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President-elect: Professor Michele Dougherty CBE FRS FInstP FRAS

Term of office: October 2023-September 2025 (to be President from October 2025)

A headshot of Institute of Physics president-elect Michele Dougherty smiling

Michele Dougherty is a Professor of Space Physics and Head of the Department of Physics at Imperial College London.

Michele has been involved in space exploration for nearly 30 years and in 2008 became only the second woman in over a century to be awarded the Royal Society’s Hughes Medal.

She has led unmanned exploratory missions to Saturn and Jupiter and was the Principal Investigator for the magnetometer instrument onboard the Cassini mission to Saturn that led to the discovery of an atmosphere around one of the planet’s moons.

She is also the Principal Investigator of the magnetometer for the Jupiter Icy Moons Explorer (JUICE) of the European Space Agency that launched in April 2023. Michele has been awarded the 2024 Royal Society Bakerian Medal for her work on both the Cassini and JUICE missions.

She has contributed significantly to the UK space sector and was chair for the Science Programme Advisory Committee of the UK Space Agency from 2014-2016.

Michele is a Fellow of the Royal Society, and was awarded the Royal Astronomical Society Geophysics Gold Medal in 2017, a CBE in the 2018 new year honours list and the Institute of Physics  Richard Glazebrook Gold Medal and Prize the same year.