Diamond welcomes new Finance & Corporate Services Appointment

Jane Tirard appointed Diamond’s new Director of Finance and Corporate Services.

Jane Tirard
Jane Tirard


Diamond Light Source Ltd, the UK’s synchrotron science facility, has appointed Jane Tirard as its new Director of Finance and Corporate Services.

Starting in January 2015, Jane will take over from Andrew Akerman, who has been with Diamond since 2009 and retires at the end of this year. Diamond’s new appointment will be joining one of the UK’s most cutting-edge scientific facilities. Jane’s background, which spans both the private and public sectors, means she brings a wealth of relevant experience to the role.
Jane comes equipped with over 30 years of regional and global experience in business and financial management. In her current role as Finance Director at Queen Mary University of London, Jane has honed her skills in an academic environment. Jane is also particularly familiar with the UK’s synchrotron. Diamond is a joint venture between the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC) and the Wellcome Trust, and Jane previously held the post of Executive Director of Finance at STFC, where she contributed to the strategic direction of the organisation and the financial plan, as well as leading on all aspects of financial and management accounting.
Diamond’s CEO, Professor Andrew Harrison, comments: “We are extremely pleased to welcome Jane on board. Her wealth of experience in high level strategic financial planning and her working knowledge of government departments, funding councils, academia and the pharmaceutical sector will be a great asset to Diamond. Science is an internationally competitive field and Diamond needs people of Jane’s calibre to ensure that we retain our position as a world class facility. We are extremely grateful to Andy Akerman for his considerable contribution to the organisation over the last six years and wish him all the best for the future.”
Jane adds: “I’m delighted to be joining Diamond. It’s a truly incredible facility, and a great example of Britain leading the way in science and technology. I was with STFC for four years and so I have valuable experience of working in this complex and fast moving field. I felt this really was an unmissable opportunity: I understand the environment; I know many of the people, and I know many of the issues. This is a really exciting time for Diamond, and I hope that my leadership and work as a director will ensure that finance and corporate services continue to underpin the strategy for the future.”
Jane is coming to Diamond at an important time. Eight years into its operation, Diamond is one of the world’s most advanced scientific machines. Thousands of researchers from academia and industry use the facility every year, exploiting the intense beams of electron light produced by the synchrotron to carry out experiments into everything, from viruses and vaccines, to engineering and technology.
Building began on Diamond in 2003, and the phased construction process is still ongoing. There are now 24 experimental stations, or ‘beamlines’, around the synchrotron where scientists can use Diamond’s light. This number is set to increase to 33 by 2018. With so many facilities now online, the synchrotron has transitioned from a facility under construction to an operational machine. Thus, Diamond is in the process of looking ahead, and is laying out its 10 year vision for the future of the facility. Jane’s skills and experience will be vital to this process, helping to ensure that Diamond maintains its status as a world class facility.
Diamond also hosts the world’s only Membrane Protein Facility to be situated adjacent to a synchrotron, and construction is well underway on a national electron microscopy facility for both the life and the physical sciences. The synchrotron is also part of the collaboration that is developing a UK Hub for Free Electron Laser (FEL) expertise, and this will be hosted at Diamond.