Jill Burnett (1976)
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1976 - 1979
Innovation consultant & Enterprise Manager, UWE
Jill studied Mathematics at Murray Edwards College, was Captain of the University's Ladies Sailing team (1978) and Vice President of the Cruising Club (1979), achieving a half blue for sailing. After graduating she studied for a PhD in satellite image processing for archaeology at the Institute of Archaeology in London.
Joining the Software industry in the early 80's, Jill played a lead role in the start-up and fast growth of a GEC commercial software business providing bespoke information and transaction processing systems using new 4GL and relational database technologies. In 1993, having delivered in increasingly senior roles, she joined an Oxford-based software start-up to follow her interest in new product development. Here Jill established training, consultancy and innovation services, supporting US incorporation and subsequent sale of the business. Appointed to VP Product Development by the new owners, Jill achieved global sales of $40M for her product development group and collaborated with peers in US, Sweden and France to integrate the company's expanded product portfolio.
Since returning to her core interests in 2003, Jill has built a portfolio career supporting business start-up and innovation in her local Bristol and Bath community. As an advisor to high growth potential SME's (small and medium enterprises) she is actively involved in raising funding for business development, particularly R&D. Working with SETsquared (Universities of Bath and Bristol), Business Link and the University of the West of England (UWE) she has generated over £2M in successful grant applications for 35 companies, attracting significant equity and loan funding. Jill is currently working with an engineering company supplying the robotics and prosthetics sectors and a creative media start-up providing immersive experiences for cultural attractions. In 2007 Jill took a job-share as Enterprise Manager at UWE, supporting exploitation of staff and student intellectual property (IP) and championing knowledge exchange with business. Here she made the case for a UWE business incubator in central Bristol and has established an innovative service, attracting an expanding, collaborative community of entrepreneurs and supporters with a combined client annual turnover forecast approaching £2m after its first year of operation.
Outside of work, Jill and her husband, Bruce (Corpus engineer, REME), are renovating a Grade II listed mill using traditional methods and green technologies. This 7-year project will complete in 2010 and they plan to set up a design and engineering business utilising the expertise. They have three boys, aged 14, 19 and 20 - interested in computer games, medicine and industrial chemistry respectively.
1983 - 1986
Former Head of Technical Department at Large UK Accounting Firm, currnetly a Research Fellow at Department of Zoology, Univeristy of Oxford.
On graduating from New Hall in 1986 with a degree in mathematics, Nina qualified as a Chartered Accountant, spending nearly 20 years in audit, ultimately as Head of Technical Department at a large national UK firm. Her work predominantly involved accounts/audit technical, training and regulatory issues. During that time, she spent a few years working remotely from home and later negotiated part-time hours in her senior office-based role. In 2005 Nina changed career and embarked on a doctorate in mathematical ecology at the University of Oxford (in the Department of Zoology and at St Anne’s, which is Murray Edwards’ sister college), where she is currently a Postdoctoral Research Fellow. She is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales and remains interested in regulatory, ethical and governance matters; she is the Deputy Chairman of the Standards Committee of Oxfordshire County Council.