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Prestigious line-up to receive Honorary Fellowships

13 July 2015

Sam Warburton
Wales rugby captain Sam Warburton is among this year's Honorary Fellows.

A Welsh rugby international, a renowned broadcaster, an award-winning British novelist and one of the UK's most successful retail entrepreneurs are among those who will be honoured at our annual degree ceremonies this week (13 - 17 July 2015).

Welsh rugby team captain Sam Warburton will join broadcaster Susanna Reid, JoJo Maman Bébé founder Laura Tenison MBE and British novelist Philippa Gregory to receive the honours, which are awarded to individuals who have achieved outstanding recognition in their field.

A further five eminent figures from fields including the arts, international development and science will also receive Fellowships. These include opera director David Pountney; Africaid founder Marcus McGilvray; biologist Anne Glover CBE; Stonewall CEO Ruth Hunt; and Executive Vice President for Shell, Ceri Powell.

Sam Warburton will receive an Honorary Fellowship in recognition of his outstanding sporting achievements, which include being the Welsh rugby team's most capped - and second youngest - captain in history.

Susanna Reid, whose illustrious career in journalism began in 1993 when she trained at Cardiff University's School of Journalism, Media and Cultural Studies, will be recognised for her contribution to broadcasting.

Philippa Gregory, dubbed the 'queen of British historical fiction' for her award-winning novels including The Other Boleyn Girl, will receive a Fellowship for her contribution to literature. 

Laura Tenison MBE, whose mother and baby brand JoJo Maman Bébé has grown from a start-up to a business with a turnover of £50m and 700 employees, will be recognised for her role in industry.

More than 6,000 students will graduate in this year's ceremonies, and approximately 30,000 people will be welcomed to Cardiff for the celebrations. The event is one of the biggest in the University's calendar and the ceremonies will be broadcast live in the Hayes area of Cardiff, as well as streamed on the University's website.

Honorary Fellows for 2015

Laura Tenison
Laura Tenison, the Founder and MD of JoJo Maman Bébé, the UK's leading boutique mother and baby brand.

Laura Tenison

Laura Tenison is the Founder and MD of JoJo Maman Bébé, the UK's leading boutique mother and baby brand. Her company has grown organically from a start-up in 1993 to a current turnover of £50M and 700 employees. The business is run with a strict code of moral conduct; putting people and the planet above profit. Laura and her team are currently working on export growth and a new distribution centre has been set up in the USA to fulfil the growing number of stateside orders. Laura is a hands-on trustee of the company charity Nema, which works to relieve child poverty in Africa, a regular mentor to other business people and runs an environmental initiative which works to recycle children's clothing for distribution by Barnardo's, saving up to 50,000 garments from landfill and helping those in need in the UK. Laura has won numerous awards and accolades including the Veuve Clicquot Business Woman of the year and an MBE for services to industry.

Susanna Reid
Journalist and presenter Susanna Reid.

Susanna Reid

Susanna Victoria Reid is a journalist and presenter best known as the co-presenter of BBC Breakfast from 2003 until her departure in early 2014. She currently co-presents the ITV Breakfast programme Good Morning Britain. Reid studied Politics, Philosophy and Law at the University of Bristol (1989–92), where she was editor of Epigram, the university's student newspaper. She then undertook a Postgraduate Diploma in Broadcast Journalism from Cardiff University's School of Journalism, Media and Cultural Studies. Reid began her career at BBC Radio Bristol and then became a reporter for Radio 5 Live, as well as a producer. She then joined BBC News 24, where she spent two years as a reporter. Reid became a reporter for Breakfast News in 1998 and became one of the main presenters on BBC Breakfast from 2010-2014. Reid is a regular contributor to Media Trust, the charity that links other charities to the media industry, and has hosted events for the Myotubular Trust and Voluntary Arts England.

Sam Warburton
Welsh international rugby union player Sam Warburton.

Sam Warburton

Sam is a Welsh international rugby union player. Sam plays regional rugby for the Cardiff Blues and was first capped for Wales in 2009. He has gone on to win 54 Wales caps. In June 2011 he was named as Wales's captain versus the Barbarians and subsequently in August 2011 he was named as the Wales captain for the 2011 Rugby World Cup, aged 22. In April 2013 he was named the Lions' captain for the 2013 tour to Australia which they won. Warburton holds the record for the most Wales caps as captain, leading the side on 35 occasions. Sam is a patron of Velindre Cancer Centre.

Philippa Gregory
Award-winning British novelist Philippa Gregory.

Philippa Gregory

Philippa was an established historian and writer when she discovered her interest in the Tudor period and wrote the novel The Other Boleyn Girl, which was made into a TV drama and a major film. Now, 14 novels later, she is returning to the Tudors with Henry VIII's sixth wife, Kateryn Parr. Philippa's other great interest is the charity that she founded nearly twenty years ago: Gardens for The Gambia, through which she has raised funds for almost 200 wells in the primary schools of this very dry and poor African country, and thousands of school children have been able to learn market gardening and grow food to eat in the school gardens watered by the wells. The charity also provides wells for women's collective gardens and for The Gambia's only agricultural college, at Njawara. Philippa graduated from the University of Sussex with a degree in History, and received a History PhD in 18th century literature from the University of Edinburgh. In 2009 Edinburgh made her the university's Alumna of the Year. She also reviews for The Washington Post, the LA Times, and for UK newspapers, and is a regular broadcaster on television and radio. She posts regularly to her large following on Facebook and Twitter.

Ruth Hunt
Chief Executive of Stonewall, Ruth Hunt.

Ruth Hunt

Ruth was appointed Chief Executive of Stonewall in August 2014, having worked in senior positions in the organisation since 2011. She has successfully led the development of Stonewall's groundbreaking policy, campaigning and research outputs, including its work to tackle homophobic bullying in schools, effective interventions to improve the health of lesbian, gay and bisexual people and Stonewall's acclaimed leadership development programmes. Since taking on the leadership, Ruth has committed to bringing Stonewall even deeper into communities, engaging with groups from different ethnicities, religions and geographies – both in the UK and abroad. Ruth attended St. Hilda's College, Oxford where she studied English and was elected President of Oxford Student Union. In 2014, Ruth was voted the eight most influential LGBT person in Britain in The Independent's Rainbow List.

Ceri Powell
Executive Vice President of Exploration for Shell, Ceri Powell.

Dr Ceri M Powell

Ceri is from Pembrokeshire. She graduated with a BSc. in Geology from Liverpool University, and with a PhD in Structural Geology from The University of Wales (Cardiff). Ceri joined Shell in 1990, and has worked as a geoscientist in the UK, Angola, Malaysia, the Netherlands, and the United Arab Emirates. In 2009 Ceri was appointed Executive Vice President of Exploration for Shell, overseeing all technical aspects of exploration in the company and accountable for exploration operations and new business opportunities in Europe, Africa, Middle East, Russia/CIS, Asia and Australia. Ceri is an active member of the prestigious Advisory Board of the United Nations Sustainable Energy for All programme, chaired by the Secretary General of the UN. In 2014 Ceri was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Science from Heriot-Watt University for services to Geoscience. Since 2014 Ceri has served as a non executive director on the Board of Carillion PLC, and as the Chairman of the Board Sustainability Committee. She lives in The Hague, Netherlands, and also has a home in the Cotswolds where she is a passionate gardener specialising in medicinal herbs. As one of the most senior women in the Energy Industry today, Ceri has twice been awarded the accolade of being on the Fortune Top 50's Most Powerful Women in International Business, in 2013 and again in 2014. She is currently listed at No 21.

Marcus McGilvray
Marcus McGilvray, founder and CEO Africaid - Whizzkids United.

Marcus McGilvray

Marcus grew up in Monmouthshire and trained in London as a HIV Nurse Specialist. Now based in KwaZulu Natal, South Africa, Marcus is the founder and CEO Africaid - Whizzkids United, a not-for-profit that provides health, education and empowerment services to disadvantaged young people. More than 20 programmes make up WhizzKids United (all designed by Marcus) including sexual and reproductive health, HIV prevention and treatment, OVC care and support, girl's empowerment and mixed gender league all run from the WhizzKids United Health Academy. In the last three years more than 35,000 young people aged between 12 and 20 across Africa have accessed Africaid services. Professor Bruce Walker, a leading HIV/Aids researcher at Harvard Medical School describes Whizzkids as "one of the most impressive HIV prevention programs I have ever seen." In 2010 and 2102, the UN Special Adviser to the Secretary General on Sport for Development and Peace endorsed Whizzkids United. Marcus was made a Ghanaian Chief in 2013 in honour of his contribution to African society."

David Pountney

David became internationally known through his production of Katya Kabanova at the 1972 Wexford Festival. Between 1975 and 1980, he was Director of Productions for Scottish Opera. Productions there featured a Janáček cycle in collaboration with Welsh National Opera. He directed the world premiere of David Blake's Toussaint in 1977 (ENO) and went on to become ENO's Director of Productions in 1980, directing over 20 operas. He has directed many world premiers, including three by Peter Maxwell Davies and has translated operas into English from Russian, Czech, German and Italian. As a freelance director from 1992 he worked regularly in Zurich, at Vienna State Opera, Bayerische Staatsoper as well as opera houses in America and Japan, and in the UK has a long-standing association with Opera North. He received a Janáček medal for his Janáček cycle in Wales and Scotland, and a Martinů medal for his productions of Julietta and Greek Passion (Opera North and Bregenz Festival). His productions have twice won an Olivier award. Recent engagements include Saul og David in Copenhagen, The Passenger (Houston, New York and Chicago); Kommilitonen, his third opera written in collaboration with Peter Maxwell Davies (Royal Academy of Music and US premiere at the Juilliard School, New York); a new Philip Glass opera, Spüren der Verirrten,for the opening of a new opera house in Linz which won the Schickaneder Prize for best opera production in 2013, and Die Zauberflöte for the lake stage in Bregenz, where he was Intendant from 2003 - 13. Since 2011 he has been Chief Executive and Artistic Director of WNO. He is a CBE, a Chevalier in the French Ordre des Arts et Lettres, has the Cavalier's Cross of the Order of Merit of the Republic of Poland and was awarded the Ehrenkreuz des Bundes Osterreich in 2014. He was recently awarded an Honorary Fellowship of the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama in recognition of his contribution as an artist and cultural leader.

Anne Glover
Professor Dame Anne Glover, CBE.

Professor Dame Anne Glover, CBE

Anne has a BSc in Biochemistry from Edinburgh and a PhD in Molecular Microbiology from Cambridge. She has pursued a career in scientific research at Aberdeen University and her research has been varied including studying how proteins are directed to the correct location within our cells, the diversity and function of the microbial population in soil, the development of biological sensors (biosensors) to detect environmental pollution and more recently, how we respond to stress at the molecular level. In 2008 she was made a Woman of Outstanding Achievement in Science, Engineering and Technology (SET) and has worked hard to raise the profile of women in SET and to ensure that not only are women are recruited into careers in SET but that they are supported to remain in the profession during their careers. Anne has promoted the communication of science and has appeared on BBC and international television and many global radio programmes. In 2009, she was awarded a CBE by the Queen in recognition of her services to environmental sciences.

Anne was the first Chief Scientific Adviser to the President of the European Commission (2012-2015). Prior to that, she was the first Chief Scientific Adviser for Scotland (2006-2011). She is currently Vice Principal for External Affairs and Dean for Europe at the University of Aberdeen. Professor Glover became a Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire (DBE) for services to Science in the 2015 Queen's Birthday Honours List.