Professor Derek Burke CBE, CiS President from 1999 to 2001, died at age 89 on 15th March 2019.
Derek was Vice Chancellor of the University of East Anglia (1987-1995), chairman of the John Innes Centre Governing Council (1987-1995), and a key figure in establishing the Norwich Research Park. In 1992 he was made a Deputy Lieutenant of Norfolk. He was a specialist adviser to the House of Commons Select Committee on Science and Technology from 1995 to 2001. He also served as a member of the Board of Social Responsibility of the Church of England, was an Honorary Fellow of St Edmund’s College and a Faraday Institute Associate.
CiS members remember him always taking a great interest in the affairs of CiS. He was a popular speaker at CiS events and as President he sometimes attended our committee meetings to make sure he was up to date. He was the editor of ‘Creation and Evolution’ (1985) one of the Inter-Varsity Press volumes in the series ‘When Christians Disagree’. This was an attempt to have an amicable, productive debate between CiS (whose members largely supported theistic evolution) and the Creation Research Society (who supported special creation).
Derek started a small meeting in his own home to discuss science and faith and this eventually developed into the now CiS affiliated group, Science and Faith in Norfolk. He also helped to establish an annual series of Science-Faith Lectures at Norwich Cathedral which still continues.
Derek was buried beside his wife, Mary, at Walberswick churchyard, Suffolk on Saturday 11thApril. Our sincere condolences, thoughts and prayers go out to his family and friends.