Dame Sue Ion OBE is made a Dame Grand Cross of the Order of the British Empire
A global expert in nuclear engineering and member of the University of Central Lancashire’s (UCLan) Board of Governors has been recognised in the Queen’s Birthday Honours 2022.
Proud Prestonian Dame Sue Ion, also a UCLan Honorary Fellow, has been made a Dame Grand Cross of the Order of the British Empire (GBE).
The award recognises the international impact Sue has achieved on energy strategy, both in the UK and internationally, and ‘for her work fostering the next generation of engineers from under-represented groups’.
In addition to her role on the UCLan Board, Sue is a British engineer and an expert advisor on the nuclear power industry. She represents the UK on the world stage, as well as helping to shape long-term energy strategy at home. In 2019 Sue became an Honorary Fellow of the Institute of Physics.
"I was encouraged to study materials science as a degree course all those years ago and to visit what became UCLan to see the work of the amazing scientists and engineers of the day. "— Dame Sue Ion
Commenting on what inspired her to take up science and engineering as a career Sue said: “I shall be forever grateful that when I was a student at Penwortham Girls’ Grammar, I was encouraged to study materials science as a degree course all those years ago and to visit what became UCLan to see the work of the amazing scientists and engineers of the day. It has enabled me to have the most fantastic career and opportunities and to link with some of the best talent in the globe!”
The GBE award citation highlighted some of Sue’s achievements: Dame Susan Ion is a global expert in nuclear engineering who has made extensive contributions to the public, private and third sectors, serving as an outstanding role model and advocate of STEM careers and shaping long-term energy strategy on domestic and global stages.
She spent nearly 30 years at British Nuclear Fuels Limited, serving as Group Director of Technology and Operations from 1996-2006. Subsequently she has taken on an extraordinary range of senior roles supporting key government decisions and advising on strategic policies. She has made extensive and influential voluntary contributions to professional bodies, including Vice-President and Chair of the Policy Committee at the Royal Academy of Engineering, first female member and Chair of the prestigious MacRobert Award Judges, and member of the Council for the Royal Society.
Sue lives in Leyland, Lancashire.
The Queen's Birthday Honours mark the extraordinary contributions and service of people across the UK. Grand Cross is the highest of the five order classes which in descending order are as follows:
- Knight Grand Cross or Dame Grand Cross of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (GBE)
- Knight Commander or Dame Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (KBE or DBE)
- Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (CBE)
- Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (OBE)