic Specialist Advisory Committee for the Royal College of Surgeons and co-authored the first competency-based curriculum in Trauma and Orthopaedic Surgery. She received a CBE for services to medicine in 2007 and was elected President of the British Orthopaedic Association the following year.  In 2009 she was elected to the Council of the Royal College of Surgeons of England and chaired the Invited Review Mechanism from 2011-14 before being elected President of the Royal College of Surgeons of England (2014-17), the first woman in the history of the College to hold this role. Clare was also the Chair of the Faculty of Medical Leadership and Management until the end of 2018.

She is the first woman to hold the Chair since the GMC was established 160 years ago.


Dame Clare Marx

Mr Steven Burnett

Lay member, Wales

Steve Burnett is currently a Non-Executive Director at Golden Charter Ltd, a Non-Executive Director at HM Treasury Government Internal Audit Agency, Senior Independent Director at the Wales Audit Office and a Director of GMC Services International Ltd.

He has previously been the Senior Independent Director at Liverpool Women’s NHS Foundation Trust Hospital.

After a long career in the financial services sector, Steve retired from the position of CEO of Royal Liver Assurance in 2009. During his time as CEO the organisation addressed financial challenges whilst also modernising its product range and service approach, entering new markets and reinventing its role in the sector. Steve is a retired actuary.

Stephen Burnett

Professor Anthony Harnden 

Registrant member, England

GMC Ref No: 2807869

Anthony Harnden is a general practitioner with a clinical and research interest in primary care paediatrics. He has worked as a Principal in General Practice at Morland House Surgery, Wheatley Oxfordshire for 28 years.

He is a Professor of Primary Care and Director of Graduate Studies at the Nuffield Department of Primary Care Health Sciences, University of Oxford and a Governing Body Fellow of St Hugh’s College, University of Oxford.

Anthony is currently the Deputy Chairman of the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) which advises the UK government on vaccine policy. He developed and is adviser for the British Medical Journal diagnostic series ‘Easily Missed?’

He was formerly the National Clinical Champion for Child Health at the Royal College of General Practitioners, the inaugural Chairman of the WHO Global Network of National Immunisation and Technical Advisory Groups (NITAGs), the primary care lead for the Confidential Enquiry in Child Deaths and a Board Trustee at the Centre for Maternal and Child Enquiries.


Prof. Anthony Harnden

Lord Hunt of Kings Heath

Lay member, England 

Philip Hunt has been a member of the House of Lords since 1997. His main interests are health, social care and constitutional affairs. Philip was Parliamentary Under Secretary in the Department of Health from 1998 until 2003, was a Minister of State for Health in 2007 and was Deputy Leader of the Lords from 2008-2010. He also held the role of Shadow Spokesperson on health.

He is currently supporting patient groups campaigning on access to medicines, standards of wound care, surgical mesh, and prescribed medicine addiction. He is President of the Royal Society of Public Health, Health Care Supply Association, Hospital Caterers Association and GS1, the Barcoding Association. He is Treasurer of the All Party Parliamentary Health Group. He is a Trustee of the Royal College of Ophthalmologists and the Foundation for Liver Research.

Philip lives in Birmingham. He is a keen cyclist, supporter of Birmingham City FC and Warwickshire County Cricket Club. He is a patron of the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra and Birmingham Contemporary Music Group.


Picture of Lord Hunt

Professor Paul Knight OBE 

Registrant member, Scotland

GMC Ref No: 2343239

Paul Knight is Consultant Physician in Geriatric Medicine at Glasgow Royal Infirmary and an honorary Professor of Medicine at Glasgow University. He is Chair of the editorial board of Age and Aging, and of the Atlas of Variation workstream of Realistic Medicine for the Scottish Government.

He was previously the Director of Medical Education and Secondary Care Appraisal Lead for NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde, Chair of the Scottish Directors of Medical Education, President of the British Geriatrics Society, President of the European Union Geriatric Medicine Society, Registrar of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow and a Non-Executive Board Member of NHS Quality Improvement Scotland. He was the Associate Post Graduate Dean for Management Education in the Scotland West Region Deanery.


Prof. Paul Knight

Dr Raj Patel MBE 

Registrant member, England

GMC Ref No: 3103487

Dr Raj Patel is Deputy National Medical Director of Primary Care for NHS England and NHS Improvement.  He was formerly Medical Director of NHS England Lancashire and Greater Manchester as well as Director of Commissioning for Lancashire. 

A Fellow of the Royal College of General Practitioners, Raj has been a GP partner in Greater Manchester since 1993 and has held senior clinical leadership positions in the NHS, locally, regionally and nationally since 1997 as well as a GP advisor role at the Department of Health. He is a graduate of Manchester University Medical School and now sits on the General Assembly of the university.  Raj was awarded an MBE in The Queen’s Birthday honours list 2019 for services to healthcare. 


Picture of Dr Raj Patel

Miss Alison Wright 

Registrant member, England

GMC Ref No: 3498288

Miss Alison Wright trained at Leeds University and in 2003 became a Consultant in Obstetrics and Gynaecology at Leeds General Infirmary and St James University Hospital. 

In 2008 she took up a Consultant post at the Royal Free Hospital in London, where she is currently based. Alison is a Fellow of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists and was an elected international representative and then Vice- President. During her time as Vice-President, she set up the ‘supporting our doctors’ service for Members and Fellows of the RCOG.

She specialises in pelvic floor problems, childbirth trauma, maternal medicine and complex pregnancy care.


Picture of Miss Alison Wright