Addiction expert, energy engineer and diabetes medic among New Year Honourees

Dr Henrietta Bowden-Jones OBE

Dr Henrietta Bowden-Jones OBE

Neuroscientist Dr Henrietta Bowden-Jones and chemical engineer Professor Geoff Maitland have received New Year Honours.

Diabetes researcher Professor Jonathan Valabhji was also recognised in the honours list with an OBE.

Dr Bowden-Jones is to receive an OBE and Professor Maitland a CBE. Other honourees with Imperial connections include Council Member and Chief Executive of the Crown Estate Alison Nimmo who becomes a Dame.

Dr Bowden-Jones, an Imperial alumna and Honorary Clinical Senior Lecturer in the Faculty of Medicine, is being honoured for services to addiction treatment and research.

Dr Bowden-Jones is the founder and director of the National Problem Gambling Clinic. The clinic is the first and only NHS multidisciplinary treatment centre for the treatment of problem gamblers. Since opening in 2008, the clinic has dealt with thousands of referrals and has built an extensive national database on pathological gambling.

Reflecting on her OBE, Dr Bowden-Jones said: “I am truly delighted to have received this OBE for my work in addiction treatment and research having dedicated my entire professional life to this disease. About 100 million people in the world suffer from alcohol use disorders and about 27 million people are opioid dependent. Many more are experiencing harm from other drugs and from behavioural addictions.

My neuroscience research at Imperial has fuelled every clinical decision I have taken. Dr Henrietta Bowden-Jones OBE


“I would like to dedicate this award to the children of addicted parents in recognition of all the suffering they are experiencing and of the harm it has caused them. We will continue fighting this illness until science leads us to be able to prevent it. Furthermore, I would like to express my gratitude to this Government for finally taking seriously the issue of gambling disorder and the harm it causes not just to problem gamblers but to their spouses and children.

“My neuroscience research at Imperial has fuelled every clinical decision I have taken, it has driven my quest for knowledge when exploring patient groups and I will forever be grateful to the university for shaping the way I think about my work.”

Energy innovator

Professor Geoff Maitland CBE is honoured for services to chemical engineering following a distinguished career where he drove connections between industry and academia.

Professor Maitland’s work on interactions at the mollecular and colloidal level and the bulk properties of materials is contributing to the development of affordable, high capacity, renewable low CO2 emission energy systems. At Imperial he has helped develop the College’s world-leading work in carbon capture and storage, exploitation of non-conventional sources of hydrocarbons and renewable production of hydrogen using green algae and cyanobacteria.

Professor Maitland has also played a key role in Greening Imperial, a cross-campus and community initiative to improve the College’s performance in sustainability and enhance its actions on tackling environmental challenges and climate change.

Professor Maitland said: “It is a great honour to be recognised by HM The Queen in this way. I feel it is also recognition of the contributions and support I have received throughout my career from a wide range of superb students, colleagues and collaborators, as well as from my family and close friends.

"In particular I am enormously grateful for the opportunities Imperial has given me as the hub of my career, first as a young lecturer and then, after 20 years away working in the oil and gas industry, welcoming me back to focus on energy engineering and how we can avoid catastrophic climate change. The support and encouragement I have received from Stephen Richardson, Andrew Livingston and Nilay Shah as successive heads of department in Chemical Engineering, and my excellent collaborators there and in Earth Science and Engineering, have been pivotal to my career, as have my industrial collaborators, especially in Shell and Schlumberger.

"The College has also been the ideal base from which to interact with the wider Chemical Engineering community through my work with IChemE which has been, and continues to be, a wonderful experience. I am just very lucky to have worked with such great people!”

Diabetes researcher

Professor Jonathan Valabhji (MD Clinical Medicine Research 2000), Professor of Practice (Diabetes) at the College, has been awarded an OBE for services to diabetes and obesity care.

Professor Valabhji, whose current research focus is on diabetic foot disease and diabetes population level health, is also a Consultant Diabetologist at Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust and has been the National Clinical Director for Diabetes and Obesity at NHS England since 2013.

Professor Valabhji said: “I am delighted to receive this award. It is wonderful to be recognised for playing a part in helping to improve the lives of people affected by diabetes and obesity.

“Millions of people in the UK and around the world are affected by diabetes, and even more by obesity. University research plays a key role in developing new ways to prevent, diagnose and treat these conditions.

“Imperial has been a central part of my career since I studied here as a postgraduate 20 years ago.

“Together, with teams at the hospital and NHS England, we have made some ground breaking improvements in diabetes and obesity care.”

Further Imperial Honours

Other Imperial honourees include Dr Patrick Vallance, the Government Chief Scientific Adviser and an Imperial Honorary Graduate, has been made a Knight Bachelor for services to Open Clinical Science.

Dr Sridevi Kalidindi (St Mary’s Hospital Medical School 1996), Consultant Psychiatrist in Rehabilitation and Recovery at the South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust, has been awarded a CBE for services to Rehabilitation Psychiatry.

Two alumni were honoured with MBEs: Dr Adrian Bowyer (Mechanical Engineering 1973, PhD 1977) for services to 3D Printing and Alan Stoyel (DIC Geology 1961) for services to Water Mill Heritage.

Finally, Nicholas Austin (MBA 1999) was awarded a BEM for political service. Photos and graphics subject to third party copyright used with permission or Imperial College London.

Andrew Scheuber
Communications and Public Affairs