Skip to main content

Honorary Fellows announced for Cardiff University's biggest ever graduations

20 July 2022

Dafydd Iwan

Famous figures from music, sport, journalism and politics are among those being made Honorary Fellows at Cardiff University’s graduation ceremonies, taking place this week. (July 20-22)

Singer-songwriter and Cardiff University alumnus Dafydd Iwan, Welsh international footballer Jessica Fishlock, musician and broadcaster Cerys Matthews and former head coach of the Welsh international rugby team, Warren Gatland are some of the names who will join 56,000 students and guests at the Principality Stadium in the Welsh capital.

Investigative journalist Carole Cadwalladr, Lord Michael Heseltine, Future Generations Commissioner for Wales Sophie Howe, also a Cardiff University alumna, and writer and broadcaster Sali Hughes will also receive the accolade.

Julia Gillard, who was Australia’s first female prime minister, along with Cardiff University alumna BBC journalist Laura Trevelyan, will collect Honorary Fellowships, as well as give speeches at their respective ceremonies (Gillard on Wednesday 20 July and Trevelyan on Thursday 21 July). Also delivering a speech at the final ceremony on Friday 22 July will be BBC News journalist Huw Edwards, who is already an Honorary Fellow and Cardiff University alumnus.

Previously the University held virtual ceremonies for students in 2020 and 2021 because of restrictions in place around the COVID-19 pandemic. Now, they’ll join the class of 2022 as they are recognised for their achievements in the University’s biggest ever graduation ceremonies.

Cardiff University Vice-Chancellor Professor Colin Riordan said: “Our Honorary Fellows for this year’s graduation ceremonies, many of whom are former students of this University, have made significant achievements in a wide range of fields. We are proud to welcome them to the Principality Stadium. They will no doubt provide huge inspiration to our students during what is set to be our largest graduation celebration yet.”

The full list of Honorary Fellows

2022 ceremony (Wednesday 20 July)

Julia Gillard was the 27th Prime Minister of Australia and the first, and only, woman to serve in that role. Since leaving office, she has dedicated her time to advocacy, governance roles, and writing.

Abi Morgan OBE is a playwright and screenwriter known for her works in theatre, television and film, such as Sex Traffic, The Hour, Brick Lane, The Iron Lady, The Invisible Woman and Suffragette.

Jessica Fishlock MBE is a professional footballer and LGBTQI Ambassador. She was the first Welsh footballer to reach 100 international caps and is the current Welsh international cap record holder.

Sophie Howe (LLB 1999) was appointed as the first Future Generations Commissioner for Wales in 2016. Her role is to act as a guardian for the interests of future generations and to support public bodies to work towards achieving wellbeing goals.

Sarah Powell is Chief Executive of British Gymnastics and is an experienced leader with more than 20 years’ experience of working in sport.

Sarah Powell

Dorothea Hodge (BScEcon 1995, MSc 1998) is the founding director of Aequitas Global, an award-winning policy and communications agency.

Joseph Yun (BScEcon 1976) had a diplomatic career spanning 33 years for the US Department of State, marked by his commitment to face-to-face engagement for resolving conflict.

Sir Geoff Mulgan is Professor of Collective Intelligence, Public Policy and Social Innovation at University College London.

(Honorary Degree recipient) Professor David Beerling (BSc 1987, PhD 1990) is an international leader in carbon dioxide removal technologies and founder and director of the Leverhulme Centre for Climate Change Mitigation.

2021 ceremony (Friday 22 July)

Dafydd Iwan (BArch 1968) is a singer-songwriter who has released many albums and is the author of books in Welsh. His rousing Welsh language song, Yma o Hyd, has become the unofficial anthem for the Wales national football team, reaching number one in the download chart in June.

Cerys Matthews

Cerys Matthews MBE is a musician, author and broadcaster. She hosts shows on BBC Radio 2, 4 and 6 Music. Matthews is Vice President of Shelter Wales and of the Hay Festival of Literature and Arts and is patron of the Dylan Thomas Society and Ballet Cymru.

Lord Michael Heseltine was a Member of Parliament from 1966 to 2001. He was Deputy Prime Minister from 1995 to 1997. He is founder and Chairman of the Haymarket Group, a privately owned media company.

Michelle Terry (BA 2001) trained at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA) and has been the Artistic Director of Shakespeare’s Globe since 2018. She is an Olivier Award-winning actress and writer.

Bill Rammell (BA 1982) is former Labour MP for Harlow. He was Vice-Chancellor of the University of Bedfordshire for eight years and in 2021 became President of the University of Kurdistan Hewlêr.

Susan Hemming CBE (LLB 1986) is Director of Legal Services at the Crown Prosecution Service.

Professor Jane den Hollander (PhD) was Vice-Chancellor of Deakin University from 2010 until her retirement in 2019. She served as Interim Vice-Chancellor at the University of Western Australia (March-July 2020) and Murdoch University (November-March 2022).

Professor Kenneth Matengu is the Vice-Chancellor of the University of Namibia.

Yehuda Bauer (BA 1950) is Professor (Emeritus) of Holocaust Studies at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, Academic Adviser of Yad Vashem, and Member of the Israeli Academy of Science.

2020 ceremony (Thursday 21 July)

Laura Trevelyan (PgDip 1991) is an anchor and correspondent for the BBC’s US Emmy award winning newscast World News America, seen on BBC World News and PBS.

Warren Gatland CBE is a New Zealand Rugby Union coach and former All Black. Between 2007 and 2019, he coached Wales winning four Six Nations titles, including three Grand Slams, and reached the semi-finals of the 2011 and 2019 Rugby World Cups.

Carole Cadwalladr is a journalist for The Guardian and Observer. Her investigation into Cambridge Analytica resulted in Mark Zuckerberg being called before Congress and Facebook losing more than $100 billion from its share price. Cadwalladr’s work has won a Polk Award and the Orwell Prize for political journalism.

Beth Fisher was sports reporter for ITV Cymru Wales News from 2019 to this year and is now freelance. Beth arrived late into the industry after retiring from international hockey but made history in 2019 when she became the first woman in Wales to commentate on football for BBC Wales.

Sali Hughes is a writer and broadcaster who has been the Guardian’s Beauty Editor since 2011. She is also co-founder of Beauty Banks, a nationwide charity providing toiletries to people living in poverty.

Elizabeth Palmer (PgDip 1980) is senior foreign correspondent for CBS News, currently working as Asia correspondent based in Tokyo.

Elizabeth Palmer

Gordon Sanghera (BScTech 1983, PhD 1987) is co-founder of Oxford Nanopore, a company that has developed a new generation of nanopore-based sensing technology, and was appointed CEO in May 2005.

Christopher DV Jones CBE (MBBCh 1979) is Chair of Health Education and Improvement Wales, which takes a leading role in shaping the healthcare workforce.

Share this story