Council members

You can find the full names, qualifications and biographies of our members of Council here.

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 joined the GMC as Chair in January 2019.

She was a consultant Trauma and Orthopaedic Surgeon for 24 years working in London before moving to Ipswich Hospital NHS Trust in 1993. She was also Associate Medical Director for appraisal and revalidation in Ipswich from 2013–18.

Earlier in her career Clare chaired the T&O 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.

2008–09 she was President of the British Orthopaedic Association and in 2009 she was elected to the Council of the Royal College of Surgeons of England. Clare 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. She then Chaired 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 and Senior Independent Director at the Wales Audit Office.

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

Dr Vanessa Davies

Lay member, Scotland

Vanessa served as a senior civil servant in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office before training as a barrister, gaining a graduate diploma in law and the Bar professional postgraduate qualification. She spent three years as deputy CEO for a large legal aid charity working in refugee and asylum and immigration law. In 2010, Vanessa was appointed Director General of the Bar Standards Board, retiring in January 2020.

Vanessa’s non-executive portfolio includes being a Charity Trustee for Support through Court 2007–16, and Law for Life 2016 to date. She has been on the Board of the Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education since 2017 and chair of its Advisory Committee on Degree Awarding Powers since 2019. Vanessa became a non-executive director at the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal in 2018. In 2019 she was appointed as a lay member of the House of Lords Conduct Committee.


Vanessa Davies

Ms Lara Fielden

Lay member, England

Lara is a lay board member of the Independent Press Standards Organisation and the Bar Standards Board. She was previously Deputy Chair of the London Probation Trust where she chaired the Serious Further Offences Committee and the Probation Courts Forum. 

Lara was Chair of Governors of the Children’s Hospital School at Great Ormond Street and University College Hospital until 2017.

She was a Visiting Fellow, and continues as a Research Associate, at Oxford University’s Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism.

Lara was a Steering Group Member for the UK Statistics Authority’s Review of the Code of Practice governing official statistics.

She has served as a professional conduct panel chair for the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy, a lay panellist for the Bar Tribunals and Adjudication Service, a lay examiner for the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, and as a magistrate chairing in the adult court.


Lara Fielden

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 31 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 is currently advising government on the optimal Covid-19 vaccination strategy.

He developed and is adviser for the British Medical Journal diagnostic series ‘Easily Missed?’ He is a Board member of GMC Services International Ltd.

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  Health Care Supply Association, Hospital Caterers Association and GS1, the Barcoding Association. Philip is a past President of the Royal Society of Public Health. 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 an honorary Professor of Medicine at Glasgow University.  He is currently seconded from NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde to Social Security Scotland where he is leading the development of the health and social care infrastructure related to eligibility for disability benefits as Chief Officer for Health and Social Care Operations.

He has recently stepped down from being 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

Dame Carrie MacEwen 

Registrant member, Scotland

GMC Ref No: 2553610

Carrie is a consultant ophthalmologist for NHS Tayside and Honorary Professor at the University of Dundee. She served as Chair of the Academy of Medical Royal Colleges, until 2020 and is Past-President of the Royal College of Ophthalmologists

Carrie is the clinical co-lead for the ophthalmology ‘Getting It Right First Time’ programme and the Eye Care Recovery and Transformation Programme for NHS England/Improvement.  She is a specialty advisor to the Scottish Chief Medical Officer and leads the Scottish Eyecare Workstream. Carrie has served on several committees in support of education, training and assessment and NHS committees regarding service re-design for general medical services. She chairs the multi-professional subcommittee of the Royal College of Ophthalmologists, the Trustee Board of the Healthcare Quality Improvement Partnership, is a trustee of the Moorfields Eye Charity and a member of the council of the University of Exeter.


Carrie MacEwen

Professor Deepa Mann-Kler 

Lay member, Northern Ireland

As Chief Executive of Neon and Visiting Professor for Immersive Futures with Ulster University, Deepa specialises in the use of immersive technologies for health and wellbeing. As an artist Deepa has a strong focus on public art light installations.

Deepa currently holds three Non-Executive directorships: the Public Health Agency NI; Equality Commission for Northern Ireland and the Registers of Scotland.   She is also a Member of the Professional Conduct Committee for the Pharmaceutical Society of Ireland.

As a TedX speaker and thought leader she regularly speaks on the intersection of digital transformation, technical innovation, health, inclusion, ethics, bias, data, artificial intelligence and creativity. Deepa is author of the first report on race discrimination with policy recommendations for the public sector in Northern Ireland, 'Out of the Shadows'.

Deepa has an MSc in European Social Policy Analysis, Erasmus at Bath, Roskilde and Tilburg universities, a Post Graduate Certificate in Education from Westminster College Oxford and a BSc Social Policy and Administration at the London School of Economics.


Deepa Mann-Kler

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 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

Dr Suzanne Shale 

Lay member, England

Suzanne Shale is an independent ethics consultant, working with organisations across health and social care, the third sector, and the criminal justice system. Suzanne chairs the London Policing Ethics Panel and in 2020 joined the national independent policing ethics committee advising on aspects of policing the pandemic.

She has been actively involved in quality assurance of undergraduate and postgraduate medical education, working with Higher Education England and its predecessor organisations, universities in the UK, overseas education ministries, and as an Associate with the GMC.

Suzanne is a non-executive director at Oxleas NHS Foundation Trust, sits on the Independent Reconfiguration Panel advising ministers on contested NHS reconfigurations, and is a Visiting Professor at the Department of Security and Crime Science, University College London.


Suzanne Shale

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. She is a Board member of GMC Services International Ltd.

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 is currently a national speciality adviser (NSA) in Obstetrics for NHSE/I . Her clinical interests include pelvic floor problems, childbirth trauma, maternal medicine and complex pregnancies.


Picture of Miss Alison Wright