Sir George Buckley, the former Chairman and CEO of US tech giant 3M, has been named as the new Chancellor of the University of Huddersfield.
Sir George, who was knighted in 2011, was a student at the university before launching a career that would see him rise to the top at leading multi-national companies.
He currently holds posts that include the Chairmanship of UK manufacturer and technology innovator Smiths Group and Stanley Black & Decker, who are the world’s largest makers of hand and power tools.
He is also a member of the board of Hitachi, the Japanese industrial conglomerate, and is recently retired from the board of Pepsico, the US food and drink giant.
Sir George has stated that his success in business was based on the scientific and technical training he received at Huddersfield, and he has maintained close ties with the institution ever since.
In 2003 he received an honorary doctorate, and six years later a state-of-the-art lecture theatre was opened that carries his name.
Then in 2013 the University’s new business and innovation centre – which provides facilities for enterprises that range from student start-ups to established firms – was named the 3M Buckley Innovation Centre. Sir George announced that the company would sponsor a 3M Chair of Innovation.
Now he has accepted the role of Chancellor, succeeding the Duke of York, who stood down earlier this year. The role has also been previously filled by Star Trek veteran Sir Patrick Stewart.
“Sir George Buckley is probably the best example I can think of as a person who has used education – alongside his capacity for hard work and his visionary qualities – as the stepping stone for a truly exceptional career. He will be an enormous inspiration to our students, showing them what is possible,” said Jonathan Thornton, the Chair of the University of Huddersfield Council.
The Vice-Chancellor of the University of Huddersfield, Professor Bob Cryan said “Sir George has been tremendously generous in his support for the University over the years and he has been a regular visitor, giving numerous presentations to both students and staff.
“He is a truly inspirational individual that ran one of the most innovative companies in the world, and his advice is highly sought after by both Governments and major corporations. Sir George is a proud Huddersfield graduate and a fantastic role model for our students, and I do not doubt that he will be an amazing Chancellor.”