MCR Executive Committee

The MCR is run by an Executive Committee (often simply called the ‘Exec’) composed of MCR members, elected by MCR Members. They are here to serve the MCR community; organising events for members, representing the members in College and University decision making, and overseeing the day-to-day running of the common room. If you ever have any need for them or wish to make comments or suggestions, they are always happy to receive them!

Executive Officers


Callum Bowler

I’m Callum Bowler, a first-year English PhD student. As Castle MCR President, I oversee the running of the MCR, as well as representing the wishes and views of the MCR to both the College and the University. I also take responsibility for relaying the thoughts of University leadership to the MCR when relevant, and liasing with Castle JCR and SCR as well as the MCRs of other Durham colleges. I aim to ensure that all Castle MCR members are as socially and as academically fulfilled as they can be during their time at Durham. Please don’t hesitate to get in touch at if you have any questions, concerns, or anything at all you’d like to discuss relating to the MCR or Castle life.

Pronouns: he/him

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Alexandra Dedio
Vice President

Hi everyone! I’m Alex, an MSc Management student and the MCR Vice President. I am responsible for writing and circulating the weekly MCR newsletter, editing the MCR website, running formal sign-ups, and standing in for the president in their absence. I also take the Exec meeting minutes and am in charge of passing on your anonymous feedback. I’m looking forward to getting to meet you all! 


Pronouns: She/her

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John Rayner

Hello, my name is John and I am studying for an MSc in Environmental and Nature Resource Economics. As Treasurer, I keep track of the MCR’s finances, help set committee and event budgets, run stash, and help ensure Castle MCR members get as much value as possible from their membership.

Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions regarding the MCR’s finances.

Pronouns: he/him

A photo of Lydia, the Academic Officer. She has short hair and glasses.

Lydia Atkins
Academic Officer

Hi I’m Lydia Atkins, a MA Medieval and Renaissance Literary Studies student. As Academic Officer, I will be leading the committee responsible for running our academic programme. This includes the Sunday Seminar Series, Castle Journal, and the annual Castle Conference. Whatever your interests or background, there is a place for you to take part in Castle’s academic life. Please send me a message if you have questions or would like to get involved in any way.


Pronouns she/her/hers

A selfie of the bearded Welfare Officer wearing a navy blue t-shirt

Kelan Ford
Welfare Officer

Hey everyone, my name is Kelan Ford and I am a second year Physical Geography Undergraduate. As Welfare Officer it is my responsibility to make sure the physical and mental wellbeing of students is a priority. This is done through campaigns, events, drop-in sessions, and making information/guidance accessible to all. Alongside heading up the Welfare Committee, I am a point of contact for anyone who has any issues or concerns. If you have any such issues or wish to get involved with the Committee, please drop me an email.


Pronouns: he/him

Decorative: Jon, the communications officer, stood in front of University College.

Jonathon Hawkins
Communications Officer

I’m Jon, an MA Philosophy student here at Durham. As communications officer, I oversee our social media and keep members up to date. In addition, I help the Vice President maintain the website, and provide marketing support for officers running events. As part of the role, I also manage the MCR’s Public Relations and help maintain the reputation of the group. I do so by engaging with external stakeholders and communicating with the local press. If you have any questions, please reach out. It’s my job after all!

Pronouns: He/Him


Yundi Guo
International Officer

Hi everyone. I’m Yundi Guo, a final-year History PhD student. As International Officer, it is my role to represent the interests and well-being of international MCR members and promote cross-cultural understanding in the community. I am also responsible for welcoming and supporting international students upon arrival and during their time at Castle. If you have any questions about living and studying in Durham as an international student or any ideas about how we can improve the international diversity of our MCR community, please feel free to get in touch.

Pronouns: She/her.

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Mike Merriam
Ball Chair

Hello! I'm Mike, an MA  International Relations (East Asia) student. As Ball Chair, I organize both the annual MCR Charity Ball - the biggest event on our social calendar - as well as Inter-MCR Formals. If you are interested in joining the Ball Committee or have any questions about the role, feel free to email me at: . For enquiries about the MCR Charity Ball, please email:

Pronouns: he/him

Rudolfs Treilis

A picture of the steward looking longingly in the distance

I am Rudolfs, a second-year Ph.D. student in theoretical physics and the steward for Castle MCR. I am here to welcome you to the Maurice Tucker room and make sure that everyone has a good time there while studying or relaxing. If you want to contact me about using the room or have a recommendation in mind, feel free to email me at

Pronouns: he/him

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(Currently Vacant)
Social Chair


Let us know if you are interested in applying!

Non-executive Officers

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Currently Vacant
Internal Affairs Officer

Let us know if you are interested in applying!

A picture of the charities officer taking a panic selfie for her bio
Safi Smith
Charities Officer

Hey, I’m Safi and I’m an MSc medical anthropology student. As charities officer, I work with the CCA committee to keep the MCR informed and involved in charity events, community outreach, and volunteering opportunities. I also am responsible for the MCR’s charity presence and will organise some charity events during the year. If you want to get involved in anything charity-wise, you are welcome to contact me.

Pronouns she/her

Dean Slack
MCR Advisor

Hi, I'm Dean, a third-year PhD student studying Computer Science. I've been on the Exec for the past 2 years, previously as the MCR Secretary, and as the longest-serving member I currently act as Advisor to the MCR Exec. For any questions MCR or Durham related, I'm always happy to help! I can be contacted at

Pronouns: he/him

(Currently Vacant)
Let us know if you are interested in applying!