People moves- who's gone where in the HR sector?

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Despite the ongoing challenges of the coronavirus pandemic, there has still been plenty of job changes in the HR sector. Here, we roundup our top movers and shakers.

Move of the month Jon Dawson has been appointed The Lore Group’s director of people development, moving from the Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park London and One Hyde Park Residences where he was the HR Director.

Dawson’s role is a new one for the LoreGroup as it continues to grow its portfolio of hotels and hospitality concepts.

I knew Lore Group was the right place for me when…

I saw the passion with which the Group wants to further enhance its culture to be recognised as an employer of choice within the hospitality industry, by creating and managing hotel concepts through thoughtful design and the interesting use of space.

I’m most excited about...

The Lore Group has a fantastic portfolio of properties and is poised to continue to deliver

forward-thinking unique hotels in key markets across the UK, Europe and the US.

My biggest challenge in my new role will be…

To help the Group further grow to be at the forefront of some of the most exciting hospitality concepts in the countries it operates, through innovative people strategies and by developing a global culture without losing the unique individuality that makes each property special.

The biggest lessons I’ve learnt from my previous role has been...

Even with a detailed people strategy be prepared for anything. In my last 4 years at Mandarin Oriental we completed a £100M renovation of the property, handled two closures and two reopenings of the hotel due to a fire in 2018 and then the 2020 global pandemic. We did this while retaining our colleagues by creating some unique engagement strategies to ensure the culture remained at the forefront of our business.

The toughest point of my career has been...

To be part of the team that launched the Edition hotel brand in the UK and US, that has since gone on to grow substantially across the globe. The people and culture strategies put in place in those early days still hold strong today and it’s great to see the brand from the sidelines still using all the hard work that went into creating it.

If I achieve just one thing in my new role...

The hospitality industry has never faced such a challenge as COVID-19. Focusing on the long-term future of the Group and how we can all support each other to rebuild after this

crisis is a challenge I’m passionate about, not just with Lore Group, but within our industry as a whole.

I genuinely think as tough as times may be now, the learnings we are gaining will only make hospitality a stronger sector in the long-term future.


Other moves

Emily Boynton has been appointed executive director of human resources at Kingston University.

Boynton joins the university following over two years leading HR strategy and OD for the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, which included supporting staff in the wake of the Grenfell Tower Fire.

During this period, she was responsible for designing interventions for staff required to give evidence at the public inquiry into the disaster as well as well as developing and implementing the council’s overarching people strategy.

Speaking on her new appointment at Kingston, Boynton said: “[Universities’] power to transform lives and the central role they play as hubs of knowledge in their local communities and wider regions makes working in higher education extremely exciting.”


Chris Dunford has become the permanent chief people officer of British Arab Commercial Bank following a term as its interim HRD.

As prior HRD for American Express Global Business Travel, Dunford brings with him experience of supporting global teams.

He has also previously worked for real-estate services firm CBRE and held senior HR positions within the NHS.

Dunford will be part of the executive committee at BACB and will report to CEO Susie Aliker. Aliker said: “In Chris we have found a versatile and experienced HR leader ready to steer the bank’s people strategy during a period of extraordinary change in the working environment for most sectors, including financial services.”


Nikki Humphrey, chief people officer at Virgin Atlantic, joins John Lewis Partnership (JLP) as people executive director.

Humphrey joins the parent company of Waitrose and John Lewis at a challenging time for the high street brands amid redundancy consultations and following a half-year loss of £635 million.

In her appointment, Humphrey will be joining the executive team, responsible for spearheading the development of the company’s people strategy.

Prior to Virgin Atlantic, Humphrey held roles as people director, centre of excellence, at Lloyds Banking Group and HRD at Scottish Widows Investment Partnership.

JLP chair Sharon White, commented: “Nikki’s impressive experience will help ensure the partnership continues to be a great place to work for current and future partners.”


Scott Group establishes its first group HR director role with the appointment of Gill Gorman. Gorman was formerly head of HR for logistics at Royal Mail and group HRD at Scotbeef.

Following these roles, she set up her own HR consultancy business, Enabling People HR, and founded the Scottish HR Freelancers network. She is also currently a member of the board of trustees at The Donaldson Trust, a charity supporting neurodiversity.

As group HRD is a new role, Gorman will be responsible for building Scott Group’s people strategy. Alan Gibson, managing director of the group’s Scott Pallets business said:

“Investing in developing and implementing an ambitious people strategy is our number one priority. We are excited to have Gill on board to lead this work.”

The full piece of the above appears in the September/October 2020 print issue. Subscribe today to have all our latest articles delivered right to your desk.

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