Birthday honours’ joy for Sussex staff and alumnus

Former university technician Peter Reed has received a British Empire Medal

Former university technician Peter Reed has received a British Empire Medal

A long-serving technician and a first-generation law alumnus have been recognised in this year’s Queen’s Birthday Honours.

Peter Reed has received a British Empire Medal and Marcus Hayes an MBE in the list of honours announced earlier this month.

They were joined on the list of more than 1,000 great and the good across the UK to receive honours by Oscar-winning actor Olivia Colman, adventurer Bear Grylls, musician Elvis Costello, singer Alfie Boe and comedian Griff Rhys Jones OBEs.

Peter joined the University in 1985 and worked as a Senior Electronics Technician in Life Sciences until retirement earlier this year.

He was honoured for services to education and voluntary First Aid work in recognition of his key role in the University’s Emergency Response Team - the University’s rescue team providing full first aid cover across campus during working hours.

Sophie Solomon-Hosseini, from the Emergency Response team, said: “In his time at Sussex, Peter brought dedication and diligence to his voluntary role on the First Aid team. His knowledge and compassion made him a pleasure to be around and a fantastic leader. Peter’s absence is felt within the team and his experience was invaluable to all of us. This honour is truly deserved and we wish him an extremely happy retirement.”

Jane Fairhall, who worked with Peter in the Emergency Response Team, said: “I was thrilled to hear that one of our recently retired team members, Peter Reed, is to receive a British Empire Medal in this year’s Queen’s Birthday Honours. He is a fantastic man, and was brilliant to work with in the ERT. I learned an awful lot from Peter, not only through training sessions but also when we attended shouts together. It was a great loss to the team when he retired.”

Marcus graduated from the University in 1987 with a degree in law. He was the first in his family to go to university.
Having carved out a successful career in law, he went on to establish both the Mason Hayes Scholarships and the Mason Hayes Charitable Trust Work Placement Scheme - providing financial and personal development support to those who need it most.

The Mason Hayes Charitable Trust has funded a number of legal scholarships for first generation scholars at Sussex, as well as an annual prize for the best third year essay in law.

Marcus also regularly delivers pro bono masterclasses in commercial law to students in the Law School at Sussex.

Marina Pedreira-Vilarino, Director of Development & Alumni Relations, said: “Marcus’ dedication and commitment to support First Generation law students at Sussex over the years has been nothing other than truly inspirational and humbling. I can’t think of a more deserving person to receive a Queen’s Award in recognition of his support of law and education. His support of the Law School is a great example of the impact Sussex alumni can have in enhancing the student experience and providing life transforming opportunities for our students.”

The British Empire Medal was founded in 1917 and was awarded for "meritorious" actions by civilians or military personnel.

King George V created the Member of the British Empire honour during World War One to reward services to the war effort by civilians at home and service personnel in support positions. They are now awarded for prominent national or regional roles and to those making distinguished or notable contributions in their own specific areas of activity.

To read more about the Emergency Response Team, read the latest episode of This Sussex Life.

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By: Neil Vowles
Last updated: Friday, 14 June 2019

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