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ICR Chief Executive to Become Deputy Chairman of the Wellcome Trust

The Institute of Cancer Research’s Chief Executive Professor Peter Rigby has been named the next Deputy Chairman of the Wellcome Trust’s Board of Governors. He will take up the position at the independent, global biomedical charity  in October.

Professor Rigby has been a member of the Trust's Board of Governors since January 2008. He will take over from Professor Adrian Bird from the University of Edinburgh as Deputy Chairman when Professor Bird's ten-year tenure as a Governor comes to an end.

Professor Rigby has been Chief Executive of the ICR since 1999. He is Professor of Developmental Biology at the University of London and works on the regulation of gene expression during the development of the embryo. He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society this year, and is also a Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences.

He has been a member of advisory committees for the UK's major biomedical research funders, including the Medical Research Council, Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council, Cancer Research UK and other research charities, as well as numerous biotechnology companies. He is a non-executive director of the Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust, a member of the Council of Marie Curie Cancer Care, and a Trustee of the University of London.

Sir William Castell, Chairman of the Wellcome Trust, says: "We are delighted that Peter will shortly become our new Deputy Chairman. He has extensive knowledge and experience of the biomedical field, both in the UK and internationally. Peter will be instrumental in helping the Wellcome Trust implement its visionary ten-year strategic plan, which was launched this year.

Professor Rigby said he was delighted to be taking up the position of Deputy Chairman.

"It is an immensely exciting time for both the Wellcome Trust and the biomedical research field in general, ten years on from the unravelling of the human genome," he says. "The Wellcome Trust is an exceptional organisation and I am delighted to be given the opportunity to help implement its new strategy and to shape its future direction."

Lord Ryder, Chairman of the ICR, said: "It is a great honour for The Institute of Cancer Research that our Chief Executive, Peter Rigby, has been appointed Deputy Chairman of the Wellcome Trust. On behalf of the Board of Trustees of the ICR I congratulate him in full measure. I am certain that he will be a first class Deputy Chairman. They could not have chosen a better person."

In light of this new appointment, Professor Rigby has indicated that he wishes to step down as Chief Executive during the forthcoming academic year, although he will continue his personal research at the ICR. The search for his successor has begun.

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