Graham John Hills
Graham John Hills
Sir Graham Hills and Lady Mary Hills taken in their Inverness home in March 2000
|Born||9 April 1926|
Southend-on-Sea, Essex , U.K.
|Died||9 February 2014(aged 87)|
|Pen name||Sir Graham Hills|
|Occupation||University Principal, Physical chemist, Educationalist|
Sir Graham Hills FRSE (9 April 1926 – 9 February 2014) was a physical chemist, principal of the University of Strathclyde, and a governor of the BBC. He was born in Southend-on-Sea, Essex and educated at Westcliff High School for Boys and Birkbeck College, London (BSc 1946, PhD 1950). He was knighted in 1988 for his services to education.
Hills served as a professor of Physical Chemistry at the University of Southampton for 18 years, until 1980, when he became principal at Strathclyde University, succeeding Samuel Curran who had held the post since 1959. There, his early foci were accommodating cuts to government funding by the University Grants Committee (UK), and dealing with the school's other financial difficulties. He found alternative sources of income, restructured the university (in 1982) to reduce its nine schools to four, and introduced early retirement for faculty members.
With these financial challenges stabilized, Hill turned to expanding the university. Purchases were made in 1981 and 1987, respectively, of the Barony Church (restored in 1984 and converted into a graduation hall) and Marland House (a former British Telecom office block, which was renamed the Graham Hills Building). New student residences were built on campus.
After Sir Graham's retirement, he was the driving force behind the establishment of the University of the Highlands and Islands. He moved to Inverness to be a full-time advisor to the nascent university. In 2004 he coauthored, with Robin Lingard, the book UHI: The Making of a University, a comprehensive account of the university's creation.
- Imperial College, London: Lecturer in Physical Chemistry, 1949-1962.
- University of Southampton: Professor of Physical Chemistry, 1962-1980.
- University of Western Ontario: Visiting Professor, 1968.
- Case Western Reserve University: Visiting Professor, 1969.
- University of Buenos Aires, Visiting Professor, 1977.
- University of Strathclyde, Glasgow: Principal and Vice-Chancellor, 1980-1991.
Professional committee work
- President of International Society of Electrochemistry, 1983-1985.
- Non-Executive Director: Scottish Post Office Bd, 1986-1999.
- Member: Council for Science and Technology, 1987-1993.
- Scottish Development Agency, 1988-1990.
- Member: Council for National Academic Awards, 1988-1993.
- Glasgow Action Partnership, 1989-1990.
- Scottish governor of the BBC, 1989-1994.
- Design Council, 1989-1990.
- Society of Chemical Industry, 1991-1993.
- Scottish Enterprise, 1991-1993.
- Design and Industries Association, 1992-1996.
- Chairman of the Council of Quarrier’s Homes, 1992-1997.
- Chairman of the Ness Foundation (formerly Highland Psychiatric Res.), 1998-2003.
- Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh, 1990
- Fellow of Scottish Vocational Education Council, 1989
- Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, 1978.
- Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry, 1950.
- Hon. DSc: Southampton, 1984; Lisbon, 1994.
- Hon. ScD: Technical University of Lodz, Poland, 1984.
- Commander, Polish Order of Merit, 1984.
- Hon. LLD: Glasgow, 1985; Waterloo,Canada, 1991; Strathclyde, 1991
- Royal Norwegian Order of Merit, 1986,
- Hon. Fellow of the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama, 1988.
- Hon. Medal, University of Pavia, Italy, 1988.
- Hon. Fellow of the Polytechnic of East London, 1991.
- Hon. Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow, 1992.
- DUniv: Paisley, 1993.
- Hon. Fellow of the Chartered Society of Designers, 1996.
- Hon. DEd University of Abertay Dundee, 1999.
- Hills, G. J. Reference Electrodes, 1961.
- Hills, G. J., Inheritance of Michael Faraday, (University of Southampton), 1964.
- Hills, G. J., Polarography, (Macmillan), 1964.
- Hills, G. J. (ed.) Electrochemistry: A Review of Chemical Literature: vols 1-3 (Specialist Periodical Reports), (Royal Society of Chemistry), 1970, 71, 73.
- Hills, G. J., Transactions of the Faraday Society Articles (Royal Society of Chemistry) (numerous contributions on electrochemistry.
- Hills, Graham & Lingard, Robin, UHI: The Making of a University, (Dunedin Academic Press), 2004.
- Honorary degree, University of Pavia, 1988.
A list of Obituaries available online and accessed 3/8/2015:
- The Royal Society. This is a pdf printable document.
- The Scotsman. A photograph of Sir Graham is given here.
- The Daily Telegraph. A photograph is also given here.
- The Independent. This obituary was written by Tam Dalyell), with photograph.
- The Herald. This is a letter written to the newspaper
- The Times Higher Educational Supplement,
- The Royal Society of Chemistry,
- The Strathclyde Telegraph. This is the university student newspaper.
- "Hills, Sir Graham (John)". Who's Who. ukwhoswho.com. A & C Black, an imprint of Bloomsbury Publishing plc. (subscription or UK public library membership required)
- Cf. The Glasgow Story website: http://www.theglasgowstory.com/image.php?inum=TGSS00032 Accessed 2012-08-05. The information on this site was reproduced with the permission of Strathclyde University Archives.
- Glasgow Action Partnership[permanent dead link]
- Papers of Sir Graham Hills available at Strathclyde University Archives. Collection OM/274
| Principal and Vice-chancellor
University of Strathclyde