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Honorary degrees awarded at the University of Bristol – Tuesday, 16 July

Press release issued: 16 July 2013

Bristol University is awarding honorary degrees to Dr Anthony Falconer and Dr Roger Pettman at today’s degree ceremonies in the Wills Memorial Building.

Dr Anthony Falconer, President of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RCOG), is to receive a Doctor of Science for his work to improve healthcare for women.

His career path began in the University’s Medical School, gaining experience in Plymouth and South Africa before being appointed as a consultant for Plymouth Hospitals Trust in 1986. He was latterly appointed as lead clinician for gynaecological oncology and colposcopy services from 2000 to 2007.

As President of the RCOG, Dr Falconer has been determined to enable all health care workers to provide the best possible care for the women they look after. He has embraced changes in training and has helped the RCOG to reorganise the administration of training and continuing professional development.

He’s also been committed to reducing maternal mortality in third world countries.

Dr Roger Pettman, an experienced chemist with an eye for business development, is being awarded a Doctor of Science in recognition of his involvement with Revolymer – the first spin-out company from the University of Bristol to be floated on the stock market.

Professor Terence Cosgrove came up with the concept of removable chewing gum and joined forces with Dr Pettman to embrace the commercial opportunity.

The company was floated with a value of £58million and now has a unique set of patents, plus a highly technical and well-trained research force of 35 people.

Dr Pettman followed an academic career initially before being headhunted by Shell Chemicals in 1981, where he worked for 12 years. He then helped to found and develop several new and highly successful companies, including Innotune which specialises in developing corporate and business strategies for emerging technologies developed at universities.

An honorary degree is a major accolade, awarded in recognition of outstanding achievement and distinction in a field or activity consonant with the University’s mission.

Further information

The official photographs and speeches delivered by the public orators at each ceremony are available to the media on request from the University's Press Office.
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