Sir Richard Sykes
) is a biochemist and former executive in a number of pharmaceuticals, most notably GlaxoSmithKline
He holds a degree from King's College London
, and a Ph.D.
in Microbial Biochemistry
from the University of Bristol
as well as number of honorary degrees
, including ones from the universities of Birmingham
, Sheffield Hallam
Until 2001, Sykes was chairman of GlaxoSmithKline
and president of the British Association for the Advancement of Science
. In 1994
he was knighted
for his services to the pharmaceutical industry
and in 1999
he was awarded the Singapore National Day Public Service Star Award
for his services to the economy of Singapore
. In December 2007 he was appointed Independent Non-Executive Director at Eurasian Natural Resources Corporation
Between January 2001 and July 2008, Sykes was the Rector
of Imperial College, London
In 2004 he spearheaded an abortive attempt to merge Imperial College with University College London.
He also controversially supported the lifting of the £3,000 cap on tuition fees and instead allowing the universities to set fees at anything up to £10,000, a proposal opposed by many student-representing societies.
In March 2006 his salary became the centre of attention amongst Imperial College staff and students after the students' union newspaper, FELIX, published a front page article highlighting how much he was paid. Sir Richard received a salary £305,000 a year, the second highest among university principals after Professor Laura Tyson, dean of the London Business School.
On July 1st, 2008, he was succeeded as Rector of Imperial College by Professor Roy Anderson.
Sir Richard is chairman of the think-tank Reform
. He is a trustee of the Natural History Museum
(London) and the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew
In September 2008 he was appointed Chair of NHS London.