Board of Directors

Derek Cowie - Chairman

Mr Derek Cowie, Chairman of the Lathallan Board of Governors, has been involved with Lathallan School for a number of years, with both of his sons having attended Lathallan School. Mr Cowie has recently retired after a successful career in North Sea oil.

Gavin Calder

Mr Gavin Calder has been in Senior Management roles in a number of Scottish independent schools. Having served as Deputy Head of the Junior School at Robert Gordon’s College until 2004, he moved to Loretto School to become Deputy Head and Housemaster of Newfield House, and latterly Mr Calder has been Head of Edinburgh Academy Junior School and Nursery. Mr Calder has a particular interest in curriculum architecture, after completing a short term secondment for Learning and Teaching Scotland. Mr Calder has been a member of the Board of the Scottish Council of Independent Schools since 2012. A passionate advocate of outdoor education, Mr Calder has published articles and sits on the Board of charity Scottish Outdoor Education Centres. He is also the chairman of the Board of Academy Sports Ltd.

Jeanette Forbes OBE

Jeanette Forbes OBE is a qualified systems engineer who established her company PCL Group in 2000, following the downturn in the Oil & Gas industry. Over the last 20 years she has enjoyed outstanding success in her field, claiming over 20 awards and accolades and being an influential board member within a number of national organisations, including the Scottish Government. In 2015, she was named Business Women Scotland's Inspirational Women of the Year. She was given The Queens Award for Voluntary Service in 2017 and was named CEO of the Year, Scotland Women in Technology Awards later that year. A former Elevator Awards Entrepreneur of the Year and 2019 Business Woman of the Year, The Scottish SME Business Award. Her achievements were recognised by The Queen in 2019 as she was awarded an OBE. In 2020, she was given the Significant Contribution at The Offshore Achievement Awards and is an invaluable addition to to the Lathallan School Board.

Robert Leggate

Robert Leggate graduated from St Andrews University with an honours degree in modern history and political economy and then qualified as a chartered accountant. Robert moved to Aberdeenshire and held senior financial positions in the oil and gas industry including with McAlpine and Vetco until he was appointed bursar of Robert Gordon’s College in 1991. During this time he served as a board member of SCIS from 1998-2008, and as Chair of the Scottish Bursars’ Group from 2008-11. After retiring from Robert Gordon’s College in 2011, Mr Leggate has been involved as a Trustee of Beannachar Ltd (which offers residential and day care for young adults with learning difficulties and is part of the Camphill Trust).

Alastair Shepherd

Alastair Shepherd is a former pupil at Lathallan and Chairman of the Old Lathallian Association. He is a solicitor in Edinburgh with HBJ Gateley, specialising in rural property, and is also a Writer to the Signet and Notary Public. Born in Nigeria, as an “army child” he moved house every two years before abandoning his Stonehaven roots for a settled life in East Lothian. He graduated in law from Aberdeen University in 1981. Married with two children, Mr Shepherd has an interest in history, in particular researching War Memorials, and has written a book on the Haddington War Memorial. Mr Shepherd will not only bring his legal experience to the Board, but also his knowledge of the history of Lathallan since 1930.

Gary Leslie

Gary Leslie has had a successful career within the Hotel and Catering Business and more recently within the Oil Service Industry. He purchased his first hotel venture in 1985 in Shetland. In 1992 he returned to Aberdeen to further his business interests and in 1994 bought and personally operated The Queen’s Hotel, Aberdeen which was sold in 2006 to The Malmaison Group. He was an active participant in hotel, catering and licensed trade training and development organisations. A change of path took him to the Oil Service Industry where he became Managing Director for Saltire Energy before becoming a Director and Shareholder of another service company. Educated at Mackie Academy in Stonehaven and very familiar with the Johnshaven and Lathallan area.

Beth Christie

Beth is a Lecturer in Education in the Outdoor and Environmental Education Section of the Moray House School of Education, she is also Programme Director for the MSc Learning for Sustainability. She has two children who attend Lathallan Senior School. She completed a successful all-female expedition to Antartica in 2018, meeting other 'like-minded' inspiring women, on a trip designed to develop leadership, strategic and communication capabilities.


Lathallan School
Brotherton Castle
by Montrose

DD10 0HN

Lathallan School

Lathallan School is a Scottish independent co-educational day and boarding school offering an outstanding Nursery, Junior and Secondary education in the North East of Scotland.


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