Queen honours inspirational alumni

We are pleased to announce that two of our alumni have been recognised in this year’s Queen’s Birthday Honours

Helen Dolphin, who received her BSc in Molecular & Cellular Biology from Bath, has been made a  Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) for her services to people with disabilities. 

Soon after graduating in 1997, Helen became disabled herself after contracting Meningococcal Septicaemia and losing both her legs and hands. She rebuilt her life and went on to become a TV Reporter as well as actively campaigning for disability rights.

She now works as Director of Policy & Campaigns for the charity Disabled Motoring UK, where she works to improve access and mobility for around 15,000 Blue Badge holders. She advises members on their rights and works with local councils on how best to operate the scheme. She also writes in the monthly magazine Disabled Motoring UK, covering a range of issues such as accessible holidays, vehicle reviews and mobility aids.

Helen said: “I was absolutely amazed when I opened the letter saying I’d been nominated for an MBE. It was a fantastic surprise. When I became disabled getting back to driving was a major part of my rehabilitation and I’m passionate about getting as many disabled people as possible back behind the wheel. To be rewarded in this way for doing a job I love is the icing on the cake!”

Helen competed in the Paralympic trials in London and holds three British swimming records. Watch a short documentary about her life.

David Bull studied at Bath for an MSc in Development Studies and was awarded an Honorary Doctor of Laws by the University in 2009.

Since graduating in 1975, he has worked for Oxfam, the Environment Liaison Centre in Kenya, the World University Service and Amnesty International UK.

He is now the Chief Executive Officer of Unicef UK where his achievements include: driving their first ever global campaign focusing on the impact of HIV/AIDS; championing Unicef UK’s response to the impact of climate change on children; helping to shape the Children’s Rights and Business Principles; and leading the introduction of the Rights Respecting Schools Award in the UK.

In 2014, Unicef UK was the official charity partner for the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games and, for the first time ever, development issues and children’s rights were featured in the opening ceremony of a major sporting event, reaching over one billion people around the world. David has been recognised with a CBE for his humanitarian services.

The Department of Development & Alumni Relations works with more than 90,000 former University of Bath students in 150  countries, and its Director, Gavin Maggs, said:  “The University is proud to maintain strong links with our thriving alumni community.

“Whether they are acknowledged officially through the Honours System, or through their contributions to the community, sport, economy or culture, Bath alumni are making a positive impact worldwide. David and Helen are both inspirational people and it’s great to see their services recognised through these official awards.”

Another of our honorary graduates has also  been recognised:  Dr Andreas Whittam Smith CBE has been appointed a Knight Bachelor for public service, particularly to the Church of England.

In 2002, he took up the post of First Church Estates Commissioner responsible for £5bn of the Church's investments. He is also chairman of the Children's Mutual. Prior to this when he was a financial journalist, he led the team that founded The Independent. Other positions he has held include being president of the British Board of Film Classification and chairman of the Financial Ombudsman Service.

Read about two University staff who were also recognised in the recent Honours: Peter Troughton CBE (Pro-Chancellor) & Professor Chris Budd OBE (Professor in Applied Mathematics)

Bookmark with:

What is this?

We are one of the UK's leading universities with an international reputation for quality research and teaching. Our Mission is to deliver world class research and teaching, educating our graduates to become future leaders and innovators, and benefiting the wider population through our research, enterprise and influence. Our courses are innovative and interdisciplinary and we have an outstanding record of graduate employment.