12 September 2017

The University of Hertfordshire has shown its appreciation this week to fifteen pillars of the community, awarding them with an honorary doctorate for their outstanding contribution to society.

This year’s recipients include singer and actress Elaine Paige OBE; British parasport athlete David Henson MBE and former Chief Executive of Saracens Rugby Club Edward Griffiths.

A number of leading local figures were also recognised, including Uno Bus founder Philip Waters from Harpenden; alternative energy pioneer and businesswoman Dr Vivienne Cox from Hemel Hempstead and internationally renowned artist Diane Maclean of St Albans.

All fifteen celebrated individuals were presented with their honorary degrees or fellowships at St Albans Cathedral during the University of Hertfordshire’s 2017 graduate awards ceremonies this week.

Inspiration individuals

Sue Grant, Secretary and Registrar at the University of Hertfordshire said: 'Alongside our fantastic student graduates, we are also delighted to be awarding honorary doctorates and fellowships to fifteen inspirational individuals.  It’s an honour to recognise the great contribution to society that our honorary graduates have made and to celebrate their exceptional achievements.  They are all important role models and mentors for our students as they look to the future and graduate from the University of Hertfordshire this week.'

The full list of honorary doctorates and fellowships awarded by the University of Hertfordshire this year is as follows:

  • Mr Philip Waters FRSA, the founding director of Uno Bus from Harpenden, has been awarded a Doctor of Letters in honour of his service to the University and local community.
  • Mr Colin Gordon, former CEO of Kenwood from Hertford, has been presented with a Fellowship in recognition of his services to the University and business.
  • Mr Jim Rodford, a successful musician and former bass guitarist for the Kinks from St Albans, has been awarded a Doctor of Arts in recognition of his services to music.
  • Ms Elaine Paige OBE, the theatre, television and radio star, has been awarded a Doctor of Arts in recognition of her outstanding contribution to music and theatre.
  • Ms Diane Maclean FRBS, an internationally renowned artist from St Albans, has been awarded a Doctor of Arts in recognition of her support of the University and her contribution to the sculpture industry and environmental art.
  • Dr Vivienne Cox CBE, an internationally celebrated businesswoman and alternative energy pioneer from Hemel Hempstead, has been awarded a Doctor of Science in recognition of her outstanding contribution to international development, business and industry.
  • Mr Barry Dodd CBE, a graduate from Hatfield Polytechnic and now an entrepreneur and champion of British industry, has been awarded a Doctor of Science in recognition of his contribution to business, industry and entrepreneurship.
  • Mr David Henson MBE, the Invictus Games and Paralympic medal winner and graduate from the University, has been presented with a Fellowship in recognition of his services to sport and the community in Hertfordshire.
  • Mr Edward Griffiths, the former Chief Executive of Saracens Rugby club, has been awarded a Doctor of Science in recognition of his significant contribution to the development of sport.
  • Mrs Catherine Jobling Scorey, director of womenswear at Ted Baker and a mentor at the University of Hertfordshire, has been awarded a Doctor of Art in recognition of her contribution to the fashion industry.
  • Mr Christopher Porritt, an accomplished racing driver who has designed and built a number of supercars, has been awarded a Doctor of Science in recognition of his contribution to the automotive industry.

  • Mr Dan Dark, Senior Vice President and Managing Director at Warner Bros. Studios Leavesden, has been awarded a Doctor of Art in recognition of his contribution to the film industry in Hertfordshire.

  • The Countess of Verulam, the first woman to hold the office of Lord Lieutenant of Hertfordshire and a renowned artist, has been awarded a Doctor of Art in recognition of her services to the University of Hertfordshire.

  • Ms Grace Ononiwu OBE, Chief Crown Prosecutor for Northamptonshire, has been presented with a Doctor of Law in recognition of her contribution to justice and the legal system, including her ongoing work to promote legal education.

  • Mr Andrew Green, a respected BBC radio producer and presenter, has been presented with a Fellowship in recognition of his contribution to the capturing of oral history.