The tech talent that made the New Year Honours List
Do you recognise any of the names that made it to one of the most important lists there is?
The New Year Honours List is a massive deal and an opportunity for contributions to society and to industry to be truly recognised.
It's a long list spanning many industries, but who made the cut from the world of tech and why? We run down this many of this year's worthy tech honours candidates...
Susan Carter, Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC)
Sue is a member of STFC's director of laboratories team based at the RAL site in Oxfordshire. She was awarded an MBE for her services to science and technology over the years.
"Sue is the epitome of the perfect PA - the "go to" person for the National Laboratories' 1,400 staff, across three geographically separate sites and many different scientific and engineering disciplines. Positive, friendly, knowledgeable and tirelessly hard-working, she is the person everyone approaches to get things done," said Dr Andrew Taylor, executive director of STFC National Laboratories.
"Outside work, Sue is a weekly volunteer at the Sir Michael Sobell House Hospice in Oxford, where she brings her caring, positive and generous approach to spending time with those at the end of their life."
Robin Christopherson, AbilityNet
Robin received an MBE thanks to the good work he has done to promote inclusion across the board. As a person who is blind, he has first-hand knowledge of just how powerful technology can be if it is designed in an accessible manner.
"I've had the privilege to be AbilityNet's ambassador for technology for many years, giving me the opportunity to demonstrate to audiences across the world how tech has the power to change and even transform people's lives regardless of any disability or impairment they may have," he said.
"AbilityNet's mission is to help people to reach their full potential. Over the last few decades we've seen a revolution that has almost infinitely expanded opportunities for people with disabilities and I feel very fortunate to have played a small part in spreading the word."
Professor Amanda Fisher, MRC London
Professor Fisher, director of the MRC London Institute of Medical Sciences, was given a Damehood in this year's Honours List for her sterling work in this field.
"I hope this recognition will enable me to make a real difference in two areas. First, to highlight the essential contribution that discovery science can make to life-saving treatments, even when this may not at first be obvious," said Professor Fisher.
"When I began work on HIV, my focus was on how to get bits of DNA into human blood cells to see if they would express certain genes. When we tried this technique with DNA from HIV we struck gold. Infectious virus was produced. With the luxury of hindsight this was important because it helped to establish HIV as the virus that caused AIDS, and allowed us to find out what each of the virus's genes do.
"And second, it matters to me that it's still a struggle to attract girls into science and to persuade them to stay. There's strength in diverse teams in science, as in so many walks of life. Every day I'm inspired by our teams as they explore the impact of genetic and environmental factors in ageing, health and disease and work towards new therapies for conditions such as cancer, sepsis, diabetes and heart disease. We do all of this so much better because we are a diverse team and we're creative."
Deborah Forster, Apps for Good
Deborah is co-CEO at Apps for Good. She was awarded an MBE in this year's New Year Honours List for her services to digital tech development. Though she's remained fairly quiet about this magnificent accolade so far as we couldn't find much fanfare online at the time of writing
Anne-Marie Imafidon, Stemettes
Ann-Marie has been give an MBE for her sheer determination not to take no for an answer when it comes to why girls and females can't take their seat at the tech table.
"It's a well done and thank you to my team, our volunteers and those who have taken us seriously over the last four years," said Ann-Marie.
"This is humbling and a sign of what is to come. Inclusivity in the sector and across society is important for all of us it's an honour in itself to do the work we do."
Sir Alec Jeffreys, University of Leicester
Sir Alec, an emeritus professor of the university, was awarded a Companions of Honour (CH) title for
"I am delighted by this wonderful and wholly unexpected honour," he said.
"More importantly, it is a great tribute to genetics and forensic science and to my many colleagues in Leicester and beyond who helped turn an accidental by-product of curiosity-driven blue-skies research into technologies that have reached out and profoundly touched the lives of millions of people worldwide."
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