Full Committee of the Cambridge Union (Easter 2016)

The Cambridge Union Society is an organisation that was founded and is headed by students. Each term is planned and carried out by a mixture of elected and appointed officers, with support from the organisation's staff and trustees.

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Standing Committee - Officers

Officers of the Cambridge Union are students elected by the membership of the Union. In addition to their individual responsibilities in creating their term's programme, they are also entitled to vote on decisions regarding the Union's operations and future. The Vice-President is a annually appointed position who holds the same voting rights as an Officer.


President - Charlotte Ivers, Pembroke


The President serves as the Chairman of the Standing Committee, debates and Members' Business Meetings. They responsible for organising a programme of  debates and overseeing the planning of other events during his or her term in office. He or she is also the head of the Society and overall responsibility lies with them.



Vice President - William Fitzalan Howard, Robinson 


The Vice-President is appointed by Standing Committee at the end of Lent as an annual position, and is responsible for the long-term direction of the Society. They rank as second-in-command behind the President, and facilitate the work of the termly Presidents, including assisting the handover between termly Officers, and inviting high-profile speakers well in advance. The Vice-President also works heavily with the Bursar as well as the student Officers.

Vice President-designate: Leyla Gumusdis, Peterhouse


Executive Officer - Katherine Dunbar, St John's


The Executive Officer is responsible for implementing the decisions of the Standing Committee and fulfils a general facilitation role between other Committee  members.  The Executive Officer is in charge of the programme of debates for each term, and can be designated roles or assigned specific responsibilities  according to the needs of each particular term. Also responsible for the chair of Executive Committee, which brings together appointees responsible for event planning and management. 



Speakers Officer - Matteo Violet-Vianello, Queens'


The Speakers Officer is responsible for planning and then administering a programme of individual speakers across their term of office, and working with a team of appointed officers to facilitate the smooth running of these events.




Treasurer - Leyla Gumusdis, Peterhouse


The Treasurer is responsible for raising sponsorship funds for his or her term in office, obtaining local business discounts for members and directing the  Society's merchandising operations. (The responsibility for managing the Society's finances lies with the Bursar and the Accounts Manager).



Social Events Officer - Page Nyame-Satterthwaite, Christ's


The Social Events Officer is responsible for organising a programme of social events for their term including balls, parties, food and drink tastings, garden  parties and musical events.




Debating Officer - Muhammad Asadullah Khan, Trinity, and John Papantoniou, Trinity


The Debating Officers are two positions appointed by Standing Committee at the end of Lent Term. They are in charge of the debating side of the Union, coordinating  the entry and selection of teams to debating competitions, as well as training members in debating. They also take a leading role in running the  Schools' Debating Competition every year. 

These Officers have significant experience in university competitive debating and specific organisational experience in competitive debating prior to their appointment.


Standing Committee - Officers-Elect

In order to give our officers enough time to plan their term, all of the termly officerships are elected a term in advance and serve for a term as officers-elect. This enables them to become familiar with their role, work with their immediate predecessor and to plan effectively for their own time in office. The President-elect, flanked by two officers-elect, presides over the emergency debates that precede main debates. Officers-elect are also entitled to vote on Union business. 


President-Elect - Asia Lambert, Newnham


The President-elect is responsible for managing their team of elected officers, and planning the general outline of their upcoming term in office.




Executive Officer-Elect - Katherine Dunbar, Magdalene


The Executive Officer-elect is responsible for assisting the President with the administration of their term, and is responsible for creating a program of forums and debates across their term in office. Other elected officers are expected to assist the Executive Officer in this regard, alongside Debates Committee. 



Speakers Officer-Elect - Matteo Violet-Vianello, Queens'


The Speakers Officer-elect is responsible for crafting a program of single speaker events accross their term in office, supported by Speakers Deputies. These deputies are not members of Standing Committee, and appointments are made on an ad-hoc basis based on performance in Speakers Committee. 



Treasurer-Elect - Leyla Gumusdis, Peterhouse


The Treasurer-elect is responsible for securing sponsorship and members benefits for their term in office. 




Social Events Officer-Elect - Page Nyame-Satterthwaite, Christ's


The Social Events Officer-elect is responsible for planning a range of social events for the term in office, and chairing any ents-related steering committees.



Appointed Positions

Whilst the Union is run by a team of elected officers on a bi-termly basis, the day-to-day activities of the Union are managed by a larger team of dedicated students appointed by elected officers for the duration of their terms. Senior Heads of departments are invited to attend Standing Committee meetings by the President, as well as other appointees as and when necessary. Applications to become an appointee are sent out at the end of each term by the incoming President. 


Events and Guests

Heads of Events Management - Charles Connor, King's, and Edmund MacKeith, Sidney Sussex


The HoEM is in charge of running the Society's events, by managing and encouraging stewards to work on events. The HoEM is a permanent invitee of Standing Committee, where they advise on the logistics of event running.

Deputy Heads of Events Management - James Burn, Christ's, and Miles Kekwick, Girton


Senior Guest Liaisons - Andrea Borbely, Murray Edwards, and Ben Dalton, Girton (Debates), and Carrie Gothard, Trinity, and Chantal Wong, Robinson (Speakers)



The Senior Guest Liaison Officers are responsible for looking after guests for debates and speaker meetings, accompanying our high-profile speakers to and from the Society, dining with them, and generally ensuring they have a good time. They also manage a team of guest liaisons responsible for shadowing guests and making sure they have everything they need from their arrival in Cambridge to their departure. 

Deputy Guest Liaisons - Max Campbell, Hughes Hall, Caitlin McCartney, Magdalene, Caspar Ramsay, Jesus (Debates), and Jonah Surkes, Clare, and Dan Sanderson, Pembroke (Speakers)

Head of Audio-Visual - Mikko Mäntylä, Trinity, and Sally Scrivener, Corpus


The HoAV is in charge of all the Union's technical systems, including creating and over-seeing longer term upgrade programs in conjunction with the Bursar and Trustees. This includes on-the-night operations management, including radio mic operation, live streaming, recording, over-flow room feeds, and the Union's YouTube account and more generally maintaining the Union's AV systems. The HoAV is also responsible for facilitating and coordinating live speakers, and questions from external members, and managing the team of regular AV stewards who assist at Union events. 

Deputy Head of AV - Jason Lee, Downing, and Max Wolffe, Churchill 


Digital Media Editor - Tom Whittaker, Pembroke, and Jacob Chan

The DME is responsible for creating the recruitment video and editing together clips of Union events into promotional material. They are appointed as and when deemed necessary by the President at the time. The DME has access to all Union equipment and digital content.


Press and Publicity

Head of Press - Anna Bockmuehl, Peterhouse, and Laura Robinson, Murray Edwards


The Head of Press is in charge of the Society's presentation to student, local and national press (including radio). The Head of Press works directly with the President to co-ordinate our approach to the media., as is responsible for management of the Union's press-related presence online. Additional responsibilities includes reporting on all Union events, and acting as the Union's spokesperson.

Deputy Heads of Press - Seun Adekoya, Queens' and Hani El-Bay, Trinity


Heads of Publicity - Jasmina O'Shaughnessy, Robinson, and Tom McArthur, Girton 


As well as publicising our regular events online, they are also responsible for maintaining our presence on Twitter, Facebook and other forms of social media more generally.​

​Deputy Heads of Online Publicity - Aleksei Opacic, King's and Aatif Syed, Peterhouse


Chief Photographer - Chris Williamson, St Edmund's 


The Chief Photographer appoints and runs a team of photographers, managing the photography at Union events. He or she will also manage Press Agency inquiries regarding photographs, and ensure that all photographs are properly archived and stored at the Union.


Other roles

Secretary - Haroun Mahmud, King's


The Secretary is responsible for minuting all debates, emergency debates, Standing Committee, Open and General Meetings. They also write the weekly emails.


Heads of Online Membership - Aditya Basrur, Magdalene and Denys Grabchak, Wolfson

Heads of Membership - Rachel Mander, Newnham and Joe Fiber, Girton​


This is an annual role appointed at the end of Michaelmas; the Membership Officer is responsible for co-ordinating our outreach and recruitment efforts. This runs on a two termly basis at the start of Easter, and the position is thus vacant during Lent. The Head of Recruitment may manage their own budget and work closely with the Vice-President and other Officers, as well as the Bursar, to perform their duties.

Diversity Officer - Tim Adelani, Peterhouse


The Diversity Officer is in charge of CUS Diversity initiatives. The Diversity Officer was made a bi-termly role in March 2015, and is appointed at the end of every term to serve one term as officer-designate, and one term in office. 

Women’s Officer - Elsa Minns


The Women’s Officer works to monitor and improve the gender balance reflected in attendance of Union events and in the speakers who are invited. The Women's Officer was made a bi-termly role in March 2015, and is appointed at the end of every term to serve one term as officer-designate, and one term in office. 

Women's Officer Designate - Ruth Lawlor, Trinity College

Access Officers - Till Schoefer, Homerton and Michael Brown, Pembroke


The Access Officer is in charge of crucial parts of the Union's charitable work, such as CUS Access initiatives, which school and public visits, and working with the Debating Officers to incorporate access into the Debating programme.


Governance Committees

Board of Trustees

  • Lord Chris Smith PC (Chairman)
  • Dr Nigel Brown OBE
  • Mr Andy Swarbrick FCA
  • Dr Nigel Yandell
  • Mr Nick Heath FRICS
  • The Hon Daniel Janner QC
  • Janet Turner QC
  • Ms Charlotte Ivers, President of the Cambridge Union
  • William Fitzalan Howard Esq, Vice President of the Cambridge Union
  • Tim Hayward Esq


Directors of Cambridge Union Society Events Ltd.

  • Andy Swarbrick Esq.
  • William Fitzalan Howard Esq.
  • Colonel William Bailey
  • Tim Hayward Esq
  • Ms Charlotte Ivers


The Fundraising Steering Committee

  • William Fitzalan Howard (Vice President and Trustee, 2015-2016)
  • Oliver Mosley (President and Trustee, Michaelmas 2015)
  • Leyla Gumusdis (Treasurer and Vice President-designate, Easter 2016)
  • Janet Turner QC (Trustee)
  • Lord Karan Bilimoria (Vice President, Easter 1988)
  • Colonel William Bailey MBE (Bursar)
  • Jiameng Gao (Technical)
  • David Branch (President, Michaelmas 1995)
  • Alessandro Forzani (Vice President, 2012-2013)
  • Joanna Mobed (President, Michaelmas 2013)

Established in 2016 to manage the Union's development programme. 


Review Committee

  • Julien Domercq (ex officio President, Michaelmas 2009) - Chair
  • Joshua Blanchard Lewis (ex officio Vice President, 2008-9)
  • Jan Jonathan Bock (ex officio Senior Committee Member, Michaelmas 2009)
  • Lauren Davidson (ex officio President, Lent 2011)
  • Joel Fenster (ex officio President, Easter 2013)
  • Alex Forzani (ex officio Vice President, 2012-13)
  • Rahul Mansigani (ex officio Treasurer, Easter 2010)
  • Sophie Odenthal (ex officio Speakers Officer, Lent 2012)



  • Colonel William Bailey MBE Bursar
  • Dr David Sellick, Accountant 
  • George Swarbrick, Events Administrator
  • Patrick Hanwell, Site Supervisor 
  • Joe Burman, Events Manager 
  • Jody Fletcher, Bar Manager
  • Bartłomiej Fajer, Barman
  • Nathan Caples, Senior Technician 
  • Sam Haskell, Senior Webmaster