A truth-based professional

December 22, 2011

I worked with Gillian Radcliffe, who recently resigned as head of communications at the London College of Communication ("PR chief's parting shot cites LCC head's 'unfair' management style", 15 December), very closely between 1991 and 1997 when she was head of press and public affairs for the South Yorkshire Police.

Gillian showed enormous integrity and humanity in her dealings with our officers, our support staff and with representatives of the media. She was a thorough-going professional, pressing always for transparency and a strong ethical base in the way that we approached media enquiries into our work.

We both recognised that such a stance, particularly from the police service, underpins an important aspect of democratic freedom. Any other approach in any other institution would sit very uncomfortably with her.

The other wonderful quality one inherited with Gillian was her Yorkshire directness; hers was simply an unwillingness to sit passively by at what she saw as injustice, incomplete thinking (my own included) or unsubstantiated gossip. She would quietly and with dignity stand up for what she believed in. She wrote for us a very good paper called "Into the light" in which she advocated positive, constantly truth-based handling of information; the title says a lot about her life and philosophy.

I had eventually to let her go, with great reluctance, for the sake of her career development, and we were never quite the same afterwards. Whoever succeeds in attracting her services will discover a true gem.

Richard Wells, Chief Constable, South Yorkshire Police, 1990-98, via www.timeshighereducation.co.uk

You've reached your article limit.

Register to continue

Registration is free and only takes a moment. Once registered you can read a total of 3 articles each month, plus:

  • Sign up for the editor's highlights
  • Receive World University Rankings news first
  • Get job alerts, shortlist jobs and save job searches
  • Participate in reader discussions and post comments
Register

Have your say

Log in or register to post comments

Featured Jobs

Assistant Recruitment - Human Resources Office

University Of Nottingham Ningbo China

Outreach Officer

Gsm London

Professorship in Geomatics

Norwegian University Of Science & Technology -ntnu

Professor of European History

Newcastle University

Head of Department

University Of Chichester
See all jobs

Most Commented

men in office with feet on desk. Vintage

Three-quarters of respondents are dissatisfied with the people running their institutions

A face made of numbers looks over a university campus

From personalising tuition to performance management, the use of data is increasingly driving how institutions operate

students use laptops

Researchers say students who use computers score half a grade lower than those who write notes

Canal houses, Amsterdam, Netherlands

All three of England’s for-profit universities owned in Netherlands

As the country succeeds in attracting even more students from overseas, a mixture of demographics, ‘soft power’ concerns and local politics help explain its policy