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Notable alumnae

Discover former pupils of GDST who have excelled in a variety of fields.

Academia and education

Professor Dame Mary Beard (photograph by Robin Cormack)
  • Professor Dame Mary Beard, Professor of Classics at University of Cambridge, author and broadcaster
  • Anne Lonsdale CBE (Heathfield), Sinologist and former president of New Hall College, Cambridge
  • Professor MM McCabe (Oxford) - Professor of Ancient Philosophy Emerita, King’s College, London and author
  • Professor Dame Shirley Pearce (Norwich) – Chair of Governors of the London School of Economics and member of the Committee on Standards in Public Life
  • Professor Dame Marliyn Strathern (Bromley) – Emeritus Professor of Social Anthropology and Life Fellow, Girton College


Afua Hirsch
  • Naomi Alderman (South Hampstead) - Best-selling author
  • Dame AS Byatt (Sheffield) - Author and winner of the Man Booker Prize
  • Harriet Evans (Notting Hill & Ealing) - Best-selling author
  • Anne Fine OBE (Northampton) - Children's author and former Children's Laureate
  • Lucy Foley (Portsmouth) - Best-selling author
  • Frances Hardinge (Ipswich) - Author; winner of the 2015 Costa Book of the Year award
  • Afua Hirsch (Wimbledon) - Author and Man Booker Prize judge 2019
  • Sophie Kinsella (Putney) - Best-selling author
  • LJ Ross (Newcastle) – Author; creator of the DCI Ryan Mysteries series
  • Rebecca Stott (Brighton & Hove) – Author; winner of 2017 Costa Book Awards biography category



Debbie Wosskow
  • Emma Bridgewater CBE (Oxford) – Ceramics designer and manufacturer
  • Jasmine Birtles (Brighton & Hove) – Founder, and broadcaster
  • Mary Chapman (Sutton) – Chartered Director and former chief executive of the Chartered Management Institute
  • Karen Jones CBE (Sutton) – Chancellor, University of East Anglia and co-founder of the Café Rouge restaurant chain
  • Penny Hughes CBE (Birkenhead) – President of the Advertising Association
  • Jane Platt CBE (Birkenhead) – Chair of LifeSight Master Trust and non-executive FCA Board member
  • Dr Laura Toogood (Royal High Bath) – Digital expert and author
  • Alison Berryman (Wimbledon) - Global Head of Fraud Operations, Barclays
  • Susan Ma (Croydon) – Founder, Tropic Skincare
  • Fleur Emery (Portsmouth) – Founder, Grasshopper Porridge
  • Debbie Wosskow OBE (Sheffield) – Co-founder, The AllBright

Broadcasting, media and journalism

Sophie Raworth (photograph by Anita Corbin, Putney alumna)
  • Samira Ahmed (Wimbledon) - Broadcaster and journalist
  • Angellica Bell (Notting Hill & Ealing) - TV presenter
  • Bettany Hughes (Notting Hill & Ealing) - Historian and broadcaster 
  • Konnie Huq (Notting Hill & Ealing) - Former Blue Peter presenter
  • Suzy Klein (South Hampstead) - TV and radio presenter, BBC
  • Kate Phillips (Shrewsbury) - Controller of BBC Entertainment
  • Caroline Raphael (Putney) - Commissioning Editor, Radio 4
  • Sophie Raworth (Putney) - TV news presenter
  • Susanna Reid (Croydon) - News presenter and journalist
  • Kate Riley (Ipswich) - CNN Anchor
  • Dr Helen Scales (Sutton) - Presenter, writer and marine biologist
  • Charlene White (Blackheath) - News presenter and journalist

Film, TV and theatre

Helena Bonham Carter
  • Jenny Beavan (Putney)  OBE - Oscar-winning costume designer
  • Mary Berry CBE (Royal High, Bath) - Chef; writer and journalist
  • Helena Bonham Carter (South Hampstead) - Actor
  • Olivia Colman (Norwich) - Oscar-winning actor
  • Mel Giedroyc (Oxford) - Comedian and presenter
  • Pippa Harris (Oxford) - Film Producer; work includes Call the Midwife and Starter for Ten
  • Miriam Margolyes OBE (Oxford) - Award-winning actor
  • Sandy Powell OBE (Sydenham) - Oscar-winning costume designer
  • Indhu Rubasingham (Nottingham) OBE  - Artistic director, Tricycle Theatre
  • Sophie Simnett (Putney) – Actor
  • Dame Rosemary Squire (Nottingham) - Co-founder of Ambassador Theatre Group and Trafalgar Entertainment Group
  • Miriam Stoppard OBE (Newcastle) -  Doctor, author, TV presenter and advice columnist


Sandie Okoro
  • Dame Margaret Booth (Northwood) - retired judge, only the third woman appointed as a High Court judge
  • Her Honour Judge Frances Kirkham CBE (Heathfield) – retired judge, and founder member of the UK Association of Women Judgess
  • Cathryn McGahey QC (Howell’s) – Barrister, junior counsel to the Bloody Sunday Inquiry
  • Sandie Okoro (Putney) - World Bank Group Senior Vice President and General Counsel
  • Her Honour Judge Deborah Taylor (Newcastle) – Senior circuit judge and resident judge at Southwark Crown Court




Non-profit & charity

  • Dr Mary Baker MBE (Bromley) - Former CEO of Parkinson’s Disease Society and President of European Federation of Neurological Associations
  • Tanya Barron (South Hampstead) - Chief Executive of Plan UK
  • Ann Cotton OBE (Howell's) - Founder and President Camfed
  • Dianne Jeffrey CBE (Sheffield) - Chairman Age UK
  • Alison Maguire (Croydon) - Head of Research & Finance, The Lily Foundation
  • Dame Mary Marsh (Birkenhead) - Former CEO of NSPCC, independent non-executive Director of HSBC Bank plc
  • Anita Grover (Sydenham) - CEO of Auditory Verbal UK


Public service

Baroness Virginia Bottomley of Nettlestone (photograph by Anita Corbin, Putney alumna)
  • Madeleine Albright (Kensington) - Former US Secretary of State
  • Baroness Virginia Bottomley of Nettlestone (Putney) - Life Peer and former Secretary of State for Health and for National Heritage
  • Suella Braverman (formerly Fernandes, Heathfield) - Conservative MP for Fareham
  • Fiona Bruce - (Howell's) Conservative MP for Congleton
  • Cressida Dick CBE (Oxford) - Metropolitan Police Commissioner
  • Louise Haigh (Sheffield) - Labour MP for Sheffield Heeley
  • Meg Hillier (Portsmouth) - Labour MP for Hackney South and Shoreditch
  • Dame Margaret Hodge (Bromley) - Labour MP for Barking and Dagenham
  • Dr Rupa Huq (Notting Hill & Ealing) - Labour MP for Ealing Central and Acton
  • Cdr Maryla Ingham (Sutton) - Commanding Officer, 1st Patrol Boat Squadron, Royal Navy
  • Baroness Manningham-Buller (Northampton) - Former Director General of MI5 
  • Esther McVey (Belvedere) – Conservative MP for Tatton
  • Dame Stella Rimington (Nottingham) - First female Director General of MI5
  • Alice Walpole (Norwich) - Deputy Special Representative for Political Affairs and Electoral Assistance of the United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI)
  • Rev Canon Alison White (Notting Hill & Ealing) - Anglican Bishop of Hull


Science, maths and medicine

Dr Jess Wade
  • Professor Sarah-Jayne Blakemore (Oxford) – Professor of Cognitive Neuroscience at the Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience, UCL
  • Professor Alison Bruce (Newcastle) - Head of Nuclear Physics Research and Enterprise Group at the University of Brighton
  • Dr Alice Bunn (Shrewsbury) – International Director at the UK Space Agency
  • Dr Jane Collins (Portsmouth) - Chief Executive of Marie Curie Cancer Care
  • Professor Baroness Ilora Finlay (Wimbledon) - First consultant in palliative medicine in Wales and President of the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy
  • Dr Emily Grossman (South Hampstead) - Science communicator, broadcaster and educator
  • Dr Patricia Hamilton CBE (Croydon) - Director of Medical Education England
  • Professor Alison Hodge (Sydenham) - Associate Dean, Engineering and Applied Science at Aston University
  • Dr Sheila Kanani (Wimbledon) – Education, Outreach and Diversity Officer at the Royal Astronomical Society
  • Dame Frances Clare Kirwan (Oxford) - Savilian Professor of Geometry at the University of Oxford
  • Dr Jess Wade (South Hampstead) - Physicist and researcher in Dept of Physics and Centre for Plastic Electronics at Imperial College, London


  • Claire Bennett (Sydenham) – Former captain of England women’s fencing team
  • Fiona Bigwood (Croydon) - Dressage Team; Olympic Silver medallist
  • Sam Davies (Portsmouth) - Yachtswoman (4th in 2009 Vendée Globe)
  • Sam Eve (Ipswich) - Member of the first all-female team to complete the polar challenge
  • Sophie Hemming (Norwich) - Rugby; member of the World Cup winning England team, 2014
  • Sheila Lerwill (Streatham & Clapham) - Holder of women's high jump record for three years, silver medal at 1952 Helsinki Olympics
  • Hannah Mills MBE (Howell’s) - Olympic gold medal winning sailor
  • Aicha McKenzie (Putney) - Director of AMCK, choreographer and former Commonwealth games rhythmic gymnast
  • Karen Pickering MBE (Brighton and Hove) - Swimmer; Commonwealth gold medallist; Chair of the British Athletes Commission
  • Sam Quek (Birkenhead) – Member of the 2016 Olympic gold medal winning hockey team