Published online by Cambridge University Press: 06 October 2020
Professor Mark Ormrod is among the leading historians of the later Middle Ages in Britain. His contributions to the field are enormous: over his career he has published extensively and he has also fostered the field through the creation of funded projects that have brought previously hard-to-access archival resources into much wider public use, through the supervision of research students and through mentoring early career researchers. He has provided leadership at the highest level, both within his own institution, the University of York, and through his service to a number of national research councils and scholarly societies and, in particular, The National Archives.
Mark completed his doctorate in 1984 at the University of Oxford under the supervision of Professor James Campbell and then held a number of temporary and part-time positions at the Universities of Sheffield, Evansville (British Campus), and Queen's University Belfast before holding a British Academy Postdoctoral Research Fellowship at Cambridge from 1987–90. From there he moved to a lectureship at the University of York in 1990 and was promoted to full Professor in 1995. His experience of what is now widely known as ‘precarity’ in this early phase of his career always informed his later nurturing of graduate students and postdoctoral researchers, whose careers were always at the forefront of his mind in the creation of the many funded research projects that he so successfully established.
At York, Mark found a very happy home in both the Department of History and the interdisciplinary postgraduate Centre for Medieval Studies where his co-supervisors and co-teachers included Jeremy Goldberg, Jon Finch, Richard Marks, Nicola McDonald, Alastair Minnis, Linne Mooney, Sarah Rees Jones, Felicity Riddy and Craig Taylor. He was Director of the Centre for Medieval Studies 1998–2001 and 2002–3, and was Head of the Department of History in 2001 and 2003–7. He also struck up a very close working relationship with the Borthwick Institute for Archives, working with colleagues including Philippa Hoskin, Chris Webb and Gary Brannan. It was little surprise to his colleagues when he was appointed as the first Dean of the newly created Faculty of Arts and Humanities at York in 2009, a position that he held until his retirement in 2017.