Dr Helen Sharman CMG OBE FRSC FIScT

Helen Sharman CMG OBE

Helen Sharman is the UK Outreach Ambassador at Imperial College London and a world-class inspirational speaker. She became the first British Astronaut in 1991, when she launched on a Soyuz rocket to carry out experiments on the Mir Space Station.

After her return from space, Helen spent many years communicating science and its benefits, winning prizes for radio and TV programmes and for her inspirational talks on STEM, leadership, teamwork and problem solving.

Following a degree in chemistry at the University of Sheffield, Helen started her career in industry in research and development of display screens at GEC before moving to Mars Confectionery, where she was part of the team that created the Mars Ice Cream.

More recently, Helen started a new career in management, leading a research group at the National Physical Laboratory and then as Technical Manager for Science, Engineering and Computing at Kingston University London. She was the Operations Manager of Imperial College London’s Chemistry Department before moving into Imperial’s Outreach Team.

Helen is also member of the Science Museum Advisory Board, an Ambassador for the Royal Osteoporosis Society and an active member of the Association of Space Explorers. She hosts the Zero Pressure podcast (available on https://linktr.ee/zeropressurepod), a relaxed conversation with people on the cutting edge, looking at how science and technology can contribute to solving complex, interrelated global challenges of today and tomorrow.

Helen was invited to join the Order of St Michael and St George in the Queen’s 2018 New Year’s Honours List.

Terry Croft MBE FIScT CSci

IST Chair and CEO

Terry began his career as an Analytical Chemist for a multinational mining company, where he developed new analytical techniques and procedures as instrumentation technology advanced. He moved to the University of Sheffield to work as the Chief Technician in the Botany Department. Over the next eight years he continued to advance, becoming Departmental Manager of the Department of Animal and Plant Sciences. All the while championing the need for a more professional approach to the training and development of technicians in the HE sector; Terry received several more promotions before undertaking the role of Faculty Director of Operations.

For many years, Terry has been an active member of his professional body, the Institute of Science and Technology, (IST). In May 2012, he was elected as Chair of the IST, a position he still holds today.

Terry’s passion and commitment to the Technical Community lead to his appointment as Director of Technical Development and Modernisation at the University of Sheffield in 2013. In 2014, he was awarded a three-year Catalyst Grant by HEFCE to undertake the TDM Project, which covered a variety of issues affecting Higher Education Institutions. In December 2017 he was awarded £1.125m to launch the National Technician Development Centre (NTDC) for technicians and their employers. After a highly successful three years for the NTDC, Terry retired from his Director’s role in January 2020 and remains as the NTDC’s Founding Director.

Terry was awarded an MBE for services to humanity after he rescued an academic colleague and his family from the violence occurring in Iraq in 1992. He was named ‘One of the Top 100 Leading Scientists 2014’ and awarded Chartered Scientist status by the Science Council. He is also the current Chairman and CEO of the Institute of Science and Technology.

Terry’s new role is as Founding Director of the National Technician Development Centre; a one-stop shop, providing organisations and their technical communities with access to information, expertise and a range of research and tools.

Lucy Hudson BSc FIScT

IST Secretary

Lucy is the IST Secretary, and has responsibility for ensuring that we comply with legislative requirements and that we maintain suitable official records, and also for the coordination of our Executive meetings and documentation.

She is Operations Manager of the Department of Biology at University of York, where she has worked for 30 years. Lucy manages the technical support, services and facilities of the Department, with more than 11oo undergraduates, 150 researchers, 70 academics & 90 technicians.

Lucy is also a trustee and member of the Royal Society of Biology, a Fellow of the IST and an external advisor for the National Technician Development Centre

Dr. Michelle Jackson FIScT CSci

IST Registrar

Michelle graduated with a degree in Biochemistry from the University of Manchester in 1991, followed by a PhD in biochemistry which was awarded in 1994.  Over the next 9 years she worked in research labs as a post-doctoral scientist and technician in both Universities and the NHS.  In 2003 she was appointed as a Technical Resources Manager (TRM) within one of three research sections within the Faculty of Life Sciences at the University of Manchester.In 2008 Michelle took up the post of Development Manager with the HEaTED project and as well as being actively involved in planning and directing the project, she developed their range of technical skills courses, Virtual Learning Environment, and set up the regional networking groups for technicians in HE.  Michelle left HEaTED in 2011 to set up as a consultant and has been working on some challenging projects with S-Lab, the IST and a variety of universities since then.Michelle has developed technical knowledge across a wide range of disciplines including, clinical research, immunology, molecular biology, biochemical and biophysical science and cellular biology.  In 2007 she became a Fellow of the Institute of Science and Technology and, with an A1 qualification, acts as an assessor for their Continuing Professional Development programme. Michelle worked as Technical Manager at the University of Nottingham which then led her to her current role in 2019 as Deputy Director of Operations at the University of Sheffield Faculty of Engineering.

In 2008 Michelle was elected to the IST Executive and continued in that role until 2013 when she became the IST Registrar.  As Registrar Michelle oversees the new professional registration scheme offered by the IST which is licensed by the Science Council.  Along with members of the Executive committee Michelle was instrumental in setting up the new registration scheme run by the IST, and now coordinates the scheme and its assessors.


IST Education Officer

Arthur is a Trustee of the Science Council and a Specialist Advisor to the National Technician Development Centre (NTDC). During a long career as a professional Technician, Scientist and Management practitioner, Arthur became highly knowledgeable of and skilled in the effective delivery of research, teaching and professional services in the UK’s Higher Education Institution (HEI) sector.

Arthur commenced his career at the University of Manchester, in 1975, as a trainee Technician. He completed his education and developed his professional profile whilst progressing his Technical, Scientific and Managerial career at the University.  He attained an M.Sc., PhD and Chartered membership of the Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (CMIOSH). He is a Member of the Institute of Safety in Technology and Research (MISTR) and a Fellow of both the Royal Society of Biology (FRSB) and Institute of Science and Technology (FIScT).

Arthur served as an elected member of Manchester University’s General Assembly. He held the posts of Treasurer and Chair for the University Bioscience Managers’ Association (UBMA) and acted as a Regional Network Co-ordinator for both HEaTED and The Universities Safety and Health Association (USHA).

Arthur has well established, productive working relationships within a number of professional bodies and organisations. Working with them, he has actively contributed to shaping best practice and achieving, HEI sector wide, advances; most notably in enhancing the professionalism, employability and career progression prospects of technical staff and in the development of safe & sustainable laboratories.

Dr Marie Oldfield CStat CSci APAI FIScT

Marie Oldfield
Marie Oldfield

IST EDI Coordinator

Dr Marie Oldfield, CStat, CSci, APAI, FIScT, is the Chair and Founder of the IST AI Special Interest Group and Women in Tech Group. Marie is the CEO of Oldfield Consultancy and Senior Lecturer in Practice at LSE.

Marie is a recognised and published AI and EthicsLeader with a background in Mathematics and Philosophy. Marie is a trusted advisor to Governments, Defence, and the Legal Sector amongst others. Marie works at the forefront of Ethical AI, driving improvement and development.

Marie is frequently invited to speak on popular podcasts, panels and at conferences about her experience and research on the development of Ethics in AI as well as being invited to speak at Chatham House and at multiple companies on AI and Ethics issues.

Marie is passionate about giving back and has worked with many institutions including the UN, Nethope, MapAction, and various international bodies and governments to promote education, help in disaster relief and improve the life chances of the most poor and vulnerable across the globe.

Marie also operates as the IST’s EDI Coordinator and is the founder member of the IST’s Women in Tech Group.

Joan Ward BA MBA FIScT

j.wardIST Deputy Chair/Finance Officer

Having started her career as a trainee technician at the University of Manchester, with minimal science qualifications, Joan worked in a number roles in their bioscience labs whilst gaining additional qualifications in science subjects up to degree level (Open University). Following on from her basic grounding in teaching/research she then spent  10 years as a Lab Superintendent/Manager, during which time she secured approaching £1m in grant income (over a number of years) to support the development of trainee technician programmes (in collaboration with a local FE College). In addition she also helped develop and roll-out a bespoke software package designed to handle HE departmental/faculty accounts and research grants – the software ultimately becoming adopted by over 400 departments across the country/HE sector. As a consequence of departmental/faculty restructuring she moved into a Finance/Admin role where she set up a new faculty finance, purchasing and research administration unit – also completing an MBA (Open University) during this time.

After spending several years consolidating the new integrated finance/research grants unit, and helping to roll-out the model to other faculties,  she decided to take advantage of a University early retirement scheme (having over 30 years University service) and ‘jumped ship’ to set up her own consultancy company, which she continues to run today. Her company provides consultancy support for admin systems development and website design/development.

Having joined the IST during her time as Lab Manager she continues to support the work of the Institute as Finance Officer, Deputy Chair  and Administrator. Within her roles within the IST Joan was part of the team that obtained funding for, and facilitated the setup of HEaTED. She was also heavily involved in the IST team that gained a Science Council Licence for the award of CSci, RSci and RSciTech registration. Joan has a strong commitment to the development of technical staff career opportunities and the enhancement of  the professionalisation of the technical community, and this is exemplified in her support for a variety of initiatives that work towards those aims. She is currently on the Board of Trustees of the National Technician’s Development Centre.