Board of Trustees

The Trustees of the Nuclear Institute are:

Neil Thomson, NI President

Neil has 35 years of power generation experience holding senior technical and operational positions including plant management, Chief Engineer, Director and CEO roles and a Directorship of the Institute of Non Destructive Testing. He is currently the Senior Technical Advisor in EDF-Energy Generation, which involves advising EDF-Energy on strategic policy matters covering the generation fleet. He has a BSc (Hons) in Physics and the Chalmers Memorial Prize in Physics. He is a Fellow of the Institute of Physics, Fellow of the Institute of Mechanical Engineers and a member of the government Nuclear Innovation Research Advisory Board (NIRAB), NDA Research Advisory Board and Co-Chairs the National Waste Research Forum.

Neil Thomson-1

The President provides leadership to the Board and ensures that trustees fulfil their duties and responsibilities for the proper governance of the Institute.


John Clarke, Vice President

John Clarke joined the Board of Trustees at its June meeting in the role of Vice President and is effectively the President Elect until the end of 2017 when Neil stands down and John takes over.

John has worked in the nuclear industry for more than 35 years. He has held a number of executive positions including Head of Environment, Health, Safety and Quality at the Sellafield Plant in Cumbria, Director of Production for Sellafield Ltd, Managing Director of International Nuclear Services Ltd and most recently CEO of the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority.

John has held a number of non-executive roles over the past 10 years as well as national and international advisory roles. He is a member of the International Atomic Energy Agency Standing Advisory Group on Nuclear Energy which provides advice across the full nuclear spectrum to the IAEA Secretary General. John is a graduate in Chemical Engineering at the University of Sheffield and is a Fellow of the Institution of Chemical Engineers as well as being a Fellow of the Nuclear Institute. 

Tim Chittenden

Tim joined the Royal Navy in 1971 and spent nearly 35 years as a specialist nuclear engineer rising to the rank of Rear Admiral.  Leaving the Royal Navy in 2005 he joined the board of BAE Systems Submarines before retiring in 2011. He has been a non-executive director of Sellafield Ltd since 2008.  Tim was awarded the Institute of Nuclear Engineers Prize for Nuclear Engineering during post graduate training in 1974 and has been a member of the Institution of Nuclear Engineers (INucE) and subsequently, the Nuclear Institute ever since.

Miranda Kirschel

Miranda is part of the Energy Advisory team in EY’s Energy & Assets practice, where she is currently Stakeholder Lead on the SMR TechnoEconomic Assessment for the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC). She also played a central role in the development of the National Nuclear Laboratory’s SMR Feasibility Study. Miranda previously held senior Business Development & Government Relations roles with leading engineering consultancies, Atkins and CH2M HILL where she led business development activities in the UK, South Africa, Czech Republic, China, and Netherlands in the nuclear new build market. She has also led strategy and bid development on Stakeholder Engagement and Socioeconomic development in major UK decommissioning competitions, also leading engagement with Government, councils, trade unions and local communities.

Miranda began her career as the initiator and coordinator of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Nuclear Energy at the Nuclear Industry Association, bringing together industry and Government to promote engagement, knowledge building and understanding of international experience. She founded Women in Nuclear UK to improve gender balance and encourage capacity building in the nuclear industry and to improve the level of information and engagement in the industry with women in the public. She was previously the first President of WiN UK. Miranda is a politics graduate with 15 years professional experience in the nuclear sector.

Mark Lyons

Mark joined the nuclear industry in 1993 as a graduate with Rolls-Royce plc. His management roles include President of Studsvik UK Limited and Managing Director of L2 Business Consulting Limited. Mark’s technical expertise is with radiological protection, radwaste management, decommissioning, and nuclear licensed site management and operations. He has been a learned member of the Nuclear Institute and its predecessor organisations for over 15 years including serving as a Trustee, Branch Chairman and in 2013 becoming Chairman of the Education and Training Committee.

Paul Pearson, Honorary Treasurer

Paul is a Director in PwC’s Energy Sector with over 30 years’ experience of advising government agencies, authorities and private sector clients on nuclear engineering and management consultancy, with considerable experience of the highly regulated Nuclear, Industrial, Defence and Marine sectors. He is focused on client requirements, financial management and programme delivery with a sound understanding of consultancy and engineering activities. Paul has managed consultancy businesses delivering significant projects in the nuclear sector. Paul has proven leadership in business change with profitable growth into new and existing markets.

Fiona Rayment

Fiona is the Director for Fuel Cycle Solutions within the NNL. She has twenty years' nuclear industry experience, working primarily within technology, operations and strategic planning roles both in the UK and internationally. Fiona is a Chartered Chemist with a BSc (Hons), a PhD in Chemistry and an MBA. She is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry and of the Nuclear Institute. Fiona is also a board member of the National Skills Academy Nuclear, a member of the Fusion Advisory Board and the Office of Nuclear Regulation Advisory Board. She chairs the Nuclear Skills Strategy Group and was made an OBE in the Queen's 2017 birthday honours list. 

John Robertson

Having joined the Ministry of Defence in 1984 as a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Nuclear Science and Technology (DNST), then based at the Royal Naval College in Greenwich, John was involved in education and training in support of the Naval Nuclear Propulsion Programme (NNPP). He lectured in nuclear and reactor physics, nuclear fuel cycle technologies, radiation protection and nuclear safety, and carried out research on behalf of the NNPP specialising in nuclear safety, reactor accident analyses and radiological environmental impact assessment. 

In 1991, following an exchange to the Royal Military College of Canada, Mr. Robertson was promoted to Principal Lecturer and the post of Manager of the Nuclear Physics Group and then to the post of Assistant Director in 1997. During this period, John served on a number of MoD committees involved in setting training and qualification standards and functional competence frameworks for the NNPP. He also managed a research group on nuclear safety, providing technical advice to a range of MoD authorities, including the Defence Nuclear Safety Regulator (DNSR).

John is now Director of Education and Nuclear Skills at Gen2, one of the largest private training providers serving the UK engineering and technology sectors. John continues to lecture in nuclear-related technology and holds appointments as honorary lecturer of the University of Manchester and the University of Cumbria.

Clive Smith

Clive served in the Royal Navy for 37 years, beginning as an apprentice and eventually as Chief Engineer. During his latter period at sea he was awarded the OBE. On shore he held a variety of engineering roles relating to nuclear safety and safety regulation. Clive was seconded to the Department of Trade and Industry and then set up a Nuclear Skills Team within the Ministry of Defence. Post Navy, Clive remained engaged in the nuclear skills agenda, initially with Energy Foresight, then as a senior lecturer in the Royal Navy’s nuclear department and with Cogent Sector Skills Council. Clive is now the Principal Engineer with STS Nuclear.

Rebecca Weston

Rebecca has held a number of senior positions at Sellafield in Operations, Technical and Commercial, and has particular expertise in Special Nuclear Material and the back end of the fuel cycle. She is currently a senior manager within their Decommissioning Division. Rebecca has an Executive MBA, PhD and is a Chartered Physicist, Chartered Engineer, and is a Fellow of the Institute of Physics. She has been a Nuclear Institute volunteer for 10 years, chaired the Cumbria branch for 3 years and served on the NI Education and Training Committee. She is a board director of the Centre for Leadership Performance.

Jack Gritt

With 30 years' experience in the nuclear industry, Jack has held a number of positions across executive, operations, program and project management, safety case management and performance and quality. 

Jack has a BSc (Hons) in Mathematics and is currently the Programme Performance and QA Director at Horizon Nuclear Power. In 2016, she become the President of Women in Nuclear UK (WiN UK). 

Alastair Laird

Alastair has over 28 years of experience in the UK nuclear sector and manages the international activities of Project Time and Cost International Ltd, focused on nuclear decommissioning and clean-up. Prior to joining PT&C Alastair worked for the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority and chaired the sanction and national programme governance and reporting processes.

Prior to the NDA Alastair worked at six UK nuclear licensed sites: four operational power plants, one shutdown power plant and spent five years at Sellafield. He has performed technical, operational, and senior managerial roles covering reactor physics, operations, engineering and fuel route support. Alastair’s real passion though is anything that is project and risk management led and anything that involves educational programmes and the Young Generation Network. He has a BSc (Hons) in Physics.

Anindya Sen

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