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29 March 2017

St David Award Winners and Finalists 2017

The 2017 St David Awards were announced last week.

The awards recognise the great deeds and often extraordinary contributions made by people from all walks of life.

We have picked out a few winners and finalists from the Science and International categories to highlight how Welsh People are leading the way, excelling in their field of expertise and promoting Wales as top place to study, live and do business.

Innovation, Science and Technology catergoryProffessor Meena Upadhyaya OBE

Professor Meena Upadhyaya OBE (pictured right) won this years award for her outstanding contribution to medical genetics. She has been an advert for Science and Education in Wales as a Professor of Cardiff University and also the former Director of the All Wales Medical Genetics Service Research and Development Laboratory.

Her research has led to identifying the genetic mutations responsible for 2 diseases and she has developed tests for approximately 20 genetic diseases over her career, but her influence did not stop there. In 2016 she was awarded an OBE for her charity work and support for the Asian community in Wales, were she remains a leading figure.

Another finalist in this category, Genesis Biosciences, are leaders in the field of bacteria fermentation and they were the first company to do so for both microbial and antimicrobial products. Wales has a commitment to improve its Life Sciences sector and Genesis Biosciences, who are based in Cardiff, are part of that movement aiming for scientific breakthroughs and commercialisation. Wales is the only nation with a £100m dedicated Life Sciences Fund, a world-leading academic expertise and a Life Sciences Hub.

Another finalist and potential winner of the award in the future was 22 year old Jessica Leigh Jones. Jessica is an astrophysicist and engineer working for Japanese company, Sony at their UK Technology Centre, Pencoed Wales. She develops the next generation manufacturing technologies. As well as inventing new ground breaking technologies, Jessica is also the Director of the Engineering Education Scheme Wales.

International AwardDr David Nott OBE

Welshman and Consultant Surgeon, Dr David Nott OBE (pictured right), has spent 23 years travelling on unpaid leave, to provide surgical treatment in war-torn areas of the World and he was a deserving winner of the International award this year. He has taught advanced surgical skills to local medics and surgeons whist abroad and also set up the David Nott Foundation in 2016, to provide training scholarships for surgeons in countries such as Syria.

The compassion and hard work of David and the other two finalists in the International category, Nizar Dahan and Professor Carl Jones MBE, deserve recognition. They are outstanding examples of some of the work Welsh people are doing to foster links with World Nations and support the International community.

First Minister of Wales Carwyn Jones pictured with Wales football coach Chris Coleman In a statement about the awards, First Minister of Wales Carwyn Jones (pictured right) said: “I know there are fantastic people doing exceptional things here in Wales. I’m lucky as I travel across the country, to see first hand the efforts people make, day in day out to make Wales as great as it is.”

Congratulations to all the finalists and Winners!

Full List of Winners: