Jean Thomas has been Master of St Catharine’s College since 2007 and is a Deputy Vice-Chancellor. After holding a Beit Memorial Fellowship at the Laboratory of Molecular Biology (1967-69) she was successively Demonstrator, Lecturer and Reader in the Department of Biochemistry, and Professor of Macromolecular Biochemistry (now Emeritus) from 1991-2010. She continues to run a small research group studying various aspects of chromatin structure and function.
Jean has served on numerous University committees over the years, including the General Board, Promotions and Appeals Committees, and most recently as a member of the Septemviri. Last year she was appointed a Trustee of the Wolfson Foundation and will become President of the Society of Biology in May. She recently ended a five-year term as Biological Secretary and Vice-President of the Royal Society and previously served for seven years as a Governor of the Wellcome Trust, for 10 years as a Trustee of the British Museum, and for five years as President of the Biochemical Society. She has served at various times as a Council Member of SERC and EPSRC, on the scientific Advisory Committees of the (then) Imperial Cancer Research Fund and the Lister Institute, and as Chair of the Internal Merit Promotion Committee of the Research Councils.
Jean Thomas was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in 1986, a Member of EMBO in 1982, a Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences in 2002, and a Fellow of the Learned Society of Wales in 2010. She is an Honorary Fellow of Darwin and Murray Edwards Colleges, and of Worcestor College Oxford, and holds Honorary Degrees/Fellowships from several Universities.
She was awarded a CBE in 1993 for Services to Science and a DBE in 2005 for services to Biochemistry.