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Meet the 2021 CIBSE BPA Speakers

Stuart MacPherson

CIBSE President 2020/21
Director, Irons Foulner Consulting Engineers

Stuart MacPherson holds a BSc in physics, an MSc in building services engineering, an MBA and a PhD. He has served on the Scottish Region Committee for many years, including a time as Chair. Stuart is a membership interviewer, joined the CIBSE board in 2009, and has served as the Treasurer and a Vice President before being elected President...

He has served on several panels as an adviser to the Scottish Government on the energy performance of buildings and carbon accounting related to buildings and he has assisted with the drafting of the Scottish Building Regulations in relation to energy and sustainability.   He retains an interest in research following an earlier career in academia and is a member of the referee board of a number of academic journals

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Catherine Noakes, OBE

Professor of Environmental Engineering for Buildings, University of Leeds

Professor Cath Noakes is a chartered mechanical engineer, with a background in fluid dynamics. Her teaching and research expertise is in building physics and environmental engineering and she leads research into ventilation, indoor air quality and infection control in the built environment. 

Her internationally recognised research group carry out experimental and modelling based studies, to explore the transport of airborne pathogens, the influence of indoor airflows and effectiveness of engineering approaches to controlling airborne disease transmission.

Cath is currently Deputy Director of Leeds Institute for Fluid Dynamics and Co-Director for the EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Fluid Dynamics.  Since April 2020 she has been involved in the UK COVID-19 response, leading the SAGE EMG sub-group focusing on the science underpinning environmental transmission of COVID-19.

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Tom Hopton

Associate, Buro Happold
CIBSE BPA Engineer of the Year 2020

Tom is an Associate at Buro Happold with 15 years’ experience in the built environment industry. A fellow of CIBSE, member of Building Controls Industry Association (BCIA), panel member of the  ICT and controls group, and part-time lecturer.

Tom is passionate about ‘better buildings’ and the role that technology can play to unlock building performance in its holistic form. Working across many sectors from schools to stadiums Tom prides himself on the technical detail and the holistic approach needed to successfully deliver outcomes with integrated solutions.

His contribution to the industry has recently been recognised when he was awarded Building Performance Engineer of the Year 2020, a true marker of his holistic approach to building performance.

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Stephen Matthews


Stephen Matthews was educated at Welbeck College, RMA Sandhurst and RMCS Shrivenham where he read mechanical engineering.  In 1973 he was commissioned into the Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers (REME).  As a young officer he served predominately in Germany with armoured units; as well as Cyprus in 1974 and the Falklands in 1982-83.

He attended the Army Staff College as both a student and instructor. In his latter military years he saw service in Bosnia and Kosovo, was responsible for technical training (aeronautical, electrical and mechanical) - training some 5,500 students pa, from basic to 1st degree and beyond in a £750M pa PFI.  He left the military aged 49 having enjoyed two demanding 1-star jobs.

In July 2006 he joined CIBSE as the Chief Executive with a passion to develop the Institution and make an informed contribution to the climate change debate. Since then he has continued to develop the Institution as it seeks to be one of the most successful Professional Engineering Institutions.

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