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Professor Alan C Roberts OBE

Professor V. Craig Jordan CMG,OBE, FMedSci, Honorary Fellow and Past President of the Royal Society of Medicine Foundation of North America, remembers Professor Alan Roberts  

Professor Alan C Roberts OBE, KStJ, TD died on 1 December 2021. He served the Nation in three dedicated aspects of his distinguished career.

Founder of the RSM Technology in Medicine Section and RSM Vice President from 2007 to 2009, he was also an RSM Honorary Fellow. His is pictured with this article receiving the RSM Medal in July 2018. He was the Pro Chancellor and the Chairman of the Court and Council at the University of Leeds (1983-2000). In his parallel world, he was commissioned into the Royal Artillery rising to the rank of Colonel and Deputy Commander to the General Officer Commanding North East Military District, an honorary aid-de-camp to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II (1980-1984), a Gentleman Usher of the Imperial Society of Knights Bachelor and Deputy Lord Lieutenant for West Yorkshire.

Alan Clive Roberts was educated at Manchester Metropolitan University and subsequently at Bradford University. It was at Bradford that his scientific career in materials science and reconstruction surgery blossomed by specializing in Prosthetics and the use of tissue adhesives in wound management.

His research resulted in a license for Indermil in 1993 which is used world-wide in surgery. This was followed in 2006 by a license for a prosthetic adhesive and skin cleansing system Zenflosil. He was awarded the Prince Philip Medal in 1970 for outstanding research achievements followed by the MBE in 1982 and appointment as OBE in 2002.

Professor Roberts chose to contribute to the Nation through reserve officer military service. I suspect his dedication to serve the Nation was influenced by the example of his father Major William Roberts MBE. Professor Roberts commanded Leeds University Officers Training Corps before promotion to Colonel and Deputy Commander of North East Military District.

He was honorary Colonel Commandant of the Royal Artillery and Honorary Colonel of 269(WR) Battery 101(N) Regiment Royal Artillery. He leveraged his roles in academic administration in universities with his commitment to training future army officers within universities as the National Chairman of the council of Military Education Committees of the Universities in the United Kingdom (1990-96).

Professor Alan Roberts life’s work through biomedical research, university administration, international academic outreach, a commitment to military preparedness and education will continue to have a profound effect on the future of the United Kingdom. For his enormous contribution to the Nation and medical research, we should all be grateful.

Professor Roberts is survived by his wife Margaret Mary (nee Shaw ) and their two sons Martin John and Adrian Christopher Roberts

Professor V.Craig Jordan CMG,OBE FMedSci
Dallas /Ft Worth Living Legend Chair of Cancer Reasearch
MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, Texas
Honorary Fellow ,Royal Society of Medicine
Past President ,Royal Society of Medicine Foundation of North America

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