22 Jun 2015
James joined SCI in 1992 and has been a member of the Fine Chemicals Group (FCG) ever since. He served on the FCG committee from 1991-2011. As a member of the C&I Editorial Advisory Board, James brought his considerable industrial experience to support the content planning of SCI’s flagship magazine and his work here led to his being invited to stand for election to the Publications Advisory Committee (PAC) in 2011.
When and how did you become a member of SCI?
I became a member of SCI following an SCI Colour Chemistry Symposium that I missed in 1991. I bumped into Trevor Laird, then Chairman of the Fine Chemicals Group who was looking for someone to join the committee to help organise further symposia in the series, so I joined SCI and the Fine Chemicals committee at the same time.
What has driven your continued involvement?
The breadth and quality of meetings that the Fine Chemicals Group organise have driven my continued involvement, eventually serving as Treasurer, Secretary, Vice-chair and Chair of the group.
How has being involved in SCI activities had an impact on your professional career?
The overriding benefit of the being involved in SCI activities has been the networking opportunities that membership of the Fine Chemicals Group have afforded me. In addition, the skills that I developed in organising scientific meetings has led to me being able to bring structure and organisation to the department in which I have worked. I also learnt how to chair meetings in a structured and informal way. Finally, my involvement in PAC has been beneficial in understanding some of the more strategic issues facing organisations.
How do your SCI activities reflect your personal/professional interests?
I have always been interested in enabling the sharing and discussion of information and have promoted this in my roles within GE Healthcare. Conference organisation through the Fine Chemicals Group and sitting on the Publications Advisory Committee are extensions of this interest.
What motivates to you to participate in SCI activities?
I get a great deal of satisfaction from seeing plans come together and helping to define strategy within SCI.
How do you think that your contribution has helped shaped SCI?
The Fine Chemicals Group has always been well run and has organised a great range of scientific meetings. My contribution was to ensure that this continued during my tenure as Chair of the committee.
What are your thoughts about receiving a Distinguished Service Award?
I was surprised, humbled and honoured to learn I was to receive the Distinguished Service Award. It is always a pleasure to have one’s efforts recognised.