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Honorary degrees for leading lights in agriculture and veterinary medicine

Three key figures from the world of agriculture and animal health are to receive honorary degrees at the 2014 Harper Adams University Graduation Ceremony on Friday, September 19.

harper adams university

Three key figures from the world of agriculture and animal health are to receive honorary degrees at the 2014 Harper Adams University Graduation Ceremony on Friday, September 19.

Mr Meurig Raymond, President of the National Farmers’ Union (NFU), is to receive an honorary doctorate for services to agriculture, in recognition of his contribution over many years to the NFU.

Farming 3,100 acres in Pembrokeshire with his twin brother, Mr Raymond began his career with the NFU when he was elected local branch Chairman in 1979. He then progressed to Welsh NFU Treasurer in 1992, and later the Vice-Chairman of the Cereals Committee in 1999.  He was elected as Vice President in 2004, Deputy President in 2006 and most recently, President earlier this year.

Mr Raymond has represented Wales on the Home Grown Cereals Authority and served on the council of Food from Britain. He was awarded an MBE in the Queen’s New Year Honours in January 2005 for his services to agriculture.

Mr Raymond has agreed to give the address to students graduating in September and will congratulate them as they receive their awards.

Chief Veterinary Officer to the Welsh Government, Professor Christianne Glossop, receives an honorary doctorate for services to Veterinary Medicine in Wales.

Professor Glossop qualified at the Royal Veterinary College where she also completed her PhD on the subject of cattle fertility. She has specialised in food animal production and medicine throughout her career, with a particular interest in breeding technologies. In her current role, Professor Glossop is responsible for developing and implementing the animal health and welfare policy and strategy for Wales.

Her role in supporting the livestock industry is well known, and her vision is “to see bovine TB eradicated from Wales once and for all”. She was awarded the Princess Royal Award by the Royal Association of British Dairy Farmers in 2009 and, in the same year, she and Elin Jones, the former Welsh Rural Affairs Minister, were joint winners of the Farmers Weekly Farming Champion award.

Professor Glossop said: “I am both honoured and humbled by this award.  Harper Adams University is a leading light in education, research and development in the agri-sector, including animal health and welfare, and its graduates are respected the world over.”

CEO of Frontier Agriculture, Mark Aitchison, will receive an honorary doctorate for services to agriculture. Mr Aitchison studied BSc (Hons) Applied Biology at the University of Liverpool and completed a postgraduate qualification in Crop Science at Harper Adams.

Following graduation, he became an agronomist at Schering Agriculture and was appointed Managing Director of the Cargill Agricultural Division in 1998. Mr Aitchison oversaw the company’s transition to Banks Cargill and subsequently became the Managing Director and later CEO following a further merger, of the newly created Frontier Agriculture in 2005.

Today, Frontier remains the UK’s leading crop inputs and grain marketing business with an annual turnover of £1.7bn and is recognised for its close customer relationships and successful management of the arable supply chain.  More than 900 staff, including 120 agronomists, are employed across 46 sites nationwide.

Commenting on the awards, Harper Adams Vice-Chancellor, Dr David Llewellyn, said: “Each of the recipients of our honorary degrees has made an outstanding contribution to their respective industries and organisations and to wider society; and each has been involved, in some way, in the activities of the University. We are delighted to be able to recognise the roles they have played in the agri-food sector and to public life, and very much look forward to the presentation of the awards later in September.”

 

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