Lee Cooper was presented with his medal at Windsor in November by King Charles – the first occasion of him bestowing these medals as King.
During an outstanding 44 year career as a Research Worker with Forest Research, Lee supported numerous projects benefiting the forestry sector and society. The award acknowledges Lee’s outstanding commitment and pivotal role in the success of these projects. His expert historical knowledge and decades of dedication to maintaining Forest Research’s experimental network resulting in a unique and valuable resource for research.
Many of the successful projects supported by Lee have subsequently informed government policies including those on alternative tree species choice, renewable energy policies, continuous cover forestry and alternative silvicultural systems being implemented across the UK. He has also been actively involved with pest and disease monitoring to alert colleagues and regulatory authorities to new outbreaks, this work helping protect the biosecurity of the UK.
Throughout his career, Lee generously supported students to achieve Master’s and PhD qualifications by advising them on the practicalities and pitfalls of field work. In mentoring and coaching other Research Workers he has been invaluable, helping ensure the future of Forest Research’s experimental network in the UK. His dedication is such that he came out of retirement part-time to ensure a new team of Research Workers could learn from his experience which he was keen to share with future generations.