Reporter 461, 12 February 2001


Four honoured by University

Four distinguished public figures from the worlds of literature, science and politics are to receive honorary degrees from the University of Leeds.

Craig Jordan, whose cancer research has saved the lives of tens of thousands of women, is to receive the honorary degree of Doctor of Medicine. Professor Jordan gained both undergraduate and postgraduate qualifications at the University of Leeds.

Yorkshire-born Betty Boothroyd, the first woman Speaker of the House of Commons when she took up the post in 1992, is to have an honorary degree of Doctor of Laws conferred.

She is joined by Nobel Prize winning poet Seamus Heaney (Doctor of Letters) who has been described as ‘the most important Irish poet since Yeats’.

Neurologist Susan Greenfield, who has made an enormous contribution to the public understanding of science, is to be awarded the honorary degree of Doctor of Science.

The ceremony will be held at the University on Wednesday July 18.

Professor Jordan has received a BSc (1969), a PhD (1973) and a DSc (1985) from the Department of Pharmacology at the University of Leeds. His PhD thesis on anti-oestrogens as potential therapeutic agents underpinned his development of Tamoxifen, the first breast cancer drug.

Betty Boothroyd was born in Dewsbury in 1929, the daughter of textile workers. She worked as a dancer from 1946 to 1948 and appeared in pantomime in London’s West End as a Tiller Girl. Her move into politics began when she contested a seat on Dewsbury council in 1950. She was awarded the honorary LLD by the University in 1992 but the degree has yet to be conferred.

Professor of Pharmacology at Oxford University since 1996, Susan Greenfield has developed a multi-disciplinary approach to studies of the brain. In 1995 she published her theory of consciousness, Journey to the Centres of the Mind.

Professor Heaney is a world-renowned poet and was awarded the Nobel Prize for literature in 1995.

Further information is available in the press release

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