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  • 22/11/2016
  • Media Releases

Liberty leader honoured by Scottish Alma Mater for contribution to engineering

An industry leader who has played pivotal role in the rescue and turnaround of major parts of Britain’s steel and engineering sectors over the past year, today (Tuesday 22nd November 2016) received an Honorary Doctorate from the Scottish university where he graduated more than 30 years ago.

Douglas Dawson, Chief Executive of Liberty Industries Group, was honoured for outstanding service to engineering over the past three decades, in a career which has now led him to the forefront of Liberty House Group’s high-profile drive to revive manufacturing and engineering in the United Kingdom.

Mr Dawson, 55, whose roles as an entrepreneur and top industry executive, have made deep positive impacts on engineering over many years, received his Honorary Degree of Doctor of Engineering from Glasgow Caledonian University during a high profile ceremony at the university’s Britannia Building.

A native of Glasgow, he graduated in Mechanical Engineering from GCU in 1982 and went on to distinguish himself within the UK and internationally in the engineering and manufacturing sectors.

Over the past year he has worked alongside international entrepreneur, Sanjeev Gupta, in rescuing struggling industrial enterprises and developing a new business model designed to give the British steel and engineering sectors a competitive and sustainable future.

As Chief Executive of Liberty Industries Group, he has led the recovery of the former Caparo steel and engineering businesses in the West Midlands and is also a member of the Strategic Board of the $7bn-a-year GFG Alliance, a fast-growing global enterprise which includes the Liberty House and SIMEC groups.

He began his career as a Naval Engineering Officer, reaching the rank of Chief Engineer Class 1 by the age of 26, before moving on to senior management roles with global industrial enterprises. He subsequently founded his own industrial enterprise, which he grew into a $60m-a-year business.

Professor Iain Cameron, Dean of GCU’s School of Engineering and Built Environment, said; “Douglas Dawson is one of the University’s most successful engineering graduates and is an outstanding role model for our students today. His 30-year track record of achievement in a succession of challenging roles demonstrates that the sky really is the limit for someone who combines a good education with determination and commitment, regardless of their background.

“We are proud to have played a part in his story and grateful that he continues to be an ambassador for the University and for future generations of engineers.  Douglas is passionate about facilitating entry in to engineering and related programmes for all youths and young adults but especially those from backgrounds that do not normally go to University. We hope this award will help inspire future generations to undertake engineering at Glasgow Caledonian University.”

Speaking about the award Mr Dawson said: “I’m very grateful to the university not only for this personal honour but more significantly for promoting the importance of the engineering sector to the UK economy.”

This is the second time GCU has honoured Mr Dawson for his contribution to industry. In 2014 he received an Alumni Achievement Award for Engineering & Industrial Management.