President's Gold Medals for exceptional service 2021

THREE members of IPEM have been honoured for their long and exceptional service to the Institute.

The recipients of the President's Gold Medal for Exceptional Service in 2021 are:

Claire Hardiman

IPEM Fellow Claire Hardiman is Head of Radiation Physics and Radiobiology at Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust in London.


She said: ‘I am delighted and honoured to accept the IPEM President’s Gold Medal for Exceptional Service. I was first inspired to volunteer with IPEM at a lunchtime meeting at MPEC nearly 20 years ago, aimed at getting more female members involved.

‘My first role was as a member of the Professional Development Panel. I have since chaired the Professional and Standards Committee and, as the IPEM representative, EFOMP’s Professional Committee. I am currently honoured to serve as one of IPEM’s Member Trustees.

‘Over the years of my involvement, I have been fortunate to work with many dedicated and inspiring individuals, from both staff and membership. IPEM is a much-respected professional body, of which I am proud to be a member and consider IPEM to be my professional home.’

Dr Viv Cosgrove

Dr Cosgrove is Head of Radiotherapy Physics at the Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust.


He said: ‘I was surprised and delighted to receive the President’s Gold Medal for Exceptional Service. It was unexpected and flattering, as the work I have been involved in with IPEM has always been alongside very talented and hardworking physicists, engineers and technologists who deserve equal recognition and praise for the work they do for the IPEM membership.


‘Most of the IPEM work I have been involved in is with the Radiotherapy Physics Professional Standards Panel. This group was set up in 2015 with the enthusiastic drive of the first chair, Professor Carl Rowbottom. The panel consists of senior radiotherapy physicists, providing support and guidance on professional issues in radiotherapy. This has included updating or providing new guidance and recommendations on the provision of radiotherapy physics services, representing IPEM at parliamentary meetings and events and working closely with IPEM’s Workforce Intelligence Unit to understand and support the development of all radiotherapy physics professionals.

‘The thing I’ve learnt most over the years as member then chair of the panel is how important it is that IPEM has a strong voice and presence when there are national reviews on the provision of cancer services in general and radiotherapy services in particular. As we move from the Covid frying pan to the fire of post-Covid recovery, the scientific, technical and engineering workforce will be critical to the progress that will be made to re-establish services to pre-Covid levels, and to continue to improve services for all those that will need to access them in future. It is ever more important that our contribution is acknowledged, resourced and developed.’

Professor Azzam Taktak

IPEM Fellow Professor Azzam Taktak is Consultant Clinical Scientist/Honorary Professor at Liverpool University Hospitals NHS Trust.


Professor Taktak said: ‘I am extremely flattered and honoured to be awarded the Gold Medal for Exceptional Service. Over the last 20 years, I have joined many IPEM committees and served a number of offices, most notably being CEng Registrar between 2008 – 2012 and Vice President for Engineering between 2012 – 2015. I have also been a member of working groups such as Report 90 and Report 97 related to Electrical Safety of Medical Equipment. 


‘Being a member of the Institute has opened so many doors of opportunity for me, put me in touch with some of the leading names in the field and helped shape my career path in ways I could not have foreseen.’

Professor Stephen O’Connor, IPEM’s President, said of the award winners: ‘I initiated this Gold Medal in 2020 as there were no awards to recognise long and exceptional service to IPEM.

‘Claire, Viv and Azzam, like their predecessors in 2020, have given exceptional service to IPEM over many years which has developed our profession and supported IPEM and they are truly deserving of their awards.’