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Professor Rowena Hill named in the King’s Birthday Honours List

Workforce Development Trust trustee Professor Rowena Hill has been named in the King’s Birthday Honours List.

Professor Hill has been awarded an MBE for her role as National Collaborative Lead of the Covid-19 Foresight Group (C19 NFG), a cross-government and multi-agency group set up to support the UK response to Covid-19. The independent task force was established to try and predict how society might be impacted by the virus, and to draw on academic insights and expertise to save lives, relieve harm and support communities. 

Rowena, who is Professor of Resilience, Emergencies and Disaster Science within the School of Social Sciences at Nottingham Trent University (NTU led interdisciplinary teams across universities and sectors, anticipating pandemic impacts over varying timeframes—days, weeks, years, and even decades. Insights from the C19 NFG then empowered national and local decision makers to plan effectively.  

The Covid-19 Foresight Group worked tirelessly, delivering weekly briefings, roundtables, reports, and reviews. Their valuable contributions have informed the Covid Inquiry and although the original C19 NFG concluded, the group has since reconvened, leveraging their expertise to address climate change, resilience, and adaptation.

Professor Hill said: “I am extremely proud of this work and particularly the contribution of NTU and colleagues who worked on this with me. It was a time of such turmoil and uncertainty for everyone, but as individuals and an institution, we did what we could, when we were asked and made a difference. 

“It was extremely hard work and there were many difficult decisions along the way, but receiving this MBE has reaffirmed that we did the right thing at the right time. I’d like to share this with my colleagues across the many teams we worked with. My thanks to my family too, who were so understanding at the time.” 

John Rogers, Chief Executive of The Workforce Development Trust, says: 

“We would like to say a huge congratulations to Rowena. To be recognised for the outstanding contribution she has made to helping keep the public safe and well during the pandemic is a wonderful accolade. We would like to join in giving thanks for her service, as well as her continued contributions to The Workforce Development Trust.”