Girton and Hughes Hall elect new Heads of House

Girton and Hughes Hall elect new Heads of House

  • Dr Elisabeth Kendall and Sir Laurie Bristow

Two Cambridge Colleges have recently announced new appointments, with the Heads of House taking up their positions in October 2022. Dr Elisabeth Kendall will be Mistress of Girton and Sir Laurie Bristow (Trinity 1991) will be President of Hughes Hall.

Dr Elisabeth Kendall

Dr Elisabeth Kendall has been elected as the 20th Mistress of Girton College, with effect from 1 October 2022. She will succeed Professor Susan J Smith, who will be retiring after 13 years. 

Dr Kendall is currently a Senior Research Fellow in Arabic and Islamic Studies at Pembroke College, Oxford. She passionately believes that research and education can make a difference beyond the confines of academia. 

Over the past ten years, Dr Kendall has undertaken extensive fieldwork in Yemen, researching terrorism and poetry. In the process she has built deep relationships with tribes in the east, including a cross-tribal council to support communities against al-Qa’ida. She also co-founded and now chairs the Mahra Youth Unity Association, an NGO in Yemen focused on building conflict resilience and education initiatives. 

Read more on Girton's website


Sir Laurie Bristow (Trinity 1991)

Sir Laurie Bristow will become the tenth President of Hughes Hall, and will succeed Dr Anthony Freeling whose eight-year term concludes this year.

A senior diplomat, Sir Laurie was UK Ambassador to Afghanistan until November 2020. Prior to that, he was the COP26 Regional Ambassador to China, the Middle East, North Africa, Eastern Europe and Central Asia. 

Sir Laurie served for four years as Ambassador to the Russian Federation and has held other senior diplomatic roles throughout his career, including Ambassador to Azerbaijan and Director for National Security at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office.

Read more on the Hughes Hall website