The Department of Metabolism, Digestion and Reproduction's is actively working to increase and support development opportunities to all our staff. We champion initiatives to promote the advancement of gender equality, representation, progression and success for all. The Committee's success is reflected by the Department recently receiving the Athena SWAN Silver award.

MDR's People and Culture Committee is currently seeking a new Co-Chair, please contact Prof Lesley Regan if you wish to be considered for the role.

People and Culture Committee members include:



Major areas of interest 


Professor Dame Lesley Regan 

Professor of Obstetrics and Gynaecology 

IRDB, Section of Reproductive Biomedicine 

Athena Lead for DoSC (Bronze 2015, Silver 2018), founding co-Lead for MDR 

I strongly support workplace equality and diversity and actively promote equal opportunities for women in academia. 

Dr Vicky Salem 

Senior Clinical Lecturer and Consultant Endocrinologist 

Division of Diabetes, Endocrinology and Metabolism 

Athena Lead for DoM (Silver 2014 and 2018), founding co-Lead for MDR  

I am passionate about promoting women in academia and reminding people of all the wonderful opportunities that being involved in the Athena mission has brought me.

Yasmin Abdi 

Divisional Operations Assistant

MDR Centre 



Toby Athersuch 

Senior Lecturer 


Division of Bioinformatics 

Athena, EDI, Societal Engagement Champion 

As a student-turned-academic at Imperial, I have witnessed the recent impact of Athena SWAN; I am delighted to be able to help contribute to this transformation. 

Veronique Azuara  

Reader in Stem Cell Biology 



IRDB, Section of Reproductive Biomedicine 

EDI/People & Culture reps at Departmental Executive and Senior Management Board meetings; specific interest in early career development and mentoring on leadership and research strategy. 

Over the years I have developed a genuine interest in developing others. I mentor research staff and younger PIs – internally as part of our FoM Mentor Network and externally. This long-term investment toward the College makes sense to me as this is home where I want to develop my own future career. 

Dr Suzanne Barr 

Senior Clinical Teaching Fellow  


Division of Digestive Diseases 


Widening access in STEM Higher Education and in particular gender equity 

Advocate for EDI and in particular gender equity in Higher Education.  As a parent to two young children, I also have first-hand experience of the additional challenges women face in academia  

Ines Cebola 

Advanced Research Fellow 

Division of Systems Medicine 

Mid career development, overseas inductions, outreach 

I am strongly committed to promote and support other researchers, especially early career researcher, in their pursuit of equal opportunities in academia. 

Leah Grey 

MDR Staffing Coordinator 

MDR Centre 


PTO working group 

DATA management 

I have been proudly involved in contributing toward our EDI remit since joining Imperial in 2017. 

Stephen Franks 

Clinical Professor of Reproductive Endocrinology 

IRDB, Section of Reproductive Biomedicine 


I have always been a strong advocate of equality in the workplace. I believe in supporting my colleagues in managing their careers and I am proud to be part of the mentorship scheme. 

Jia Li 

Senior Lecturer 

Division of Digestive Diseases 

Diversity, equality and inclusion; work-life balance 

I am interested in promoting work-life balance for academics’ wellbeing. 

Victoria Male 

Sir Henry Dale Fellow and Lecturer  

Division of Pregnancy, Parturition and Prematurity 


Particularly interested in finding solutions to the challenges faced by early and mid-career researchers trying to balance science with family responsibilities and in developing new ways to acknowledge contributions that are often underappreciated.  

Aldara Martin Alonso 

PhD student 

Division of Diabetes, Endocrinology and Metabolism 


Research Degrees Student Representative at MDR, PhD student in Endocrinology & Investigative Medicine 

I am particularly interested in supporting female PhD students to progress and achieve a sustainable career in academia. 

Kevin Murphy  

Professor of Endocrinology and Metabolism  

Division of Diabetes, Endocrinology and Metabolism  

Admissions Tutor for Widening Participation in UG Medicine, Director of Postgraduate Studies (Research) across the 4 Depts that previously made up DoM. 

I'm interested in widening participation across UG and PG studies. I designed and am academic lead for Pathways to Medicine, our UG widening participation in medicine programme co-funded by the Sutton Trust, and for our new Medical Schools Council WP summer school programme.  

Marianna Norton 

Postdoctoral Research Assistant 

Division of Diabetes, Endocrinology and Metabolism 

Post-doc representative for the Division of Diabetes, Endocrinology and Metabolism. 

Helping voice the concerns and needs of PhD students and post-docs in the division since 2015 with the aim of developing a work environment we can all excel in. First as a PhD student representative and now a post-doc representative. 

Bryn Owen 

Non Clinical Lecturer 

Division of Diabetes, Endocrinology and Metabolism 

Mid career engagement and a new dad with a partner also in academia 

I’ve been at Imperial as an undergraduate, postgraduate, and member of staff. I’ve seen a lot of change in the Faculty, and I know that we can do more. 

Alejandra Thomas 

Senior Lecturer

Division of Diabetes, Endocrinology and Metabolism 

Mid career engagement  

Joined the department in 2015 as Senior Fellow, then Lecturer and now Senior Lecturer. Strongly support equal opportunities for women, parents and minorities in academia. Mum of 2, full time researcher and MSc coordinator 

Joanna Thompson 

Departmental Manager

MDR Centre

PTO lead 

An integral part of my role is helping to shape the culture in the Department.  As a working parent of four teenagers, I have been able to take advantage of the flexible working opportunities that Imperial College provides.  

Mark Thursz 

Clinical Professor of Hepatology and Head of Department 

Division of Digestive Diseases 

Departmental Culture change 

Addressing inequalities of opportunity because of gender, race or disability is fundamental to creating a thriving community that delivers truly relevant and world-class research.  Our PCC is fully empowered to help make that happen.  

Rob Bell  

Athena SWAN Co-ordinator

Imperial College London Centre 


I act as a link between departments and central College, advising on good practice and raising awareness of activities. I volunteer as an Athena SWAN assessor. 

Nicholas Wood 

Programme Manager (Data)

Faculty of Medicine Centre 


 Everyone benefits from a just, supportive and diverse working environment for all and I’m committed to leveraging data approaches to identify and overcome barriers to achieving this and to help create solutions which foster it.  

Benjie Coleman 

Communications Coordinator

MDR Centre 



 I am proud to support our Department in being a welcoming and equitable place to work. I help communicate the great work our People and Culture Committee does for the advancement of equality, representation, and progression, for all. 

Lenne Lillepuu 

Learning and Development Centre 


 I lead a bespoke programme of support for fellows and clinicians and ensure their views are represented widely across the College. I have extensive experience in working with and supporting early career researchers as well as leading departmental culture change via the implementation of Athena SWAN principles and action plans. 

Christopher Peters 

Lead and Chair of Culture and Engagement Committee  

Department of Surgery and Cancer 


I am delighted to act as a liaison between the Surgery and Cancer and MDR Departments which share many of the same aims and  have many of the same problems to solve. This has allowed us to work together on joint projects for the benefit of our staff and students.   

Paula Phillips 

Institutional Affairs Manager

Faculty of Medicine Centre  


I have an HR background and am a Chartered Member of the CIPD. I have been committed to improving the world of work for all staff in the Faculty of Medicine for the past 18 years.