Institute for Ageing

Staff Profile

Dr Gary Nestor

NIHR CRN Assistant Specialty Cluster Lead



Gary Nestor BSc PhD MBA is the NIHR CRN Assistant Specialty Cluster Lead for the national specialties of Ageing, Dementias and Neurodegeneration (DeNDRoN), Neurological Disorders and Genetics, based at Newcastle University.

Gary is a natural scientist by background, who spent the 1990s running a health informatics SME, followed by a decade in research and business development for Newcastle University. He joined the Clinical Research Network in late 2010 as the DeNDRoN topic network General Manager, migrating into his current role via a period as DeNDRoN acting Assistant Director during the CRN restructuring.

Gary has been involved in research in some capacity since completing his PhD in 1988 and has an underlying philanthropic belief in the value and use of science for societal benefit.


A highly qualified and motivated scientific professional, with experience in both the academic and commercial sectors at regional, national, and international levels. Underlying philanthropic belief in the value and use of science for economic and social development.

Roles and Responsibilities

Assistant Director role created following the 2014 restructuring of the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Clinical Research Network (CRN) and provides senior leadership within the cluster function. The post is jointly responsible for the national strategic and operational establishment of a cohort of clinical leadership across our cluster of specialties which will support driving forwards the development, delivery and realisation of high quality research that ultimately delivers benefits to the NHS and the health and well-being of patients and carers.

The effective harnessing of this clinical leadership is across a group of specialties which have a collective clinical research portfolio worth about a third of a billion sterling (ca. £0.25b) containing over 600 research studies. This is all done by providing a NIHR CRN clinical leadership support function through the development and delivery of initiatives and activities that support external & internal CRN engagement of our cluster of clinical specialties.

The NIHR CRN Cluster teams are also working at a national level on the implications and realisation of overarching emerging technologies and innovations for the NIHR CRN.


BSC (Dunelm) 2-i Hons Chemistry
PhD (Hull) Chemistry & Materials Science

Previous Positions

Acting Assistant Director - NIHR CRN DeNDRoN, Newcastle University (2014-2015)
General Manager - NIHR CRN DeNDRoN, Newcastle University (2010-2013)
Principal Business Development Executive - Business Development Directorate, Newcastle University (2001-2010)
Research Manager - Sowerby Centre for Health Informatics at Newcastle (SCHIN), Newcastle University (1997–2000)
Founder, owner, and MD of CARMA - Computerised Audit & Research for Medical Administration (1993 – 2000)
Information & IT Manager - Chainbridge Medical Partnership
Senior Research Chemist - Ciba-Geigy Plastics


NIHR national Multimorbidity Steering Group
NIHR CRN national LCRN Performance Manager Group
NIHR CRN Medical Directorate Cluster Leadership Group

NIHR CRN National AcoRD Working Group
NIHR CRN National Workforce Development Steering Group AURIL
Directorship of Newcastle University Singaporean commercialisation vehicle NUIdeasBank Pte Ltd
University NE Regional eScience Centre Board
Regional ICT Strategy Group
Regional Digital Cluster Group
North Tyneside ePartnership
BCS Health Informatics Group
Primary Health Care Specialist Group
University of Newcastle Medical Faculty Undergraduate Tutor



German (reasonable conversational and technical)