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MEI Online: People News: Europe: January 6th 2009


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:: OBE for Prof. Richard Williams

Professor Richard A. Williams, Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Enterprise, Knowledge Transfer and International Strategy, has been awarded the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in recognition of services to science and engineering.

Williams is also Professor of Mineral and Process Engineering in the University’s Institute of Particle Science and Engineering. Working as Trustee, Vice President and Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering, he has been extensively involved in identifying and nurturing engineering achievements and innovation in the UK and abroad.

He has had a significant role in building innovation and entrepreneurial activity on the regional, national and international stage by fostering closer links between scientists and engineers and higher education and businesses.

Professor Williams’ academic research, looking at the properties of mixtures of fine particulates in fluids, has focused on solving problems in the scale-up of manufacturing process. He has more than 440 publications in this field, received both national and international awards for innovation and has founded several innovative companies from his work.

He said: “I am delighted and extremely honoured to receive this OBE. The award reflects the fact that innovation in engineering is at the very centre of society and drives improvement in our quality of life on a global scale."

Richard Williams
Prof. Richard Williams OBE

Professor Williams graduated from Imperial College London in 1982 with a degree in minerals engineering after attending the Kings School, Worcester. After spells with the Anglo American Corporation and De Beers Industrial Diamonds, he was appointed lecturer in the Chemical Engineering Department at UMIST, Manchester, in 1986, going on to become Senior Lecturer.

At the age of 33 he was appointed Professor of Minerals Engineering at the University of Exeter before being named Anglo American PLC Professor of Mineral and Process Engineering at the University of Leeds in 1999. At Leeds, he established the Institute of Particle Science and Engineering, a world-leading group of chemical engineers teaching and researching in particulate systems.

In 2000, he was made a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering and elected to the Australian Academy of Science and Technology in 2008. Professor Williams has founded five companies, both public and private. He is a director of 12 companies, trusts and not-for-profit bodies. Regionally, he is a director of Medilink Ltd, Leeds Innovation Centre Ltd, the Leeds, York and North Yorkshire Chamber of Commerce and White Rose Technology Seedcorn Ltd.

He lives in Harrogate with his wife and two children.




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