Strategic management team

Paul Goffin 2

Director of Estates Services

Paul Goffin was appointed as the University of Oxford’s Director of Estates in March 2012. He is responsible for providing vision, leadership and management in ensuring the effective and efficient development and delivery of estates services within the University’s functional estate, whilst contributing to the University’s wider strategic development.  

Paul is also responsible for leading the Estates Services department, numbering over 350 staff delivering a diverse range of services to the central University and colleges, including capital projects, buildings conservation and maintenance, horticultural services, facilities management, space management, environmental sustainability, security services, and graduate accommodation. 

Before coming to Oxford, Paul worked in the Estates team at the University of Leicester for ten years, first as the Deputy Director of Estates and for the last five and a half years as the Director of Estates. Prior to this, he worked in both private practice and the public sector.

Paul holds a BSc in Building Surveying and an MSc in Construction Management.  He was elected a Professional Member of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors in 1991, and a Fellow in 2006. He has been a member of the British Library’s Capital Projects Committee since 2005 and is a member of the AUDE (Association of University Directors of Estates) Sustainability Advisory Group.  Paul is also a Professorial Fellow at Jesus College.

Paul can be contacted on email at Alternatively contact Barbara Wright, Executive Assistant to the Director of Estates, on (2)78755 or email

Director of Capital Projects

Director of Capital Projects Chris Carrington joined Estates Services in November 2016.

Chris provides strategic direction and leadership for the delivery of capital funded projects and programmes. Chris leads the Estates Capital Projects team that ensure that departmental, divisional and University strategic objectives and masterplans are achieved.

Chris has over 30 years’ experience in the construction industry, both in public and private sectors. A Chartered Surveyor specialising in project management with an MBA in Construction & Real Estate, over the last two decades he has worked for some of the UK’s leading construction and management consultancies. He has successfully delivered construction programmes across a wide range of industry sectors including education, transport, commercial property, manufacturing, health, social housing, central and local government.

Before joining Oxford, he spent more than seven years as Capital Programme Director and Deputy Director of Estates at the University of Warwick, including a spell as Interim Estates Director, delivering around £360m of facilities projects for research, teaching, accommodation and infrastructure.

Chris attends termly Divisional meetings, the Building & Estates Sub-Committee, the Capital Steering Group, Master Planning Groups and various strategic project groups.

Director of Operations

Isobel Hughes Isobel Hughes became Director of Operations, a new role in the Strategic Management Team, in June 2016.  She is responsible for the day-to-day leadership and management of the Facilities Management team, the Repairs & Maintenance teams (comprising Building Services, Conservation & Buildings and the Direct Labour Organisation) and the Environmental Sustainability team.

Isobel was previously Head of Conservation & Buildings, having originally joined Estates Services in 2002 as a project architect. As a qualified architect, her earlier career included roles in local government, as a Conservation Officer at West Oxfordshire District Council, and in architectural practice, specialising in historic buildings.

Isobel is a trustee of Oxford Preservation Trust.

Head of Business Administration

Sharon MitchellSharon Mitchell has held the role of Head of Business Administration at Estates Services since 2009.  She heads the Business Administration team, comprising communications, customer service, HR, purchasing and IT systems, and is a member of Estates Services’ Strategic Management team.

As Business Manager, she is responsible for the management and development of the day-to-day administration of the department, as well as strengthening and supporting the strategic work of Estates Services – making decisions on Estates Services priorities impacting on the Estate Strategy.

She advises on and manages departmental recruitment, personnel and training issues and requirements, is responsible for Estates Services policy, and facilitates and ensures the completion of Estates Services strategy, implementing management initiatives and projects. 

Sharon is also one of a number of Assessment Centre Assessors for the Ambitious Futures Graduate Programme for University Leadership, of which the University of Oxford is a partner, and an accredited analyst for the University’s HERA Higher Education Role Analysis scheme. Outside the University, she mentors students and graduates taking part in Manchester Metropolitan University’s MentorMatch programme.

Before joining the University, Sharon worked in offshore financial services, and finance, business and HR management roles in both small and large organisations, including Marks & Spencer and leading accountancy and consultancy firms. She has an honours degree in Banking, Insurance & Modern Languages and is an Associate of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development Management.

Head of Finance

Sarah Davies - Head of Finance Sarah Davies joined Estates Services as Head of Finance at the end of 2014. She and the finance team she leads provide financial management for the department and the University’s capital plan, as well as a wide range of services to Estates Services colleagues including financial planning and forecasting,  budget and project monitoring and reporting, and capital grant income and external financial reporting.  They also undertake financial operations including invoice processing, income receipting, and tenant and property finances. 

Before coming to Oxford, Sarah held senior finance and administration roles at the universities of Liverpool and Bangor, in their Facilities Management and Estates and Residences departments.  She is a biochemistry graduate, holds an MSc in Real Estate and is an Associate of the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants.

Head of Security Services and University Marshal

Paul Sullivan Paul Sullivan was appointed at the beginning of 2015, having been Deputy Head of Security Services since 2011.  He heads the University’s Security Services team, which provides a wide range of services aimed at maintaining a safe and secure physical environment for the University community, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

As University Marshal, Paul plays a key role in University ceremonies, notably Encaenia, and is responsible for liaison with the Proctor’s Office, general policing of the University and advising on student disciplinary matters.  He is also a member of the University’s Security Subcommittee.

Before joining the University, Paul served 32 years with Thames Valley Police, rising to the rank of Chief Superintendent and holding a number of operational roles including Area Commander for the City of Oxford and Head of the Tactical Support Department.  Paul is a member of the Association of University Chief Security Officers (AUCSO).