Professor Neva Haites OBE (class of 1964) obtained a PhD in Biochemistry at the University of Queensland before moving to Aberdeen, where she undertook her medical degree and training. She was a Professor in Medical Genetics and the Head of College at the University of Aberdeen, College of Life Sciences and Medicine. In 2004, she was appointed as Vice Principal of the University of Aberdeen, representing the first female to hold the position.
As a scientist and physician who investigated molecular genetics and diseases in humans and specialises in cancer genetics, Professor Haites has more than 90 publications in genetics concerning inherited predisposition to disease.
Professor Haites is an Emeritus Professor of Medical Genetics and a retired Honorary consultant clinical geneticist at NHS Grampian. As a clinical geneticist she saw, among other referrals, individuals and families with a history of cancer and provided counselling, genetic testing and services for surveillance.
She has recently been a member of the Working Group of the Nuffield Council on Bioethics considering Genome Editing and human reproduction: social and ethical issues. She was also a member of the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA), a Government Advisory Committee member of the Committee on Medical Aspects of Radiation in the Environment (COMARE), and a Biomedical and Therapeutic Committee member of the Chief Scientist Office (CSO) of the Scottish Office.
Professor Haites was awarded an Order of the British Empire (OBE) for services to Medicine during the 2006 New Year Honours. She was elected Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences (FMedSci) in 2000, Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh (FRSE) in 2010, and has gained fellowships with the Royal College of Physicians (FRCP) and the Royal College of Pathologists (FRCP).
With a special interest in inherited predisposition to cancer, Professor Haites has Chaired the Cancer Genetics Sub-Group of the Scottish Cancer Group. In March 2019 Professor Haites became a Trustee of the University of Aberdeen Development Trust.
The Somerville House community look forward to warmly welcoming Professor Haites back to the school to celebrate advancements in girls’ education over the past 120 years, as we commemorate the school’s milestone birthday.
The event is open to the entire school community, and tickets can be purchased here.