The Brasenose Alumni Society
A Society that helps its members maintain a strong connection with the College Community and each other
By Penny Andrews, Secretary (Maths, 1979)
This report covers the 12 months up to and including the Society’s AGM and Dinner in September 2022.
The Brasenose Alumni Society
The Brasenose Alumni Society is Brasenose’s alumni association.
All matriculated Brasenose members automatically become members of the Brasenose Alumni Society when they go down, together with certain former employees/academics of the College. The term “alumni” in relation to the Society thus includes all these individuals.
There is no membership fee.
The activities of the Society
Although the formal object of the Society, as set out in the Rules, cannot be changed, its activities can be refined (in line with the object) from time to time. In February 2021, the Committee resolved that the Society should undertake the following activities:
- Foster closer relationships between BNC alumni and between alumni and the College Community (whether students, fellows, staff, the Alumni Office or the institution itself)
- Hold a President’s Summer Party and Society Dinner annually
- Professional networking with past and present members of the College
- Social networking with past and present members of the College and encouraging special interest groups and societies
- Encourage (but not finance) alumni attendance at or participation in College events
- Bring less-connected alumni and their ideas and skills closer to the College.
There are two more activities listed: one involving merely the Committee and Year Reps; the other clarifying an activity that is no longer required.
Please see the Participation paragraph below if you would like to be involved in the Society’s activities.
A full copy of the Society’s Rules (its name, object/purpose, membership, Committee, general meetings etc) is set out on the College’s website at https://www.bnc.ox.ac.uk/downloads/bnc_society/Brasenose_Alumni_Society_Rules_Oct_2021.pdf.
Regular events arranged by the Society
The Society hosts two annual events in collaboration with the Development Office:
- The President’s Summer Party, usually held in London
- The annual Society Dinner, usually held in College during the University’s annual Alumni Weekend in September.
These are advertised on the College website as well as by email. Both are somewhat constrained by numbers, so early application is advisable.
Report on 2021 – 22 events
The President’s Summer Party
In July 2022 the 2021-22 Society President, Rod Clayton, hosted a Summer Drinks Party at the Society of Antiquaries of London, in Burlington House, Piccadilly. This was a very successful event, with around 100 alumni attending. Sadly, it was the last Society event to be attended by Liz Miller, the Director of the Development Office, who has now left Brasenose to move to another role. She has been a great support to the Society and our activities, and we shall miss her.
Annual Society Dinner
The Society’s Annual Dinner was held in September at Brasenose and was very well attended with 120 attending, including the President of the HCR, Christian Norton, and Vice president of the JCR, Alexander Roberts. John Bowers welcomed us and used the opportunity to provide reassurance that Brasenose and the University are determined defenders of free speech on campus, notwithstanding the difficulties of other universities in this area, so well aired in the press. Rod Clayton, President, and his guest speaker Bill O’Chee, recollected with pleasure their time at College and commented how the values and skills learned, and friends made, have been important in their lives ever since.
The Society’s monthly drinks have now been resumed. The first drinks were held at the beginning of October and the plan is to hold them on the first Tuesday evening of each month, most months. They are now being held at the Red Lion pub, Crown Passage, London, which has the advantage of being very close to the previous venue (the Oxford & Cambridge Club). All alumni are welcome to come to these; no prior notice is necessary. Details are advertised on the College website and by email.
September 2022 AGM
The Society’s AGM was held in College, just before the Annual dinner.
The following officers and Committee members were elected or confirmed at the AGM, to run for the year from September 2022 to September 2023:
- President: Narmada Thiranagama (1996)
- Vice President: Dan Chambers (1988)
- Committee members elected/re-elected:
David Bradbury (1981), David Clark (1970), Paul Dawson-Bowling (1962), Rosie Duthie (2016) Drusilla Gabbott (1982), Penny Gilbert (1978), Amanda Holland (1988), Jane Johnson (1987), Alexandra Marks (1977) and Sarah Williamson Atkins (1984)
- Committee members not requiring election/re-election:
Penny Andrews (1979) Secretary, Nigel Bird (1969) Treasurer; ex-Presidents Paul Silk (1970), Amanda Pullinger (1984) and Rod Clayton (1986); ex Officio College members John Bowers, Principal; Julia Diamantis, Director of Development; Ed Bispham, Academic Representative
The meeting noted that the Society’s funds remain in good health.
Participation in Society activities
As noted before, the Brasenose Alumni Society is here to reflect the full diversity of our alumni community – ex students and ex staff.
The Society would welcome alumni who have ideas for events (whether on a larger scale or smaller, more local ideas such as arranging a walk or curry evening for fellow alumni in the area) or networks, possibly including current students or College staff. If you would like to be involved, please do come forward, even if you have not been involved before.
Otherwise, if you would like to be active in shaping the Society’s activities or in helping the College and its students, please do consider joining the Society’s Committee. Election to the Committee is at the AGM in September and there is a nomination form at the back of The Brazen Nose. If you think you might be interested in joining and would like to attend a Committee meeting as an observer, please let us know.
For further information and support, please contact the Society Secretary at [email protected].
The Society also runs the Year Rep scheme. Please see here [link to a pdf of the Brazen Nose article for 2022] and here [link to Year Rep Scheme webpage].