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New Year Honours 2022: Two AstraZeneca employees made OBEs for their work on the Covid-19 response

Two AstraZeneca employees have been included in the Queen’s New Year Honours List 2022, recognised for their outstanding achievements in UK life sciences and supporting the UK and global response to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Dr Ruth March OBE. Picture: AstraZeneca
Dr Ruth March OBE. Picture: AstraZeneca

Dr Ruth March, from Cambridge, who is senior vice president, precision medicine and biosamples, research and development, is made an OBE in the list.

“I am proud to accept this award on behalf of the team who overcame many challenges to enable regular Covid-19 diagnostic testing for our employees and to keep the supply of innovative medicines that AstraZeneca delivers to patients every day,” she said.

“Through their untiring efforts, teamwork and expertise, not a single manufacturing line or research lab have closed throughout the pandemic. It has been truly humbling to see how rapidly skills developed for high throughput screening and technologies have been redeployed to protect our colleagues and our sites. I would like to thank all colleagues and collaborators for their amazing vision and dedication.”

Dr Julia Thompson OBE. Picture: Jon Large
Dr Julia Thompson OBE. Picture: Jon Large

Dr Julia Thompson, from Thriplow, who is AstraZeneca’s executive director, biopharmaceutical development, research and development, is also made an OBE in the list.

She said: “This award is a great honour and privilege. I am enormously proud of what AstraZeneca has done towards the pandemic response and I am glad that I have been able to contribute.

“As the leader of a clinical supply function, my work through the pandemic could not have been more purposeful, more acutely aligned to our mission of bringing innovative medicines and vaccines for Covid-19 to the patients we serve. I would like to thank my team, and the many colleagues, contractors and partners that we work with for their focus, expertise and hard work. Together so much is possible.”

Sir Mene Pangalos, executive vice president, biopharmaceuticals R&D, at Cambridge-headquartered company, said: “I am delighted that two of my colleagues have been awarded these special honours by Her Majesty and it is a testament to their commitment and contributions to the global challenge we face.

“This moment gives me equal pride as we look back at the achievements our teams have made in this remarkable year, nearly one year since the first person was vaccinated with Vaxzevria on January 4. In less than 12 months, the hard work of my colleagues and our international partners has ensured that over 2.5 billion doses of our vaccine have been delivered to over 170 countries.”

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