Knighthoods for Jewish businessman and scientist

By Jessica Elgot, January 6, 2012

A Jewish professor and a city businessman have both been knighted in this year’s honours list.

Professor Sir Mark Pepys received a knighthood for his groundbreaking biomedical work. He is currently director of the Wolfson Drug Discovery Unit, and the former Head of Medicine at the Royal Free Campus of University College London.

As a clinical scientist, he developed new drugs for potential use is conditions like Alzheimer's disease and cardiovascular disease.

Sir George Iacobescu, chief executive of Canary Wharf Group, has been knighted for services to charity, community and the Financial Services Industry. Sir George is a patron of CST and Jewish Care, and a founding co-chair of Teach First.

Philanthropist Dr Alan Diamond, a member of Central Synagogue, received an OBE for voluntary and public service. Dr Diamond is a patron of Norwood, and a generous supporter of CST, Youth Aliyah and sat on the Anglo-Israel executive, as well as holding positions at Sydney Sussex College Cambridge.

He and his wife recently funded the refurbishment of the children’s synagogue at Central Synagogue.

London-born Laurence Geller, CEO of Strategic Hotels and Resorts was made CBE. Now based in Chicago, the businessman is on the Board of the American Jewish Committee and is chairman of the board of trustees for the Churchill Centre in London. “I am most humbled by this very special honor,” said Mr Geller. “Giving back to society and serving causes beyond oneself has always been, and will always be an imperative of mine.”

Last updated: 12:07pm, January 10 2012