Christians in Science

The Committee


The activities of CiS are overseen by the CiS committee, which is drawn from the membership and meets three or more times during the year.

Chair: Prof Andrew Halestrap

Andrew Halestrap is a Professor of Biochemistry at the University of Bristol and is current Chairman of The Bristol Heart Institute. He is a Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences and was awarded Keilin Memorial Lecture of the Biochemical society in 2010. His current research focuses on how lactic acid crosses cell membranes and the role of mitochondria in the healthy and diseased heart (see He is on the Editorial Board of two major research journals and the council of the British Heart Foundation.

General Secretary: Dr Diana Briggs

Diana is based in Oxford and in addition to her role as CiS General Secretary also coordinates the Oxford Local Group. She studied Biochemistry at Otago University (New Zealand) and obtained a DPhil in Protein Chemistry from Oxford. Following post-docs in Molecular and Cell Biology in both London and Oxford, she was a scientific advisor for a small biotech company for a number of years.

Development Officer: Emily Sturgess

Emily studied Biological Sciences at Jesus College, Oxford, and then went on to obtain an MSc in Species Identification and Survey Skills from the University of Reading, as training in environmental consultancy. She is particularly interested in biodiversity, conservational ethics, animal behaviour and making spreadsheets. In her spare hours not being a Development Officer, she blogs, eats cake, and occasionally plays in a ceilidh band.

Emily is based in Oxford, and can be contacted at

Executive Officer: Mrs Mary Browett

Mary has worked in a diverse number of industries from IT, Construction, Retail, NHS etc but has always had an interest in the Sciences. From looking through microscopes to star gazing, biology, geology, chemistry, and the list goes on. Mary lives in Exeter with her husband Warren.

Mary can be contacted at

Education Secretary: Dr John Ling

Dr John Ling has taught in different capacities at a variety of state and independent schools. John’s PhD is in Materials Engineering, John has also worked for British Steel and Corus Group Plc and was an industrial scientist and Secretary to the UK STIR innovation group. John has more recently been an Education Advisor to The Wonder Project ( and The Long Shop Museum, Suffolk In 2006 John organised a National Education Conference exploring Christian attitudes to education followed, in 2008, by a Royal Society supported Sixth Form conference entitled “God and The Big Bang”.

Interview: html version / pdf version (432kb)

Journal Editor: Prof Keith Fox

Keith Fox is Professor of Biochemistry at Southampton University, where he leads research on sequence specific recognition of DNA by small molecules, oligonucleotides and proteins, and is Executive Editor of the journal Nucleic Acids Research. He is a lay reader at Highfield Church, Southampton.

Interview: html version pdf version (236 kb)

School of Biological Sciences, University of Southampton, University Road, Southampton, SO17 1BJ

Journal Reviews Editor: Rev Dr Rodney Holder

Rodney Holder worked as an astrophysicist before becoming ordained as a minister in the Church of England, and is currently Course Director at The Faraday Institute for Science and Religion at St Edmund’s College, Cambridge.

Membership Secretary: Mrs Fran Armitage

Fran studied biochemistry in Oxford in the 1960s, and did some post-graduate work at UBC in Vancouver.  On returning to England, she was a full-time Mum for some years, and then became involved with the administration of various international Christian organisations and conferences.   She took over as CiS membership secretary in time for the 2012 renewal process.  She lives in Coventry with her husband Godfrey, who is also a member of CiS.

Treasurer: Dr Hugh Reynolds

Hugh is a retired biochemist. Formerly, he researched Neurodegeneration, particularly with reference to Alzheimer’s disease, at the Institute of Psychiatry, King’s College London; and has also worked in the pharmaceuticals industry.

24 Wanstead Road, Bromley, Kent BR1 3BL
Tel: 020 8460 5532

International Secretary: Dr Bob Sluka

“I grew up loving the ocean – despite spending my first 18 years of life in Detroit. Starting diving at age 13 and degrees in marine biology from University of Miami convinced me that a life lived studying the ocean was for me. I grew up in a Christian home and continue to follow that faith. However, it has only been recently that I have discovered how my faith relates to my love of the ocean. I am working towards a life that integrates my beliefs and love of the ocean in a way that brings blessing to people, nations, and the planet. I am Lead Scientist of A Rocha International’s Marine and Coastal Conservation Programme and  am an associate of the Faraday Institute for Science and Religion.”

Student Secretary: Anna Pearson

Anna completed her MSci Physics degree at Royal Holloway, University of London and is now studying for a DPhil in the Materials department at Oxford. Her project entails trying to find out if large* things (which should behave normally) can behave like quantum particles (which don’t!).

Whilst at Royal Holloway, along with a few friends Anna set up a student CiS group, and in her final year (which had lectures across the London universities) set up a group in central London. She has recently started to get some science-faith communication practice with the God and the Big Bang and LASAR projects , .

*a carbon nanotube, which is large when compared to an electron

Committee members:

Dr Clare Foster

Clare is a Research Officer in the Improving Outcomes Team at Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Clinical Commissioning Group, and previously worked as a Research Facilitator at Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridge. She has a PhD in colorectal cancer cell biology from Durham University and an MPhil in Public Health from the University of Cambridge. Clare was involved with setting up the Durham local group of CiS as an undergraduate, and has previously been the Student Rep on the CiS committee.

Dr Rhoda Hawkins

Dr Rhoda Hawkins is a Lecturer in Physics at the University of Sheffield. Prior to this she worked as a postdoc in Amsterdam, Paris and Bristol. She did her PhD at the University of Leeds and her undergraduate studies at the University of Oxford. She has been a member of Christians in Science since her student days and served on the committee as a PhD student rep. More recently she has enjoyed using the Test of Faith materials in a variety of contexts and speaking in secondary schools about science and religion.