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Jim Watson appointed Riddet Institute Chairman

Media Release

10 February 2009

Jim Watson appointed Riddet Institute Chairman

Dr James (Jim) Watson has been appointed Chairman of the Riddet Institute, the country’s newest Centre of Research Excellence (CoRE).

Dr Watson is well known in New Zealand scientific and business circles as the founder and CEO of Genesis Research & Development, a past-president of the Royal Society of New Zealand and past Chair of the National Science Panel. He has had a long career in Health Sciences and has held professorships at the University of California, Irvine and the University of Auckland.

Professor Paul Moughan co-director of the Riddet Institute said “We are delighted that Dr Watson has agreed to chair our Board of Directors. He is a well-respected scientist and leader and has the business acumen and strategic skills that will pilot us in our role as a world leader in food science research.”

Dr Watson is enthusiastic about his new role. “I believe the creation of a Centre of Research Excellence within the Riddet Institute gives it the ideal positioning to make a real difference to food science research in this country,” he said. “New Zealand is dependent on food exports for its standard of living and producers and processors now, more than ever, need help to create foods that will have a major impact on the health of all New Zealanders and be a vital part of growing our export economy. Fundamental science will be the life-blood of new directions for the food industry.”

The CoRE’s other directors are: Professor Robert Anderson (Pro Vice-Chancellor College of Sciences, Massey University); Professor Vernon Squire (Pro Vice-Chancellor, College of Sciences, University of Otago); Mr Peter Landon-Lane, CEO, Plant & Food Research; Dr Andrew West, CEO, AgResearch; Dr Jeremy Hill, Group Director Technology, Fonterra Co-operative Group Ltd. A director representing Maori will be appointed shortly.


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