New year's honoursFollowing on from our announcement that Baroness Williams of Crosby (PPE, 1948) was made a Companion of Honour in the New Year’s honours list, it is a great pleasure to report that a further three Somerville alumnae have also been recognised.

Rachel Griffiths (English Language and Literature, 1967) the Care Quality Commission’s Mental Capacity Act Lead, has been made a MBE for services to vulnerable people. Her role supports CQC in ensuring that the Mental Capacity Act remains a key part of its strategy and policies, including its inspections. Rachel represents CQC in joint working with external national bodies to help drive improvement in health and social care and she is part of the Leadership Group of the National Mental Capacity Forum.

‘It was a great surprise to receive this award, and I do feel a bit of a fraud since I’ve just followed my interests,’ says Rachel. ‘It’s been a treat in itself to be in a position to influence national policy and practice: it’s always so nice to get one’s own way, and so rare.’

Also honoured was Professor Kamila Hawthorne (Physiological Sciences, 1978), Vice Chair of Professional Development at the RCGP and Clinical Professor of Medical Education and Associate Dean for Medicine at the University of Surrey, who has been awarded an MBE for services to general practice.

Alongside her role at the University of Surrey, Professor Hawthorne practises as a GP in Cardiff. She has been teaching undergraduate medical students since 1991 and has also worked with the RCGP for many years, representing the South East Wales faculty on college council since 2007. She is a previous chair of the RCGP’s Assessment and Curriculum Development Committee and is a current MRCGP examiner.

Caroline Ross (Modern History, 1993), a lawyer at the Department of Energy and Climate Change, has been made an OBE for her legal services to international climate change negotiations.

‘Being awarded the OBE was a lovely surprise and it hasn’t really sunk in properly yet,’ says Ross. ‘Being part of the UK and EU teams involved in securing the Paris Agreement was an honour in itself, so this is really the icing on the cake.’

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