Professor Deborah Bowman MBE appointed to GOC Council

Deborah Bowman has been appointed as the newest lay member of the General Optical Council (GOC) as of 1 September 2019 for a period of four years.

Deborah will replace Selina Ullah, whose term finishes on 31 August 2019.

Deborah is Professor of Bioethics & Clinical Ethics and Deputy Principal (Institutional Affairs) at St. George's, University of London. Her academic interests include the application of ethics to policy, clinical practice and healthcare regulation.

She currently serves as a lay member on the GOC Standards Committee, although she will have to stand down on appointment as a Council member. Previously, she served as chair for the General Medical Council’s review of its Consent Guidance, as a Non-executive Director of St George’s and South West London Mental Health Trust, as a member of the London Police Ethics Panel for the Mayor’s Office and Metropolitan Police and as a Governor of Morden Primary School.

Deborah is a broadcaster and regular commentator in the media, particularly for BBC radio; most recently writing and presenting Patient Undone and a fourth series of Test Case for BBC Radio 4. She was the Editor-in-Chief of the BMJ journal of Medical Humanities for four years. In 2016, she was awarded an MBE for Services to Medical Ethics.

GOC Chair Gareth Hadley said:

"I am pleased to welcome Deborah to the Council. Her high level of expertise in professional standards and ethics will be extremely valuable as we continue our work of ensuring public protection in the optical sector. I look forward to working with her as the GOC progresses key strategic projects, including the Education Strategic Review (ESR) and Continuing Education and Training (CET) review.

"I thank Selina for her time and dedication as a lay Council member. Selina brought a wealth of experience to the role and made many valuable contributions to the GOC during her time as a Council member. I know she will continue to achieve great things and I wish her all the best in her future endeavours."

For further information please contact:

Communications Team

General Optical Council

t: 020 7307 3478 – option 3


Notes to editors:

  1. Read Deborah’s biography
  2. The GOC Council is composed of twelve members; six GOC registrants and six lay members (not optometrists or dispensing opticians). The Chair must be a lay member.
  3. The Privy Council formally made the appointment based on the recommendation of the GOC’s selection panel.
  4. The selection panel was independently assessed to ensure the process is fair, transparent, open, credible and based on merit. Read our appointments policy.
  5. Photographs of Deborah are available on request.