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ICE Past President Rachel Skinner receives CBE

05 January 2022

The ICE fellow was recognised for services to infrastructure in the Queen’s New Year Honours list.

ICE Past President Rachel Skinner receives CBE
ICE's 156th President Rachel Skinner.

ICE Past President Rachel Skinner, 45, has been awarded a CBE for services to infrastructure in the New Year Honours 2022 list.

The executive director at engineering consultancy WSP was the youngest president of ICE, and only the second woman in the institution’s over 200-year history, when she took on the role in 2020/21.

“This honour is unexpected and humbling, yet also exciting as it recognises the crucial importance of fast, fair climate action across all infrastructure sectors as the world makes permanent change towards net zero. A sincere thanks to ICE and WSP for supporting my journey so far,” Skinner said.

Rachel Skinner was the 156th president of ICE, and the theme of her year was ‘Shaping Zero’, which focused on challenging civil engineers to help achieve net zero.

She was not the only past president to be recognised this year, as ICE's 139th president in 2003, Doug Oakervee, was knighted for services to transport and infrastructure delivery.

Other ICE members recognised in 2022

Professor Sarah Springman CBE received a DBE for services to engineering and international sports administration. The ICE fellow is a rector and professor of geotechnical engineering at ETH Zurich.

Meanwhile, Professor Hanif Kara, an ICE fellow and design director and co-founder, AKT II, and professor in practice of architectural technology, Harvard Graduate School of Design, received an OBE for services to architecture, engineering, and education.

ICE staff

In addition, Rekha Thawrani, global head of NEC contracts at ICE's commercial arm, Thomas Telford, received an OBE for services to infrastructure and British exports.

Thawrani joined Thomas Telford Limited in 1996 and has been responsible for NEC since 2004, with her role growing as the product and team have grown.

The award reflects the contribution that NEC has made to UK infrastructure since HS1 and the Olympics and how it has expanded overseas over the last decade under Thawrani's leadership. NEC is now in use in countries as far as Hong Kong, South Africa, Australia, New Zealand, Belgium, Peru and even Antarctica.

Chris Gibson, managing director, Thomas Telford Limited, said: "Rekha has been instrumental in the development and growth of NEC, bringing its core values of mutual trust and collaboration to new markets and sectors in the UK and overseas."

  • Anh Nguyen, digital content lead at ICE