Pharmaceutical Medicine
Designatory Letters: 
BSc Edin 1957, MB Edin 1959, MD Birm 1967, CBiol 1969, MRCP Edin 1980, CAP III,12, MCRP (London) 1976, FRCP (London) 1991, FACP 1981, FFPM 1991

Ian, as he was known by family, friends and colleagues, was born in West Lothian, Scotland. He was educated at Bathgate Academy and went on to qualify in medicine at Edinburgh in 1959. After finishing his house jobs with Mr RL Stewart and Prof. Sir John Crofton, Ian began his postgraduate career with 7 years in academia. After 3 years as Lecturer in Virology at the University of Sheffield under Prof. Colin Beattie, he moved on to be senior research fellow of the MRC attached to the Department of Virology at the University of Birmingham. He received an MD for his work with Prof. Peter Wildy and Prof. Douglas Watson, on the biochemistry of virus replication.

In 1967 he was offered and accepted a post in the pharmaceutical industry as Director of the British affiliate of Eli Lilly & Co. He moved on to be European Director of Research and Development, and in 1977 to be Vice-President of Lilly Research Labs in the USA with worldwide responsibility for all clinical research and development. He was also appointed Professor of Medicine at Indiana/Purdue University School of Medicine.

In 1983 he was offered and accepted the post of Chief Executive of Glaxo Group Research with responsibility for all of Glaxo’s research and development activities worldwide as successor to Sir David Jack. Unfortunately, after 3 years it became clear that there was a serious conflict of interests stemming from his previous work at Lilly and Ian resigned.

He decided to take a break and enrolled at London City University where he obtained a qualification in law. He worked part time for some 12 years as Assistant Deputy Coroner for inner north London and later for City of London. His special interest was in the investigation of deaths in prison and police custody.

In 1988 he made the decision to return to the pharmaceutical industry, joining, by invitation, a group of former Glaxo colleagues as Director of Research and Development at Porton International plc., a start-up biotechnology company that had been established to develop and commercialise potential therapeutic products discovered at the centre for Applied Microbiological Research at Porton Down, Wiltshire.

His activities bore fruit quickly and the company became profitable. He subsequently participated in a buy out of the company that 2 years later was sold to a French pharmaceutical firm.

Ian then retired at 64 years but remained active for some years as a consultant to new enterprise.

His interests were golf, gardening and travelling extensively to remote and challenging destinations to see wildlife. He is survived by his wife Elma, four children and 11 grandchildren.