Dame Commander for Professor Sue Black in Birthday Honours

Professor Sue Black of the University of Dundee, one of the world’s foremost experts in forensic anthropology, has received a Damehood in HM The Queen’s 90th birthday Honours.

Professor Black is Director of the Centre for Anatomy and Human Identification (CAHID) and co-Director of the Leverhulme Research Centre for Forensic Science, based at the University of Dundee.

Her forensic expertise has been crucial to a number of high-profile criminal cases, including the conviction of Scotland’s largest paedophile ring in 2009 and more recently the conviction of Richard Huckle, the UK’s most prolific paedophile. At CAHID she leads a team which has developed new forensic techniques such as identification of child abusers through vein and skin patterns of the hand and other parts of the anatomy.

“I am deeply honoured to receive a Damehood, and frankly more than a little embarrassed!” said Professor Black.

“We do not do this kind of work at Dundee to receive honours, we are absolutely committed to providing the best education in forensic science and using our research to provide the tools and techniques which can best serve criminal investigations, historical cases and mass events such as natural disasters. At Dundee we are among the world leaders in this field.

“However, it is certainly always encouraging for me and the forensics team here at Dundee to receive recognition because everything we do reflects on the team.”

In 1999 Professor Black headed the British Forensic Team’s exhumation of mass graves in Kosovo. She has been deployed to aid with disaster victim identification in major events such as the Asian tsunami of 2004.

She founded the British Association of Human Identification in 2001, the same year in which she received an OBE for her services to forensic anthropology in Kosovo.

CAHID was awarded the Queen’s Anniversary Prize for Higher Education 2014. It is one of the world’s foremost institutions for the study and application of human anatomy, forensic human identification, disaster victim identification, forensic science research and forensic and medical art. The Centre attracts students from around the world.

Last year the University was granted £10million to establish the Leverhulme Research Centre for Forensic Science, which is led by Professor Black and Professor Niamh Nic Daeid. The Centre is dedicated to stimulating the research and evidence base for forensic science.

For more on forensic science at Dundee see http://cahid.dundee.ac.uk/

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