UCL staff and alumni recognised in New Year Honours

Congratulations to members of UCL’s community who have been recognised in the New Year Honours 2024.

Emeritus Professor Valerie Lund CBE (UCL Ear Institute) has been made a Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire, for services to rhinology.

Dame Valerie is Emeritus Professor of Rhinology at UCL and, in a career spanning more than 40 years, has led many groundbreaking studies identifying the causes, diagnosis and treatment of nasal and sinus problems.

In this time, she has also been an Honorary Consultant Surgeon at the Royal National Throat Nose and Ear Hospital, Moorfields Eye Hospital, and University College Hospital (all London).

On receiving her honour, Dame Valerie said: "I am deeply honoured to receive this, which recognises the importance of ENT and specifically conditions of the nose and sinuses, which profoundly affect  millions of people worldwide. I  am extremely grateful   all the colleagues in the UK and abroad who have supported and encouraged me throughout my career, without whom t’his award could not have happened." 

Professor Maurice Biriotti (UCL Faculty of Arts & Humanities) has been awarded an OBE for services to business, to academia and to philanthropy. He is a Professor of Applied Humanities at UCL, and the Co-Director of the UCL Arista Institute, an interdisciplinary research centre that seeks to use academic insights to provide meaningful and sustainable real-world changes.

Professor Biriotti is also the founder and Chief Executive of SHM, a strategy consultancy firm that uses approaches from the humanities and social sciences to solve complex issues for organisations.

On receiving his award Professor Biriotti said: "I really don’t know what to say, except that I’m surprised and overwhelmed and feel I have so much more to do!" 

Professor Bryan Williams (UCL Institute of Cardiovascular Science) has been awarded an OBE for services to medicine. Professor Williams is Chair of Medicine at UCL and as a Consultant Physician at UCLH.

He recently commenced a new position as the first Chief Scientific and Chief Medical Officer at the British Heart Foundation. For over a decade prior to that, he was Director of the NIHR University College London Hospitals/UCL Biomedical Research Centre and Director of Research and Board member at UCLH.

He is recognised in the most recent Clarivate listings as one of the world’s most influential clinical scientists and has worked as a front-line clinician in the NHS for 40 years.

Professor Williams said: "I am delighted to receive this national honour in recognition of my services to medicine. It is at times like this you pause and reflect on where you have come from, the incredible support of my family and the contribution of the many dedicated and talented people I have had the privilege to work with in the NHS and academia throughout my career."      

Dr Andi Hoxhaj (UCL Laws) has been awarded an OBE for services to UK/Albania relations, and is listed in the overseas and international New Year Honours.

In particular this award acknowledges the role Dr Hoxhaj played in encouraging that " The UK-Albania Joint Communique: Enhancing Bilateral Cooperation in Areas of Common Interest " signed by the Prime Ministers of the UK and Albania in December 2022, includes a new component in the field of "education" as part of the two countries’ areas of bilateral cooperation.

Dr Hoxhaj, a Lecturer (Teaching) at UCL, said: "I am truly honoured and humbled to be nominated by the FCDO, and I am absolutely delighted to receive the order from His Majesty King Charles III.

"I am really pleased by the FCDO’s support for educational cooperation as a means of forging closer ties between the UK and Albania, as well as acknowledging the value that academia and research can play in fostering better understanding in areas of common interests".

"I am incredibly grateful for my family, friends, and colleagues who have supported and encouraged my initiatives. Without their support and help, I would not have been able to receive this recognition by His Majesty, which is the greatest honour of my life."

UCL alumni represented in this year’s list include:

  • Spencer Drury - PGCE Economics (1996), was awarded an MBE for political and public service
  • Dr Olurotimi Babatunde Adesanya - MSc Restorative Dental Practice (2009), was awarded an MBE for services to oral health
  • Dr Benjamin Marc Ellis - MBBS Medicine (2002), was awarded an MBE for services to healthcare, to equality, and to the Jewish community

  • University College London, Gower Street, London, WC1E 6BT (0) 20 7679 2000