By Chandni Tanna
Saturday, June 16, 2012
TWO people from Comet country have been recognised by Her Majesty The Queen in her Birthday Honours list.
Business leader, Dr Mike Short, president of the Stevenage-based Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) and vice president at Telefónica Europe plc will become a Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (CBE).
With a career spanning 37 years in electronics and telecommunications Dr Short said: “It is a great honour to receive this personally for my contribution to the mobile industry even though many others have played such a great role.
“I am particularly pleased that it helps highlight how much mobile innovation and investment has done for society, skills and services. This is a truly great year to receive my medal after 25 years in the mobile industry and only 20 years since the first digital mobile phone was approved for connection to mobile networks.”
As president of the IET, Dr Short oversees an organisation of 150,000 members across 127 countries as well as being an ambassador for the engineering and technology profession. The role of IET president is a voluntary one lasting for 12 months.
After working for Philips, Landis & Gyr and BT, Dr Short joined Cellnet in 1989, now known as O2 and part of Telefonica Group.
In his current role of vice president of public affairs for Telefonica Europe, Dr Short’s focus is on European public policy that relates to innovation; including research, the responsible use of mobiles and new business development.
He is a past chairman of the Global GSM Association, the UK Mobile Data Association, and has served on several boards, task forces and government advisory committees.
Currently a visiting professor at a number of UK universities, Dr Short was also awarded an honorary doctorate for services to the mobile communications industry in 2008 - the same year he joined the IET’s Board of Trustees.
The second person from Comet country to be recognised for her work in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list is 48-year-old, Sarah Wren.
The Hitchin resident is to be awarded an MBE for services to the community sector in Hertfordshire.
Sarah has been involved in many local community charities for the past 10 years and currently serves as chief executive for Hertfordshire Community Meals (HCM) to the elderly.
Sarah helped create HCM in 2007, a social enterprise delivering around 545,000 meals on wheels - once a day, seven days a week throughout the year.
Ms Wren said: “I feel really honoured, it’s the sort of thing you never really anticipate, its very special and I feel humbled. But at the same time I work as part of a team and I want to share the award with my colleagues because we all work as a team.”
Speaking of why she got involved in the charity she said: “I believe that in late stage in life people should be treated with respect and given as much independence as possible. All the staff at HCM are so caring and it’s about developing a relationship with our clients and we go further than dropping off a meal, it’s a service that deals with each individual needs.”