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Professor Dame Jane Francis to join Natural History Museum’s Board of Trustees

The Natural History Museum is pleased to announce the appointment of Professor Dame Jane Francis DCMG FRS to the Board of Trustees. She joins as the Royal Society Trustee, appointed by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport, commencing an initial four-year term on 1 February 2023.

Jane Francis is Director of the British Antarctic Survey, a research centre of the UK Natural Environment Research Council. She is involved with international polar organisations, such as the Antarctic Treaty and European Polar Board, and on several advisory boards of national polar programmes.  

Lord Green of Hurstpierpoint, Chair of the Trustees of the Natural History Museum says: “Jane is a towering figure in polar science. She brings pioneering research expertise in past climate change as well as a distinguished track record in leadership and education – not to mention an inspirational wealth of adventure and endeavour! We are thrilled to have her support in helping us achieve our mission of creating advocates for the planet.”

Professor Dame Jane Francis says: “I am honoured to be involved with such a prestigious institution that is involved in important research and education to help us understand our planet and how we need to look after it more carefully.”

Jane Francis is a geologist by training. She has undertaken research projects at the universities of Southampton, London, Leeds and Adelaide, using fossils to determine the change from greenhouse to icehouse climates in the polar regions over the past 100 million years. She has undertaken over 15 scientific expeditions to the Arctic and Antarctica in search of fossil forests and climates of the past. 

Jane was appointed Dame Commander of the Order of St Michael and St George (DCMG) in recognition of services to UK polar science and diplomacy. She was also awarded the UK Polar Medal by H.M The Queen, the Royal Geographical Society’s Patron's Medal and the 2022 Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation Award for Planetary Health. Jane is Chancellor of the University of Leeds and a Fellow of the Royal Society. 

Jane joins the other current members of the Board of Trustees as well as incoming Chair of the Board of Trustees Sir Patrick Vallance: Prof Yadvinder Malhi, Harris Bokhari, Dr Sarah Thomas, Mark Read, Dame Frances Cairncross, Robert Noel, and Prof Dame Janet Thornton.


Notes to editors

Natural History Museum media contact:

Tel: +44 (0)20 7942 5654 / 07799690151

Email: press@nhm.ac.uk

For more information on the Museum’s governance and Trustees please visit the Natural History Museum’s Website: https://www.nhm.ac.uk/about-us/governance.html

About The Natural History Museum

The Natural History Museum is both a world-leading science research centre and the most-visited indoor attraction in the UK last year. With a vision of a future in which both people and the planet thrive, it is uniquely positioned to be a powerful champion for balancing humanity’s needs with those of the natural world.

It is custodian of one of the world’s most important scientific collections comprising over 80 million specimens accessed by researchers from all over the world both in person and via over 30 billion digital data downloads to date. The Museum’s 350 scientists are finding solutions to the planetary emergency from biodiversity loss through to the sustainable extraction of natural resources.

The Museum uses its global reach and influence to meet its mission to create advocates for the planet - to inform, inspire and empower everyone to make a difference for nature. We welcome millions of visitors through our doors each year, our website has had 17 million visits in the last year and our touring exhibitions have been seen by around 20 million people in the last 10 years.