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Northumbria University honours inspirational figures

Press release   •   Jul 05, 2013 00:00 BST

Cricketing legend Paul Collingwood and best selling crime author Val McDermid will receive honorary degrees from Northumbria University this month.

They are joined by the Byker born doyenne of fashion photography, Chris Moore, campaigning human rights lawyer Professor David J McQuoid-Mason and leading international business and management scholar Professor Howard Thomas.

The recipients of honorary degrees are nominated by the University’s staff for their achievements, their links to the University - and for their sheer inspirational qualities.

Paul Collingwood is England’s most capped One Day International cricketer and leading run scorer. He was awarded the MBE in the Queen’s New Year’s honours for his role in the 2005 Ashes victory, going on to play in two more Ashes winning teams. Wisden named him Cricketer of the Year, saying he had “become the embodiment of the sort of cricketer who not only made the most of his ability, but was also determined to keep getting better.”

Val McDermid is an award-winning author with an international reputation as a writer of crime fiction. She is the first student from a state school in Scotland to be accepted at St Hilda’s College Oxford, where she read English. She is probably best known for her novels featuring the characters Lindsay Gordon, Kate Brannigan and Dr Tony Hill. The Dr Tony Hill series has been adapted for television as Wire in the Blood, starring Robson Green. She is involved in many writing and community causes, including New Writing North.

Chris Moore is known throughout the fashion community as the ‘Catwalk King’. His pictures have appeared everywhere from American Vogue to the front cover of Time magazine and The Sunday Times. For over twenty years he provided every catwalk image for the International Herald Tribute. His website,, is a virtual global fashion portfolio. In 2009 he was honoured at a special event at 10 Downing Street, when 25 of his iconic photographs were displayed to mark the 25th anniversary of London Fashion Week.

Professor David J McQuoid-Mason is world leading scholar and legal educator, having just retired as Professor of Law at the University of KwaZulu-Natal in Durban, South Africa. However he is better known for his work on Law Clinics and Street Law in over 60 countries. Following South Africa’s first Legal Aid Conference at the KwaZulu-Natal Law School, he founded their first Legal Aid Clinic to provide legal services for poor and marginalized clients and in 1986 he established the first Street Law programme in South Africa. He is President of the Commonwealth Legal Education Association and Vice President of the Academic and Professional Development Committee of the International Bar Association.

Professor Howard Thomas’s career in business and management education has spanned over 48 years. During that time he has written over 30 books and 200 articles on strategic management to become one of the most highly cited scholars in his field. He is a former President of the Strategic Management Society, a Fellow of both the American and British Academies of Management and a former Chair of the Graduate Management Admissions Council.

The honorary graduates will receive their degrees alongside Northumbria’s current students who come from over 100 nationalities.

Northumbria University is the 10th largest higher education provider in the UK. It is sponsored by 550 employers and 49 professional bodies accredit Northumbria University courses.

Northumbria is a research-rich, business-focussed, professional university with a global reputation for academic excellence. To find out more about our courses go

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