Ex-health chief and victorious Lioness appointed MBE

time:2023-05-31 02:20:52 source:The New York Times

A former health chief who led Newcastle's coronavirus response and one of the North East's victorious Lionesses have been appointed MBEs.

Prof Eugene Milne and footballer Lucy Bronze, who is from Berwick and played for Sunderland, were named in the King's first New Year Honours list.

He said the honour was a "lovely fillip", while Bronze said the first person she told was her grandma.

North Tyneside Mayor Norma Redfearn was also recognised and been made a dame.

Prof Milne said: "Everyone in public health knows that it is a team activity, and I have been blessed with terrific colleagues over the years. I would not be here without them."

Bronze, 31, was part of the squad which won Euro 2022 at Wembley in the summer and said: "To be recognised for everything I've done throughout my career was a little bit surreal. It's just something so different to football and something harder to compute.

"An MBE is obviously a huge honour and very special. The first person I told was my grandma.

"My grandma probably doesn't understand many of the awards I've won in football but she adored the Queen, so I thought 'this (MBE) is going to be her special thing'."

As the city's director of public health, Prof Milne had become a "leading voice" in the region's response to the pandemic, Newcastle City Council said.

He moved to Newcastle to study medicine in 1979 and was director of public health for eight years before retiring in April.

Also honoured from Newcastle University were:

Right-back Bronze had four years at Sunderland before moving to Everton, Liverpool, Manchester City and now Barcelona, and has 100 caps for England.

England captain Leah Williamson has been made an OBE and teammates Beth Mead and Ellen White become MBEs after they won England's first major football trophy since the men's 1966 World Cup.

Asked why not all the Lionesses were included, Sir Hugh Robertson, chairman of the honours sports committee, said there was a danger of "carpet bombing the entire squad because then you get people who've done five minutes on the pitch and get an award".

"So what we've tried to do is stick to the principle of the honours system which is to recognise excellence and to recognise extraordinary contributions," he said.

Selected other awards:

Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE)

Officers of the Order of the British Empire (OBE)

Members of the Order of the British Empire (MBE)

British Empire Medal (BEM)

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