St Anne’s College is delighted to announce the election of alumna Ms Helen King (PPE, 1983) as the College’s next Principal. Helen will start in her role on 24 April 2017.


Helen King:

‘I feel immensely honoured and a little overwhelmed to have been selected by the Governing Body of St Anne's College to be their Principal and to be the first police officer ever appointed to head an Oxbridge College. St Anne's is rightly proud of its history of having been established by a remarkable group of determined people in order to enable women of any financial background, with talent, appetite and determination, to gain a university education at Oxford. It resolutely continues to seek to identify and nurture students with potential, regardless of privilege. My three years at St Anne's as an undergraduate in the 1980s shaped my life through my tutors, my contemporaries and the opportunities Oxford gave me.

I'd like to pay tribute to the positive legacy of the outgoing Principal, Tim Gardam, and thank the acting Principal, Robert Chard and acting Vice-Principal, Martin Speight, the College's Officers and Governing Body for all the work that is being done during this interim period.’


Robert Chard, Acting Principal:

‘Speaking on behalf of the Fellowship, I would like to stress how delighted we are at the outcome of this election. St Anne's selects its Principals for their values and personal qualities, and Helen King combines genuine human warmth with impressive competence and a commitment to inclusiveness, diversity and opportunity. We feel she will work well with all segments of the St Anne's community – students, staff, Fellows, and alumnae – in steering the College through what looks to be a time of many changes ahead, and keeping us in an optimal position to continue our tradition of transforming the lives of people who traditionally would not have had access to an Oxford education.’

Helen King (St Anne’s, PPE, 1983) joined the Cheshire Constabulary as a Police Constable in 1986 under the Graduate Entry Scheme. She worked in uniform and CID roles across the county. In 2005, Helen transferred to Merseyside Police as an Assistant Chief Constable. In 2009, she took over the Force's Operations portfolio, responsible for Merseyside's six policing areas. She was awarded the Queen's Police Medal in the New Year's Honours list 2011. In April 2012, Helen returned to Cheshire Constabulary as the Deputy Chief Constable and was responsible for performance management, governance, standards and communications. Helen joined the Metropolitan Police Service as Assistant Commissioner for Territorial Policing in June 2014 with oversight of policing in London’s 32 Boroughs and was responsible for Roads Policing and Criminal Justice.  Since April 2016, she has held the position of Assistant Commissioner for Professionalism which includes responsibility for Training and Professional Standards.

Any queries, please contact Kate Davy, Communications Officer, at

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