Institute welcomes new Board Chair, Dr Ray Thomson

Institute welcomes new Board Chair, Dr Ray Thomson

2015 brings a changing of the guard for the Representative Governance Board of The MacDiarmid Institute for Advanced Materials and Nanotechnology. 

Departing Chair Dr Steve Thompson, who has held the position since 2010, shared his reflections on his time with the Institute; “We have taken the Insititute through its ‘teenage’ years where we evolved from the inspirational and personal leadership style of its co-founder, Paul Callaghan, through a period where we needed to install some effective governance systems and processes and develop a first strategic plan. We have spent time streamlining the hull, clearing the deck, and trimming the sails. We now have a racing boat – it’s time to go racing.” 

MacDiarmid Institute Director Professor Kate McGrath thanked Dr Thompson for his service. “Steve led the Board through the development of our first Strategic Plan and the successful rebidding process. I have very much enjoyed working with him and have learnt a lot during our time together.” 

Professor McGrath also extended a warm welcome to incoming Chair Dr Ray Thomson; “I am very happy to welcome Ray to be our new Chair of the Board. Ray’s expertise will significantly aid us as we explore the best ways to deliver value to New Zealand from the educational framework [we offer] our students, to the translation of our research outcomes in a commercial context. This is a very exciting time for [The MacDiarmid Institute] and we are very fortunate to have Ray working with us.” 

Introducing Dr Ray Thomson

After graduating with a PhD in physics from Otago University, Dr Ray Thomson has dedicated most of the last 35 years to working as a financial analyst and company director. Over the last decade he has been keenly involved with angel investment, taking on the role of Chairman of the NZ Angel Association for 2012 and 2013. Ray was recently recognised for his services to the angel investment community with the prestigious Arc Angel award.

Dr Thomson is an accredited fellow of the Institute Of Directors. He recently served on the board of Industrial Research LTD 2009-2012, and is currently Chair of Manuka Health NZ, Supreme Biotechnologies, and Rush Digital Interactive. In addition, Ray chaired the MBIE ‘Smart Ideas’ panels in 2013 and 2014.

Dr Thomson has a strong interest in the commercialisation of scientific research and is looking forward to working with the MacDiarmid Institute investigators to improve outcomes, particularly in this area.

 

Dr Steve Thompson (front, centre) with the Board at their final meeting of 2014.

Dr Steve Thompson (front, centre) with the Board at their final meeting of 2014.

 

Media Enquiries to Kylie Docherty, Communications officer. Kylie.Docherty@vuw.ac.nz