British Kenyans receive Queen’s Birthday Honours

Queen's Birthday Honours 2017
Colin Church (left) and Graham Shaw (right) has been awarded OBEs in the Queen's Birthday Honours List. Photos: LinkedIn

Two honours have been awarded as part of the Queen’s 2017 Birthday Honours’ Diplomatic Service and Overseas list for their work in Kenya.

The Queen’s Birthday Honours list, released on the Queen’s Official birthday recognise the achievements of a wide range of extraordinary people.

To mark 100 years of the Order of the British Empire, this year’s awards are the most diverse ever. In this centenary year the Honours List has granted a great number of awards to individuals from a Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) background.

Graham Shaw MBE

Graham Neil Akeroyd Shaw, Chairman of the British Chamber of Commerce Kenya was awarded an MBE for services to the promotion of British business in Kenya.

Graham Shaw
Graham Shaw

The British Chamber was launched in 2015 to encourage increased trade between Kenya and Great Britain. The Chamber assist not only British Industry to look to Kenya for business opportunities but for Kenyan businesses to link north into Great Britain with particular focus on Education, Oil and Gas, Energy, Infrastructure Project Management and ICT.

From 1986 to 1992, he worked for PwC as a management consultant working in finance throughout Africa before joining telecommunications company Wilken Group in Nairobi as Chief Executive Officer. His other Nairobi board positions include Chairman of Virtual Mobile Ltd, Chairman of  Ramani Geosystems, Director of Rivercross Tracking Ltd, Chairman of Amana Capital Ltd and Chairman of Group Talk Ltd.

His most recent position is that of Chairman of Kenya Private Sector Alliance (KPSA) which aims to “strengthen the role of private sector as the pillar and engine of economic growth, employment and wealth creation.”

Posting on the Brits in Kenya Facebook Page, Graham said the award was a “massive surprise but gratefully accepted.”

Colin Church OBE

Former Chief Executive of Rhino Ark, Colin Edward Church was also awarded an OBE for services to conservation, the environment and the community in Kenya.

Colin Church
Colin Church

Colin has served on various conservation and tourism boards in Kenya. He was Chairman of the Kenya Wildlife Service in 2003/04, a Head of State appointment, and writes for a number of conservation and national publications in East Africa. He has been adviser on tourism to the Governments of Dubai, the Seychelles, Uganda and Kenya. He was president in 1996 and remains a Fellow of the International Public Relations Association (IPRA) and a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Public Relations in the United Kingdom (CIPR).

Related Content: UK High Commission in Kenya celebrates the Queen’s official birthday.

Dominic Troulan QGE

Dominic Troulan has been awarded the George Cross for saving lives during the Westgate Shopping Mall terrorist attack in Kenya in 2013, becoming the first civilian recipient of the award for over 40 years.

Troulan served in the British Armed Forces for over 20 years, first in the Royal Marines and subsequently in the British Army. As a sergeant in the Royal Marines, he was awarded the Queen’s Gallantry Medal (QGM) in 1993 for service in Northern Ireland. As a warrant officer class 1 in the British Army’s Parachute Regiment, he received a short-service commission in the rank of captain on 15 April 2002. He was granted an intermediate regular commission in the same rank on 1 January 2005, and was promoted to major on 31 July 2008. He entered the reserves on 31 August 2009.

Dominic Troulan
Dominic Troulan QGM

On 21 September 2013, a group of heavily-armed terrorists entered the Westgate Shopping Mall in Nairobi, Kenya and started to murder men, women and children indiscriminately. Dominic Troulan, a security consultant working in Nairobi, was contacted by a friend who asked him to go to the incident to try and locate the friend’s wife and daughter.

On arrival at the Mall, Troulan contacted the family by telephone and entered the Mall. He was armed with only a pistol while the area was dominated by terrorists armed with grenades and machine guns. Nevertheless, Troulan managed to bring the two women to safety.

Realising that large numbers of civilians remained trapped while the terrorists continued to kill indiscriminately, Troulan re-entered the Mall. Over the course of several hours, he went into the building at least a dozen times and on each occasion managed to bring many innocent civilians to safety. He was fired on twice by the terrorists but managed to force them back. By now, Troulan was exhausted, dehydrated and at the limit of his mental capacity. He was about to stop when a distress call was received from a woman who was trapped, injured and bleeding. Once again, Troulan entered the Mall and brought the woman to safety.

Despite the strain of his efforts, it should be noted that Troulan had the presence of mind to realise that the terrorists could be hiding among the survivors. Troulan enlisted help and searched the civilians once he had led them to safety, thus ensuring that no terrorists were hiding in their midst.

Barbara Frost DBE

Barbara Mary Frost, the former Chief Executive of WaterAid, which operates in Kenya, has been made a DBE (Dame of the British Empire) for services to the provision of safe water, sanitation and hygiene in developing countries. She has been honoured for her work, commitment and leadership in making the world a better place through the provision of safe water, hygiene and sanitation.

Over the past 12 years as Chief Executive of WaterAid, Barbara led the development of the charity to further raise the importance and profile of water, hygiene and sanitation in the aid and development sectors both nationally and internationally. Originally established by the UK water industry, WaterAid is now a global charity with strong UK wide support. With Barbara’s inspirational leadership it has seen lives transformed and become recognised worldwide as a trusted name.

Non-Kenyan East African Honours

Amy Hathaway

Outside of Kenya but still in East Africa, Mrs Amy Denise Hathaway, Project Director of Forever Projects, in Tanzania has been awarded an MBE for services to providing interim and community care for abandoned and vulnerable infants in Mwanza.

She is the Founder and Project Director of Forever Angels Baby Home in Mwanza, Tanzania. Through a decade of selfless and dedicated hard work, she has created a home for abandoned and at risk infants which has saved and transformed lives and had a significant impact on the local community.

It all started in 2002 when Amy, then working as an international teacher in Tanzania, became aware of the huge challenges faced by local hospitals and social services in dealing with large numbers of abandoned or motherless babies. Amy was so moved that she gave up her job and began to follow her vision in a full time, voluntary capacity.

Through her strength of personality and powers of persuasion, by 2006 she had enough support and funds to buy, renovate and staff an old hospital building. The first child arrived at the Baby Home at the end of 2006 and now, ten years later, a loving home has provided over 350 orphans with a safe haven.

The charity has grown to include a pre-school, a sensory room, a specialised facility for premature infants as well as a rapidly expanding Community Outreach program – providing life saving nutrition for orphan babies and supporting their relatives to set up sustainable businesses and empowering them to support their own families now and into the future.

On learning of her award said “I am overwhelmed and delighted that this honour will put Forever Angels in the spotlight. Our work in Tanzania is incredible and only possible because of the passion and dedication of my amazing family, trustees, volunteers and staff. I am thankful to them for creating this with me.”

Professor Philip Cotton, Vice Chancellor of the University of Rwanda received his OBE for services to education in Rwanda.

Other notable Birthday honours

PC Keith Palmer, the police officer murdered in March’s Westminster attack has been awarded a posthumous George Medal for bravery medal by the Queen.

Gallantry awards also went to pensioner Bernard Kenny, who went to the aid of murdered MP Jo Cox, and to two men who helped after the Tunisia beach attack.

Comedian Billy Connolly, who was made a CBE in 2003 has been knighted for services to entertainment and charity, while Julie Walters becomes a dame.

TV star June Whitfield, mezzo soprano Sarah Connolly and 100-year-old Gone with the Wind actress Olivia de Havilland have also become dames.

Meanwhile, Harry Potter author JK Rowling, musician Sir Paul McCartney, television cook Delia Smith and designer Sir Terence Conran are among nine new members of the prestigious Order of the Companion of Honour.

Kathleen Rees, Chief Executive Officer at the Haven in Wolverhampton receives an MBE for services to the protection of women and child victims of domestic violence in the West Midlands and overseas. Annabel Mehta, President of non-governmental organisation Apnalaya, also receives an MBE for services to the community and under privileged in Mumbai, India. The chairman of Westfield Corporation, Frank Lowy AC, and Trevor PEARS CMG of the Pears Family Charitable Organisation are both appointed Knight Bachelor.


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